Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Volunteers attend training session in Oklahoma City - Norman Transcript

NORMAN â€" Volunteer of the week is Carlos Bromlow. He is always ready to take on any task that we ask of him. The last couple of years his main duties have been in the kitchen keeping the coffee and snacks available to all of those who visit us each Thursday. Carlos has been the go-to-guy when we need help setting up worktables or helping to cleanup at the end of the day. Carlos is married to Betty.

There were more than 50 volunteers who made it for the junior service officer training held in Oklahoma City. The training was broken down into two groups advanced and beginners. All of those in attendance were glad to receive an update on some of the changes that the Department of Veterans Affairs. One of the important changes that could impact many veterans is the time period before we can file for a re-evaluation of the veterans service connected disability. We have always been told that the veteran must wait one year from the date stamped on the front of their decision letter. The VA rating officials have told us that there is no longer a waiting period. If you feel that your service connected disability has become more severe since the last rating, stop by and let’s ask for a re-evaluation.

Last Thursday we were able to provide assistance to 134 veterans and surviving spouses. Of this number, there were nine veterans who received a 100 percent rating for their disabilities that occurred or were caused by military service. For those of you who were not retired military and received the 100 percent rating, your dependents might qualify for the Champ-VA medical insurance and the educational benefits. Retired military dependents also might qualify for the educational benefits that are available. For more information, call Jerry or Joan Baxter at 833-0773.

There were six widows who made the trip to visit with Shirley’s crew of ladies about DIC and pension benefits. I encourage all surviving spouses to stop by on Thursday morning or call Shirley for information about possible VA benefits. She can be reached at 361-9322 for questions on surviving spouse benefits.

We were able to process 24 veterans for VA benefits who had never filed a claim for benefits before. I reviewed most of these applications and I’m pleased to say that many of them should be able to receive some type of benefits.

Applications are available each Thursday morning for those who are in need of the benevolence service. We are a 501(C)(3) non- profit for those of you who would like to support our service. Any donations you make to us should be tax deductible. We do not receive any federal, state or United Way aid, the only support we receive is from the men and women who we have helped through the Veterans Corner location

The book, “One Hundred stories from Veterans Corner” has arrived and is on sale for $15. I’m proud to say that one of our own volunteers Dr. Kami Day has published this for us. She recorded thousands of hours of Veterans stories the last three years. You can also purchase the book on at ref=cm_sw_r_fa_alp_yO1uqb07C2E0W. We purchased 500 to be sold at our Corner by Harold Harvell, JD Kinard and Riley Phillips. These men also sell military hats and other items that are used as a fundraiser to help provide the service to veterans and their surviving spouses.

The drivers that are available to transport veterans to their VA appointments are Clayton Lee at 684-8860, Harold Martin at 227-3239, Robert Root at 919-3008 and Howard Roberts at 205-4895.

Here to help

For all of your questions and assistance about veteran’s benefits, we are at the Goldsby Community Center each Thursday. The doors open at 8 a.m.

Take time to visit our web address at

You also may send donations to Veterans Corner P.O. Box 704 Washington, OK 73093.

You can contact me at 550-8806 or kdgraham@

Semper Fi.

Dale K. Graham is service officer for VFW Post 4890.

Oklahoma City Council takes cues from peer cities Fort Worth, Texas, Charlotte ... -

Copyright ©2012 The Associated Press. Produced by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
By Michael Kimball | Published: September 19, 2012 Oklahoman    Comment on this articleLeave a comment

Patience, partnership, planning and compromise will be key elements in sustaining Oklahoma City's redevelopment momentum if experiences in Fort Worth, Texas, and Charlotte, N.C., are indications.

The Oklahoma City Council spent Tuesday morning in a special meeting at Oklahoma City Community College to hear the redevelopment stories of Fort Worth and Charlotte, both a few years further along with major redevelopment initiatives similar to things happening here.

Planners from both cities shared their stories with the council and stressed that a long-term view, careful planning, partnerships with the private sector and compromises in the face of controversy have been catalysts to sustained success.


Charlotte's redevelopment efforts focused on a revitalized downtown core and a revamped, expanded transportation service in the metro, said Debra Campbell, planning director for Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. Continued efforts focusing on making the downtown area viable, livable, memorable and sustainable have been hallmarks.

But lessons have been learned over decades and applied in contemporary efforts, Campbell said.

The city has worked hard in recent years to minimize the number of people displaced by urban redevelopment after low-income families were kicked out of downtown in the 1960s.

“We will never, ever make that mistake again,” Campbell vowed.

Charlotte's transit renaissance involved making sure a light rail system serving outlying areas connected with bus services to help commuters, not just tourists and people who spend all day downtown.

And in words that may resonate with people following development of the future Oklahoma City Boulevard downtown, Campbell left no doubt where she thinks the focus should be when tackling Oklahoma City's transportation challenges.

“A good land use plan is a good transportation plan,” Campbell said. “But land use should lead.”

Greater Oklahoma City Chamber President Roy Williams echoed Campbell's remarks when sharing lessons the chamber has learned from its own visits to peer cities.

“You build transit for the city you want, not the city you have,” he said.

A patient and well-detailed planning process with the long term in mind also has been key in Charlotte, Campbell said.

Fort Worth

The redevelopment project in Fort Worth most similar to an effort in Oklahoma City is the relocation of Interstate 30 in downtown Fort Worth. The new alignment is a few blocks south of the previous roadway, which is similar to what Oklahoma City has done with the new alignment of Interstate 40.

Images shared by Randle Harwood, Fort Worth's director of planning and development, showed what Oklahoma City leaders hope to see take shape here: An ugly, elevated roadway transiting over a blighted area has given way to an elegant boulevard that has already spurred redevelopment, with more planned in the near future.

But Mike Brennan, president of Fort Worth South Inc., a nonprofit development advocate similar to Downtown OKC Inc., cautioned Oklahoma City leaders that “tough compromises” will have to be made. For example, planners in one Fort Worth district hoped for a code requirement for multistory buildings, but compromised when some developers were willing to invest only in single-story buildings for now.

Still, Fort Worth's mixed-use development successes should be encouraging to Oklahoma City's civic leaders looking for a broader range of development in the urban core. Clearly written city codes, investment from public-private partnerships and clear vision similar to some projects in Oklahoma City have yielded small businesses in Fort Worth that occupy the first floor of some buildings, many that take design cues from regional history, with residential loft space overhead.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Aerosmith to play Nov. 8 show at Chesapeake Energy Arena - (blog)

Aerosmith will launch the second leg of its “Global Warming Tour” Nov. 8 at Oklahoma City’s Chesapeake Energy Arena, the venue announced this evening.

The venerable rock ‘n’ roll band kicked off its triumphant, sold-out “The Global Warming Tour” this past summer, with critics from the New York Times, Dallas Morning News, Boston Herald and more.

After launching the tour’s second leg here in OKC, Aerosmith â€" Steven Tyler (vocals), Joe Perry (guitar), Brad Whitford (guitar), Tom Hamilton (bass) and Joey Kramer (drums) â€" will take the month-long, 14-city arena tour to New York City (Madison Square Garden), Los Angeles (Staples Center) and Las Vegas (MGM Grand Garden Arena), among other cities.  The Rock and Roll Hall of Famers will be coming fully armed with career-defining hits as well as blazing songs from their new album “Music from Another Dimension,”out Nov. 6 on Columbia Records. They’re the only band of their stature with all-original members, according to a news release.

The tour will include special guests Cheap Trick.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Monday at  American Express card members can get advance tickets beginning at 10 a.m. Wednesday.  For VIP ticket packages, including opportunities to meet band members, backstage tours, great tickets and more, visit  In addition, a Facebook pre-sale begins Friday; fans who visit RSVP to the presale will have early access to tickets.

“Music From Another Dimension” â€" recently chosen by People magazine as one of “5 Must Have Albums For Fall”- marks Aerosmith’s 15th studio album and their first studio album of all-new material in 11 years. The album was recorded in Los Angeles and at the band’s studio in Massachusetts; it was produced by Jack Douglas, Tyler and Perry, with the exception of three tracks produced by Tyler and Marti Frederiksen. The album abounds with one highlight after another, including “Out Go The Lights,” “Oh Yeah,” “Luv XXX,” “We All Fall Down,” “Street Jesus” and “Can’t Stop Loving You,” on which Tyler duets with Checotah native Carrie Underwood.  The album also includes “Freedom Fighter,” which features Johnny Depp on backing vocals. The album’s first two singles have been released simultaneously to radio and are now lighting up the airwaves: “What Could Have Been Love” is now impacting at Hot AC and “Lover A Lot” at Rock, Active Rock, and Classic Rock.

For more information, go to

The Global Warming Tour dates are as follows:

DATE                                     CITY                                                       VENUE

Thu        11/8                       Oklahoma City, OK                          Chesapeake Energy Arena

Sun        11/11                     Wichita, KS                                          INTRUST Bank Arena

Wed      11/14                     Kansas City, MO                               Spring Center

Fri           11/16                     Austin, TX                                            Frank Erwin Center

Tue        11/20                     New York, NY                                    Madison Square Garden

Fri           11/23                     Atlantic City, NJ                                 Revel Resorts â€" Ovation Hall

Sun        11/25                     Columbus, OH                                   Nationwide Arena

Tue        11/27                     Toronto, ON                                       Air Canada Centre

Sat          12/1                       Las Vegas, NV                                    MGM Grand Garden Arena

Mon      12/3                       Los Angeles, CA                                STAPLES Center

Thu        12/6                       New Orleans, LA                              New Orleans Arena

Sun        12/9                       Fort Lauderdale, FL                         BB&T Center

Tue        12/11                     Tampa, FL                                            Tampa Bay Times Forum

Thu        12/13                     Nashville, TN                                      Bridgestone Arena


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Two arrested after one punched a police officer at Oklahoma State Fair -

Copyright ©2012 The Associated Press. Produced by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
By LeighAnne Manwarren | Published: September 18, 2012 Oklahoman   

Two men were arrested after a fight at the Oklahoma State Fair, and one is accused of punching a police officer.

Michael Anthony Walter, 19, was arrested Saturday on complaints of assault and battery and public drunkenness and Alexander Daniel Allen Flynn, 20, was arrested on complaints of assault and battery on a city official and assault and battery on a police officer.

photo - Alexander Daniel Allen Flynn, 20, was arrested on complaints of assault and battery of a city official and assault and battery of a police officer. <strong></strong>

Alexander Daniel Allen Flynn, 20, was arrested on complaints of assault and battery of a city official and assault and battery of a police officer.


According to a police report released Tuesday, a man saw Walter arguing with and pushing a woman who was later identified to be his mother. The man told Walter to leave the woman alone.

The man said Walter then ran up to him and started punching him in the head.

Two Oklahoma City police officers in plainclothes heard people yelling in the parking lots near Neosho Avenue and Homestead Drive and saw the fight in progress, according to the police report.

The officers identified themselves and tried to break up the fight, placing Walter on the ground. Flynn, a friend of Walter's, then approached police, the report said.

An officer placed his hand on Flynn's chest to force him back, and Flynn punched him in the face with a closed fist, police reported. The officer then arrested Flynn.

Walter's mother told police she and her son were arguing about whether or not they wanted to leave the fair. Police noted both Walter and his mother smelled of alcohol.

Police said while Flynn was detained at the state fair's safety center, he taunted uniformed officers and said, “I knew he was a cop, but it doesn't matter. You don't put your hands on me.”

Walter and Flynn were both taken to the Oklahoma County jail.

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Associated Press

WARWICK, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee and House Speaker Gordon Fox said Tuesday they are looking into whether the state can seize by eminent domain the site of a 2003 nightclub fire where 100 people were killed so that a memorial can be built there.

Families of the victims have been fighting for years to build a memorial at the site of the Feb. 20, 2003, blaze in West Warwick, which was started when pyrotechnics for the rock band Great White set fire to flammable foam that lined the walls of The Station nightclub.

The land is owned by a private company, which has so far refused to sell or donate it so that a permanent memorial can be erected. Families of fire victims and survivors have described the situation as a stalemate. A makeshift memorial with homemade crosses, photos of victims and flowers exists on the land. Families and survivors gather annually to remember the blaze.

Chafee told The Associated Press on Monday that he was open to the idea of taking the land by eminent domain after Dave Kane, the father of the youngest fire victim, called on the state to seize it. The governor told reporters Tuesday that his office is examining the legalities of seizing the land by eminent domain.

Fox on Tuesday told the AP through his spokesman, Larry Berman, that the state should look at taking the land, and that his staff was also exploring the issue, including how much the land would cost.

"He said, 'How do you put a price tag on 100 people's lives?'" Berman said.

The governor said that as the 10-year anniversary of the fire approached, it was an appropriate time to renew focus on the fire.

Chafee said he does not take seizing land lightly and said working with the landowner is preferable to invoking eminent domain. But he also pointed out that the state has seized land in the past for parks and said he asked his legal team to look at "the process and legalities of eminent domain."

"We have to proceed very deliberatively," Chafee said. "I'm very sensitive to the high emotions associated with this tragedy. ... If the families of the victims are unified, I'm very eager to work with them."

The family that owns the land did not respond to calls seeking comment.

Several relatives of those who died and fire survivors told the AP this week they were hopeful that the governor's attention would help break the impasse.

A "satellite" memorial in neighboring Warwick was scheduled to break ground Wednesday, concerning some families who worried the focus would be taken off efforts to place a memorial at the site of the fire. Berman told the AP that Fox shares a belief that the site of the fire is the most appropriate location for a memorial.

A lawyer who represented the state Economic Development Corp. in a previous eminent domain case said Tuesday that the governor's legal team will have to determine whether the purpose of taking the land is for a public use. Attorney Sam Zurier said both the Rhode Island Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court have said it is up to legislators to define what qualifies as a public use.

"You don't need to plan on building a highway or a public building," he said, citing a U.S. Supreme Court decision that allowed New London, Conn., to exercise eminent domain law to take over the property of several homeowners for commercial use.


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Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Webfoots and Whitetails - (blog)

A Delta Waterfowl chapter has organized in Oklahoma City

Delta Waterfowl chapter forms in Oklahoma
An Oklahoma Delta Waterfowl Chapter has organized in Oklahoma City and will hold its first banquet Oct. 6 at the Express Event Center, 8512 NW Expressway.
Delta Waterfowl is a conservation organization that started in 1911 and is the oldest waterfowl conservation organization in the country.
The main focus of the group is duck production and predator management, said Patrick Lambakis, Oklahoma Delta Waterfowl Chapter Chairman.
For more information on Delta Waterfowl or tickets to the banquet, visit or call Lambakis at 213-3539.

Paul Newsom DU banquet on Friday
The Tri-City Chapters of Ducks Unlimited will hold a fund raising banquet in honor of the late Paul Newsom on Friday (Sept. 21) in Oklahoma City.
The banquet will be at the Eve Centre, 8601 S Western. Doors open at 6 p.m. Dinner will be served at 7 p.m. with a live auction to follow.
For more information, contact Tim Miller at 593-2657 or
Newsom, who died of cancer in 2009, was host of the outdoors television shows, Paul Newsom’s Great Outdoors and Hunting the Country.

Whitetail workshop
A deer hunting and management workshop will be held Thursday (Sept. 20) from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds in Norman.
The workshop is free to the public, but those attending must RSVP by Sept. 18 to Cherry Slaughter by calling (405) 321-4774 or emailing
Featured speakers from the Oklahoma State University Cooperate Extenions from Grady, McClain and Cleveland counties will cover a variety of deer management and hunting-related topics.

Quality Deer Management group forming
The Quality Deer Management Association,, is holding a meeting to discuss the formation of a wildlife management cooperative in the greater Butler and Hammon areas on Sept. 25 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Butler Community Building.
The QDMA is a national nonprofit wildlife conservation organization that specializes in education and outreach to landowners, hunters, wildlife resource professionals and the public. For more information on the meeting, contact Kip Adams at or (570) 439-5696.

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OKC Zoo Adopts Infant Chimpanzee - KWTV

Ruben, while he was at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. Soon he will make his public debut in Oklahoma City. Photo: Tampa’s Lowry Park ZooRuben, while he was at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. Soon he will make his public debut in Oklahoma City. Photo: Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo


The Oklahoma City Zoo adopts a new infant chimpanzee into its troop. After being hand-raised at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, seven-month-old Ruben arrived in Oklahoma City on July 30.

Ruben needed a new home after a rough start in life. His mother, Rukiya, died 24 hours after giving birth. As if the loss of his mother wasn't enough, zoo officials say he was treated roughly by his father and his surrogate mother didn't accept him. That's when the Oklahoma City Zoo stepped in to help.

"The big benefit of being accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is collaboration with other zoos," said Alan Varsik, Oklahoma City Zoo deputy director. "This is especially true for the well-being of our animals, such as being able to provide the long-term social health of this infant chimp, Ruben."

Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo caregivers gave Ruben aroundâ€"the-clock care since his birth. They also traveled with him to Oklahoma City and stayed for the first 72 hours to monitor the transition to his new home.

After just a few weeks, zoo officials say Ruben is blending well and being accepted by his new chimp family. Gradually, he has been introduced to the dominate male, Mwami; his surrogate mother, Kito; adult male,Quadeer; adult female, Cindy; and four-year-old, Zoe.

"Our Zoo has had two successful chimpanzee surrogate situations and we are gaining a good reputation among accredited zoos for our surrogate program," said Laura Bottaro, Oklahoma City Zoo mammal curator.

The Zoo plans to continue its surrogacy efforts as needed locally and abroad as part of the Chimpanzee Species Survival Plan, a cooperative conservation and breeding program for species at risk of extinction.

Watch for updates on Ruben's progress and debut dates! Or follow Ruben and the other OKC Zoo animals on Facebook!