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Western Nebraska Airport Authority Board member Lou Kleager announces his retirement from the Board effective August 16, 2018.

He wishes to thank the voters of Scotts Bluff County for their support as well as his fellow Board members and the Airport Staff.

He has enjoyed being a small part of the team which has continued to develop an extraordinary airport. He notes that the physical facilities are in excellent shape, the budget is well managed, the safety program is strong and that we now have an outstanding, reliable airline service at an affordable price.

He is retiring for personal reasons and is looking forward to other pursuits.


The crash occurred at just before 11am on Thursday near mile marker 100 on Highway 385 in Morrill County. A southbound Jeep had crossed the center line and struck a northbound semi head on. The driver of the Jeep, Chester Shuster, 71, of Alliance was killed in the collision. It is believed that Shuster was suffering a medical episode at the time of the crash. A trooper and three civilians on scene performed CPR on Shuster paramedics arrived, but he was pronounced deceased on scene.


Adams County Colorado Coroner’s Office notified us that Messiah White, (male) age 4, of Colorado Springs Colorado, passed away in the early morning hours of July 24, 2018.  


Based on numerous interviews, investigation and reports by Scotts Bluff County Deputies, Nebraska State Patrol, and Nebraska Game and Parks Commission officers, we have determined this an accidental death


#1. 2018 Toyota C-HR donated by TEAM Auto Center - Garrett Dudden

#2. 2018 Honda Pioneer 500 donated by Sandberg Honda - Brock Schank

#3 .$2,000 Cash donated by McDonalds of W.Neb & Torr. WY - Jennifer Schwab

#4. 2 Rndtrip tickets donated by Skywest Airlines - Teresa Swank

#5. La-Z-Boy Recliner donated by Webber’s Furniture - Troy Ouderkirk

#6. Fire Pit Table & Chairs donated by Carr-Trumbull Lumber - Evelyn Bjordahl

#7. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Diane Vandenberg

#8. $250 in Gift Cards donated by Runza - Karol Nyquist

#9. 2 - 2019 Western Nebraska Pioneers Season tickets - Judy Howell

#10. $250 Gift Card donated by The Steel Grill - John Maser

#11. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Maria Lara-Montelango

#12. WNCC Family Athletic Pass - Juan Gonzales

#13. $250 in Gift Cards donated by Runza - Mike Rotness

#14. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Gina Cannon

#15. $200 Cash donated by KNEB - Stacy Keller

#16. WNCC Family Athletic Pass - Steve Cervantes

#17. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Debbie Edmuds

#18. One year of Car Washes donated by Paradise - Angela Miller

#19. 12 Haircuts in a year donated by Attitudez Salon - Nickole DeWitt

#20. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Jayme Hallman

#21. Birthday Party donated by Carpenter Center - mindy Reed

#22. 3 month Family Membership donated by YMCA - Zita Bolinger

#23. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Michael Miller

#24. $100 in Gift Cards dontated Runza - Ruth Kozal

#25. King Kong Pizza Dinner donated by Sam & Louie’s Pizzeria - Andrew Weber

#26. $500 gift Certificated donated by Gering Valley One Hour - Craig Rubottom

#27. $75 in Gift Cards donated by Runza - Trisha Luckinbill

#28. $100 Gas Card donated by WTT - John Farrington

#29. $25 Gift Card donated by Runza - Danielle Lenebeck

#30. 60 minute facial donated by Rachel Ann Esthetics - Kristen Mitzel


ALLIANCE, Neb. (AP) — A 41-year-old insurance saleswoman is accused of fraud in the Nebraska Panhandle.

Box Butte County Court records say Mandy Fair is charged with felony counts of insurance fraud and identity theft. The records don't list the name of an attorney who could comment for her. Fair is scheduled to be in court Tuesday.

She's accused of turning in fraudulent insurance applications from Aug. 17 to Oct. 11 last year. Prosecutors say she did so to be paid bonuses and advance commissions.

On July 21, 2018 at approximately 12:24 p.m. the Scotts Bluff County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to the Lake Minatare Recreation area in the Butte View area for a call of an unresponsive four year old boy found in the water.

Upon arrival, Deputies began CPR.

Valley Ambulance and Minatare Volunteer Fire Department arrived on scene, and Airlink transported the child to Regional West Medical Center. The boy was later transported to Denver for medical treatment. The Nebraska State Patrol and Nebraska Game and Parks officers assisted with the call.

The boy and his family are from Colorado.  They were in this area visiting relatives.  This is not considered a criminal investigation, we are releasing no names.


At around 1355 hrs on Wednesday July 18th, 2018 Scottsbluff Police Officers were called to a reported shop lifting at Wal-Mart. Suspect left Wal-Mart on foot heading south. Scottsbluff Police were directed to the “In N Out” Storage behind Domino’s as last location of suspect.

Suspect entered a storage unit where he had a vehicle hidden. The vehicle was found to have been reported stolen in Scottsbluff earlier on this date.

Scottsbluff Police attempted to stop the suspect as he headed west on 27th street. Suspect was able to drive through ditch and onto Hwy 26

Suspect was later seen running across 19th Hole Golf Course where he was arrested; the stolen vehicle was located at the west end of Pheasant driver where the suspect had run it into a ditch where it became disabled.

Suspect was identified as John Mackenzie 38 years old. Mackenzie is being held on numerous Felony and Misdemeanor charges from Scotts Bluff County Sheriff’s Office and the Scottsbluff Police Department.   

Agencies assisting in the apprehension were Scotts Bluff County Sheriff’s Office, Scottsbluff Police Department, and an Officer from The National Park Service 


GERING, Neb. (AP) — The first human case of West Nile virus in Nebraska this season has been reported in a western county, according to health officials.

The Scotts Bluff County man who contracted the infectious disease is between age 50 and 70 and spends time outdoors, said Paulette Schnell, director of the county's Health Department. He wasn't hospitalized.

West Nile virus is spread through infected mosquitoes' bites. The county, which has irrigation canals and the North Platte River, has seen an increase in mosquitoes, Schnell said. Moisture in the area has produced conditions where the disease can flourish, including standing water, she said.

State Epidemiologist Dr. Tom Safranek said there will likely be more virus cases this year. Mosquitoes in Lancaster and Phelps counties have tested positive for the virus so far.

Nebraska recorded 68 human cases of the virus and two deaths last year.

Most people who test positive for the disease will either have no symptoms or mild flu-like signs. Some may experience headache, body aches, vomiting, fatigue or weakness. The disease can be fatal. There aren't vaccines to prevent the virus or medicine to treat it, according to local health officials.

Health officials recommend residents apply mosquito repellant, drain standing water, avoid spending time outdoors during dawn and dusk and wear long-sleeved shirts, pants and socks when outside.


CHADRON, Neb. (AP) — State game officials say a mountain lion that killed a domestic goat in northwest Nebraska has been found and killed.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission says the goat's owner contacted the commission Monday after finding the goat carcass near Chadron in Dawes County.

The owner and Game and Parks officials cooperated in identifying the mountain lion believed responsible, and the big cat was killed Tuesday, in accordance with the commission's mountain lion policy.

The commission says it's the state's fourth confirmed case of livestock depredation in Nebraska by a mountain lion since the cats' presence in the state was confirmed in 1991.


 GERING, Neb. (AP) — The public is invited to help uncover the biodiversity of the Wildcat Hills in the Nebraska Panhandle during the Wildcat Hills Bioblitz.

The event is scheduled to run Friday and Saturday, based at the Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area south of Gering.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission says bioblitzes bring together natural resource experts, community volunteers and others to inventory all living species in a specific area during a certain period. The event begins at the Wildcat Hills Nature Center with a free pizza dinner, children's activities and door prizes Friday at 6 p.m. On Saturday the surveys will get underway at 7 a.m.

A Nebraska park entry permit is required for vehicles. More information is available by calling 402-310-6137.