11:35 PM Jul 25, 2010
MONROEVILLE - A heating lamp for chicks caused a Fern Road barn fire that killed a few small turkeys and chickens early Sunday morning. The Huron River Joint Fire District received water from the Fairfield, Norwalk and Willard fire departments. Huron River Joint Fire Chief Ronald Stang said firefighters used between 15,000 and 18,000 gallons of water. He had no information on the amount of damage, but said the fire melted the siding on the west side of the house owned by Elaine Smith.
11:35 PM Jul 25, 2010
Don't be surprised if the future Dr. Keely Telquist mentions Dr. Scott Kaple frequently in her conversations. Telquist has been observing the Norwalk family practice doctor at work every Tuesday since June to gain clinical experience for her medical school application.
11:35 PM Jul 25, 2010
There's good news with the Norwalk Furniture situation. About 300 workers will be back on the job Monday for at least a week to finish orders already stated. The state has agreed to help the company through a low-interest loan. And Comerica Bank is back at the bargaining table. Dominic Aversa, acting CEO for Norwalk Furniture, said he appreciates the bank's reconsideration.
11:35 PM Jul 25, 2010
A former employee and a worker who was just laid off sound off about the layoffs at Tenneco Automotive. One employee, who asked to remain anonymous, worked there for 15 years was just told she would be laid off within two months. "Starting in two months, they're taking our jobs away from us and sending them all to China or Mexico, " she said. "It is hurtful. They don't realize we have families to support. We're going to lose our health insurance. What if something happens to my kids?"
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
Lisa Wilkerson had to spend thousands of dollars for gasoline over 14 months to attend cosmetology school in Tiffin. That was when gasoline generally cost $2.50 a gallon. Wilkerson's husband, Rob, said he can't imagine what it would cost today for cosmetology students to regularly travel from Norwalk to Tiffin.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
Human beings all over the world speak many languages, and most people understand only one or two of those languages. It is an exercise in humility to realize that those Chinese symbols that appear on my daughter's face book page actually mean something to many people, although to me they are inscrutable line drawings. Even though the symbols and words in another language are incomprehensible, they can be translated. That is an awesome notion. It means that even though people on the other side of the Earth are conversing using words and sounds that are completely different from English, the thoughts and feelings they are expressing are exactly the same thoughts and feelings that human beings express in every other language, in every part of the globe.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
Two Plymouth men were indicted Friday in connection with using a stolen car to steal a rifle last month. On July 6, Kyle S. Branham, 19, of 421 Plymouth St., and David W. Hodge, 21, of 105 Park Ave., are accused of stealing a 2003 Pontiac Vibe from Townline Road 12, Willard, a prosecutor said earlier. They reportedly drove it to Old Military Road where they are accused of stealing a HMR17 Savage rifle and some tools from various cars.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
Norwalk Furniture officials have filed the paperwork to get federal help for laid-off employees under the Trade Adjustment Act, designed to help workers at companies hurt by foreign trade, but it will take 30 to 40 days for the Department of Labor to rule on the request. In the meantime, about 400 people turned out at the rally and informational meeting for Norwalk Furniture employees Wednesday at Norwalk High School.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
It's summertime at last and the weather all over Ohio is classic: hot, sunny days and cooler, but often muggy nights. Fishing can hit the doldrums a little for some species, but channel cats love hot and warm, and there's no better time to head out on some pleasant summer evening, fish half the night, and bring home a string of good eating. They're hitting very well right now, and area lakes and rivers are waiting with cats that will range from a pound up to six or seven, even more. Where to find these whiskered denizens is easy, since they inhabit nearly every body of water of any size, and bait shops can usually give at least some details on hotspots. But what to catch them on can get a little tougher, simply because there are so many choices. To make it all easier, keep in mind a couple of basic facts. One is that they feed mostly at night, though in deeper water many can be caught during daylight hours.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
In just 16 hours, Norwalk Furniture employees gathered about 50 employees and headed up in a caravan to Comerica headquarters in Detroit with one message "Norwalk Furniture Calling, Answer Your Phone." After Dominic Aversa, acting CEO in the company's reorganization, released details about Comerica's refusal to consider buyout offers and the bank's insistance on liquidation, employees finally saw a way they could join in the battle.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
A Toledo man who helped transport about 160 pounds of marijuana from Arizona to Norwalk was sentenced to eight years in prison Wednesday. Carlos C. Torres Jr., 31, also was fined $7,500 for possession of marijuana after a two-day trial in Huron County Common Pleas Court. Judge Jim Conway had a 2004 Dodge Durango forfeited to the Huron County Sheriff's Office. Torres was the passenger in the Durango during a Sept. 20 traffic stop when authorities found three crates of marijuana in the bed of another pickup truck. Police stopped the two vehicles on U.S. 250 outside of Milan.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
cashby@norwalkreflector.com Immigration Customs Enforcement agents shut down the local Casa Fiesta about lunch time Wednesday. Simultaneously, ICE authorities used nine search warrants in the Northern Ohio chain and the owners' homes. About 12:45 p.m., ICE agents escorted two male suspects in plastic handcuffs into an unmarked, white conversion van parked outside the restaurant entrance. ICE spokesman Greg Palmore wouldn't say exactly why authorities were there, but said the people taken into custody may be facing criminal or immigration violations. "We are in the process of executing these search warrants in an ongoing criminal investigation," Palmore said.
11:32 PM Jul 25, 2010
The acting CEO for Norwalk Furniture said Comerica Bank, which holds $11 million in loans for the company, has refused to even talk to several investors interested in buying out the loans and taking over the company. Dominic Aversa, who is heading the restructuring effort for the company, said bank officials in Detroit and Texas are in a panic because of losses in their industry.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
With Tenneco's announcement Tuesday that it was eliminating nearly half the 150 jobs at its operation in Milan, that's some 560 jobs our area has shed since Friday night. That of course is when we got word here at the Reflector that Norwalk Furniture was going to tell its approximately 500 employees not to bother showing up for work Monday morning.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
Local businesses admit they are taking a hit with the suspension of operations at Norwalk Furniture, but believe they can weather the storm. "Certainly, Norwalk Furniture is one of our largest diesel customers and that certainly impacts your business," said Bob Sunderman, vice president and energy division manager for Sunrise Cooperative. "Anytime you lose one of your largest companies it is not good, but Sunrise is still a viable operation and it will not affect our employment here," he said. He said he hopes the furniture company can rebound, but his operation can take the financial hit and keep on going.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
Special agents with U. S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) shut down the Casa Fiesta restaurant in Norwalk about lunch time Wednesday. Simultaneously, ICE authorities used nine search warrants to arrest 58 people on immigration violations at eight restaurants in the chain and the owners' home. About 12:45 p.m., ICE agents escorted at least two men from the Norwalk restaurant in plastic handcuffs into an unmarked, white conversion van parked outside the restaurant entrance. ICE spokesman Greg Palmore wouldn't say exactly why authorities were there, but said the people taken into custody may be facing criminal or immigration violations.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
A Toledo man accused of helping ship about 160 pounds of marijuana from Arizona to Huron County is believed to have left several fingerprints on what the state calls the "elaborate packaging." Carlos C. Torres Jr., 31, faces one count of possession of marijuana in connection with a Sept. 20, 2007 traffic stop. His accomplice, John E. Nunley Jr., 36, formerly of Toledo, is serving an eight-year prison term for being the carpenter who built the crates.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
City council members heard promising reports about the re-opening of Norwalk Furniture in a work session Tuesday night. "We all have great concerns about Norwalk Furniture," Mayor Sue Lesch said. "I'm optimistic we're going to be able to find some solutions."
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
Norwalk Furniture employees staged their own rally today to coincide with the informationals meeting at Norwalk High School for employees to learn about filing for unemployment and other options in face of the company's suspension of operations. "We're banding together. Our worst fear is it will fall apart and we won't have our jobs anymore," an employee helping organize the rally said. "We know we're not dead in the water yet, but I'm getting more information from the newspaper than I'm getting from my employer and my union."
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
First is was Fannie and Freddie. Then came Furniture. In case you haven't noticed, these are tough economic times. Norwalk Furniture Corp. employees were informed late Friday night not to report to work Monday. Operations at both the Norwalk and Cookeville, Tenn., plants were suspended until further notice. We all knew times were tough at Furniture. The company has been letting people go a few at a time. There were rumors out there the doors would close in August ... maybe even last until Christmas.
11:31 PM Jul 25, 2010
mlboose@norwalkreflector.com Though Norwalk Furniture officials are still confident restructuring and new investors can get the company back on its feet, some people remember when another premier employer, Norwalk Truck Lines, shut down local operations in 1968. "It was a big blow to the community," said Don Richards, now retired in Huron. "There were 125 that were employed in the home office," not counting drivers and mechanics that were relocated before the final local shutdown. For Richards' family, the move of Norwalk Truck Lines to Colorado meant the start of a long series of relocations that only ended when he retired in 2002.