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Archive for the ‘Feature: OML’ Category

Sarah Beth Pippen – One Monticello Life

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

Sara Beth, from a prior recitalAs the Monticello community met for the annual Easter Community Service recently, many familiar faces were present.

There was a new face, who was introduced as a part of the program, to sing “How Great Thou Art”, before the message.

Sarah Beth Pippen, the worship leader at Immanuel Baptist Church,  then led the room into worship, as she followed with a strong, spirit-filled rendition of the old, familiar hymn.

MLive recently spoke with Sarah Beth, as a part of our One Monticello Life series.


One Monticello Life – Robin Hood, Candidate for County Judge

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

Robin Hood, son of Mack and Nola Hood, has lived in Drew County for almost all of his life. He was raised with 3 sisters and 3 brothers and said that having so many siblings made growing up a lot of fun, and described them as a very close family.

“We were very family oriented. My family was very loving and very Christian oriented. My mother was very spiritual and she was the spiritual head of our family. We always went to church; it was the focus of our lives.”


One Monticello Life – Robert Akin – Candidate for Drew County Judge

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

“I’m a natural born leader,” Robert Akin, independent county judge candidate, said.

Demonstrating leadership started as early as grade school and continued through high school and into the workforce. He mentioned always being a leader in clubs in high school including running the rodeo club, which sent and paid kids’ way to nationals. Akin presided as president of the State Chuck Wagon Association with 700 members. This organization worked with special needs kids through Ark of Arkansas and Sunshine School by putting on rodeos for them. He served as vice president of Maintenance Local at the Pine Bluff paper mill requiring him to represent and negotiate contracts for 400 people.


One Monticello Life – Tonya Loveless, Candidate for Drew County Collector

Monday, September 17th, 2012

“I didn’t come into this job thinking it would turn into an elected position one day.”

Tonya Loveless was born in Jonesboro, AR and raised here in Monticello by parents Van and Karen Brown, along with her four siblings.

“My family was awesome. We did a lot of camping, fishing, and hunting. I think I was on a deer stand before I was bigger than my rifle. We loved water skiing and boating and having so many siblings made everything fun… I had a pretty good life.” “My grandparents were great, they were here in Monticello. (Albert and Willie Mae Hobbs, and Jim and Toni Holcomb – they were a big part of my life. I was rotten because they treated me so great.” “Willie Mae is my last living grandparent.”


Special Election Edition of One Monticello Life

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

Tuesday is Election Day.  Ms the final day for Early Voting.

Over the past several weeks, MLive’s Mandy Moss has interviewed the Democratic candidates for County Judge, Sheriff, and County Collector.

This week’s “election edition” will re-post those interviews for a final “meet the candidates” opportunity for MLive reades.

One Monticello Life – Jim Glennon, Candidate for County Judge

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

Jim Glennon was born and raised in Possum Valley by parents James and Glenda Glennon. “I have three sisters and a brother that are still living. My baby sister died when she was six of spinal meningitis. I was 9 or 10 when she died. It was one of those situations where you ask God, “Why didn’t you take me instead of my baby sister?”

Growing up, there was little time for the Glennon children to find trouble to get into. Working as a family was top priority, and living out in the country meant that if you wanted entertainment, you created it for yourself.


One Monticello Life – Sheriff Mark Gober

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

Mark Gober is well known in Monticello for being Sheriff since 2005, but few may know what brought him to this point in life.

Growing up, Sheriff Gober said that his family often moved every year due to his father’s career in the ARMY. It was a move to Alaska that put him on a path right back to Drew County.


One Monticello Life – Cheri Adcock Norris, Candidate for Collector

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

“I really thought I was done that day, and even though this person was very irate and taking it out on me, I still managed to get my job done correctly and it didn’t sway me from getting things done in the office.”

Cheri Norris grew up the oldest of three siblings, and said she had a great time doing family activities like roller skating, having picnics, and playing at the lake. At the age of five she moved from Southeast Arkansas up to Michigan with her mom, Betty Maloney.


One Monticello Life – Thad, Nikki, & Colton Mitchell – 2012 Drew County Farm Family of the Year

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

“I was born and raised on same property we’re living on now. This 180 acres of land has never been bought or sold, it was homesteaded by my family. It goes back to my Great Great Granddaddy. I’m the 5th generation farming this land.” – Thad Mitchell

Thad and Nikki Mitchell, along with their six year old son, Colton, have settled on the family land to continue with the farming tradition and raise their family. This year, they have been selected as Farm Family of the Year for Drew County.

Thad and Nikki’s farming business largely consists of raising Bermuda grass for hay, along with some Alfalfa, and producing eggs for Tyson Foods.


One Monticello Life, Jesus Christ

Sunday, April 8th, 2012

MonticelloLive has an Eater tradition of honoring Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for us by featuring a special One Monticello Life, written by a local pastor, on Easter Sunday, each year.  This year we present ONE EXTRA-ORDINARY LIFE by Larry Doggett, of Fountain of Life Christian Center, the speaker at tonight’s Community Easter Service.

The extra-ordinary life that I write about today is about a man called, Jesus, who is also known as the Son of God, and also, Christ–the anointed One of God, and the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Growing up in the Bible belt, I have heard about Jesus all of my life. There are many things that I could share and here are some from A through Z about this extra-ordinary life of Jesus.

The life of Jesus is extra-ordinary for His:
Authenticity. Jesus is Emanuel, God with us. Matthew 1:23
Behavior. Jesus was and is sinless, the living Son of God. 1-Peter 2:21-25
Creation & Cause Jesus is the creator of all things and the abundant life giver. Colossians 1:16, John 10:10
Death: Jesus said that no man would take His life for He gave it for us. John 10:11,15-18

One Monticello Life – Andrew Bentz

Monday, March 26th, 2012

– “I went down to Grand Central Station and got pizza for me and DiGiovanni, and we went to the elevator. I was dressed in my urban attire… and these two suits walked up and they looked at us and then backed out and left. It was weird because you could tell they were scared of us because of what we were wearing. I think they thought I was going to rob them. “ – Andrew (LilDru) Bentz


One Monticello Life ‘ “Polar Plunge’s” Karen Caldwell

Sunday, February 12th, 2012

“When you’re working with special needs, they’re giving you the best they’ve got. When you think of everyday people, you’ve got people that aren’t giving their best, they know they’re not, and they’re okay with it.” – Karen Caldwell

"AJ Huffman joined the Caldwell's team at the 2011 Polar Plunge.

On June 25, 1967 in Heidelberg, Germany, Morris and Gertrud Donham welcomed their youngest child into the world. As they counted her ten fingers and ten toes, they likely wondered what her future would hold. What would she do with her life? What impact would this child have on the people she encountered? Today, citizens of Monticello, AR are thankful for the daughter they raised and the blessings she has spent her life pouring out to others.


One Monticello Life – Taco Bell’s Friendly Face & Voice – Keba Brown

Monday, January 30th, 2012

This week’s One Monticello Life story features a member of our community that has been mentioned to MLive as a good candidate for recognition more times than any other. She is well known throughout the entire city, yet she isn’t a politician, doctor, lawyer, or in the public spotlight at all.

MLive recently received an email from a local business leader saying, “I went through the Taco Bell drive-thru today and realized that for a very long time, I have heard this sweet little voice take my order, and how nice she always is, and I took the time to thank her for a job well done.


One Monticello Life – MPD Chief Eddy Deaton

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

Eddy Deaton has a new title at the Monticello Police Department as of January 2012… Chief Deaton. He takes his future goals for the department very seriously.

 “I want to make the Monticello Police Department one of the best departments in the state. I want the officers to have the most updated training and equipment out there. I want to see all law enforcement agencies working together to accomplish a common goal of professional enforcement of the law, and community involvement, to aid in preventing and stopping crime.”


One Monticello Life: Mayor Allen Maxwell

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

“I grew up in a different time than what kids today are. Living was foot-loose and fancy-free! You didn’t lock your doors, you left your windows open, you left your car unlocked. We kids would get together on our bikes early in the morning and ride all around town and we wouldn’t get back home until dark. I don’t think any of our parents ever knew where we were, but they knew we’d be back home.” (more…)

One Monticello Life: Chris Ray

Monday, December 20th, 2010

Since 1964, the name “Ray” has been well known throughout Monticello and surrounding areas. It all began when C.L. Ray started “Ray’s” restaurant 46 years ago, and the family tradition has carried on since.

C.L. Ray’s grandson, Chris Ray was born February 24, 1974 to Mark and Laurie Ray. Chris grew up here in Monticello, and described it as “a great place to live, and a wonderful place to raise a family.” (more…)

One Monticello Life: The Marketplace, Drew County’s Industry of the Year

Sunday, November 21st, 2010


MonticelloLive on Vimeo.

The Drew County Industry of the Year award was recently presented to Launius Enterprises, also known as The Marketplace, at the MEDC/Chamber of Commerce banquet. The Marketplace is a 47,000 square foot building in which space is offered to individuals and businesses in order to sell their products. This week’s One Monticello Life tells of the beginning and growth of The Marketplace and its owners, Gene and Shelly Launius.

When Gene and Shelly Launius moved to Monticello from Hector in order for Gene to continue his education in forestry, an idea like The Marketplace never crossed their minds. Years later after owning J&L Timber Company and Prestige Home Furnishings, they purchased the old building that currently houses The Marketplace in hopes to lease the property to other companies. After numerous failed attempts, Gene had an idea and started the wheels rolling.

The Marketplace opened in September of 2009 with 77 booth spaces available and one man’s dream of becoming “THE” place to shop in Southeast Arkansas. The booths completely filled up within a few months so work quickly began to open up more of the building for additional spaces. Located at 249 Hwy 425 North in what most Monticellonians remember as the old Safeway grocery store, The Marketplace currently has 190 retail booth spaces between two parts of the building with future plans of more being added once the third phase of the building is finished.


One Monticello Life: Tommy Maxwell

Monday, November 1st, 2010

Allen and Ruby Lee Maxwell gave life to six children, one of which they named Tommy. It was May 4, 1949 when Tommy Maxwell came into the world in Warren, AR. Warren would be the city he would call home for all of his years growing up.

Life growing up was good in the Maxwell home. Allen worked with Arkansas Power and Light plus other side jobs that the kids were allowed to work with him.

“As kids, we helped dad with little odds and ends jobs like wiring and trimming trees. For fun, we loved to hunt and play sports. My favorite sport was football. I played until I hurt my back as a Junior in high school. I was injured during a game against Monticello High.” (more…)

One Monticello Life: Dr. Sylvia Simon

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010

The oldest of seven children, Sylvia Simon describes life growing up as “very busy.” Raised mostly in Warren, AR, she says that things in her family were a little different than in your traditional family.

“We didn’t watch TV at all, so we entertained ourselves in other ways like gardening, quilting, crocheting, and things like that. I’m really an old lady I guess because those are still the things I do.. those are my hobbies now.” (more…)

One Monticello Life-Miss Drew County 2010, Toni Findley

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

“My mom taught me, if you want anything, you have to do it yourself.”

Raised by single mother, Rhonda Findley, Toni Findley learned early in life what it meant to work hard for what you want, and to lean on those closest to you. Her childhood years shaped a strong passion to help single parents, and to always believe in second chances for others.

Toni attended McGehee schools until her family moved to Monticello right before her sixth-grade year. School was not easy for Toni. She suffered from ADHD and said the problems that came with the condition made everything difficult, from schoolwork to making friends.

Toni & her mom, Rhonda Findley, at the Miss Drew County Pageant

“I was very impulsive, blunt, and I couldn’t wait my turn for anything. It made things really difficult. I was also a perfectionist so if I couldn’t do something the perfect way, I just wouldn’t try to do it at all. I’d rather give nothing than only do it half-way.” (more…)

One Monticello Life: Shay and Sherrie Gillespie

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Growing up in a single-parent home, Shay Gillespie never could have dreamed all that he would accomplish in his future. Raised by his mother and grandmother, he was taught to work hard and to trust God to provide everything he needed.

“Growing up we were poor, but we didn’t know we were poor. Back then everyone in the community raised you… and made sure you had everything you needed.” – Rev. Gillespie

Shay Gillespie became a trailblazer, starting at a very young age. (more…)

One Monticello Life: UAM Provost, David Ray

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

Drew Central Superintendant Wayne Fawcett, UAM Provost David Ray, and Monticello Superintendant Bobby Harper, at last week's MEDC meeting.

He’s been an inspiration and an example to college students for decades; everyone in town recognizes his name, and his voice: now sit back and join in on a visit with UAM Provost David Ray, this week’s One Monticello Life. (more…)

One Monticello Life: Pete Rowe

Sunday, June 15th, 2008

0051.JPGWith today being Father’s Day, Mr. Pete Rowe has been chosen the the One Monticello Life for this week.

Mr. Pete is the father of 3 adult children; Vernon who works in the environmental field and lives in Pittsburgh, TX; Norman, who lives in Cabot, Retired from the Air Force after 20 years, and is employed in the computer field; and Sue, who lives here in Monticello, and is a former factory and health-care worker. 

 Pete Rowe was employed by Arkla gas, beginning as a serviceman, with meter reading responsibilities, and retiring 32 years later as district manager for the Dumas district.

He originally started with Arkla after working for the McGehee water dept for 3 years.

Mr. Pete was born and raised in McGehee, where he remained until 1976.

Mr. Rowe was in the 11th grade at McGehee, when he left school to join navy in 1944.  He completed his educaiton after returning from military service.

He served in the U.S. Navy with 2 years active duty, where he served aboard the U.S.S Seagull, stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. After his active duty, he served 18 more years in the Navy reserve. 


One Monticello Life: Joe Williams

Sunday, April 27th, 2008


Joe Williams, Jr. was born and raised in Monticello, and graduated from Monticello High School in 1982.  He attended and graduated from UAM with a B.A. in computer science.

Joe has spent the last 4 years employed as receiving manager for School Apperal’s Star City facility, but is best know from the more than 20 years he spent at Burlington Industries, here in Monticello.

He started working at Burlington in 1982, but was told by the personnel manager that if he was going to quit school, that he wasn’t going to get hired, but that he should get promoted after he graduated.  Joe took the challenge, completed his education, and began his way up the Burlington ladder of supervision.


One Monticello Life: Doug Knight

Sunday, April 20th, 2008


Doug Knight was born in Springhill, LA, but his family moved to Drew County when he was 2 years old.  Doug grew up in the Plantersville area, and graduated from Drew Central High School.

Doug continued his education by taking industrial electricity classes at Pines vo-tech in Pine Bluff.


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