Church leaders: Lean on loved ones in wake of tragedy

Published: Sunday, July 22, 2012 @ 8:02 PM
Updated: Friday, September 23, 2016 @ 9:41 PM
By: Michael Cooper - Staff Writer

Area church leaders on Sunday said the best way to deal with a tragedy like Friday’s shooting at a movie theater in Colorado which claimed the life of Springfield native Matt McQuinn is to spend time with loved ones and remember that God has a plan for our lives.

“There’s no better a reminder than an incident like this that life is short,” said Fellowship Church youth and campus pastor Jeremy Hudson, who developed a friendship with McQuinn while they were both members at Maiden Lane Church of God.

McQuinn, a Vandalia Butler High School graduate, his girlfriend, Sam Yowler, formerly of St. Paris, and her brother, Nick Yowler, also formerly of St. Paris, all attended a midnight screening of the “Dark Knight Rises” on Friday at a suburban Denver cinema in Aurora where a lone gunman entered the theater, threw gas canisters and opened fire on the crowd. He killed 12 people, including McQuinn who spent his last moments shielding his girlfriend from the bullets. There were 58 peole injured in one of the deadliest shootings in United States history.

In a time like this, Hudson said, it’s best to not let things go unsaid or unresolved with family members.

“There’s unsettled business in each one of us where we could stand to pick up the phone or go knock on a door and clear the air,” said Hudson, who had just run into McQuinn at Chipotle in Springfield a few months ago.

Tim Cary, worship pastor at Cornerstone Baptist Church, said residents should rely on God in these times of need.

Cary also had a small connection to the shooting. He recently started following Jessica Ghawi, an aspiring sportscaster who also went by the name Jessica Redfield, on Twitter and saw her tweet about going to see the midnight showing. The next morning, he was shocked to hear she was one of 12 killed in the shooting along with McQuinn. Ghawi had recently survived shootings at a mall in Toronto last month.

Cary said hearing the news about Ghawi, who he only knew through social media, was an eye-opener.

“It was one of a bunch of tweets (about the movie), probably hundreds,” Cary said. “I remember reading that, and for me personally, you have to stop and realize that life is a vapor. We have plans and ideas and hopes and goals and dreams of what our lives are going to be, and we never really know where our next breath is going to come from.”

Two of McQuinn’s former band mates and friends said he exuded a lighthearted spirit even in the midst of having a bad day. Mark A. Robey, 29, of New Carlisle, and Aaron J. Snow, 29, of Springfield, said they all met at a youth study group at Maiden Lane Church in Springfield where they played together in a worship team band. McQuinn played bass guitar. Robey and Snow played the drums.

“He was always a happy guy,” Robey said. “There wasn’t a time where we got together that he wasn’t laughing. Even on bad days, when he was having a bad day, he would find the joy and laugh and lighten the mood.

“He was always thinking about other people,” Robey said. “He would drop anything he was doing to spend time with his friends.”

Aaron J. Snow, 29, of Springfield, similarly described McQuinn.

“Matt was a goofball,” Snow said. “He always had something funny to say, (he was) a guy to laugh with. One of those people to lighten the mood regardless of the situation.”

The two would spend hours talking and stay up playing video games into the “wee hours of the morning,” Snow said.

“He was a very good guy,” he said. “One of my closest friends. I don’t have very many, and he was definitely one of those.”

“That’s just where our friendship between all three of us got real solid,” Robey said.

Robey and Snow said they weren’t surprised by reports McQuinn used his body to shield Samantha during the tragedy.

“Matt definitely died a hero protecting Sam,” Snow said. “That’s definitely Matt, too. Didn’t surprise me when I heard that. He’ll drop everything if you need (him) to be with you.”

“I think when Matt had his mind set on something, he would do it, and if it involved a friend, or family member or someone he cared about, he would step up to the plate and help out,” Robey said. “I would say he definitely died a hero.”

Hudson said church officials from all walks of faith are ready to help area residents make sense of the tragedy.

“All it takes is the effort to reach out,” Hudson said.

Police asking for public help in finding missing Beavercreek man

Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 11:29 PM
By: Breaking News Staff

Police asking for public help in finding missing Beavercreek man

Beavercreek police are asking for the public's help in finding a man reported missing Monday night.

Thomas Kastner, 55, of Beavercreek was reported missing around 8 p.m., according to a Beavercreek police department release. 

Kastner is described as 5'10" tall, weighing 200 pounds, with gray hair and brown eyes. 

Beavercreek police said Kastner suffers from medical conditons requiring medication. 

Kastner was last seen wearing jeans, a gray and red plaid shirt, white shoes, a beige hat and a black winter coat. 

Anyone with knowledge of Kastner's whereabouts is asked to call the Beavercreek police department at 937-426-1225.

3rd suspect in home invasion/kidnapping investigation is now in jail

Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 10:39 PM
By: Breaking News Staff

3rd suspect in home invasion/kidnapping investigation is now in jail
Jaron Hayes (left), Daviana North and Randall Williams MONTGOMERY COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE

UPDATE @ 9:55 p.m. (Jan. 23): The third suspect accused of forcing a Harrison Twp. woman out of her house and to withdraw money from a bank is now in jail. 

Jaron Hayes, 19, sought in the investigation since two accused accomplices were arrested the day after the Jan. 20 incident, was led to the Montgomery County Jail in handcuffs following at least five hours of interrogation by sheriff's detectives. 

Hayes was walked from sheriff's headquarters to the jail just before 10 p.m. He was still being processed into the facility at 10:30 p.m. 

Randall Williams, another of the suspects, remains in jail on a $750,000 bond. He's detained on several felonies including kidnapping, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery, weapons possession as a felon, theft and several probation violations. 

Daviana North, another of the suspects, remains in jail on a $750,000 bond on a charge of felony receiving stolen property. 

North and Williams are due in court Jan. 30.


A trio is accused of forcing a Harrison Twp. woman out of her house at gunpoint Friday night and ordering her to make withdrawals from her bank account.

Two of the suspects were arrested around noon today and an arrest warrant has been issued for a third suspect, according to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies were called around 5 a.m. to a home off Philadelphia Drive in Harrison Twp. after a resident said she had been abducted outside her home around 8:30 p.m. Friday, then forced back inside her house at gunpoint. She had been taken to and from the residence several times to make withdrawals from her bank account, according to the sheriff’s office.

Detectives were called due to similar incidents in the area, and were able to find three suspects. Two were taken to jail but a third fled on foot, deputies said.

Daviana North, 19, and Randall Williams, 25, were booked into the Montgomery County Jail on suspicion of aggravated burglary.

An arrest warrant has been issued for 19-year-old Jaron Hayes for aggravated burglary and probation violation. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is urged to call the sheriff’s office at 937-225-4357.

Deputies also searched Hayes’ home in the 400 block of Elm Hill Drive in Harrison Twp. and seized items believed to be stolen and evidence in the aggravated burglary case, according to the sheriff’s office.

Also found was an iPhone detectives believe to be stolen. It had charge but no service to identify the owner. Anyone who recognizes the screen saver and can identify whether it was stolen is urged to call the sheriff’s office, 937-225-4357.

Mild temps continue as winter poised to return

Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 9:42 PM
By: Breaking News Staff

Occasional showers and drizzle will be likely through the evening hours. Patchy fog will also be possible after dark as temperatures will hold in the 40s.


Tonight: Patchy light rain and drizzle will linger through the night. Temperatures will slowly drop into the upper 30s.

Tuesday: Patchy drizzle and fog will be likely early with lingering clouds through the day. Temperatures will remain unseasonably mild with highs in the middle 40s. 

Wednesday: Mostly cloudy skies will start the day with increasing winds. Some showers are expected to develop by late afternoon or evening. Temperatures will climb into the lower 50s. 

Thursday: Much cooler air will return to the Miami Valley with a few rain showers in the morning mixing with and then changing to snow showers or flurries in the afternoon. Highs will be in the upper 30s with blustery conditions.

Friday: More seasonable weather is expected with occasional snow showers or flurries and highs in the lower 30s with blustery conditions. 

Saturday: Skies will be mostly cloudy and it will remain breezy. A few passing flurries are possible. Highs will be in the lower 30s.

Centerville council approves use of shopping center area

Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 9:35 PM
By: Tremayne Hogue - Staff Writer

UPDATE @ 9:28 a.m.

Centerville City Council approved the addition of the Centerville Place Planning Study to their Create the Vision plan. 

Council approved the resolution 7-0. 

"We're very excited about the project," Centerville Mayor Brooks Compton said.


Centerville city council is holding a public hearing tonight on plans to amend the city’s master plan to include a study that outlines potential use of 25 acres at Centerville Place Shopping Center.

RELATED: Centerville levy boosts budget total, will fund road repairs

In November, the city’s planning commission introduced a study to determine the future viability of the property located west of South Main Street and south of Spring Valley Road.

The study showed the area could support both the shopping center, and about 300 units of apartments, townhouses, patio homes and brownstones. If approved by council, the study will be included in the Create the Vision land use plan.

City planner Andrew Rodney said the study, completed in November, was “a priority for the city of Centerville.”

There is already nearly $90 million in potential residential developments throughout the city.

The meeting is at 7:30 tonight in council chambers in the Centerville Municipal Building, 100 West Spring Valley Rd.