Expect heavy traffic, more showers at first Greene County Hamvention

Published: Friday, May 19, 2017 @ 5:57 PM

            As 30,000 people from a handful of countries are expected to descend on the Greene County Fairgrounds in Xenia this weekend for the popular amateur radio convention that had been held at Hara Arena, which closed last year. SKY7
As 30,000 people from a handful of countries are expected to descend on the Greene County Fairgrounds in Xenia this weekend for the popular amateur radio convention that had been held at Hara Arena, which closed last year. SKY7

Those planning to attend or be in the vicinity this weekend of the first Hamvention at the Greene County Fairgrounds, be prepared for traffic issues – and rain.

Both made a strong showing Friday and are expected to continue through Sunday as 30,000 people from a handful of countries are projected to descend on Xenia for the popular amateur radio convention that had been held at Hara Arena, which closed last year.

RELATED: Hamvention expects increased attendance at new venue

The National Weather Service is on site and “we are working closely with them and they have phone contact with us, email contact immediately to give us forewarning if there’s an issue,” Hamvention spokesman Michael Kalter, a Greene County resident, said Friday.

The chances for showers and thunderstorms in Greene County are strongest after 7 a.m. today as it expected to be mostly cloudy with a chance of precipitation about 40 percent with as much as one quarter inch of rain, according to the weather service.

RELATED: Hamvention finds new home

With temperatures ranging from the mid-50s to the mid-70s, showers and thunderstorms are more likely – 80 percent - overnight Saturday into Sunday with as much as a half inch of rain possible throughout the day, according to the forecast.

Projected to provide a $14 million economic boost to the region, Hamvention will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. Peak traffic hours, officials said, will be from 7 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. as people make their way to the fairgrounds, and from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. as they leave.

Green County Sheriff Gene Fischer said state troopers and Xenia police officers have joined deputies if traffic-control efforts.

RELATED: Hara Arena closing forces Hamvention to find new home

“We anticipated we were going to have backed up traffic and we were right on par.,” he said Friday morning. “It is still backed up right now and we’re trying to get everybody in as fast as we can.”

Kalter said this year will undoubtedly leave officials with “learning experiences that the community will have for next year.”

“Hamvention is a big deal and we want them to work” with local officials “because it’s really a boon for the county and the city,” he said.

Fatal crash: Back-seat passengers not wearing seat belts, state patrol says

Published: Sunday, August 20, 2017 @ 4:00 PM
Updated: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 6:53 PM

Friends, teachers remember 2 Clark County students killed in crash

Two Clark County high school students killed in Sunday’s rollover crash in Greene County were not wearing seat belts, Ohio State Highway Patrol officials said in a statement.

LOCAL NEWS: U.S. 35 E crash kills one in Dayton

  • Killed were David Waag, 17, of Beavercreek, and Connor Williams, 15, of Fairborn
  • A vigil at Greenon High School was planned for Monday night
  • Alcohol and drugs do not appear to be factors, according to the state patrol.

LOCAL NEWS: Man, 51, killed in Clark County crash

UPDATE @ 6 p.m. (Aug. 21) 

The tight-knit Greenon schools community is continuing to grieve the loss of the two high school athletes killed in Sunday’s crash.

"A lot of people are hurting still," Greenon Superintendent Brad Silvus said. "But they are rallying around each other and supporting both families and also the families of those that were able to survive."

UPDATE @ 12:05 p.m. (Aug. 21)

Counselors are being made available to help students and staff members at two Clark County schools where two teenagers killed in Sunday’s rollover crash on Wilkerson Road were students.

Both schools are closed today in light of the news that Connor Williams and David Waag were killed.

Williams was a sophomore at Global Impact STEM Academy in Springfield. Director Joshua Jennings said area districts have offered to help provide grief counselors.

Global Impact Stem Academy closed after student dies in crash

"Our school counselors will be able to be here ... for [students] to talk to and work out the grieving process that they may be going through collectively as a school or individually,” Jennings said. “ In addition to that, we've been in contact with a number of surrounding districts who are willing to send out their counselors as well and trained professionals to be able to add additional support where needed.”

Counselors are also being made available at Greenon High School, where David Waag was a senior. Greenon High was closed Monday but counselors were made available from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Troopers release crash details

Trey Blevins, 18, of Enon, was driving a black 2005 Toyota Corolla that went off the right side of Wilkerson Road between Fairborn and Yellow Springs, the state patrol said in a statement released early Monday.

“It appears in our investigation that they drifted off the right side of the road, over-corrected, went off the left side, hit a tree and then overturned,” said Sgt. Paul Lezotte of the Xenia Post.

Blevins, who was wearing a seat belt, was taken to Soin Medical Center suffering from minor injuries. 

READ: Local news from the Miami Valley

The right front passenger, Zach Knauer, 17, of Springfield, was also wearing a seat belt. He was taken to Soin for observation. 

Waag and Williams were in the back seat. They died at the scene.

The crash remains under investigation. No charges have been filed.

LOCAL NEWS: What you need to know about the 2017 solar eclipse

The vigil

Community members came together Sunday night at the Greenon High School football field to grieve the loss of the boys. Some brought candles, others illuminated cellphones to light the night in honor of Waag and Williams.

School closings

Greenon High School announced the school will be closed Monday, but counselors will be available from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., according to a social media post.

“After careful consideration of our need to support our students during this difficult time and protect all students during tomorrow’s solar eclipse, we are cancelling school so that we can ensure the safety and emotional well-being of all students and staff.”

Officials at Global Impact STEM Academy also decided to close the school Monday. School officials sent out a “One Call” phone message and posted on social media to alert families.

The students

Waag, a senior soccer player, last year was second-team All-Central Buckeye Conference Mad River Division as a junior. Williams played football and attended Global Impact STEM Academy.

Greenon Athletic Director Adam Billet said he was not ready to comment, but said “they were great kids.”

The district had activities in place for the eclipse, but district spokeswoman said that with the deaths of two students in the tight-knit community it would be too much of a strain on the staff.

2 children injured, driver cited in single-vehicle Tipp City accident 

Published: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 6:41 PM

2 children injured, driver cited in single-vehicle Tipp City accident

Two children have been taken to Dayton Children's Hospital from a single-vehicle accident on South Tipp Cowlesville Road, just north of Virginia Drive, in Tipp City, and the driver has been given a traffic citation for a violation, Miami County Sheriff’s deputies said. 

The injuries are said to be non-life threatening and the adult who was in the vehicle has accompanied the children to the hospital, Tipp City EMS personnel said. 

According to the deputies, the driver removed one of the children, still in a car seat, before EMS personnel arrived. 

Police and the medic unit were dispatched about 5:25 p.m. on a report that the sedan had slammed into a utility pole. 

There is a phone wire in the street, knocked loose from the pole because of the impact, and that is causing traffic to be re-routed.

GOT A TIP? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.

Last of 5 charged in Union Twp. home invasion gets 7-year prison term

Published: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 6:14 PM

Eric Santos (Courtesy/Miami County Jail)
Eric Santos (Courtesy/Miami County Jail)

The last of five men convicted in a Union Twp. home invasion in September, during which shots were fired, has been sentenced to seven years in prison.

Eric Santos, 22, of Trotwood, was sentenced Monday in Miami County Common Pleas Court for his guilty pleas to single counts of aggravated burglary with a gun specification, conspiracy to aggravated burglary and felonious assault.

Santos was one of five men arrested in the invasion of a residence on North Montgomery County Line Road, where both the intruders and home owner fired weapons at each other, sheriff’s deputies said. 

One of the men, Keason Twitty, 25, of Dayton, was injured seriously. He pleaded guilty to the same felony charges as Santos as did James Benton, 24, and Corey Dixon, 18, of Englewood.

All three also were sentenced to seven years each as part of plea deals.

Kristian Martinez, 23, of Phillipsburg, who did not go in the house but drove the getaway car, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary. He was sentenced to four years in prison.

Judge Jeannine Pratt told Santos he was fortunate to get the seven-year sentence, which prosecutors recommended. He could have been sent to prison for up to 22 years. 

"This could have ended a lot worse for you," Pratt told Santos, noting that if he returns to her court, she likely wouldn't consider a recommended sentence. He was given credit for 285 days served in jail.

Sheriff’s investigators said they believed the invasion was drug-related.

The homeowner has not been charged.

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Eye damage from eclipse can show later: What you need to know

Published: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 3:13 PM
Updated: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 3:32 PM

Eclipse Glasses at Lincoln Elementary. Bill Lackey/Staff
Eclipse Glasses at Lincoln Elementary. Bill Lackey/Staff

If you damaged your eyes during the eclipse it might take a while before you see symptoms.

The first full solar eclipse in 99 years happened this afternoon, and residents across the Dayton region came out to watch the event.

Those who didn’t use certified eclipse viewing glasses or alternative methods like a pinhole projector risked injuring their eyes and possible permanent damage.

RELATED: Multiple schools close because of eclipse

But it might take a while for that damage to show. Dr. Brian Pennington, emergency room physician with Sycamore Medical Center said he hadn’t seen any patients yet with injuries related to the eclipse as of Monday afternoon, but the symptoms tend to be delayed with showing.

“It does take about anywhere from eight to 12 hours after the initial exposure to really develop the symptoms,” he said.

He said with the sun partially obscured, people can stand looking at the sun for longer, which can lead to someone staring at the sun long enough to cause temporary or permanent damage. Some symptoms could be feeling like there is a foreign object in your eye, redness, dryness, pain or even loss of vision.

A spokeswoman with Miami Valley Hospital said the only person the Premier-affiliated hospital’s ER saw related to the eclipse was someone who had fallen during the event. She said it can take up to 24 hours to see the affects of staring up at the eclipse.

Prior to the eclipse, local doctors warned that residents should proceed with caution and use proper eye protection when looking up at the sun durin the event.

Dr. Amina Husain, with Premier Eye Surgeons, said even with protective glasses, she said it’s not recommended you look too long at the eclipse.

“You can theoretically burn your retina and potentially go blind and that’s a big complication,” said Husain.

RELATED: What not to do the day of and during the total solar eclipse

Dr. Barry Gridley, who practices at Eye Care Locale in downtown Dayton and Wing Eyecare at Austin Landing, said even on a regular day, he still sometimes sees patients with damage from looking right at the sun.

“Your retina is protein and heat fries protein and there’s nothing we can do to restore it,” Gridley said.