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Tallahassee Democrat from Tallahassee, Florida • Page 7
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Tallahassee Democrat from Tallahassee, Florida • Page 7

Tallahassee, Florida
Issue Date:

Monday April 10,2006 Metro: b)ron Dobson, Rebeccah Falk Phone: (850) 599-2256, 599-2391 Fax: (850) 599-2224 Students return from Local Briefs ...2 European trip. Focus: Wakulla 3 3B Obituaries 7 Tallahassee Democrat 1 i IM (SitaQir dimes LdDcateSteife m-1 VIS8GRIP About a hundred show up to search national forest By Daniela Velazquez DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER The six-person search party stood in the middle of the Apalachicola National Forest on Sunday, with a caravan of cars 50 feet away. Paul Eakin, a ham-radio operator with the party, held a walkie-talkie in his hand, checking to see whether they should follow Tallahassee resident Carlton Allen's suggestion to concentrate near the natural-gas line in a search for any clues in the disappearance of Ali Gilmore. Eakin's search i 1 team was part of a I I larger effort to try i II i and find signs of 1w what happened to Gilmore, who was four months pregnant when she was reported missing Feb. 3. Police suspect foul play is Dennis .1 GLENN BEIL Democrat photos Volunteer searchers led by Roxy, a German shepherd, continue the search for All Gilmore In the Apalachicola National Forest on Sunday. Gilmore has been missing since Feb. 3. MISSING, ft- mulP involved because of the amount of time she has been missing. Gilmore was living in her home in the Wilson Green subdivision before her disappearance. She was separated from her husband, James Gilmore. The Pensacola branch of the KlaasKIDS Foundation, a California-based organization that helps families of missing children, led the registration. Tallahassee's Southeast K-9 Search and Rescue group organized the search. More than 100 volunteers came to search Sunday; 170 helped Saturday. Specialized searchers, such as those from Southeast K-9 Search and Rescue, Escambia Search and Rescue of Pensacola, and Gulf Coast Search and Recovery, led the volunteers in teams. The searchers turned over 15 possible clues to authorities Saturday. They won't know whether the items are Gilmore's until grew up near Forest Road 305, off Rivers Road just west of Craw-fordville Road in Leon County. When the party ran into another group searching on foot and with all-terrain vehicles, they acknowledged the necessity of a multifaceted search approach. "By doing that we may look at some vital clues along the way," Drawdy said. "You piece it together like a puzzle." Back at FAMU Way, the organizers pieced together the operation's effectiveness and hoped more of the community would be involved if another search was investigated by police. Eakin's party stood around waiting for a response from the search's weekend headquarters at 447 FAMU Way. Members of the party tried to imagine what could have happened to Gilmore. "The natural-gas line is easily accessible," said Mike Drawdy, one of the experienced searchers. "It's easy to get in and get out." Drawdy and his wife, Heidy, own several search dogs as part of a Thomasville search-and-rescue operation. "These dogs are trained to find human remains," Drawdy said. The searchers have an advantage with Allen, a member of their party, knowing the area. Allen MISSING EiLL COTTERELL NOTEBOOK End may be in sight for parole panel Rep. Mitch Needelman is on a mission. He wants to eliminate the Parole Commission, with its $9.34 million budget (currently) and its 148 job positions. And the Melbourne Republican points out that the state did away with parole for most offenses in 1983 and for capital felonies in 1995. As of last September, there were only 5,178 prisoners whose crimes occurred before the state changed its sentencing guidelines. That's out of about 87,000 inmates. The House version of the budget abolishes the commission and moves parole authority to regional boards appointed by the governor. Clemency functions the bulk of the commission's work would go to the governor's office, and parole-revocation hearings would go to the courts. "This is a dying agency in search of a mission, serving no purpose other than the continuation of unjustifiable bureaucracy," Needelman said. He's not one of those knee-jerk conservatives who beats up on state employees. He was one for more than 28 years with the old Florida Marine Patrol, and Needelman crossed party lines to vote against Gov. Jeb Bush's "Service First" plan in 2001, when the state revised its personnel system. The Senate version of the budget doesn't terminate the commission. Chances are the Senate will prevail in a joint budget conference committee. The reason for that is a February report by the Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability. OPPAGA said regionalizing parole determination probably would increase overall costs, as would assigning revocation hearings to the already-backlogged courts. And, speaking of backlogs, OPPAGA cited clemency hearings. The commission had only 341 parole hearings and released 43 offenders in 2004-05, but it did 43,332 clemency investigations. "Transferring the 51 891-HHLP A tamymtxii kawtrtt ivar i S20.CCO Please see SEARCH, 2B Mother's health brings challenges New Orleans native needs help with health-care costs By TaMaryn Waters DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER Judy Poshe savors each breath like it could be her last. Poshe, 46, takes 13 medications twice a day to try to slow down the debilitating effects of sar- -1 coidosis and Candice is a junior at Leon High School. But Poshe's health continues to decline. Besides the pulmonary disease, she suffers from severe kidney damage and She is unable to work. "I'm not ready to die," she said. "Now, I'm wracking up medical bills because I'm getting worse." Poshe has received some help from FEMA. She's also on Medicare. But it pays only 80 percent of medical costs. Poshe is one of more than 40 Katrina families that have been referred to Catholic Charities, Executive Director John Duffy said. The agency has helped Poshe with rent and utility assistance and with referrals for health-related needs. And while her case is a priority, the agency is in need of financial donations to assist others. "When we can help people like Judy, who needs chronic help, that diminishes our ability to help the one-time clients," Duffy said. "But, you can't turn your back on somebody like Judy. She's doing everything right. But she can only do what she CARING CONNECTION i A sampling of needs and good deeds. the double-lung transplant she received eight years ago. A month before Hurri MIKE EWEN Democrat Judy Poshe says she has been rejuvenated by the kindness she has been shown by the people of Tallahassee. can." Poshe sat on her olive-green sofa and managed a smile, even as she talked about her hardships. She said, "God must be saving me for something." She talked about how she can't return to her neighborhood in New Orleans because her weak immune system can't handle the potential toxicity. Her Please see CARE, 28 cane Katnnas devastation, the New Orleans native was diagnosed with pneumonia and found herself fignting for her life in a hospital bed. She was forced to leave the city and ended up in Tallahassee with her teenage daughter. Her mother and an older daughter fled to Houston. She and her 16-year-old daughter Candace found a small apartment to call home, and MIKE EWEN Democrat Leon High School student Candice Poshe has to deal with, her mother's chronic illnesses. Help pull up trousers with inventor's Pants On Easy clemency staff directly involved in clemency activities from the commission to the governor's office would lead to additional annual costs of approximately $794,000," OPPAGA calculated. Employees usually earn more in the governor's office and all jobs there are Selected Exempt, with paid-up insurance, while employees at the Parole Commission are Career Service and pay for insurance. Replying to the OPPAGA study, commission chairman Monica David said Bush's budget recommendations "address the long-standing staffing deficiencies" that created the clemency backlog. That's why the Senate probably will give the commission a budget reprieve. declines to describe in much detail because it hasn't been patented. A patent would frotect it rom being copied. Li. By Julian Pecquet DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER If you have lost your autonomy because you're injured, recuperating from surgery or just getting up there in age, a Tallahassee resident says he has an invention that could help. Jim Longhurst, a city of Tallahassee employee, has invented a way to help folks who can't easily bend down to their legs to put on pants. Longhurst, a code-enforcement supervisor who invented Pants On whatsoever," he said. Longhurst said he invented the product because the "hip kits" that are currently available some of which include long shoehorns and poles that can hold a sponge or grab socks and other clothing didn't fit his needs. He credits his 34 years as a licensed contractor he worked in construction before joining the city four years ago for his creative skills. "Working in construction, alone a lot of the time, I've had to be innovative to accomplish the task," he said. That's a quality his city co-workers have learned to appreciate. Brenda Tanner, his boss at the city's Department of Neighborhood and Community Services, said Longhurst is renowned for his skills. "We had this new office furniture," she said, he figured out how to put it Please see PANTS, 23 Easy last year, said he came up with the idea after surgery for a degenerative bone condition left him immobilized for two months. The product "is for any person who has a limitation for bending over to put their pants on," the 58-year-old said. "It helps you to be, to a degree, somewhat independent." The only problem is it's not yet for sale. Longhurst is seeking a manufacturer for his product, which he Longhurst describes it as a "very user-friendly, simple design" that he constructed using $5 or $6 worth of commonly found materials. "It's not technical FASTER SERVICE LOWER PRICES TALLAHASSEE HEARING i -L SCREENING i EXPERT QUALITY I THf PATIENT AND ANY OTHER MRSON RESPONSIBLE FOR PAYMENT HAS A RIGHT 10 I fIFFIKF TO P1V r.Mntl PIVMFIIT flR DF 1 DARYN QUICK DR. RICHARD WRIGHT MARIE FLCRES fl Off AMY Set! Hearing Aid Center Locally Owned Business Oldest Hearing Aid-Dispensing Business in the Area REIMBURSED FOR PAYMENT FOR ANY OTHER SERVICES, EXAMINATION OR TREATMENT THAT IS PERE0RMF0 AS A RESULT Of AND WITHIN 72 HOURS OF RESPONDING TO THE AOVEHTISEMENT FOR THE FREE. 0ISC0UNTED FEE. OR REDUCE0 FEE SERVICE, EXAMINATION, OR TREATMENT. I of Digital Hearing Aids! Serving North fioridasinci W2 903 N. MONROE ST. 222-3902 Only On-Site Laboratory In This Area

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