Archive for Thursday, November 9, 2006

Exploring the Past/De Soto History

November 9, 2006

5 years ago
November 2001
Unwilling to pass the water department's bills on to taxpayers, the De Soto City Council agreed to dip into the city utilities reserve account to make up a $150,000 shortfall in the department's 2001 budget.
City administrator Gerald Cooper said the water department would finish the year $100,000 in the red. Another $50,000 would be needed to pay the department's expenses in January before utility payments started to fill the department's coffers.
The water department budget shortfall was not unexpected. The city had made a practice of subsidizing the department with revenue from other utilities and the general fund. The city's 2002 budget subsidized the department to the tune of $250,000, despite an anticipated 10-percent increase in rates.
¢ A Kansas City, Kan., man killed a De Soto woman on Sept. 4 because he feared for his life and the life of his mother, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing in Johnson County District Court.
Alfredo Arambula told his mother, a sheriff's detective and a girlfriend that he shot Melanie S. Oliver, 41, while she slept at her apartment in the 8100 block of Center Drive in De Soto.
He committed the killing because longtime De Soto resident Juan Crutchfield threatened to kill him and his mother if he didn't go through with the slaying, the witnesses said during a preliminary hearing to determine if there was enough evidence to have Arambula stand trial for first-degree murder.
Crutchfield, also known as Juan Guardado, allegedly wanted to stop Oliver from testifying against him in a domestic violence case and solicited Arambula's help to kill her.
¢ Tom and Linda Brown were the new owners of the De Soto Apple Market.
35 years ago
November 1971
On a recent tour of Asia, Mr. and Mrs. Roy Soellner, De Soto, were ready to leave Bangkok, Thailand, for Katmandu, Nepal, when suddenly their plane, belonging to a Thai airline company, was commandeered by that country's government, for use in shuttling troops.
In order to get to Nepal after the plane was commandeered, the couple had to take a Japanese flight to Rangoon, Burma, then go to New Delhi and finally from there to Nepal.
The Soellners were gone for a month. They went to Hawaii, Japan, Formosa, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Rangoon, New Delhi, Katmandu, Agra, India, Jaipur, Tehran, Iran, Beruit, Lebanon, Istanbul, Turkey, Athens, Rome, and then New York and back to Kansas City.
¢ The De Soto Wildcats "Big Green Machine" produced one of its best scoring barrages in nearly a decade when they rolled over Jefferson County North 48-22 to finish the season.
Not since the undefeated 1963 gridiron season had the Wildcats achieved a better football record. The Cats wrapped up the season with a commendable 5-4 season winning total.

47 years ago
November 1959
United States Navy seaman apprentice Clarence Sams was scheduled to return to Long Beach, Calif., aboard the newly commissioned destroyer USS Turnery Joy, after a month long combination trial run and goodwill cruise to South America.
During the tour, the destroyer's crew visited Costa Rica, Peru and the Naval Station, Rodman, Canal Zone.
Upon completion of the shakedown cruise, the Turnery Joy would assume the duties as flagship for the Commander of Destroyer Squadron 13 and would join the U.S. Pacific fleet.
¢ Kenneth O. Plumb, who was employed as a player in a Kansas City Stock Company was thought to have fallen asleep while driving home in the early morning with his car coming to a violent stop at a culvert near the Ernest Hirning home. He was discovered imprisoned in the car some time later, still unconscious. He received treatment at the Olathe hospital and was reported to be in good condition. The car was badly damaged.
¢ Gerald Siscoe and John McAninch, both of De Soto, were members of the Ottawa University football squad. Both were on the starting varsity team.
¢ While using a tractor on the E.R. McVey farm west of town, Everett Plummer was thrown from his seat on to a sharp piece of metal and received a deep cut on the calf of his left leg. He was given treatment at the Reece Hospital in Gardner and returned to his home to recuperate.

53 years ago
November 1953
A fire of undetermined origin destroyed the home of Mr. and Mrs. Bill Coldwell. The family was asleep and the two young daughters in an upstairs bedroom were the first to wake. Very few of the household furnishings were saved. Some 1,000 bushels of sweet potatoes, including seed potatoes, stored in the basement were lost.
¢ Pfc. Jackson B. Manuel, son of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Manuel, De Soto, was assigned as a cook at the Army Personnel Center, Fort Lewis, Wash.
¢ Lou Falley, owner of Falley's market at Sunflower and stores in Topeka, celebrated his 21st anniversary in the grocery business.

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