Two Pine Belt teachers receive classroom makeovers

HATTIESBURG, MISS. - Two lucky Pine Belt teachers receive a classroom makeover Tuesday morning, courtesy of First Bank. Employees from First Bank surprised Taylor Huddleston, a first-grade teacher at Thames Elementary School with a $500 check to help her with a classroom makeover. Huddleston entered First Bank’s contest for a “classroom makeover” earlier during the school year, and mentioned she did not expect to win. “I was so surprised because when I applied for this, I had no clue that I was going to get it,” Huddleston said. “I’m just so happy.” Another six miles down the road, a special education teacher at Oak Grove Primary School named Nicole Neal received the same surprise. “It

Blair E. Batson, first UMMC pediatrics chair, dies

(The following press release and photo were released from the University of Mississippi Medical Center.) JACKSON, Miss. – Dr. Blair E. Batson, the first chair of pediatrics at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, died Nov. 26. He was 98. Dr. LouAnn Woodward, UMMC vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine, said Batson’s importance to the health of children in the state “cannot be underestimated. “He truly is the father of organized pediatrics in Mississippi,” she said, “and the lives of countless children in our state have been touched through his work. “What a wonderful legacy.” Batson’s successor as chair, Dr. Owen B. Evans, called him “a livi

Purvis Middle School becomes part of Algebra Nation

State legislators are doing what they can do to improve math scores throughout Mississippi. The new Algebra Nation program recently started at Purvis Middle School. Visit for more details.

Hattiesburg Police Department reaches 107 Officers

HATTIESBURG, MISS. – The Hattiesburg Police Department (HPD) adds two more officers to the department, and just need two more officer to reach the department’s goal of 107 officers. Toby Barker, the Mayor of Hattiesburg swore in the two lateral transfers, Dustin McCullan and James Harrington. Previously before joining HPD, McCullan and Harrington both worked in Louisiana. McCullan worked with the Port Allen Police Department, and Harrington worked with the LaFayette Parish Sheriff’s Office. McCullan originally started his law enforcement career with the Hattiesburg Police Department, and said he made it his personal goal to back with HPD. McCullan expressed his excitement to be back in the a

BBB says scammers are posing as SSA officials

The Better Business Bureau of Mississippi has learned of a phone scam from residents throughout the state. "The caller claims to be an officer with the Social Security Administration wanting to update your information. They are asking for your social security number, date of birth, and your mailing address," the BBB said in a statement. If a potential victim pauses when responding, the scammer threatens arrest or loss of benefits, the BBB added. "We are warning people, DO NOT give out personal information over the phone unless you can verify who you are talking to," BBB officials said. If you are worried about your Social Security benefits, the BBB recommends contacting the real Social Secu

WCU students assist with hurricane cleanup in Florida

(The following press release and photo were submitted from William Carey University.) Over trimester break Nov. 6-9, students from William Carey University’s Baptist Student Union partnered with First United Methodist Church in Panama City, Fla., on Hurricane Michael clean-up crews. Pictured are, in front, Corey Jenkins, Lizzie Stewart and BSU Director Dr. Tim Glaze. In back are Mack McElveen, Greg Williams, Carli Gustafson, Rachel Moore and WCU supporter, Sara Canova. About the WCU volunteers: • Carli Gustafson is a sophomore intercultural studies and nursing major from Ocean Springs. • Corey Jenkins is a sophomore Christian ministries and psychology major from Covington, La. • Mack

10K Ruck March Delivers More than 2,600 pounds in Food

This press release comes from Camp Shelby's 'Spearhead' Brigade HATTIESBURG, MISS.. – The Active Duty Soldiers of the177th Armored Brigade will conduct their annual 10- kilometer ruck march to deliver food donations to the Pine Belt community in support of the holidays here, Nov. 14. All donations will once again support the Edwards Street Mission and provide food to families in seven counties throughout the state, including Forrest, Jones and Lamar. Last year, the Troops donated 691 pounds of food. The ruck march is scheduled for 7 a.m. at the Longleaf Trace’s Jackson Road Station. Each Soldier will carry a minimum of 35 pounds of nonperishable items along the Trace to drop off at the turna

Local Pine Belt Coaches weigh in on a New Concussion Treatment; Part 3 of Special Series

HATTIESBURG, MISS. – Millions of dollars go into concussion research each year, and now a Florida doctor believes he finally found the cure. The potential cure called Prevacus received an endorsement from Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre. After Farve’s endorsement two legendary Pine Belt coaches and an athletic trainer expressed their thoughts about the new treatment. “The research is still out there,” Oak Grove High School’s athletic trainer, Kevin Mauldin said. “I know that Brett’s been on TV endorsing this new drug and hopefully there is something to this and there is a cure.” Both former PCS football coach Joey Hawkins and former Oak Grove High School football coach Nevil Barr made


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