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 The Punta Gorda Herald Top Stories

Weekend front won’t be as cool as expected
Fri  Dec 9 2016 08:30AM
Southwest Floridians will not get as cold this weekend as they may have thought based on earlier weather predictions. Forecasters predicted earlier in the week that temperatures would drop down … Find out how to read more online.
‘Official delivery notification’ sounds suspicious
Fri  Dec 9 2016 08:30AM
Roy Strelchun received a postcard from the Notification Warehouse Center, with no return address. It was the “last effort,” officially notifying the 80-year-old Punta Gorda resident that a “package shipment” … Find out how to read more online.
Teen identified as fatal house fire victim
Fri  Dec 9 2016 08:30AM
PUNTA GORDA — Charlotte County authorities have identified the body of the person who died in a Nov. 28 house fire on Oil Well Road as 19-year-old Ronni G. Bell. … Find out how to read more online.
Man sentenced to life for Bonhomme murder
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
Dwayne Johnson insisted on his innocence during his sentencing for the murder of Kello Bon-homme during a drug deal two years ago, even when faced by Bon-homme’s family asking how … Find out how to read more online.
Restaurant dynasties beat odds, survive for generations
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
When Karen Slusar’s husband died, she felt finished with their Dairy Queen. Her daughters had other ideas. After Hurricane Charley tore the roof from The Captain’s Table and gutted the … Find out how to read more online.
Region remembers Pearl Harbor
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
NORTH PORT — The 75th anniversary of the attacks at Pearl Harbor was remembered Wednesday morning in North Port. The event is hosted annually on Dec. 7 in an effort … Find out how to read more online.
Veterans remember Pearl Harbor
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
Members of the American Legion Post 113 and VFW Post 10476, both in Rotonda, held a joint Pear Harbor Commemoration Ceremony Wednesday at Marina at Rotonda West. … Find out how to read more online.
Drying up
Tue  Dec 6 2016 03:27PM
Coming off one of the driest Novembers since last century’s Dust Bowl, and with no significant rain anywhere in sight, Charlotte and Sarasota county residents are bracing for what comes … Find out how to read more online.
Veterans arrive at Pearl Harbor
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
Bob Virgin Jr. looked around. He saw “tons and tons of high school kids. They’re bands.” And they were getting ready to take part later today in the 75th anniversary … Find out how to read more online.
Charlotte Symphony does a little Beethoven
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
Charlotte Symphony Orchestra maestro Raffaele Ponti told his audience Sunday night that when Ludwig van Beethoven composed the third of his nine symphonies in 1804, “he blew the norm of … Find out how to read more online.
Jail’s administrative office evacuated during gas leak
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
CHARLOTTE COUNTY — A gas leak at the Charlotte County Jail led to the evacuation of the Administrative Offices on Tuesday morning. The Charlotte County Fire/EMS Apparatus and Charlotte County … Find out how to read more online.
Gas leak snarls traffic
Tue  Dec 6 2016 08:30AM
PORT CHARLOTTE — A gas leak Monday afternoon shut down traffic for about two hours on Veterans Boulevard from Murdock Circle to Cochran Boulevard in both directions. Charlotte County Fire/EMS … Find out how to read more online.
Two 21-year-olds die in single-vehicle crash
Mon  Dec 5 2016 06:56PM
Two 21-year-olds died in a single-vehicle crash in Port Charlotte early Monday morning, according to a report by the Florida Highway Patrol. Wesley Chery, of Port Charlotte, was driving a … Find out how to read more online.
Return to Pearl Harbor
Sun  Dec 4 2016 08:30AM
They are both members of the Greatest Generation, the men and women who saw our country through World War II. It’s now the Vanishing Generation, the clock ticking on those who recognized … Find out how to read more online.
Bicyclists beware on Taylor Road
Mon  Dec 5 2016 08:30AM
PUNTA GORDA — Debra Highsmith, who describes herself as a “casual bicyclist,” would love to ride the scenic and extensive Punta Gorda Pathways system, but there is no easy way … Find out how to read more online.
Even when they are a bit vulgar
Mon  Dec 5 2016 03:09PM
I recently ran a reader’s comments about my column in which he used some colorful language to describe my intellect. That column elicited responses like these: “I think you should … Find out how to read more online.
A breakfast to champion a new roof
Fri  Dec 2 2016 08:30AM
The Punta Gorda-Port Charlotte-North Port Association of Realtors is sponsoring a fundraising effort to put a new roof on the historic Trabue House. The association is sponsoring a breakfast from … Find out how to read more online.
Architectural tour of Florida Southern College planned
Fri  Dec 2 2016 08:30AM
“Out of the ground and into the light, a child of the sun” is how Frank Lloyd Wright described his work at Florida Southern College in Lakeland according to … Find out how to read more online.
Red tide stirred up on Manasota Key
Fri  Dec 2 2016 01:27PM
ENGLEWOOD — Not even toxic red tide algae in the air deterred Nancy and David Kennery from shelling on Blind Pass Beach Wednesday. “When the surf was quiet, it was … Find out how to read more online.
Gulf coast not alone fighting beach erosion
Thu  Dec 1 2016 08:30AM
Florida’s Atlantic coastal counties, like Charlotte and Sarasota counties on the Gulf Coast, find themselves having to find money to protect and maintain their beaches. On Florida’s Atlantic coast, Indian … Find out how to read more online.
AP Video
Home defaults fall to pre-recession levels
Fri  Dec 9 2016 08:30AM
SOUTHWEST FLORIDA — With home prices rising at a dramatic rate, new foreclosures have fallen to their lowest level in years as “underwater” homeowners are finally able to sell their … Find out how to read more online.
Charlotte ‘stakeholders’ to form clean water task force
Fri  Dec 9 2016 08:30AM
Charlotte County Utilities held a clean water, pro-sewer pep rally this week, and for once, nary a discouraging word was heard. Some 50 “stakeholders” convened by Charlotte County Utilities for … Find out how to read more online.
Punta Gorda approves special assessments
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
The Punta Gorda City Council unanimously approved resolutions for special assessments on the Punta Gorda Isles Bird Section canal cut-through and the Burnt Store Isles electric undergrounding study — both … Find out how to read more online.

Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office reported the following arrests: • Sara Ruthann Hughes, 21, of Tallahassee. Charges: two counts of violation of probation. Bond: none. • Michael Roy Millhoff Jr., … Find out how to read more online.
Retreat offers glimpse into 2017
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
SARASOTA — It’s officially called a retreat, but actually serves as an organizational meeting for the Sarasota County Commissioners as they move into the new year. On Friday morning, commissioners … Find out how to read more online.
City in need of food donations
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
NORTH PORT — In the season of giving, the city is encouraging residents to open their hearts and help their less fortunate neighbors through food and toiletry donations. North Port’s … Find out how to read more online.
Before the bands play, a somber note
Thu  Dec 8 2016 08:30AM
Bob Virgin Jr. couldn’t put his finger on it. It was Wednesday in Honolulu, the morning of the big day. Later, there would be a parade with marching bands, and … Find out how to read more online.
Bottom line: Englewood Waterfest a big success
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
ENGLEWOOD — The second Englewood Beach Waterfest far exceeded the hopes of its organizers. Last month’s Offshore Powerboat Association boat races at Englewood Beach appear to have netted $80,000 in … Find out how to read more online.
Cultural Center raises hand for volunteerism
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
John Halbmaier and his wife, Barbara, stopped by the Homeless Coalition table. They are Port Charlotte residents, snowbirds from New Hampshire in their second season here, were looking for volunteer … Find out how to read more online.
Family Services Center future a clean slate
Wed  Dec 7 2016 08:30AM
MURDOCK — In working with a blank canvas, county officials said the 6.5-acre campus surrounding the Charlotte County Family Services Center presents countless redevelopment possibilities. And that may be part … Find out how to read more online.
One front may bring rain, second front cooler temps
Tue  Dec 6 2016 08:30AM
Southwest Floridians may finally see some rain after six very dry weeks since Hurricane Matthew back in early October. A moist front coming to the area from the Gulf of … Find out how to read more online.
Punta Gorda K-9 services to change direction
Tue  Dec 6 2016 08:30AM
After a career of 12 suspect apprehensions, including one biting incident ending in a $70,000 settlement, K-9 Spirit will likely soon retire from the Punta Gorda Police Department, pending a … Find out how to read more online.
Amsterdam’s sweet imports
Mon  Dec 5 2016 08:30AM
When Jordy and Sharon Beumer decided to gamble on a life in the U.S., they had some tough choices to make. But Sharon, who had visited the U.S. several times … Find out how to read more online.
Man survived ship’s sinking in WWII
Mon  Dec 5 2016 08:30AM
CAPE HAZE — “When General Quarters sounded, I went to my battle station,” 96-year-old Pete Cahill of Cape Haze recalled a lifetime later. “I was one of six lookouts atop … Find out how to read more online.
Reports: Armed suspect charged in multiple vehicle burglaries
Sun  Dec 4 2016 08:30AM
PORT CHARLOTTE — A teenage suspect was arrested Friday in connection to a rash of vehicle burglaries, according to the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office. Kareem James, 18, has been charged … Find out how to read more online.
A present at the pump
Tue  Dec 6 2016 01:43PM
When their 13-year-old granddaughter was unable to accompany her eighth-grade class to Washington, D.C., for graduation, Dan Amez and his wife stepped in — and stepped on the gas. Already … Find out how to read more online.
Local music program needs funds to avoid sounding off
Fri  Dec 2 2016 08:30AM
CHARLOTTE COUNTY — Peace River Elementary School student Daytona Crandall, 9, wants to be a musician. She recently practiced her hand positions, posture and breathing techniques for playing the flute … Find out how to read more online.
Sheriff’s Office to host Alzheimer’s Education event
Fri  Dec 2 2016 08:30AM
PUNTA GORDA — The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office is hosting an Alzheimer’s Education event today, sponsored by Charlotte Memorial Funeral Home and A Better Solution of Punta Gorda. In coordination … Find out how to read more online.
Advocate honored by Drug Free Communities
Thu  Dec 1 2016 08:30AM
ENGLEWOOD — Lauri Ray says the weekly phone calls from a now-clean drug addict are the reward for her efforts. Ray, the founder of Johnny’s Dream Foundation in Englewood, helped … Find out how to read more online.
Sarasota ponders regional planning council role
Thu  Dec 1 2016 08:30AM
SARASOTA — Will Sarasota County leave the Southwest Florida Regional Planning Council based in Fort Myers? The inclination expressed by county commissioners during their Nov. 22 meeting was a likely … Find out how to read more online.