Better Newspaper Contest

2013 Award Winners

Hoosier State Press Association - The Indiana Publisher - Better Newspaper Contest

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Page 41 of 67

Division 4 Headline Writing/Category 7 First place Cheerleaders are people, too; Duck duck lose; Pain, no gain Brian Harmon Daily Reporter (Greenfield) Comments: None given Second place Losing wait, Cutting pork, Stellar grant not in stars this year Sarah Einselen Pharos-Tribune (Logansport) Comments: None given Third place A more perfect union at Goshen College | Alcohol policy is worth a shot | Former Fairfield star digs college Michael Wanbaugh The Goshen News Comments: None given Best Short Feature Story/Category 8 First place 'His angel was watching over him' Rachel Sheeley Palladium-Item (Richmond) Comments: Clear winner in this group. An inspirational story of tragedy turning to triumph. This deputy is a hero, and the reporter captured the story with good quotes and an easy-to-follow script. Second place After war in Poland, love blooms in U.S. Martha Rasche The Herald Comments: It's hard to do a story like this justice under the constrains of print media, but this reporter did. The reporter told a wonderful tale of love that spanned the generations. Well-written and great details. Third place Shear delight Ryan Trares Daily Journal (Franklin) Comments: A fun story, which was well-written and contained all the elements of feature writing. It made me feel like I was at the barber shop on Saturday morning with my late grandfather. Best Profile Feature/Category 9 First place 'Our No. 1 Fan' Jason Recker The Herald (Jasper) Comments: Community journalism at its best. Second place Looking back on an exciting life Matt Fritz The LaPorte Herald-Argus Comments: Many, many good entries. This one stood out. Third place Heroes all over the place Matt Fritz The LaPorte Herald-Argus Comments: This one demanded attention from beginning to end. Good job! Page 42 • Cheerleaders are people, too • Duck duck lose • Pain, no gain Brian Harmon Daily Reporter (Greenfield) 'His angel was watching over him' still worried Davis. As his second day of A week after a barn patrol came to a close, full of his belongings Davis decided to do a On a dark, deserted burned,Wayne County neighborhood check. country road Sheriff's Department He drove Bethel, Saturday, Nov. 24, was Reserve Deputy Mike Davis Boundary and Seaney roads Davis' second day of a threeagreed to patrol duty as a and Fountain City Pike day commitment to road way to take his mind off his patrol. As a Sheriff's Reserve before turning onto Franklin troubles. Township Road, which has unit member, he voluntarily With just 10 minutes left few houses. serves as an officer when in his shift, Davis decided to full-time deputies need time He saw something in make a quick review of the off. the middle of the road and country roads near his Arba thought a deer had been hit. He'd taken the duties to Pike home. escape the stresses of the Driving closer, Davis said, In an empty stretch of past 10 days. On Nov. 15, "'Oh my Lord, it's a man, Franklin Township Road, he he and his wife, Kathy, were not a deer.' discovered a fallen Amish awakened at about 3:30 a.m. "It was 6:01 p.m. I'll never teen who was suffering by a huge fire. The barn forget." cardiac arrest. Davis was about 40 feet away from able to summon help that Davis called dispatch for their house was burning. saved 17-year-old Nathan an ambulance and assistance. Davis lost three vehicles Stoltzfus's life. The young man was face and many other items that down in the road. Was it a an "It was a miracle," said were stored in the barn accident? A crime scene? Nathan's father, Jacob owned by Jim Nicholson. Stoltzfus of Fountain City. "I "His feet were still On his first patrol day, the moving," he said. "I saw guess his angel was watching wind fanned hot embers in over him. ... Nathan's angel the barn's remains into a fire. something shiny next to him. must have told Mike Davis Extinguished by the Fountain The Amish ride (shiny) twoto turn in that road that City-New Garden Township For complete story, see time." Volunteer Fire Department "I have to believe that without further damage, it Click on "Contests." By Rachel Sheeley Palladium-Item (Richmond) myself," Davis agreed. "It was meant to happen that way, for me to be there." 'Our No. 1 Fan' By Jason Recker The Herald (Jasper) If his body would play along, Dave Eckert would slide gracefully from one sport to the next. He'd be the kind of lanky wide receiver who stretches to pluck touchdown passes from the air just before his feet hug the sideline. A few years ago, he could regularly knock down 3-pointers. He'd love to snatch a rebound, lope down the floor and launch shots from beyond the arc. But baseball is his favorite. He imagines what it'd be like to spread his feet, dip into a crouch, lower his glove to the dirt and wait for a line drive to one-hop toward his chest. He'd snag it from the air, pump once then coolly whip the ball across the diamond. One down. If Dave could play, he'd really play. It seems unfair, then, that a man with such passion for athletics be confined by cerebral palsy. Dave's body won't play along. He's been leaning on a walker for years, awkwardly yet efficiently getting where he needs to go. Usually, the destination is a frontrow seat somewhere in southwestern Indiana. If you've been to a Jasper High School athletic event anytime in the last two decades, you've probably seen Dave. The Wildcats have many fans. Dave is unique not only for his steadfast support – he attends nearly 100 events each school year – but because he cheers for points and people. The 37-yearold man who yearns to play found an outlet long ago by developing connections with those who can. "I watch these guys grow up from freshmen all the way up," Dave says. "(Young people) don't realize things that happen, like my circumstances. They don't realize how lucky they have it. I used to get sad. But God made me the way he made me, and I'll deal with it and go from there. I watch these guys grow up, and if they can play, it helps me. It makes me feel a part of it." The Eckert surname is born and bred in Jasper, but Dave operates on a firstname basis. Wherever he goes, he's usually the most well-known guy in the room. A friend calls him "Mayor Dave," but he's more like an ambassador. Dave is comfortable with attention, but he'd rather subtly make his rounds. Before a football game last fall, he arrived 90 minutes early and idled near one end zone as fans buzzed past. By the time he reached his seat, more than 30 people had paused to say hello. After a basketball game last month, he shuffled across the floor, zigzagging among players and their families. It's nothing for Dave to stick around at the gym until 10:30. He's usually among the last to leave. Part of the reason for the early comings and late goings is mobility. Cerebral palsy impedes movement, For complete story, see Click on "Contests."

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