Three Fort Scott Tribune stories that ranked of six through 10 in 2012 involve the loss of area residents in tragic automobile accidents.
Stories that fell six through 10, along with the date the most viewed story ran and total pageviews, follow:
6. (April 20, 2012; 1,996 pageviews) The USD 234 school district announced April 19 that Diane Gross is its new superintendent. Gross replaced longtime school chief Rick Werling, whose contract ended June 30.
Werling had been with USD 234 for 32 years. Gross, who officially started July 1, came to the district from USD 480 in Liberal, where she was deputy superintendent. Prior to that appointment, Gross was assistant superintendent for learning services, assessment, and data for USD 261 in Haysville. Gross has 29 years of experience in education. Werling had announced his early retirement at the Feb. 13, 2012, school board meeting. The school board began the search for a new superintendent at the beginning of March and hired Doug Moeckel of the Kansas Association of School Boards to assist with the search and narrow down candidates. From that search, three finalists were chosen, including Fort Scott High School Principal Bob Beckham and USD 348 Superintendent Paul Dorathy. Fourteen originally applied for the job.
7. (Sept. 26, 2012; 1,925 pageviews) Justin Hueston, 22, Mapleton, was killed in a two-vehicle accident that took place early Sept. 25 on U.S. Highway 54 about three miles east of Fort Scott. Hueston died when the 1977 Honda motorcycle he was driving east on U.S. 54 was struck by a 1996 Buick Park Avenue driven by Joshua Bassett, 24, of Fort Scott. Bassett's vehicle, which was westbound on U.S. 54, drifted left of center and struck the motorcycle in the eastbound turn lane to 265th Street, about 34 feet west of the intersection of U.S. 54 and 265th Street, a Kansas Highway Patrol report said. The report said Hueston was wearing safety glasses and a helmet. The accident took place about 7:30 a.m. that Tuesday. He was transported to the Research Medical Center in Kansas City, Mo.
He is survived by a wife, Katie and two children, a daughter Paityn and a son, Colby.
8. (March 7, 2012; 1,888 pageviews) George Wilkinson, 63, Uniontown, died March 5 following a one-vehicle crash in downtown Fort Scott. The crash occurred after the 2003 Jeep Liberty driven by Wilkinson left an alleyway to the east and struck the Orange Grove Apartments building at 102 State at about 2:30 p.m. Wilkinson was taken to the Mercy Hospital emergency room where he died. Mercy spokeswoman Tina Rockhold said at the time she could not comment on the cause of death, but did say the accident and death were not related.
A passenger in the vehicle, 4-year-old Bryan Wilkinson, the great-grandson of the driver, was listed in the KHP report as having a "possible injury," but was not transported to a medical facility. Neither occupant was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. KHP Technical Trooper Rick Wingate said speed was not a factor in the cause of the crash and both occupants were found inside the vehicle. He said it was believed the cause of death could possibly have been health-related.
9. (March 30, 2012; 1,798 pageviews) Fort Scott businessman Scott E. Klein was killed in a two-vehicle crash March 29 near Louisburg. According to a Kansas Highway Patrol report, Klein, 57, of San Clemente, Calif., was killed when the 2012 Ford PC he was driving southbound on U.S. Highway 69 collided with a 1997 GMC Van driven by Marilyn Nickell, 45, of Drexel, Mo.
The accident took place at 5:30 a.m. about two miles south of Louisburg. Klein had been working at the plant in Fort Scott for the previous two weeks and was on his way to Fort Scott from Kansas City when the accident occurred.
Klein was taken to KU Medical Center, where he died. Klein Products of Kansas is a manufacturer of water tanks, tankers, truck tanks, street flushers and water pumps for various mining, construction, agricultural and government agencies. Klein started the local branch of the company in 1990.
10. (March 8, 2012; 1,602 pageviews) The city of Fort Scott decides to auction restaurant equipment and supplies from Woodland Hills Golf Course. Items were sold at auction on the city's Facebook page. Fort Scott Economic Development Recruitment and Retention Manager Macy Cullison said Facebook was chosen for the sale on the heels of the successful Bid It! Bourbon County, an online auction website found through the popular social media network. Some people had expressed interest in the restaurant and kitchen space at the course, but that idea quickly lost momentum once they saw the amount of repair work that needed to be done such as cleaning and fixing walls and floors that were falling apart, Cullison said.