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Chiefs running back Darrel Williams shoots the gap after a handoff from quarterback Patrick Mahomes II during training camp practice Thursday at Missouri Western. The Chiefs will play the Cincinnati Bengals at 7 p.m. today at Arrowhead Stadium in the first

of four preseason games.

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Felix Street Square gates | Finishing touches to new barricades nearing end
Downtown gates expected to be completed this month

The gates being built around Felix Street Square are expected to be finished by the end of the month, depending on some materials.

Work began this week on the construction of brick bases around the metal columns that house the actual gates.

The St. Joseph Public Works Department is overseeing the construction of the project, but was not involved in the designs.

Assistant Director Brady McKinley said the brick work is expected to be finished by the end of next week.

He said the next step in the project is to install lettering that will display the street names on the columns and will read “welcome” on two archways at Eighth and Felix streets, and Seventh and Faraon streets.

“The lettering is all ordered and it should ship in the next week or two,” McKinley said. “They’re waiting to get the arches up. As soon as they get the lettering in they’ll get them on the columns and they’ll get them on the arches.”

He said lettering could have started earlier, but a small setback means the letters are still being manufactured.

“They had some samples come in on the lettering, it wasn’t right according to the specs,” McKinley said. “So, then they had to go back to the manufacturer to make sure they had the correct lettering.”

The columns also were repainted after paint was not sticking to the surfaces, but the project is expected to be completely finished by September.

The gates are part of a multi-phase redevelopment plan for Coleman Hawkins Park at Felix Street Square, and are considered a safety feature by the Downtown Partnership.

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Tests help to protect high-school athletes

Athletes within the St. Joseph School District should already have their paperwork filled out and testing done, but what’s the purpose of it all?

Lyle Christensen, an athletic trainer for Mosaic Life Care, is contracted out to various schools within the district. Thursday morning, he could be found at Lafayette High School administering imPACT tests to incoming athletes.

“If they were to get a concussion, this is the test to determine if everything is OK, their brain’s functioning, they’re not having any trouble,” he said. “It tests verbal and agility skills.”

He described the test as a sort of a baseline. Should they get a concussion, experts can use the test to see if there are any lingering cognitive- or movement-related injuries.

The tests, which are required by the Missouri State High School Activities Association and the St. Joseph School District, are taken by students every two years.

“If they’re having trouble in school, they’re having trouble with memory loss or headaches and they’re struggling, we can go back in and test them to see where they’re at,” Christensen said of the imPACT tests. “And we have that baseline to compare that to. It’s not an end-all-be-all, but it’s a tool in our toolbox to figure out what else we need to do with this kid if they’re struggling.”

Physicals, which once were required every year for athletes, are now only needed every two years as well.

Christensen said some of these injuries, especially concussions, affect student-athletes very differently. Regardless of how many concussions you’ve seen, he said, they rarely affect two people the same way.

And should those students suffer a concussion on the field, Christensen said they will wait a few days to test them. Should they be struggling academically, feeling dizzy or sick, they may send them to see a doctor or specialist. Academic accommodations also may be made, whether it’s taking a break from school or minimizing certain activities to help the brain heal more effectively.

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Leadership Missouri visits St. Joseph

A group of business leaders from all corners of Missouri got the chance to take a closer look at St. Joseph’s growing business community.

The 2019 Leadership Missouri class visited a variety of local businesses and historic homes from Wednesday to Friday. Leadership Missouri is a seven-month program by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry that gives participants a chance to visit seven cities and learn more about the state’s business opportunities.

St. Joseph has been a stop on Leadership Missouri tours several times in the last 10 years.

“Everybody’s very impressed with St. Joseph,” Director of the Missouri Chamber Federation Tammy Long said. “They didn’t realize all the hidden gems that you have here. We’re trying to educate people from across the state what the other communities are doing.”

Michele Litzelfelner, member relationship manager of the Cape Girardeau Area Chamber of Commerce, applied for Leadership Missouri in hopes of making connections and see more of the state. The trip was her first time visiting St. Joseph.

“I didn’t really didn’t know what to expect. It’s larger than I thought. Very diverse,” Litzelfelner said. “The small business owners and their enthusiasm into the community, not just with their own business, but getting involved on board and committees stood out to me.”

Stops on the three-day tour of St. Joseph included The Tiger’s Den, River Bluff Brewing, Room 108, Shakespeare Chateau, Hillyard Inc., Hillyard Technical Center as well as a historic neighborhood and Parties on the Parkway.

“We have lots of special employers and they’re always willing to welcome us in,” Kristie Arthur, Director of Workforce Development at the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce, said.

To apply to participate in Leadership Missouri, visit

Judge approves petition to declare Diemel brothers legally dead

Two missing Wisconsin men have been declared legally dead by a Wisconsin judge.

According to court documents, a judge found Justin and Nicholas Diemel to have died on or around July 21.

July 21 is the day the brothers were to return to Wisconsin from Northwest Missouri.

“After analyzing all the facts available to petitioner (Lisa Diemel) and the fact that a death investigation is pending in Missouri, petitioner has come to the conclusion that the above-named individual is deceased,” one of the court documents stated.

“The status of his remains is unknown to petitioner; and there are assets and debts that should be subject to a probate proceeding,” one document said.

Shawano County Circuit Judge William Kussel Jr. approved identical petitions for both brothers on Aug. 1. The petition legally allows Lisa Diemel, the wife of Nicholas, to run the brothers’ livestock business.

The petitions give Diemel, “authority to run and administer the day to day activities of Diemel Livestock LLC; including but not limited to paying employees and contractors, entering into contracts, ordering supplies, paying bills and creditors, making cash distributions to members in accordance with their operating document and providing for family allowances.”

Human remains were found on a farm near Braymer, Missouri, on July 30 but those remains have yet to be identified. The search of the property included two different sets of dog teams, and multiple police agencies.

One of those agencies is the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Department. The Buchanan County Sheriff, Bill Puett, told News-Press NOW he hopes to have his department’s part of the investigation wrapped up by next Friday.

One man has been arrested in the case, 25-year-old Garland Joseph Nelson. He hasn’t been charged with causing harm to the brothers, but for illegally driving their rental truck. He currently sits in Caldwell County Jail without bail.

In the past, Nelson was convicted for cattle fraud and for passing bad checks. A woman also obtained an order of protection against him in 2015. The judge who signed that order was the same one assigned to his current tampering case, Caldwell County Judge Jason Kanoy.

File photo | News-Press NOW  

The search for the missing Diemel brothers was focused on a house on Catawba Road near last month in Braymer, Missouri.