Coushatta Youth Places In State Patriotic Essay Competition

The Veterans of Foreign Wars in Louisiana has awarded a seventh grader from Coushatta second place in the Patriot’s Pen competition.  The award was presented at the VFW Mid-Winter Convention held last weekend in Alexandria.

The second place trophy was presented to Isak Schmidley of Coushatta.  He traveled to the convention with his father Adam.  Young Schmidley attends the Academy of Accelerated Studies, a home school academy, in Coushatta.

The Patriot’s Pen essay competition is sponsored in Red River and Bienville parishes by VFW Post and Auxiliary 7287.  It was presented to middle school students.  Schmidley’s entry was judged best of those submitted locally.  His entry was judged best in VFW District 12 (Northwest Louisiana) and then placed second of entries sent on to the state VFW.

The trophy was presented by State VFW Commander Mickey Carrol with District 12 Commander Joe Smith, Post Commander Barry McCoy and Auxiliary President Heather McCoy looking on. 

Soccer Registration Underway

Spring soccer registration is now underway at Open Door Fellowship.  All boys and girls ages 5 to 16 can sign up.  Practices begin in March and games will be played beginning in April.

“Develop your skills with us!” is the motto of ODF Soccer.  Players develop athletically and spiritually in a Christ centered sports environment.

The registration fee is $50 per person.  That includes the uniform and shin guards.  Team equipment is provided.  Players will be assigned to teams for competition based upon the players age.

Coaches, referees, and other volunteers are also being registered for the spring season.  There is no fee for volunteers.

To register for soccer visit or call the church office at 318-932-6267.  Registration deadline is February 28th.

December Students of the Month

The Students of the Month were introduced to the Red River Parish School Board at the January meeting.  Superintendent Alison Hughes read their nomination statements submitted by their teachers.

The Red River Elementary student is Alex McDonald.  Her nomination read, “Alex is an outstanding student.  She is helpful to others and is easy to get along with.  She has a good work ethic and pushes herself every day.  Alex excels in her subjects and is a model student.”

Avery Thomley was chosen from Red River Junior High.  Her nomination read, “Avery is a devoted 8th grader who is a joy to have in the classroom.  Her welcoming smile and positive energy certainly make her a delight to teach.  Avery always puts forward her best effort, making sure that she completes her assigned lessons and stays on task.  Not only does she keep herself on task, but she is also always making sure that those around her are succeeding as well.  Watching her help others succeed is a vital part of the joy that comes from teaching Avery.  Her determination to do her absolute best is evident in everything she does.  The hard work that is put forth in the classroom every day makes her an easy choice for student of the month.”

Red River High’s December Student of the Month was Jolene Jones.  Her nomination read, “Jolene is a freshman at RRHS.  She is a model student and works very hard on assignments.  Jolene makes sure she gets an understanding of solving problems before moving on.  She also works well with others.”

And Christian Miles was selected Student of the Month at Red River Academic Academy was Christian Miles.  He was nominated by Intha Fields. “Christian is one of the most genuinely nice young men I’ve ever had the privilege of teaching.  He is polite to everyone and never meets a stranger.  After overcoming his own self-doubt, he has been stoppable.  He has improved, and continues to improve in every subject.  His hard work and self-motivation is such a good example for others.  His positive personality influences all of his classmates, including me.  He does have a super power that I’m quite jealous of, though.  He has the ability to diffuse any conflict, and makes those involved totally forget they were having a disagreement to begin with.  I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to have a sweet, hardworking student like Christian.  There is no doubt he makes the world a better place.

Student of the Month is sponsored by VFW Post and Auxiliary 7287.  Each student is presented a certificate and gift card from the Coushatta Dairy Queen.

Vacant Martin School Sold

The Red River School Board has accepted a bid to purchase the no-longer-used Martin School.  The abandoned school building and gymnasium sits on 14.9 acres of property.  The board on January 13th accepted the bid from Rex Lawson of $45,000.00 for the property.

The school had not been used since schools in the parish were consolidated in 2002.  It had fallen into disrepair in the two decades since.  Late last year the school board decided to offer the property for bids.  See The Journal issue of October 11, 2019 for that story.

Finance Director David Jones told the board that the property had been advertised for bids at the appraised value and there were no bidders.  He said it was re-advertised at less than appraisal and one bid, from Lawson, was received.

The board then voted to accept Lawson’s bid and get their attorney to draw up the act of sale.

Lawson told The Journal, “I always wanted to own an old school, even when I was a kid I wanted one.”  Lawson added, “Me and my family went to school there.  When it came up, I bid on it.”

What are his plans?  Lawson said, “I plan to put a wide band sawmill on the old tennis courts.  The high school building roof and second floor have fallen in.  I want to rebuild the second floor and put a greenhouse up there.”  And Lawson said he has plans to fix up the old gym to make it a facility to hold parties and community gatherings.

Riverdale Honor Roll

Here is the honor roll for the fall semester at Riverdale Academy.

“A” Honor Roll – Students with a 4.0 Grade Point Average

Kindergarten – Hadley Brice, Adalyn Halbmaier, Jesse Jowers, Tinley Pearah, and Ava Waters.

First Grade – Annakate Bailey, Dally Bell, Milton Guidry, Maggie Nettles, Caden Spradley, and Hope Williamson.

Second Grade – Easton Cason, Hasty Davis, Porter Eaves, Brylee Halbmaier, Ellie Hillman, Lance Mancil and Morgan Moseley.

Third Grade – Carter Breedlove, Addison Cason, Maddison Cason, Kenna Coleman, Jase Johnson, Jonathan Shaver, and Isabella Stephens.

Fourth Grade – Hayden Cason, Kaleigh Pickett, Joseph Shaver, and Chloe Spradley.

Fifth Grade – Destiney Bohannon, Cannon Breedlove, Gavin Franks and Ally Hillman.

Sixth Grade – Alaina Boyd, Tanner Carlisle, Emma Giddings, Hanna Huddleston, Makayla Pickett, and Charity Williamson.

Seventh Grade – Colton Caskey and Jadyn King.

Eighth Grade – Georgia Carlisle, Emily Cason, Madison Chamberlin, Hayden Hillman, and Ryder Huddleston.

Ninth Grade – Collin Hesson, Emily Kirkland, and Molly Seales.

Tenth Grade – Reagan Huddleston, Kenley Loftin and Renee Prosperie.

Eleventh Grade – William Almond, Abby Jones, Tinley Ogden, and Matthew Seales.

Twelfth Grade – Brooklyn Azlin, Tylar Bare, Adam Bryant, Georgia Dowden, Bailee King, Heidi Murray, and Bailey Pate.

“A/B” Honor Roll – Students with a 3.0 to 3.9 Grade Point Average

Second Grade – Jace Baxley, Trevor Bell, and William McCoy.

Third Grade – Connor Franks and Brooklyn Giddings.

Fourth Grade – Madalynn Baxley, Madelyn Chamberlin, Jackson Hillman, and Kaden McNeely.

Fifth Grade – Darcey Bohannon, Preston Eaves, Steven Gates, Abigail Jowers, Krista Mancil, and Lexi Mancil.

Sixth Grade – Ashton Almond, Benjamin Moseley, Julia Riggs, Mason Wilhite, and Tyler Wilhite.

Seventh Grade – Shirley Boyd, Ashton Hester, and Haylee Smith.

Eighth Grade – Jaxon Gates, Joseph Guillory, Cameron Hesson, and Matthew Smith.

Ninth Grade – Emma Clemons, Luke Greer, and Mason Murray.

Tenth Grade – Rylee Hodge, Denver Williams, and Rylee Woodard.

Eleventh Grade – Winfred Almond, Ronda Black, Brennan Edie, Austin Giddens, and Noah Wren.

Twelfth Grade – Morgan Alexander, Malea Edwards, and Jackson Riggs.

Upcoming Fishing Tournament

The second annual fishing tournament put on by Cover 6 Outdoors and the Red River Crappie Club is scheduled for April 18th.  It will be held at Grand Bayou Resort.

The two clubs will be sponsoring sixteen veterans in the fishing tournament.  They are currently seeking donations of prizes for the veterans participating.

Kenneth Scallion is a member of Red River Crappie Club.  Scallion told The Journal, “Cover Six Outdoors is a non-profit organization run by vets for vets.  It is dedicated to emotional rehabilitation of veterans through non-traditional therapy including hunting and fishing.”

Scallion added, “All proceeds and donations will be going to provide food, lodging and to purchase prizes for each participating veteran.  There is no cost to the veterans who participate in the fishing tournament.”

Payne Nominated For All American Games

Red River Lady Bulldog outstanding player Morgyn Payne is headed to Houston.  Payne is the area student among the top basketball talent nominated to take part in the 2020 McDonald’s All American Games.

The high School basketball star was nominated to play in the games as McDonalds published a list of over 900 top high school seniors from across the country invited to the All-American Games.

The 43rd McDonald’s All American Games is a prestigious high school basketball showcase held at the Toyota Center in Houston, Tx.  The event is scheduled for April first.

Marriage Licenses Issued

Report from the Red River Parish Clerk of Court’s Office for September through December 2019.  The dates of marriage is included.

September 2019

Jeffery Wayne Bolton married Deborah Giddings on September 12th

Joshua Vincent Dowlen married Melissa Christine Neal on September 14th

Renaldo Nehemiah Latson married Milissa Nicole Carhee on September 17th

Matthew Lee McCain married Aubrie Faith Boyle on September 28th

James Andrew Giddings married Chelsea Joann Ates on September 28th

Kevin Randall Dupree married Breanne Elizabeth Price on September 28th

Matthew Lee McCain married Aubrie Faith Boyle on September 28th

October 2019

Daniel Ernest Bice Jr married Kori Nacole Allen on October 5th

Shaun LaBlue Jones married Kawndria Myesha Demery on October 12th

Jeffery Lee Giddens married Natalie Bree James on October 19th

Jerrod Samuel Scott married Siara Rose Erickson on October 26th

November 2019

Kevin Ryan Coleman married Kayla Noelle Layton on November 2nd

Dustin Swade Antee married Brianna Nicole Bolyer on November 3rd

Vincent Kward Logan married Shannon Kavon Warner on November 7th

Charles Lee Alaniz married Joanna Nicole Beck on November 9th

Warren Windell Bowman Jr married Crystal Nicole Gant on November 30th

December 2019

Matthew Dean Johnson married Marissa Michelle Bown on December 5th

Sav’on Jamal Richmond married Asha Nakari Jenkins on December 27th

Kinny West Niette married Brandy Nicole Cloud on December 31st

ETC… for Wednesday, January 22nd

There will be a college athletic scholarship signing at Red River High today.  Morgyn Payne will sign during a ceremony to be held in the gym scheduled for 11:30 am.  The Journal will stream the signing live on our Facebook page.  Go to to see it.

Magnolia Baptist Church is holding a BBQ sandwich fundraiser on Friday.  Get a homemade pork BBQ sandwich, chips, homemade cookie and drink for $10.  Call the church at 932-6340 to place orders.

Friday night is Fish Fry night at Clara Springs Camp.  Admission $10 for all the fried catfish and sides you care to eat.  Serving begins at 5:00 pm.

Lifeshare Blood Center said the area blood supply is critically low.  They have a blood drive planned at Riverdale Academy on January 31st from 8:30 am until 12:30 pm.

The Red River Parish Sheriff’s Office (RRPSO) and Louisiana Livestock Brand Commission are trying to identify ownership of a stray bull. It was found “running at large” off of LA Hwy 1 in the Harmon Community in Red River Parish on January 8, 2020. 

The bull is currently stored with a local livestock contractor. If no owner comes forward the stray bull will be sold the next regular sale day at Red River Livestock, 6066 Hwy 1 Coushatta, LA.

The Owner, if found, will be responsible for all costs, catching, hauling, feed and care, as well as damages/mis-mate shots, etc., to the property owner. 

Anyone with questions or information may call the RRPSO at 318-932-4221 or the Livestock Brand Inspector locally at 318-949-3225.