By Melanie Patterson
The North Jefferson News
The following events were reported in The North Jefferson News during this week in 2003, 1998, 1988 and 1978.
Five years ago
• Commercial-grade fireworks owned by Fireworks Unlimited were stolen from a remote, hidden area off of Republic Road. The items included 400 explosive devices and cannons used to set off the explosives.
• McDonald’s of Gardendale employee Gloria Wallace helped the Gardendale Police Department catch an armed criminal by calling the police while a robbery was in progress in the restaurant’s parking lot. A teenage female suspect was arrested for the carjacking and robbery.
• Former Marine Dennis Reid was buried with military honors at Oakwood Memorial Gardens Cemetery. His flag-draped casket could be seen through the glass of a horse-drawn hearse.
10 years ago
• Thirty-two people in Jefferson County were killed after deadly tornadoes ripped across the southeastern United States. No major damage in this area was reported.
• State Rep. Jim Townsend, R-Pinson, announces that he will seek re-election to the Alabama House of Representatives, District 50. Gardendale’s Harold L. Smith hopes to unseat Townsend.
• Two residents voice concerns over proposed changes at the weekly senior citizens’ dance at the Fultondale Community Center. Some dance participants have raised concern over “dirty dancing” taking place when the lights are turned out. The participants also want food and children banned from the dance.
20 years ago
• There is a dispute between the town of Kimberly and the county health department over issuing permits allowing residents to dispose of their own garbage. About 250 people in Kimberly pay a monthly trash-collection fee, while 25 or 30 residents do not pay for trash pickup.
• John Carter Hudson praises the Fultondale Police Department after officers recovered items following a burglary at Hudson’s home. Hudson, who had previously criticized the department, said that officers had recovered his most valuable item: His tackle box.
• Three locals seek a GOP nomination: Belva Green of Gardendale and Frank Ingram of Corner are seeking nomination for one of the two seats available on the County Board of Education. Joan Shew of Gardendale is running for county treasurer.
30 years ago
• Questions were asked last year about whether Gardendale’s seven patrolmen can adequately cover the city’s 14.5 square miles. The question is being asked again, as the department has not increased personnel, but more homes and businesses are coming to Gardendale.
• Gardendale Police Chief Hoyatt McCain increased his department’s efforts to control speeding by using a new Dopler speed gun device. The new radar allows the patrolmen to drive along and clock the speed of cars. The old gun required policemen to remain in a still position while clocking.
• The Warrior Garbage Dump will open to the public for dumping trash such as shrubbery, etc. No garbage will be permitted.
By Melanie Patterson