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 The Punta Gorda Herald Top Stories

Environmental center gets new CEO
Sun  Sep 14 2014 05:51PM
PUNTA GORDA — Thomas Hecker is a self-described nature nerd. As one of seven children — the son of a hunter/fisherman — the Naples man and newly appointed CEO of … Find out how to read more online.
Bud Gerow served with ‘Merrill’s Marauders’ in Burma during WWII
Sun  Sep 14 2014 07:14PM
“Merrill’s Marauders” is what newspaper reporters who covered their exploits a lifetime ago during World War II called them. Officially they were the “5307th Composite Unit Provisional,” a long-range penetration … Find out how to read more online.
County holds budget line
Sun  Sep 14 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — Although the proposed 2015 Charlotte County budget and millage rate are holding steady, the coming year looks to bring a change in some spending habits. By tentatively approving … Find out how to read more online.
Elkcam construction project underway
Sun  Sep 14 2014 08:00AM
PORT CHARLOTTE — Work crews got an early start Friday morning on the Elkcam Boulevard construction project, which is a mix of both style and substance. Underground, three separate water … Find out how to read more online.
Constance officially re-elected in District 2
Sat  Sep 13 2014 08:00AM
CHARLOTTE COUNTY — Citing an uphill battle to unseat the incumbent, write-in candidate Robert Reichert dropped out of the County Commission District 2 race last week. By withdrawing from the … Find out how to read more online.
13 years later
Sat  Sep 13 2014 12:16PM
Carlo Gargiulo remembers vividly a day at Disney World with his wife and their grandchildren. They were all at the Magic Kingdom enjoying the Country Bear Jamboree. And then someone … Find out how to read more online.
City: We want your funny stories
Sat  Sep 13 2014 12:16PM
PUNTA GORDA — No doubt, anyone who has worked for the city long enough has a story or two of something funny or quirky or downright weird that they’ve witnessed … Find out how to read more online.
Local human smugglers sentenced
Thu  Sep 11 2014 08:00AM
A North Port man has been sentenced to four years in federal prison for leading a human smuggling organization that brought Cuban immigrants into the United States as recently as … Find out how to read more online.
CCSO confirms victim’s ID
Thu  Sep 11 2014 08:00AM
PORT CHARLOTTE — Authorities on Wednesday confirmed the identity of the man whose body was found Tuesday on Salisbury Street, but otherwise remained tight-lipped about the ongoing homicide investigation. “Very … Find out how to read more online.
Tax rates down, revenues up for Charlotte schools
Thu  Sep 11 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — Rates may have gone down, but Charlotte County homeowners likely will pay more in school taxes this year than last year. Such was the understanding when the Charlotte … Find out how to read more online.
Four injured in electrical accident
Wed  Sep 10 2014 08:00AM
NORTH PORT — Four construction workers were injured — one critically — in an electrical accident at U.S. 41 and Biscayne Drive Tuesday afternoon that knocked out power in the … Find out how to read more online.
Fernandez is new Charlotte Sun editor
Tue  Sep 9 2014 08:00AM
A former Charlotte County resident who grew up in Southwest Florida has returned home to become editor of the Charlotte Sun. Phil Fernandez first worked in news and circulation at … Find out how to read more online.

Tue  Sep 9 2014 08:00AM
For the second time in less than five weeks, a cut fiber in a different part of the state was the reason local residents weren’t able to dial 911. From … Find out how to read more online.
Bob Weiler was aboard a B-29 bomber shot down over Japan
Mon  Sep 8 2014 08:00AM
Bob Weiler was the left waist-gunner on a B-29 Flying Fortress dubbed “Sky Scrapper,” part of the 44th Bomb Squadron, 40th Bomb Group, 20th Air Force, based on Guam in … Find out how to read more online.
NAACP Youth Council tours history
Mon  Sep 8 2014 08:00AM
Playing the part of Oprah Winfrey, 10-year-old Trinity Carter interviews civil rights icon Thurgood Marshall, played by 12-year-old Qondel Robinson, during the presentation of “Time in History of Justice and … Find out how to read more online.
Murdock Village
Sun  Sep 7 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — “If baseball is your game, then Murdock Village is your diamond. A diamond in the rough.” With that positive tone, the Charlotte County Economic Development website trumpets the … Find out how to read more online.
City votes on tentative budget
Fri  Sep 5 2014 08:00AM
PUNTA GORDA — The City Council Wednesday night approved on first reading a tentative budget for the upcoming fiscal year, and special assessments for the Punta Gorda Isles and Burnt … Find out how to read more online.
Parents avoid further jail time
Fri  Sep 5 2014 08:00AM
The parents accused of abandoning their young children in the woods earlier this year will avoid additional jail time. Sarah Butcher, 30, reached a plea deal Thursday at the Charlotte … Find out how to read more online.
Bishop Nevins remembered
Sat  Sep 6 2014 05:19PM
VENICE ­­— As a red-haired boy of 8, long before he entered religious life, the Most Rev. John Nevins posed for Norman Rockwell, who was painting “The Census Taker” for … Find out how to read more online.
Author teaches students to embrace culture
Thu  Sep 4 2014 08:00AM
Like Cuban-born biographer Alina García-Lapuerta, many of the students in Paulo Serrano’s Advanced Placement Spanish class at Port Charlotte High School hail from different countries. Serrano jumped at the chance … Find out how to read more online.
All Faiths vegetables coming to Englewood
Sun  Sep 14 2014 07:19PM
SARASOTA — More than 30 people stood in line Wednesday morning in the parking lot of the Sarasota Hope Center waiting for fresh vegetables from All Faiths’ Sprout program. “It’s … Find out how to read more online.
Voice of the voiceless
Sun  Sep 14 2014 07:19PM
PUNTA GORDA — When Tibetan monk Geshe-La Thupton Phelgye saw animals being slaughtered for market in India, he was horrified. “My immediate thought was, how can I help these defenseless … Find out how to read more online.
County appeals Rotonda II
Sat  Sep 13 2014 08:00AM
CHARLOTTE COUNTY — The county on Friday appealed the 20th Judicial Circuit Court decision in the Rotonda II case that found the county prevented plaintiffs’ properties from being developed by … Find out how to read more online.
New 9/11 memories
Sat  Sep 13 2014 08:00AM
DEEP CREEK — Kids started pouring into Studio Seven Center for Creative Studies 30 minutes ahead of the 6 p.m. start for the advertised free art class on Thursday. On the … Find out how to read more online.
County wants more bang for lobbyist buck
Sat  Sep 13 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — In the current fiscal year, the state awarded $2 million to the Charlotte County Airport Authority for airport improvements, and another $900,000 to Punta Gorda for a planned reverse-osmosis … Find out how to read more online.
Reaction mixed to CVS pulling tobacco
Sat  Sep 13 2014 08:00AM
Stacey Saunders, a hotel employee in Port Charlotte, is often seen outside puffing on a cigarette on his lunch break. Still, he can understand why CVS has abandoned cigarette sales. … Find out how to read more online.
Sewer costs jump
Sat  Sep 13 2014 12:16PM
MURDOCK — The first foot of pipe has yet to be placed in the ground, but the base cost of the Spring Lake sewer project already has risen an estimated … Find out how to read more online.
Flame of awareness lights hope’s path
Fri  Sep 12 2014 08:00AM
Wednesday was World Suicide Prevention Day. More than 100 people showed up around sunset at Gilchrist Park in Punta Gorda for the local Suicide Awareness Candlelight Walk. … Find out how to read more online.
Still waiting for Super Boat audit
Thu  Sep 11 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — Charlotte County commissioners are hoping to see an audit of the inaugural Charlotte Harbor Super Boat Grand Prix held in April — and they want to see it … Find out how to read more online.
Body found is first homicide in 13 months
Wed  Sep 10 2014 08:00AM
PORT CHARLOTTE — Authorities say a body found in a roadway Tuesday is Charlotte County’s first homicide in more than a year. Shortly after 6 a.m., a 911 caller reported … Find out how to read more online.
Suicide walk makes every life count
Wed  Sep 10 2014 08:00AM
PUNTA GORDA — Jennifer Donovan and Diana Heinlein have been friends for years, but they never imagined their friendship would be forever forged by events so heartbreaking they still can’t … Find out how to read more online.
Calling all voters
Tue  Sep 9 2014 08:00AM
Workers throughout Charlotte County utilize roughly 2,700 radios to talk to each other. The essential communication devices are used daily by 911 dispatchers, ambulance operators, police officers, school bus drivers … Find out how to read more online.
Security breaches plague shoppers
Mon  Sep 8 2014 08:00AM
Home Depot recently announced an increase in unusual activity for some of its credit card users. The Atlanta-based home improvement giant is investigating if hackers are to blame. The difficulty … Find out how to read more online.
Car thieves hit brakes
Mon  Sep 8 2014 08:00AM
Charlotte County Sheriff Bill Prummell recently stated he has noticed “a strange phenomenon” — people leaving their keys in the car. “(That behavior is) not really a good idea, as … Find out how to read more online.
Register kids for free 9/11 art class
Mon  Sep 8 2014 08:00AM
Some children might draw fire trucks, shiny and red with their ladders and hoses on board, and firemen hanging on the back. Others might create a police car racing to … Find out how to read more online.
Fans of flora, furnishings flock to Home & Garden Show
Sun  Sep 7 2014 08:00AM
PUNTA GORDA — Betty Ann Sullivan loves the idea of updating her Port Charlotte home. Running her fingers along the listello tile backsplash in a mock cabinet display at the … Find out how to read more online.
Scams target police, residents
Fri  Sep 5 2014 08:00AM
The Punta Gorda Police Department has been busy investigating cases involving scam artists soliciting residents for money. But this week, the agency itself was targeted by the criminals. According to … Find out how to read more online.
County to revisit impact fees, Little Farm Road
Fri  Sep 5 2014 08:00AM
MURDOCK — After a monthlong vacation, at least from County Commission meetings, commissioners hosted a preagenda session Thursday to discuss direction on a couple of familiar issues. However, it seemed … Find out how to read more online.
Punta Gorda looks at selling Herald Court space
Sat  Sep 6 2014 05:19PM
PUNTA GORDA — City leaders say they want out of the rental business. At a Community Redevelopment Agency meeting Wednesday, City Councilwoman Kim Devine proposed selling the ground level of … Find out how to read more online.
Parkside progress
Thu  Sep 4 2014 03:48PM
PORT CHARLOTTE — With construction barrels already lined up as far as the eye could see, officials at Tuesday’s groundbreaking of the Elkcam Boulevard expansion project were clearly anxious to … Find out how to read more online.