Progress Editor

Part 3 of 3

Concluding our recap of some of the stories that made headlines during 2016, as reported by the Progress:


At Oakwood Homecoming, Bob Weisenburger is grand marshal of the parade, and Darhl and Joyce Fuller are named Mr. & Mrs. Oakwood.

A single-vehicle crash in Blue Creek Township claims the life of a Haviland man.

Robert Fisher of Grover Hill is the new Paulding Village administrator.

The western horizon in Paulding County is rapidly changing with wind turbine construction at numerous sites in Harrison Township.

Thousands of visitors enjoy the live entertainment, food, exhibits, demonstrations and shopping at the Flat Rock Creek Fall Festival, held at the fairgrounds.

A former courthouse employee pleads guilty to a felony charge of theft in office.

Thirteen youths bring home 14 awards from the Ohio State Fair. A total of 37 young people represented the county with their livestock and still projects.

A house fire at Haviland leaves three adults and 11 children homeless.


An eight-woman, four-man jury is seated in double homicide trial of Brad Gillespie. Following an often emotional five-day trial, the jury convicts Gillespie of murdering Hannah Fischer and Frank Tracy Jr.

A Cloverdale man dies from injuries sustained in a car-motorcycle crash in Washington Township.

Fifth grader Brendan Weidenhamer is recognized for bravery after helping his grandfather rescue his grandmother from a house fire.

The first of two Honor Flights sponsored by Paulding-Putnam Electric journeys to Washington, D.C.

Payne plans its annual fall festival.

Bob and Marilyn Mutschelknaus are retiring after working at Pleasant Valley Golf Course for 46 years.

The aggressive, invasive weed Palmer amaranth is discovered in the county.

A native plant prairie is near completion at Antwerp Schools.

About 200 people gather for IGNITE, a unified prayer gathering for revival in the county and the nation.

Paulding-Putnam Electric Cooperative will be constructing a solar field called OurSolar on Gasser Road on the west edge of Paulding.

More than 300 guests wander through Snow White’s forest as the Paulding County Carnegie Library hosts its annual Fall Extravaganza. The theme is “A Snow White Extravaganza”.

A public meeting is planned for those interested in helping control the county’s cat population and possibly starting a spay/neuter clinic.


Convicted murderer Brad Gillespie is sentenced to consecutive 15-to-life sentences.

The Antwerp Lady Archers volleyball team claims its first district title since 2009.

The Progress names Antwerp junior Rachel Williamson as All-County Volleyball Player of the Year.

Just over 9,000 voters cast ballots in the General Election on Nov. 8 - a 71 percent voter turnout. A levy to fund reopening the jail is approved and incumbent Judge John DeMuth is unseated by challenger Michael Wehrkamp.

The Ohio Lottery Partners in Education program recognizes Payne Elementary art teacher as a Teacher of the Month, and student Blake Noggle as an Academic All Star.

The EPA requests the Village of Paulding to start Phase III of its sewer overflow project.

Many “season of giving” projects are under way to help those in need for the holiday season.

Sheriff Jason Landers says his goal is to have the jail reopened by the end of September 2017.

Master Gardener Volunteers plant and dedicate an American elm tree at Oakwood Park in memory of Nolan “Tucker” Shisler, a MG volunteer and long-time community leader who recently passed away.

The Progress names Paulding senior Preston Ingol as All-County Football Player of the Year.

Plans are announced to renovate and expand the 4-H horse barn at the fairgrounds.

An estimated 1,200 people view the John Paulding Historical Society’s Festival of Trees the first two weekends of November.

Antwerp Chamber of Commerce will hold its inaugural Christmas Tree Lighting at Green Way Park downtown.


A month after receiving his sentence for two homicides, Brad Gillespie files an appeal of his convictions.

Residents recall hearing the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor 75 years ago.

Paulding Chamber of Commerce’s Christmas events include a nighttime Christmas parade, lighting ceremony and a new 20-foot tree of lights.

The season’s first winter storm dumps between 5-8 inches of snow on the county, followed by several days of single-digit high temperatures and sub-zero lows.

The recently completed Bargain Bin building will open briefly with a special sale of brand-new merchandise.

Tony Burkley of Paulding County gets ready to leave office after serving two terms in the Ohio House of Representatives.

Workers begin pouring concrete for the 4-H horse barn renovation project.

Wayne Trace wrestler Ruger Goeltzenleuchter scores his 600th career takedown.