Official says fire burned between 30,000 and 32,000 acres

CNJ staff Melrose Fire Chief Kenny Jacobs said Saturday’s fire near McAlister, nicknamed the Windy Fire, burned between 30,000 and 32,000 acres. Initial estimates put that number around 25,000 acres. Jacobs said two fires started around the same time Saturday, both beginning near highways. Jacobs said a cause for the fires is unknown. He said […]

Grassfire on Curry and Quay county line under control

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CNJ staff photo: Sharna Johnson Officials believe five buildings were destroyed in a Saturday fire that burned 15 miles long and two to three miles wide at its widest point. A shed located near the intersections of Curry Road AB and Quay Road 34 was destroyed but a residence east of it was spared. Liliana […]

Our people: Woman of letters

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Melrose resident Jamie Dickerman served as the president’s ambassador at Eastern New Mexico University during her senior year. She graduated May 14 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in political science. Dickerman works as a grant writer and special events coordinator for the Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico and plans to […]

Melrose man dies in crash

CNJ staff A 54-year-old Melrose man died early Thursday morning from injuries received in a head-on collision. Jose Perez’s 1989 Toyota Camry was traveling west on U.S. 60/84 about five miles east of Melrose when it veered into oncoming traffic, according to State Police Capt. Jimmy Glascock. Earlene Williams, 52, told police she applied the […]

Fire burns 5,000 acres near Melrose

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CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks A grassfire burned about 5,000 acres Tuesday afternoon near Melrose. The fire was contained after about three hours. Melrose Mayor Tuck Monk said the fire is believed to have started off the side of the highway by either sparks from a vehicle or a discarded cigarette. Sharna Johnson A grass […]

5-year-old cancer patient made honorary Melrose Buffalo

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CNJ staff photo: Sharna Johnson Melrose High football players Toby Kulka, left, Josh Broom, center, and Lance Wagner hold their hands out to 5-year-old Jack Sullivan. Monday, the Melrose High football team presented Sullivan with a signed football to help keep his spirits up as he begins a new round of cancer treatments. Sharna Johnson […]

Our people: Coming full circle

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Liliana Castillo: Freedom New Mexico Melrose schools superintendent Jamie Widner comes from a family of 11 children. Melrose native Jamie Widner has been in education as a teacher and administrator for 26 years, all in New Mexico. Coming from a family of 11 children, all who graduated from Melrose High School, he is family-oriented. Widner […]

Melrose student selected as County Manager for day

CNJ staff A Melrose high school senior will be following the Curry County Manager to work today. Richard R. Rush was selected to shadow Lance Pyle as part of the County Manager for the Day program the second year it has been done. The program is part of National County Government Month. Rush lives on […]

Melrose schools tagged for audit

The Associated Press Vowing to change what she described as a “systemic issue,” Education Secretary-designate Hanna Skandera said Wednesday that a preliminary review showed serious flaws in special education data reported by school districts statewide. Nine of the 34 districts targeted this month for review by the Public Education Department will be subjected to an […]

Families, officials assess damage from fire

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Courtesy photo: Missy Terry Britni Sherwood’s horses run from Sunday’s blaze in south Curry County. While all of Sherwood’s animals survived the fire, she said they are still going to have to sell their cattle because they no longer have anywhere to graze them. Sharna Johnson For about $20,000, five miles of fence line can […]

Officials worry Sunday fire just the beginning

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CNJ staff photo: Sharna Johnson High winds kept a large grass fire going nearly all afternoon Sunday, pushing it from Melrose to just west of U.S. 70 in Clovis. Sharna Johnson Fire officials fear the massive fire that ripped through south Curry County on Sunday is only the beginning as dry, hot weather and high […]

Massive fire all but contained (Updated)

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Freedom New Mexico Firefighters from more than 30 departments struggled most of Sunday to contain a massive grass fire that erupted near Melrose and quickly spread through Curry and Roosevelt counties, damaging homes and forcing several evacuations near Clovis and Portales. The fire started about 11:30 a.m. after a tire on a vehicle blew out […]

Prescribed burns to be conducted at Melrose range

CNJ staff The 27th Special Operations Wing at Cannon Air Force Base will conduct a series of prescribed burns at Melrose Air Force Range April 30-May 3. The burns are intended to clear the amount of vegetation in targeted areas and help reduce the risk of wildfires caused by training or by natural causes such […]

Press release: Prescribed burn by Cannon at Melrose range

The 27th Special Operations Wing will conduct a series of prescribed burns at Melrose Air Force Range April 30 – May 3. These scheduled fires clear the amount of vegetation in targeted areas and help reduce the risk of wildfires caused by training or by natural causes such as lightning. If weather conditions are not […]

Melrose to pay former police chief $65,000

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Jennifer Dreiling was fired as Melrose police chief April 20, 2009, after less than a year on the job. Sharna Johnson Melrose’s former police chief will be paid $65,000 and given a neutral job reference, per settlement of a discrimination claim she filed against the village and its former mayor. Melrose officials initially declined to […]

Settlement reached in Melrose discrimination case

CNJ staff The Village of Melrose Tuesday confirmed a settlement has been reached in a discrimination charge filed by its former police chief. Village Clerk Cathy Christesson provided a statement confirming settlement, however said she has received no further information regarding the settlement or its terms. Officials with the state Department of Workforce Solutions confirmed […]

Friday morning briefing: A town by another name and beating the odds

Good morning and welcome to the Freedom New Mexico Friday briefing. Fast fact Melrose was originally called Brownhorn after two ranchers — Walter “Wild Horse” Brown and Lonny Horn — who maintained adjacent properties

Settlement reached in former Melrose police chief case

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Dreiling Sharna Johnson A confidential settlement has been reached in a discrimination case launched by a former Melrose police chief against the Village of Melrose and former Mayor Lance Pyle. The New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions confirmed Monday it was notified Friday the parties had reached an agreement, according to spokeswoman Joy Forehand. She […]

School board elections set for Tuesday

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File photo School board elections historically draw a low voter turnout ranging form 5 percent to 12 percent. Liliana Castillo School board ballots for the election Tuesday are full. The election includes choosing board members, a two-mill levy and a bond issue question for Melrose. Melrose Schools’ bond question is for $1.1 million to be […]

Melrose grant waiting on state approval

Sharna Johnson The next few months will be a waiting game before it’s known if Melrose will get the money needed to update its wastewater treatment plant. With a Dec. 17 deadline met, Curry County’s application for a Community Development Block Grant is in the hands of state officials. The grant, if obtained, would pay […]