Year begins with COVID issues

By Jacob Clary - [email protected]

Hillsboro resident John Kellis snapped this photo on Feb. 9 in the front yard of his residence at 510 N. High St.

Hillsboro resident John Kellis snapped this photo on Feb. 9 in the front yard of his residence at 510 N. High St.

Times-Gazette file photo

Editor’s note: Following is a month-by-month look back at the top local news stories from 2021 as reported by The Times-Gazette. We wish our readers a Happy New Year.


1 – The Highland County Senior Citizens Center was supposed to celebrate its 50th anniversary, but COVID-19 closed the center’s doors to the public. However, the center didn’t close completely, as once a week it had drive-thru events where members were able to get free essential items. The center held events like “car bingo” at the Southern State Community College parking lot where 100 turkeys and other prizes were given away.

4 – The second round of economic stimulus checks of $600 were in the process of being scheduled for direct deposit. Advisory notices were also sent as text messages or emails on Highland County technology on New Year’s Day. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) said direct deposit payments started on Dec. 29 and would run into the first week of January.

13 – Highland County Emergency Management Agency Director David Bushelman and Highland County Health Commissioner Jared Warner spoke via Zoom about the county’s plan for vaccination, saying that people aged 80 and older were the next to be scheduled to get the vaccine the following week.

19 – Hillsboro area residents Adam and Lindsay Hall were named 2020 Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Young Cattlemen of the Year. This award was given to “individuals or couples, typically under 40 years of age, who have demonstrated the initial stages of a successful beef operation and exhibited leadership potential.”

25 – Highland County Common Pleas Court Judge Rocky Coss announced that every hearing and trial that took place in the court’s general division would now be live-streamed on YouTube. Coss said in a news release that these live streams would include hearings that are in-person, done by video through the Highland County Jail, through Zoom or through other remote methods.


5 – The Hillsboro and Greenfield robotics programs competed in the Highland County Classic at McClain High School. Of 24 teams, eight were from Hillsboro, five were high school teams and three were middle school teams. The Hillsboro High School team 45133C Charlie Squad won the tournament and qualified for the state tournament.

9 – The county received one of its highest snowfalls overnight Monday, Feb. 8, and into Tuesday morning. The National Weather Service (NWS) in Wilmington said that the county received anywhere from 6 to 9 inches of snowfall, which included 7.5 inches in the Hillsboro area. A representative from the NWS said that the organization did not have any records that showed the last time the county received that much snow from a singular weather event.

17 – Pfizer and Moderna said their direct vaccines had the possibility of being delayed by a day or two due to the weather across the state, according to a news release from Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine. He said that many providers continued with scheduled vaccinations, but that some people had theirs canceled due to snow emergencies.

25 – The Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center discussed two new programs it would begin to offer to substance use disorder (SUD) patients. These two programs are called Jail In-Reach and Wraparound. Jail In-Reach was designed to help bring SUD services to people while they are still in jail while the Wraparound program was to stay with people through their entire treatment process.


1 – McClain FFA members participated in the State Agricultural Soils Contest that was shifted to a completely virtual one. The members of McClain FFA placed in the top 10 of the state, with the four members of the team being Alex Snyder, Kenton McGlone, Lillian Fryman and Brice Graham.

10 – Two road use maintenance agreements (RUMA) were approved by county commissioners after the first public hearing was held for a proposed northwestern Highland County solar facility. These two agreements helped begin the process to construct two southwestern Highland County solar farms by Hecate Energy.

15 – Adena Health System announced a $3 million project to expand the Adena Greenfield Medical Center by 8,500 square feet. A news release said that the new expansion would be attached to the medical center and have new specialty clinics and equipment.

22 – Ohio passed one million total cases of COVID-19, with a total number of 1,001,194 cases as of the article. Highland County had a total of 3,372 of those cases. From March 7 to 20, the county had the 13th highest case rate of the 88 counties with a case rate of 171.5 cases per 100,000 residents.

30 – The state announced that Adena Health System would serve as one of Ohio’s 15 mass vaccination clinic sites. Adena was planned to receive the one-dose Johnson and Johnson and be operated locally with support from the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency.

Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.

Hillsboro resident John Kellis snapped this photo on Feb. 9 in the front yard of his residence at 510 N. High St. resident John Kellis snapped this photo on Feb. 9 in the front yard of his residence at 510 N. High St. Times-Gazette file photo

By Jacob Clary

[email protected]