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Ray Odom, 84, local entrepreneur

Rayford “Ray” Franklin Odom, 84, of Macclenny died on April 20, 2012. He was born July 10, 1927 in Waverly, GA, the youngest of six children of John D. and Nona Currie Odom. He was a WWII veteran, serving at HQ CO 5th Army European Theater of Operations as a cryptographer. He moved to Macclenny in 1950, where he met and married his wife of 60 years, Joyce Jones Odom, in November 1952.

He opened Odom’s Department Store in 1950 and operated it for 36 years. Mr. Odom as managing partner, along with two others,  purchased Pineview Golf and Country Club and Pineview Chevrolet Inc. in 1980. He owned and operated the dealership until 2009. He was an avid hunter, fisherman and Florida Gator fan, and a Gator Booster and Bull Gator for over a decade.

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Helen Wilson, 76, native of Baldwin

Helen E. Wilson, 76, of Jamesville, VA died March 20, 2012 in Virginia Beach. A native of Baldwin, she was the daughter of the late Benjamin and Ethel Young. She retired from Bailey, Banks and Biddle as a salesperson.

Survivors include husband Max R. Wilson; daughters Deborah Elaine Davis and Pamela Dan (Walt) Caudle of VA, Susan Camille (Jerry) Hawley of Texas; son Charles (Sandy) Jones Jr. of VA; sister Mary Echternkamp of Macclenny; grandchildren Robert Davis, Kelly Cheney, Ashley Caudle, Davis Caudle and Samantha Cline; great-grandchildren Savanah, Abigail, Davis, Eryn, Autumn, Madison and Liam.

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Waive off enviro-risk prospects

The medical waste incinerator looks to be, well, cooked.

Last week the Pennsylvania company proposing to place what it says would be a $27 million operation east of Macclenny called for a breather before proceeding with its request for both Baker County and the city’s approval.

A delay, in this case, is tantamount to throwing a bucket of ice water on a burning book of matches.

Two county commissioners declared this week they, like dozens and probably hundreds of constituents, don’t want to have anything to do with the burning of medical waste in or near Baker County. Assuming they don’t change their mind, that means only a single vote separates the plan and its demise.

The others, we can assume, are sniffing the air (excuse the pun) and appeared noncommittal for now. Maybe they want to give (or appear so) Integrated Waste Management Systems more time to gel up its effort to quell fears that the incinerator will be an environmental freak show.

The company insists that, with approval from the multi-layered environmental regulation agencies, what it will send into the air is harmless.

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Expedition team’s cross-state trek ends here

The Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition team reached Ocean Pond in west Baker County last week after embarking from the southern tip of the Everglades and heading north last Photographer Carlton Ward Jr. (right) presents FDEP Secretary Hershel Vinyard with map of the envisioned Florida Wildlife Corridor.January.

Its goal: travel 1000 miles in 100 days to highlight the state’s natural resources and ongoing efforts to “re-connect and restore the fragmented lands and waters in Florida.”

The state’s natural landscape and water flow has been altered through more than a century of development and the expedition aims to showcase lands already protected while identifying where additional conservation is needed.

The team is documenting the expedition online with photographs, videos and social media updates, all accessible from the expedition’s website  www.floridawildlifecorridor.org.

The expedition team arrived at Ocean Pond the evening of April 12 and met with Florida Department of Environmental Protection [FDEP] Secretary Herschel Vinyard at Olustee Battlefield the following morning.

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