Category Archives: People

Hometown Motors, Inc. Introduces Harold Dempsey as Master Technician

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

Hometown-Motors, Inc. is introducing Harold Dempsey as its Master Technician. Dempsey is widely known as the area’s #1 diesel mechanic. Dempsey’s wealth of knowledge and 30-plus years of experience involves working on lawn & garden equipment to diesel tractors and heavy equipment.

“In martial arts’ terms, I would equate Harold to a Grandmaster” said Matt Litter, President of Hometown Motors, Inc.. “Just as the addition of Ferrari Tractor elevated Hometown Motors, Inc. to a higher level, so too the addition of Harold.”

Dempsey says most of his decades of experience all started when he was a boy- working with his father. “I’ve worked on skid-loaders, jack-hammers, tillers, you name it- I have pretty much worked on it.”

Dempsey’s arrival further enhances the Hometown Motors, Inc. motto of “Buy it here, get it serviced here”.

“If you go to a big box store for example- some of the stuff at the big-box stores, we carry that here, but if you buy that out there at the big-box stores and they have nobody that knows anything about it- whether from the operational standpoint to the maintenance standpoint. We do service what we sell here.” 

Hometown Motors, Inc. has become Ohio’s premiere dealership for top brand names in turf and outdoor power equipment. In early March, Hometown Motors, Inc. was appointed by BCS America as Ferrari Tractor’s exclusive dealer/distributor for all U.S. States east of the Mississippi River. The partnership provides the east coast with several models of Ferrari sub compact and compact tractors.

Dempsey will also be part of a new video series on the Hometown-Motors YouTube Channel.

Two Chillicothe Police Officers To Receive Silver Star Award For Saving Infant

Presented By McDonalds, I’m Lovin’ It!

Chillicothe Police Officers Jonathan Dunham and Terry Brown will receive the award during a 2:00 P.M. ceremony February 19th at the Chillicothe/Ross Law Complex.

Both officers are being honored for their life-saving incident involving a three-week-old infant who was not breathing, when they arrived at a vehicle parked in front of the Olive Garden Restaurant just before noon on December 31st of 2020.

The officers found that the child was not breathing, which led Officer Dunham to pick up the infant, placing him into the rear of Officer Brown’s police cruiser, where Brown drove the child to the hospital emergency room as Officer Dunham performed CPR. Hospital E.R. staff took over upon the cruiser’s arrival at the hospital and the infant survived.

Chillicothe Police Captain Michael A.D. Short stated in a press release that the actions of both Officer Dunham and Officer Brown “Demonstrated extraordinary heroism in performing life-saving measures and without delay transporting a three-week-old infant, who was not breathing to the emergency room. Their actions gave this infant the best chance for survival and exemplified what it means to be a Police Officer.”

Trail Life USA to Honor “Scoutmaster Jim” Saturday

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

NOTE: Scoutmaster Jim was the oldest sibling of Litter Media’s Dan Ramey

A tribute photo following Ramey’s 30-plus years of service in Boy Scouts of America. Submitted photo

Scouting was a lifelong passion for Jim Ramey, who many knew as “Scoutmaster Jim”. Ramey’s sudden death just before Christmas 2020 shook those who knew him. He was 68.

After 30-plus years of service with the Boy Scouts of America, Ramey joined forces with a new group called Trail Life USA.

At the time of his departure from the BSA, Ramey stated  he was joining the new organization in part because “they adhere to the core values the BSA was founded upon.” 

Trial Life USA’s website describes the organization as being a “Church-Based, Christ-Centered, Boy-Focused mentoring and discipleship journey that speaks to the heart of a boy.”

Seven years ago, Ramey coordinated with others to begin the Trail Life USA Ohio troops which now number more than 30 and growing. Scoutmaster Jim will be honored in a collaborative ceremony, joined by both Trail Life USA and the BSA, Saturday afternoon at Crossroads Church in Circleville, Ohio.

Ramey was a member of Tail Life Troop OH-116 (based in Ashville), the Troop’s Committee Chair, High Adventure Chairman for the North Central Region for Trail Life USA, a member and instructor of the Ohio Rappel Masters, past member of the Chief Logan Service Area Committee, Order of the Arrow and recipient of numerous scouting leadership awards.

Trail Life USA has created the Jim Ramey Adventure Training Scholarship Fund for sending area trailmen to its leadership camp.

Scoutmaster Jim going over the finer points of rappelling with a young trailman scaling a cliff. Photo courtesy Trail Life USA.

Those wishing to make donations in Ramey’s name may do so through Trail Life USA, payable to: TLUSA-NCR, (in memo) Jim Ramey Memorial Fund, c/o C.J. Cordell, 30777 State Highway #40, New Auburn, WI 54757 or through Friends of Hocking Hills Memorial Fund, payable to: Friends of Hocking Hills, (in memo) James Ramey, friends of Hocking Hills State Park, P.O. Box #101, Logan, OH 43138.

Jim Ramey being interviewed by 10TV’s Bryant Summerville as Trail Life USA was beginning in Ohio. Submitted photo


Small Business Relief Grant Could Help Low Income Ohioans

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

Ohioans can receive assistance with rent, mortgage, or utilities from the state of Ohio, through their local Community Action Agency (CAA). Check if you are eligible and apply at your local CAA.

When applying for assistance, you should be prepared to provide the following information:

  • Names of all household members
  • Date(s) of birth
  • Social Security Number(s), if applicable
  • Current or previous address
  • Copies of Social Security cards, or verification for each household member, if applicable
  • Proof of income for all household members 18 years or older
  • Any supporting documentation to demonstrate need
  • Proof of hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Any federal unemployment stipend is excluded from determining a household’s benefit.

To receive Rental Assistance, you will also need to provide:

  • Total amount due, including fees
  • If moving to a new location, justification for the move (i.e. currently homeless, living with another family and not sufficient space etc.)
  • Landlord contact information and lease/rental agreement

To receive Mortgage Assistance, you will also need to provide:

  • Notice of late mortgage payment (including taxes and insurance)

To receive Utility Assistance, you will also need to provide:

  • Copy of utility bill

Ohio’s Community Action Agencies work with the Ohio Development Services Agency to provide assistance to Ohioans in need. To apply for mortgage, rent, and/or utility bill assistance including gas, electric, bulk fuel, water/sewer and trash, contact the Community Action Agency that serves your county.

To find your local Community Action Agency, click here 

If you have additional questions, send a message at EnergyHelp@Development.Ohio.Gov or call 800-282-0880.

Remembering Dave Smith, Local Broadcaster-Station Owner

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

(Editor’s note: Litter Media’s Dan Ramey worked for Smith from 1983-1988)

Dave Smith, long time owner of WFCB and later WCHI, passed away Wednesday afternoon following an extended illness. Smith was 76.Smith arrived in the First Capital in 1983 moving from his native Fostoria, Ohio where he began his career with WFOB. He would also later acquire the station where he worked as a teenager.  Smith was more than an owner, he was also a trained engineer and performed duties as a Chief Engineer in Toledo and was known to assist numerous other Ohio stations with his technical expertise. Bob Neal spent a good number of years working for Smith right out college in the 1980s until the stations sold in late 1999.“

Dave was courageous moving his family to Chillicothe” Neal told Litter Media. “Dave was an innovator developing a hyper local business model before anyone used the term in the industry. Dave devoted hours of airtime publicizing dozens of charities and was a true humanitarian. All this made Dave truly inspirational to me and countless others.”

Litter Media’s Dan Ramey was part of the staff Smith inherited when he purchased WFCB in ’83. “Dave created a family atmosphere for all who worked for he and Annette” Ramey said in a posting on Facebook. “For those who only know me through Cavalier Sports, Dave was the one who gave me the opportunity to become the Voice of the Cavaliers. I was small part of the broadcast team in 1982, but when Dave arrived in 1983, he turned me loose and it changed my life forever. He didn’t hold me back when I told him I was entertaining a job from Sunny 95 and rooted for me as my career appeared to be taking off to new heights.”

Smith’s station made its greatest stride in popularity when morning man Chip Arledge, aka The Rotund One, began a petition drive to bring rocker John Mellencamp to Chillicothe. The drive began in 1986 and Arledge’s campaign was rewarded in December of 1987 when Mellencamp performed two free shows at OU-Chillicothe’s Shoemaker Center. As an added bonus, toys were collected for local children’s charities. The event launched Arledge’s career to points beyond Chillicothe. 

“Over the years, I had a chance to work with Dave in several markets outside of Chillicothe” Arledge told Litter Media. “I can honestly tell you that every one of those markets benefitted from Dave being involved in its radio landscape. I loved him like an older brother and will miss him more than I miss being ten years old.”  

As corporate ownership began to consume radio stations in smaller markets, the focus has drifted from what many remember as local radio with the “mom and pop” style portrayed by Smith.

Buzz Perri, a 1980s Chillicothe transplant from New York City, was given a chance to operate a Saturday night show called “The Lazer’s Edge”. He recounts “Saturday nights was anything goes. Dave and Chip gave me a break. ‘Keep it clean, Buzz, keep it clean.’ Words I’ll always remember.”

Ty Tatman commented on Ramey’s Facebook post “Local small town radio was pretty amazing in the environment Dave created and nurtured here” Tatman wrote. “He was a great fella.”

Ramey adds “Smith was a fan of local music. If he and Annette weren’t at The Cross Keys for the Goosetown Astonishers, they were at The Dock at Water for live music.” 

Smith was predeceased by his loving wife Annette in August of 2019. First Presbyterian Church will host a public memorial service for Dave on Monday, February 8, 2021 at 6:00 pm, streaming on First Presbyterian’s Facebook and YouTube Channels. 


Local Educator Gives TED Talk

Presented by Hometown-Motors Inc.

An area instructor who refers to himself as a “functional nerd” is proving how a small community native can grow into a well-known educator and inventor.

Paint Valley High School graduate Josh Montgomery gave a TED Talk at the TEDx Dayton Stage late last fall, which recently was made available online.

The former Chillicothe City Schools Technology Coordinator of 14 years, was one of 50 people to interview for the TED Talk out of over 300 people to apply, last May.

Montgomery was selected to give his talk in Dayton, Ohio last November concerning his construction of the Star Wars’ robot R2D2 in his basement five years ago.

The response of the TED Talk has been “good” according to Montgomery, saying many of the builder clubs have messaged him and said much of that has been “cool” to experience. He added that he hopes this will build enthusiasm for many others in the education world to attempt similar projects.
Mentors that Montgomery says he had taught coming up the ranks have taught him how to be a visionary in his field of interest. He pointed to instructors Regina Ferguson and Dennis Griffith at Southern State along with former Chillicothe City Schools Superintendent Jon Saxton. 

“Jon Saxton was pinnacle to making me be a teacher. It wasn’t something I loved at the beginning of the process and I would have probably left if it wasn’t for Jon.”  He said Saxton told him “Hold on, you need to stay the course here, this is going to be a dream job for you”.

Josh says this journey has helped him to get students more engaged in the process of how to build projects like this and how to convey the message that education can “be fun”. He uses his educational enthusiasm in the classroom as the Associate Professor of Computer Science at Southern State Community College.   

He added that these types of skills in the classroom can also be useful for students who later are putting a job resume together.

Now as an instructor, Montgomery says “I don’t want to push someone to do an assignment, I want them to be excited about building this or designing this or programming this, I get my energy from that as well and then if it is a Saturday and we got to work, then they are excited about it- lets go make this happen.”  

Prior to his TED Talk fame, Josh was making news for producing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) face masks on 3D printers for medical health care workers during the COVD-19 pandemic.

Long Time Pickaway County Judge Retires

Presented by McDonalds, I’m Lovin’ It!

Retiring Pickaway County Juvenile and Probate Court Judge Jan Michael Long. Submitted Photo

Pickaway County Juvenile and Probate Court Judge Jan Michael Long retires from the bench this week where he has served since 1996, deciding last year not to seek another term in office.

Long was also a former senator of Ohio’s 17th District, where he was first elected in 1986.

As a Pickaway County judge, Jan Michael Long served on numerous local and state judicial committees and was past chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Judicial College of the Supreme Court of Ohio. He has also served as the President of the Ohio Association of Probate Judges and Adjunct Professor for the Columbus State Community College.

Prior to his days on the court bench, Long also was an Assistant Pickaway County Prosecutor and Assistant Law Director for the City of Circleville.

Judge Long took the opportunity to say goodbye to fellow members of the Circleville Sunrise Rotary Club District 6690 during their virtual meeting, Tuesday morning.

Pike County Native Recounts His Days with Broadcast Legend Larry King

Presented by McDonald’s, I’m Lovin’ It!

Latham, Ohio native Tim Scowden has made a career producing television shows. From Los Angeles to New York, Scowden’s made his mark with ABC, CBS and FOX and infotainment magazine show “Hard Copy”.

He was also the Senior Producer of CNN’s “Larry King Live” for five years. King, the long-time radio and TV talk show host, passed away January 23rd. READ LARRY KNIG’S OBITUARY HERE

Litter Media’s Dan and Mike interviewed Scowden about ten years ago on their long running radio show. With the passing of King, the two reached out to him to recount his time working for the broadcast legend.

Scowden shared stories that related to the humorous, professional and personal side of the former late night talk show giant. “He was just a good guy” Scowden recalled “and the stories he had were pretty phenomenal. And they weren’t like meeting the Queen or King or something like that. It was the simple stuff, stories from his past.”

Scowden described King as a very generous person with both his time and resources and was good to share both with his colleagues on the show.

“During the Obama Inauguration, at the last minute, the show decided to send a production assistant with Larry” said Scowden. The assistant quickly through a bag together to join King on his private jet to head to Washington DC. Once they landed, King noticed the assistant was ill prepared without a coat to fend off the mid-January weather. “At the end of the day, Brad went back to his hotel room and at the front desk they handed him a package” said Scowden. “It was from a local high-end department store. And it was this expensive winter down jacket, from Larry to Brad.”

King was known worldwide, something Scowden discovered when traveling outside of the U.S. “For the five years I worked for Larry King, any vacation I took, anywhere in the world, they knew Larry King. In every hotel lobby, you would see CNN International on. He was a global celebrity.”

King’s interviewing style appealed to many celebrities. Scowden said when the newsmakers of the day wanted to take their stories to the world, they always came to Larry King who conducted interviews with an estimated 50,000 guests during his career.

Watch Dan & Mike’s interview with Pike County native Tim Scowden.
An autographed photo Larry King signed for Dan & Mike when they had interviewed Tim Scowden on their radio show in 2004. Photo by Gregory Heisler for CNN

Pickaway County has Changing of the Guard

Presented by McDonald’s, I’m Lovin’ It!

The new year brought a change in the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office.

Robert B. Radcliff, who served the County for 40 years, was elected to succeed his father Dwight as Pickaway County Sheriff in 2012. Many well wishers turned out to honor Radcliff for his service.

Matthew Hafey has begun his first term to serve as Pickaway County Sheriff.

The Sheriff’s Department also announced, after 28 years of service, the retirement of D.A.R.E. Officer, Sergeant Dale Thomas. He and his K9 Michael Blue retired December 31st, 2020. The two were paired together in 2017.

A Visit with Sgt. Joe Lawhorn, Pro Cyclist

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

He’s a fixture on the highways and byways of Southern Ohio, head into the wind, pedaling against the clock, with a carriage for his son in tow.

Chillicothe’s Joe Lawhorn of Team Dayton Cycling, spent 12 years serving his country during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, first in the US Marine Corps, then another six years in the US Army.

A broken back forced Sgt. Lawhorn into retirement. Rehabilitating from the injury, he rediscovered cycling.

Litter Media introduced viewers to Lawhorn for a video project promoting the Tour of Ross County Heroes, a fundraising cycling event in 2019 to assist the Chillicothe VA Medical Center’s Veterans Bike Program, which Lawhorn is a peer volunteer assisting the program’s director Matt Cox, a US Army veteran. The two were friends at Unioto High School before the attacks on 9/11 in 2001.

Lawhorn tells of his cycling experiences, transitioning from a runner to a cyclist and its rewards. He also recounts the emotional ride into Chillicothe during the grueling 3,000-plus mile Race Across America and how cycling has helped him connect with veterans.

Selecting the roadways for the Tour of Ross County Heroes was easy because the were routes used in his training each day. Lawhorn also talks about a special stretch of roadway he always visits near Southeastern Local Schools, the gravesite of his friend Aaron Reed who was killed in action in Iraq.

What’s ahead for 2021? Lawhorn recently posted on his facebook page, an attempt to chase 500 miles in 24 hours and breaking the Trans-Ohio record, traveling from Pennsylvania to Indiana… then turning around and going for “a double”.

The interview below is unused footage from an conversation with Lawhorn in preparation for the 2019 Tour of Ross County Heroes ride.