The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) reports the first West Nile virus death for 2013, along with two new human cases. The death was in Montgomery County – in Duck Hill – and the new reported cases are in Forrest and Wayne counties.
Tuesday’s report brings the state total for 2013 to six cases, including one death. This time last year there were no reported deaths from WNV in Mississippi.
So far this year, cases have been reported in Madison, Forrest (2), Wayne, Lowndes and Montgomery counties. The MSDH only reports laboratory-confirmed cases to the public.
Cleotha Staples, whose smooth and velvety voice helped set apart the sound of the influential and best-selling gospel group The Staple Singers, died Thursday, Feb. 21, at age 78.
Staples, the eldest sister and member of the group her father Roebuck “Pops” Staples started in the 1940s, was at her Chicago home and had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for the past decade, said family friend and music publicist Bill Carpenter.
The group included sisters Pervis, Yvonne, Mavis and Cynthia, but Cleotha was the backbone, defining herself by being the “strong, silent type,” said Carpenter, author of “Uncloudy Day: The Gospel Music Encyclopedia.”
The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) has awarded Montgomery County a solid waste assistance grant for $8,909 that will be used by the county to clean up illegal dump sites.