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VIDEO – Happy birthday, Jimmy Stamey

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The Vicksburg Daily News was thrilled to be asked to join Jimmy Stamey’s family and friends in celebrating his 30th birthday with a parade Saturday.

Jimmy has cerebral palsy and a rare genetic disorder called Angelman Syndrome which gives him a happy and excitable nature, along with other issues such as difficulty walking and balancing.

When Jimmy was born, his mother, Rose Parker, was told he would not live past his first six months. Here we are celebrating his birthday 30 years later.

Happy birthday, Jimmy, from all of us at the Vicksburg Daily News.

Education

Vicksburg’s Karen Gamble teaches integrity along with communication

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Karen Gamble (photo courtesy HInds CC)

Karen Gamble hasn’t lost sight of what has produced results for her students and for the workforce for generations.

“I teach communication classes – public speaking, interpersonal communication and business communication,” Gamble said. “In all three cases, students are afraid to communicate. I grade like college, because that’s what it is here. Communication is a scary, scary challenge for these students, particularly in this day and age when they’re all about their technology – their computers, their cellphones, their videos. Then, they have to stand up and present something face-to-face that’s on a piece of paper. They have trouble with that.

“They’re not any less smart than students 20 years ago, but their skillset is different. But, in my class, they have to participate in class and give examples of concepts we’re studying. But, when they finally do it and get a decent grade, there’s nothing like it for me when that light turns on for them. Their reaction is a bit like, ‘Mama, look what I was able to do!’”

Gamble was managing editor of The Vicksburg Post for 23 years and an adjunct instructor on the Vicksburg-Warren Campus until 2013, when she began teaching at Hinds full time.

The kinds of examples she uses to direct class discussion is pulled not just from her own experiences, but from the workforce as a whole.

“In my business communication class, we had talked about integrity and what it is,” she said. “The point we came to is that integrity is typified by the person who puts the grocery buggy back in the stall at the store. Nobody will come after you if you don’t put your buggy back. But integrity is the person who puts it back knowing full well it could hurt someone or get in somebody’s way if they don’t. And the reason they’re putting it back is because it’s the right thing to do.

“One of my students came back to me a week or two after we had that discussion. ‘Miss Gamble, Miss, Gamble,’” she said. ‘I got offered a job where I just interviewed!’ The student told me she was asked straight-up, ‘What’s the best characteristics you can bring to the table if we hire you?’ She told me she said, ‘I have integrity, and I can embrace the challenge.’”

Confident self-presentation is paramount to landing any job opportunity, Gamble said.

“Business people and professional people of all walks of life want professional candidates for their jobs,” she said. “They want people who can communicate. One of the top requirements before someone is hired is that they’re able to communicate. Communication covers writing, speaking, presenting oneself, everything. Our students know this is their community. It’s also my community, so I try to help them do the best they can in our community.”

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News

Two Vicksburg police officers graduate academy with top honors

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Officer Michael Whitley, Chief Milton Moore and Officer Jeremy Hooper (photo by Thomas Parker)

The ranks of the Vicksburg Police Department grew by two Thursday as Michael Whitley and Jeremy Hooper graduated from the Mississippi Law Enforcement Training Academy in Pearl, Mississippi.

The curriculum at the academy has been modified due to COVID-19. Recruits are required to stay at the academy for eight straight weeks. Previously, the program ran several additional weeks while allowing weekends off.

Both officers took top honors, with Hooper being recognized as the best in the class in physical agility. Whitley was recognized for the highest average academically.

The class, the 245th class of the academy, consisted of 53 recruits.

The officers will report back to their respective shifts for additional instruction with a field training officer before being assigned to one of four shifts with the patrol division.

Congratulations, officers, from your friends at Vicksburg Daily News.

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People

Pastor Reginald Harris Celebrates 17 years at Bright Morning Star Church

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Photo by Thomas Parker

Vicksburg Daily News was on hand to celebrate a special day with Pastor Reginald Harris and his family.

Sunday, the congregation at Bright Morning Star Church honored Pastor Harris for 17 years of leading the church.

Churchgoers decorated their vehicles and took the opportunity to join in the drive-by celebration and show their appreciation to the Pastor and his family.

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