Is it Easy being a Middle Child?

Did you know they had such a day as National Middle Child Day? I would have never dreamed so however it is true they do!  Well I am not a middle child. I am the baby! I have one sister, VaLenia who is 10 years older than me. Everywhere we go together though she tells them I’m the oldest and they believe her!! It’s time to color the grey again I guess. Well anyway my mother, Venice Dupree Meeks, happens to be a middle child. She has an older sister, Vera Dupree Purvis and a younger sister, Thelma Dupree Tone. Now those three together is a mess. They would not tolerate anyone messing with either of their sisters however they are going to aggravate each other as much as possible. So I asked my mom what it was like being the middle child. She just laughed. I told her I really wanted to know. I explained there was a day to celebrate being the middle child. She laughed again and said it was about time to be noticed.  She was only kidding but did say it had its advantages and disadvantages.  When they went somewhere as a family they had to ride in the truck. Their daddy, Russell Dupree, had a truck as their family vehicle. When they traveled my grandpa would drive, aunt Vera would sit by him. M y grandmother, Louise Dupree, would sit by the other door. Beside her was my aunt Thelma so guess who was in the middle?? You got it, it was my mama! She said she never got to sit by granny or grandpa. So I guess when there is three children somebody is going to not get to sit by the parents and she said it was her. Its so funny sounding but then I don’t know because having such an age difference between me and VaLenia, I have felt like an only child at times so sitting by parents were never a problem for me.  Mother also said that being the middle child meant she would get all the hand me downs from Aunt Vera. Now mother and her sisters did not mind hand me downs at all but since Aunt Vera had the new things whether bought or made, mother wanted them. So I said, well didn’t Aunt Thelma get your hand me downs? “No she didn’t. She was shorter and smaller than us so she had her own made or bought”. So to sum it up, the middle child doesn’t always get the best of all the worlds. 🙂  One story mother told me was about sandwiches. Mother said there was three sandwiches one day for lunch but only mother and Aunt Vera. Aunt Vera thought since she was the oldest she should get two and mother get one. Mother wanted two. Aunt Vera got mad and slung one of the sandwiches on the wall. Now I think she may have gotten in trouble my by grandmother but no one got an extra sandwich. How funny is that?? In pictures of my aunts and my mother, they are always standing oldest to youngest and you guessed it, mother was back in the middle! It is so funny to listen to some of their stories growing up. One will describe it by putting a little drama into it and the next one defends them self by telling another side of the story. HILARIOUS!! My mother did say though the advantage was the sleeping arrangements. Mother was a little skittish and since they slept together, she had to sleep in the middle some which made it not so bad with sleeping. It made her a little less scared. How sweet is that? To Aunt Vera and Aunt Thelma, I told the story the way it was told to me. This should be funny after they read this. 🙂 Well if you are a middle child, I hope you have a great Middle Child’s day.

Southwest Health District preps for Zika

Although Zika, which is spread mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, has not been transmitted locally in Georgia, the recent outbreak of Zika in Florida has Southwest Georgia public health experts preparing for that possibility. “Residents want to know their risk and what is being done locally to prepare if mosquitoes in our area start to infect people with Zika,” said Southwest Health Director Dr. Charles Ruis. “It is important to know that the majority of people who get Zika – around 80% –experience mild or no symptoms.” Symptoms of Zika include fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis, or red eyes. Other symptoms include muscle pain and headache. Until this month, local transmission of Zika on this side of the world has been in South and Central American, Caribbean countries and Puerto Rico. Those most at risk of Zika infection are pregnant women and men and women of child-bearing age. “Zika infection during pregnancy can cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly that is a sign of incomplete brain development,” Ruis said. “Research has also shown other problems in pregnancies and among fetuses and infants infected with Zika virus before birth.” Ruis said pregnant women or people who are trying to start a family should avoid areas with Zika. The areas are listed at, and the site is updated frequently. “There is no vaccine to protect against Zika,” Ruis pointed out. “The best protection is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.” He recommended using an EPA-registered insect repellent with 30% DEET and to follow the instructions on the product label. Another tip is to wear long pants and long sleeves, to cover up against the mosquitoes, which are aggressive daytime biters. Damaged screens on doors and windows should be replaced, and overgrown bushes should be cut back. Southwest Health District also promotes the “Tip N Toss” Campaign, featured in a video produced by the Early County Health Department posted on the District Facebook page and at “We encourage residents to tip over or toss out items that hold water, such as buckets, planters, tires, toys, flowerpots and birdbaths once a week,” Ruis said. “It takes as little as a spoonful of water for mosquitos to successfully lay eggs and breed.” A vector surveillance specialist located in Southwest Health District is monitoring mosquito populations for disease-carrying insects, Ruis said. “These specialists are located throughout the state,” he said. “Like Florida, Georgia Public Health also has an emergency response plan in place that includes environmental health specialists who will quickly respond to any Georgia location where a resident gets infected with Zika from the bite of a mosquito,” Ruis noted. However, Zika can also be passed through sex from an infected person to his or her partners, he said. “Sex includes vaginal, anal, or oral sex,” he said. “Zika can be passed from a person before their symptoms start, while they have symptoms, and after their symptoms end.” He said condoms and other barrier methods can reduce the chance of getting Zika from sex. “This is especially important if your partner is pregnant,” Ruis said, citing guidelines for couples who live in or have traveled to an area with Zika. More information for couples who were in an area with Zika and who may be considering starting families or who are concerned about sexual transmission is at Ruis said Southwest Health District is in the process of sending out Zika updates and guidelines to educational institutions, healthcare providers and others in the area. “We want to ensure our partners have the most recent information about this infection available, and to encourage them to call us with questions,” he said. “We urge people to educate themselves about Zika by following Southwest Georgia Public Health on our Facebook page, through the media or by going to,” Ruis said. “Because the situation is changing almost daily, it is important to check back frequently. Your local health department also has Zika educational information they will be happy to share.” For more information like this, please follow Southwest Georgia Public Health District on Facebook!

Celebrating Catfish Month

The month for celebrating Catfish is August! Yep there is a month to celebrate catfish. It was designated as National Catfish Month by Congress in the late 1980s to pay tribute to an outstanding American product that contributes to our nation’s economy, while providing consumers with a healthy, safe and great-tasting food. The majority of U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish is produced on family-owned farms in the states of Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas and Louisiana, where many of these growers are second- or third-generation farmers. Catfish farmers feed their fish grain-based pellets made primarily of soybeans and corn, which are grown by American farmers. When the catfish reach market size, they are harvested and delivered to processing plants, many of which are located in rural areas where they are major sources of employment and the primary driver for the area’s economy. I can remember when I was younger and was with my grandpa Russell we would go to my Aunt Vera’s and fish. I loved fishing but I didn’t want to touch the bait nor the fish but hey I was good at fishing! Did you know that most Catfish are found in fresh water? They don’t have scales and the “whiskers” that make catfish look like cats are really barbels. The barbels are covered with tastebuds that allow the fish to find food in the murkiest of water. Fresh water catfish are usually egg layers and will watch over their eggs until they hatch. A female blue catfish can produce as many as 100,000 eggs at a time. Have you ever wondered how Catfish see or if they can see well? Most catfish have small eyes and rely on taste, smell, and hearing. Do you eat Catfish? It is an excellent source of protein, is low in saturated (bad) fat and is a moderate source of polyunsaturated (good) fat and omega-3 fatty acids. U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish is the number one farm-raised finfish in America. More catfish is produced in the United States on a yearly basis than all other farmed fish combined. The Catfish is the official fish of the state of Missouri. Every state, county and city is recognized for something and Missouri got the Catfish. Catfish is the fourth most popular fish in the United States. And did you know this last Catfish fact? Ninety-four percent of all US Farm-Raised Catfish is raised in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Belzoni, Mississippi claims to be the catfish capital of the world. So grab ya a date and go eat some good Catfish!

Agriculture in the Classroom

In an effort to promote agricultural literacy, Georgia Farm Bureau Foundation is donating copies of the children’s book “Hi, I’m Billy Blueberry, This Is My Story” to libraries across the state. Hank Youngblood, President of Worth County Farm Bureau and Connie Melton, Office Manager of Worth County Farm Bureau presented a copy to Margaret Jones Public Library this morning. “We appreciate this book that shows children how blueberries go from the bush to our tables,” states Leigh Wiley, library director. It’s important to get Agricultural in the classroom. Agriculture is Georgia’s largest industry.  It is an important component of the state’s economy and provides one in seven jobs in agriculturally related fields.  However, less than 2% of the population actually lives on the farm and few people have any knowledge of how the food and fiber system works to provide us with food, clothing and shelter.  The Georgia Farm Bureau provides Georgia Agriculture in the Classroom. The purpose of this program is to increase agricultural literacy among children and the general public.  It provides tools for more effective teaching about agriculture and its role in an interdependent society, and to assist Georgia’s educators in implementing the instruction of agriculture-related concepts in the classroom.

Lang Celebrates 30 Years with Sunbelt Ford in Sylvester

Kathy Lang recently celebrated 30 years with Sunbelt Ford in Sylvester. Mr. Walt Coward is proud of his long term employees and appreciates all they do for him, their customers and their community. This is an awesome accomplishment and The Martin News would like to say Congratulations to Ms. Kathy on 30 years with Sunbelt Ford. Dedication takes sacrifice! This picture right here says it all to me. It shows she has been dedicated and devoted for 30 years and Mr. Coward’s smile shows the appreciation. Thank you Mr. Coward for being a great Sylvester Business Owner and treating employee’s and customers like you would your own family!

The CNA Class of 2016 at WCHS

The Class of 2016 CNA Pinning Ceremony was held recently at Worth County High School. These students worked hard under the direction of Mrs. Culpepper and Mrs. Evans to become a Certified Nursing Assistants while in high school. A certified nursing assistant, or CNA, helps patients or clients with healthcare needs under the supervision of a Registered Nurse (RN) or a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). Also known as a Nursing Assistant (NA) a Patient Care Assistant (PCA) or a State Tested Nurse Aid (STNA), the individual who carries this title needs a strong work ethic and ability, but issues of liability and legality prevent CNAs from performing certain procedures. Congratulations to all of you on your accomplishment. The CNA Class of 2016 includes Hannah Broadway, Kambria Brown, Kanisha Chambers, Christopher Cole, Courtney Cook, Ashlee Dorsey, Christina Estevez, Alex Ferguson, Ryan Fraley, JaQuerria Fulton, Lizzie Green, Madison Hancock, Savannah Hendrix, Emily Hobby, Amber Johnson, Caitlin Loyd, Justice Lucas, Keondria McMillian, Kalia Moore, Emily Moree, McKenzie Newell, Tiffany Parker, Adreanna Riggins, Kennedy Rutherford, Shanbrika Tellis, Megan Temples and Brooke Terry.

~ Dates to Remember ~


8th ~ Help for Disabled Vets at The Margaret Jones Public Library
9th ~ Ribbon Cutting for the Little Library in Sumner
9th ~ Varsity Rams Softball Game Home at 5pm
10th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting at Noon
10th ~ Legal Help at The Margaret Jones Public Library
11th ~ WCMS Softball Game Home at 4pm
12th ~ Rams Football Game at Americus
13th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
13th ~ Ram Color Run Fundraiser 8am
13th ~ Ram Flag Football Fundraiser 10am
15th ~ City of Sylvester Council Meeting
15th ~ WCMS Softball Game Away 4pm
16th ~ City of Warwick Council Meeting
16th ~ Varsity Rams Softball Game Home at 5:30pm
16th ~ Picture Day at WCMS
17th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting at Noon
17th ~ WCMS Softball Game Away 4pm
17th ~ Varsity Rams Softball Game Away at 5:30pm
18th ~ Ray Houston Book Signing at The Margaret Jones Public Library
19th ~ Rams Football Game at Thomasville Central
20th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
20th ~ What Women Want at Darton College 10am-2pm
22nd ~ WCHS Senior Portrait Make Up Day
24th ~ WCHS Underclassman & Staff Portrait Day
24th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting at Noon
24th ~ WCMS Rams Football at Americus
25th ~ JV Football Game Home vs. Westover 5:30pm
26th ~ Rams Football Game at Ashburn
27th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
27th ~ Peanut Festival Pageant
27th ~ Mary Alice Shipp Community Awards Banquet
31st ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting at Noon
31st ~ WCMS Rams Football Home vs. Lee County
31st ~ Worth County Schools Progress Reports

*** Email your questions or event listings to and we will get them listed on the calendar ***