The Voice of the Gem City

News February 22, 2022

This is Marcia Lane, your roving reporter.

The body of a 16-year-old St. Johns County youth whose canoe overturned Sunday was recovered Monday, according to the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office. Riley Teixeira and two other boys went out in a canoe at Julington Creek Sunday evening and the canoe overturned. The two other boys swam about 600 feet to a dock and the homeowner notified authorities. A search began and was expanded Monday including an area from north of Buckman Bridge south past Julington Creek. The body was found in about 6 to 8 feet around 1:30 p.m. Monday. A number of agencies including the U.S. Coast Guard, Florida Fish and Wildlife and Clay, Jacksonville, St. Augustine and St. Johns took part in the search. “This is not what we wanted. We were hoping to find Riley, but we can give some close to the Teixeira family today,” St. Johns County Sheriff Rob Hardwick said.

It’s two day. That’s 2 as in t-w-o since it’s the 22nd day of the Second month in 2022,

Palatka officials picked up an over-sized check Monday in Madison from Gov. Ron DeSantis. Palatka’s share of the nearly $11 million check comes to about $5 million and includes a $5 million Community Development Block Grant for sidewalks and paths in a downtown commercial area. About $340,000 from a Rural Infrastructure Fund grant will go for expansion of a lift station at St. Johns Avenue and Zeagler Drive. Officials from Madison and Suwannee counties also shared in the windfall that State Rep. Bobby Payne and Sen. Keith Perry have been working on. They were at the photo op Monday that included Palatka Mayor Terrell Hill.

At 2:22 p.m. today Crescent City Junior-Senior High School officials will honor football star and coach Clarence “Pooh Bear” Williams Jr. Williams, who died Thursday in a single-car crash, was No. 22 when he played at the high school.

Lots of government meetings going on this week including the Putnam County Commission that had a board meeting this morning and will meet as the Port Authority in a workshop this afternoon. Palatka has a series of meetings lined up including Wednesday when a Palatka review committee looks at a proposal for RFP Impact Fee and Capital Improvements Element update at 10 a.m. at City Hall. On Friday the commission and Airport Advisory Board hold a special called workshop at 4 p.m. at City Hall to discuss private hangar development at the Palatka Municipal Airport.  

At Thursday’s Palatka City Commission will look at a recommendation from Mayor Terrell Hill for Black History month to give St. Johns Avenue the honorary name of Mary McLeod Bethune Boulevard. The noted educator taught at Palatka Mission School at the corner of Eighth and St. Johns Avenue before moving to Daytona Beach where she founded Bethune-Cookman College. Hill also wants a historic marker put up to Bethune. 

A second individual has filed his intent to run for the Commission seat currently held by Mayor Terrell Hill in 2022, according to Supervisor of Elections Charles Overturf III. Jose A. Maldonado has filed his intent to run for election.

Tonight country music singer-songwriter Lee Greenwood performs at the St. Johns County Fairgrounds off State Road 207 in Elkton. Greenwood is touring nationally in his 40th annual road tour with concert dates around the nation. He’s had more the 35 singles on the Billboard charts.

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