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The Versailles Republican

July 9, 2015 • Headlines

Dressed patriotically, Rose Gauck walks along the parade route during the 4th of July celebration in Milan. She was with St. Charles Church float.
Two people enjoy the parade during Milan's 4th of July celebration. This is one of many photos not published in the newspaper!
The local US Naval Sea Cadet Corp Flying Tigers Squad, a relatively new organization for youth in the area, was a nice addition to the parade.
Tom Tepe Autocenter
Tom Tepe Autocenter
Friendship State BankKing's Daughters' HealthWhitewater Motor Company Inc.
Ripley Publishing Company IncRipley Publishing Company, Inc.
Accident on US 421 in October
Man guilty of fatal drunk driving charges

A former Versailles man pleaded guilty to a charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death and is facing up to 22 years in prison.

At a July 1 hearing in Jefferson Circuit Court, Jordan T. Griffin, 23, admitted guilt to one Level 4 felony count of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death and four Level 6 felony counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing serious bodily injury. Four other charges were dismissed as part of the open plea agreement with the judge, according to the Madison Courier.The affidavit listed his address as Madison. Griffin is a 2009 South Ripley graduate.

The charges stem from an Oct. 4, 2014 afternoon accident that killed 21-year-old John T. Walker of Arkansas City, Kansas, a passenger in Griffin’s vehicle. According to previous reports, Griffin’s vehicle crossed the center line on U.S. 421 near the Jefferson Proving Ground and struck another vehicle driven by Charles McRoberts Jr., 37, of Versailles. McRoberts’ vehicle rolled over following the crash and he and four juvenile passengers in the vehicle were injured. Three of the passengers were his children. Three of the children were airlifted to University of Louisville hospital due to serious injury.

The Chief Deputy Prosecutor D.J. Mote told the court Griffin and his passenger had left Fort Campbell near the Kentucky-Tennessee border, according to the Madison Courier. He traveled to Vincennes and then was northbound on US 421 from Madison to Versailles when the two vehicles collided head-on.  

Walker was an enlisted infantryman in the U.S. Army serving as an air assault specialist at Fort Campbell. Griffin also had been serving in the military. Griffin admitted that he had been drinking along the way before the crash around 4 p.m.   Police records indicated Griffin had been traveling at 82 mph in a 55-mph speed zone before the accident. A test showed that Griffin had a blood alcohol concentration of .38 following the crash. During the hearing, Griffin admitted to his role in the crash, and to abusing alcohol. Griffin could face up to 22 years in prison on the five charges as part of the open plea agreement.made in Jefferson Circuit Court with Judge Darrell Auxier. Sentencing for Griffin has been scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on Aug. 31.

Queen pageant is Sunday at Damm Theatre
‘Just be yourself’
County queen advises 2015 candidates

Mary Mattingly

Ashley Moore remembers when she was a little girl seeing the Miss Ripley County Queen at the county fairgrounds wearing her sash and crown, and thought “How cool it would be to be the queen.” Little did she know she would be the envy of other little girls years later. “It’s amazing. A dream come true!” said the daughter of Tracy and Christy Moore.
Ashley Moore


Ashley Moore, 2014 Ripley County Queen, rode in the Milan parade. She will emcee the upcoming pageant.

Moore, the 2014 Miss Ripley County Queen, will crown the new queen on Sunday, July 12 at the Osgood Damm Theatre. There are 10 candidates vying for the title. (See their pictures and bios in The Versailles Republican, section B.) The 2015 South Ripley graduate said she entered the pageant “ on a whim. I never thought I would be Miss Ripley County so it was pretty amazing.” Her years with the high school’s Young Confederates show choir paid off. While she was a nervous wreck backstage last year, she recalled, her stage fright disappeared once she stepped on stage, which she credits from her show choir experience. The candidates perform a dance routine together, and also are judged on their evening gown, professional wear and interview question. The dance number came easy to her, and she had fallen in love with her junior prom dress so that was taken care of. She shopped with her mom Christy for professional wear, and has since wore what she chose several times for college and scholarship interviews. Moore will be going to IUPUI in late August to study biology and neuroscience. The bubbly and poised teen not only walked away with the crown, but something more valuable. “I learned to have more confidence in myself and that I can do a lot more things than I thought,” the 18-year-old said.

It’s tradition that the queen and her court reign over the weeklong 4H fair. Not only did Ashley kiss a pig, another fair tradition, but for the first time the girls participated in a greased pig contest. She didn’t know about that going into the pageant. “It was a really fun event, and I had a blast,” she said, despite the three shampoos to get the muck out of her hair. The court posed for pictures daily and interacted with the crowd. The fair can be grueling, but the girls all bonded. “We became like family in that one week!” Moore said. Her advice for any girl competing in the pageant? “Go in with an open mind and be happy and excited, but be yourself.” Judges look for individuality and strong personalities, she noted. She competed in the state fair in Indianapolis representing Ripley County, and enjoyed meeting others and comparing 4-H and fair notes from around the state.

Moore will emcee the 2015 Miss Ripley County Queen pageant July 12. Although she’ll lose the crown, she won’t lose the wonderful memories and valuable learning skills that came with the crown. Those are hers to keep forever! Doors for the pageant at the Damm Theatre open at 5:30 and the pageant begins at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $5, but 10 and under is free.

Pick up this week's edition of The Versailles Republican for the stories below and more local news. Subscribe by clicking the subscribe link or call 812-689-6364.

• Sunman club gets nonprofit status (front page)
• State park makes camp ranking (page 2)
• From the superintendent's desk: SR to hold Meet Your Teacher/Open House event (page 4)
• Research finds higher wage not a job killer (page 6)
• On the Record from the Ripley County Courthouse (page 6)
• Tyson Fund applications due Friday, July 31 (page 6)
• How-to guide on insurance released (page 8)
• County queen bios and photos (front page, section B)
• Versailles Town Court (page 3, section B)
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