Rock Rapids, Iowa — A winner has been chosen to be the Republican candidate in November in a county supervisor race in northwest Iowa.

Lyon County saw a few contested races in last Tuesday’s Primary. On the Republican ticket for Supervisor District 5, there was a tie. Both candidates, Steve Herman and Kirk Peters received 255 votes each.

At the Lyon County Board of Supervisors meeting and official vote canvassing on Monday, June 11th, a name was picked out of a hat to be the Republican candidate in November. Steve Herman’s name was drawn. Kirk Peters has until 5:00 p.m. on Thursday to request a recount.

No Democrats filed for that party’s nomination, and no Democratic write-in votes were received either during the primary. But the Republican candidate would face any challenger from the Democratic or any other party, or any independents during the general election on November 6th. Candidates can file between August 6th and August 29th.

Supervisor District 5 includes the area from north of Lester to the eastern border of the county east of Little Rock. For the most part, it’s all north of Highway 9 except in the city of Rock Rapids, where the line dips to the southern city limits in the eastern part of town.

June 8, 2018 - 9:46 am - Posted in News

Alvord, Iowa — Lyon County authorities say that shortly before 10:00 pm Thursday, one of their deputies made a traffic stop on an unusual vehicle, that led to the arrest of an Alvord man.

According to authorities, a Lyon County deputy initiated a traffic stop on a golf cart that was being operated on an Alvord city street. Authorities say that the deputy suspected alcohol use by the golf cart’s driver, 27-year old Bailey Grotewold, of Alvord.

Deputies say that after further investigation, the deupty placed Grotewold under arrest on a charge of 1st Offense OWI, which is a Serious Misdemeanor. Grotewold was additionally citer for Unlawful Operation of a Golf Cart on City Streets, a Simple Misdemeanor, according to authorities.

June 5, 2018 - 10:12 am - Posted in News

Lyon County, Iowa — A Doon man suffered mnor injuries when his pickup was struck by a tractor-trailer rig Monday morning.

According to the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office, the crash happened on 260th Street, when an eastbound Freightliner tractor-trailer rig, driven by 54-year old Dale Timmerman of Boyden, attempted to pass an eastbound 2006 Chevrolet pickup, driven by 56-year old Dale Fick of Doon, as Fick attempted a left turn into a farm driveway. Deputies say the semi struck the pickup, causing an estimated $12-thousand damage. The semi then reportedly entered the north ditch, striking a fence belonging to Bruce Fick.

The semi, owned by Rick’s Custom, Inc. sustained an estimate $12,500 damage.

Fick suffered minor injuries in the mishap.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office was assisted at the scene by troopers from the Iowa State Patrol.

May 31, 2018 - 3:38 pm - Posted in News

Lyon County, Iowa — A four-vehicle crash Wednesday morning sent a Rock Rapids woman to the hospital.

According to a report from the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office, the crash happened about 7:30 Wednesday morning near the intersection of Highway 75 and 210th Street, about 5-miles south of Rock Rapids.

Deputies say the mishap began when a southbound Buick Century, driven by 63-year old Mary Abrahamson, of Rock Rapids, struck the back of a 2013 Mercedes Sprinter van, which was then pushed into the back of a 2016 Kia Sportage, which was, in turn, pushed into a flat bed trailer hooked to a 2015 Ram truck.

According to authorities, the Mercedes, which was owned by Avera McKennan of Sioux Falls, and driven by 27-year old Brendan Kelly Goetzinger, sustained approximately $11-thousand in damage in the incident. Deputies say the Kia, which was owned and operated by 45-year old Christopher Jay Stanga of Sioux Falls, received an estimated $8-thousand in damage. The flatbed trailer being pulled by the Ram truck, both owned and operated by 49-year old Salem Mujic of Sioux Falls, cane away with about $11-hundred in damage. No damage estimate for Abrahamson’s Buick was immediately available.

Deputies say that Abrahamson was transported to Sanford of Rock Rapids by the Lyon County Ambulance for non-life-threatening injuries.

Abrahamson was reportedly cited for following too closely, a simple misdemeanor.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Lyon County Ambulance, the Rock Rapids Fire Department, and the Iowa State Patrol.

Ocheyedan, Iowa — A state senator who left the Republican Party in 2016 to protest Donald Trump being the GOP’s presidential nominee has ended his bid for reelection in November.

David Johnson of Ocheyedan was the only independent in the state legislature for the past two years. Johnson announced in December he would run as an independent and seek another term in the senate.

Three Republicans are running in Tuesday’s Primary for Johnson’s spot in the state senate. He’s been a legislator for nearly two decades but, as an independent, he faced a tough run for another senate term in the northwest Iowa district where Republicans far outnumber both independents and Democrats. Johnson had a long history in the Republican Party before he left it nearly two years ago. His father was a Republican candidate for governor in 1968. Johnson hints he’ll be back at the statehouse next year.

There are more than 20-thousand Republicans, about 13-thousand independents and 73-hundred Democrats in the district Johnson has represented. There is no Democratic candidate in the Senate District One, but a Democrat could be nominated by convention before the ballot deadline in August.


Original Story posted May 31, 2018 – 12:31pm

Ocheyedan, Iowa — Iowa Senator David Johnson will not seek reelection this fall, according to published reports.

In 2016, Johnson, who was a Republican at that time, resigned from the Republican party when Donald Trump became the presumptive Republican Presidential nomination. At that time, Johnson changed his registration from Republican to Independent.

Since resigning from the Republican party, Johnson has had difficulties landing committee slots. Coincidentally, Johnson’s Senate District is the single most Republican district in the state. He serves the 1st District, which is comprised of Lyon, Osceola, Dickinson, Clay, and Palo Alto counties.

Three Republicans will have their names on the ballot for this coming Tuesday’s pimary election for Senate District 1, the seat currently held by Johnson. They are: Jesse Wolfe, of Emmetsburg; Zach Whiting, of Spirit Lake; and Brad Price, of Spirit Lake.

KIWA has reached out to Senator Johnson for comment, and will bring his comments to you once he returns our call.

May 25, 2018 - 5:12 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — Memorial Day will be observed in the United States on Monday, May 28th.

Originally called “Decoration Day”, and celebrated on May 30th, the day was created to honor Civil War dead. It has since been expanded to honor all veterans who have died in service to the United States, and Memorial Day is now observed on the last Monday of May.

In addition to national observances, many local communities will hold Memorial Day services and events in northwest Iowa.


George’s Memorial Day activities include the posting of the Avenue Of Flags, which will take place at 7:00 a.m. Everyone is invited to volunteer.

The Bridge Service will be at 9:15 a.m., with the service at the Veterans’ Memorial to start at 9:30. The main Memorial Day service in George is at 10:00 a.m. at the George/Little Rock High School auditorium. Fifty-year certificates will be presented to Dennis Hansmann, Jerry Hickman, Harris Kaster, and posthumously to Delton Patton, who passed away in February. Paster John Pea from Ebeneezer and Zoar Presbyterian will have the message, with music provided by George/Little Rock students. From there, they’ll process from to the Evergreen Lawn Cemetery, for a short service and then to the Good Samaritan Home.

Little Rock:

Little Rock’s Memorial Day observance will be at the Little Rock school at 10 a.m. The prayer and address will be by Pastor Scott Burdsall of the First Presbyterian Church of Little Rock. Merlin Ver Steeg will read the names of the graves being decorated. A service at the Pleasant View Cemetery will follow. After that, everyone is invited to the Town & Country Building for refreshments.

Rock Rapids:

In Rock Rapids, veterans and volunteers are asked to assemble at Riverview Cemetary at 6 p.m. on Friday night, May 25th to put flags on graves. The big flags, each honoring the memory of a veteran will be placed in the Avenue of Flags on Memorial Day morning at 7 a.m., and they could use your help for that as well.

The Memorial Day Ceremony in Rock Rapids will be at Riverview Cemetery, starting at 10 a.m. Rex Strait Post 103 American Legion and Van Anne-Fields VFW post 6960 prayers will be prayed. The speaker will be Iowa Senate candidate Zach Whiting. Payton Vogel will read about the Star Spangled Banner and will do the Gettysburg Address. There will be a Salute To The Dead and taps will be played. They will then go to the Holy Name Catholic Cemetery for another Salute To The Dead, and Taps will be played. The cemetery services will be held at Forster Community Center if the weather doesn’t cooperate. Cookies and coffee will be served at the VFW Club after the ceremonies.

May 25, 2018 - 3:06 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Doon man is behind bars after being arrested this week on felony drug charges.

According to court records, 36-year-old Travis DeWeerd of Doon was arrested on a felony charge of possession of over 5 grams of methamphetamine with intent to manufacture or deliver, and misdemeanor charges of third-degree possession of stolen property and two counts of possession of a controlled substance.

The criminal complaint in the case alleges that during the execution of a search warrant for stolen property at DeWeerd’s home, deputies found about 15 grams of a substance believed to be methamphetamine. The complaint also alleges that one of the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office drug dogs indicated on the odor of illegal drugs coming from the substance.

The complaint also says that a second search warrant was granted, and during that search for drug and narcotic items, a scale, six grams of cocaine, and numerous prescription pills were allegedly found. It says deputies didn’t locate any valid prescriptions for the pills.

According to court records, DeWeerd’s preliminary hearing has been scheduled for June 1st.

May 24, 2018 - 4:48 pm - Posted in News

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Rock Rapids, Iowa — The races at Rapid Speedway in Rock Rapids on Friday night will feature a 12-year old driving a race car to bring awareness to kids cancer.

Jared Foster, a member of Team KWC (Kids With Cancer racing) says his organization builds different race cars to take to various childhood cancer events and they spread awareness locally and regionally.

He says that the other “show” cars are to give a kid fighting cancer a chance to sit in a race car and experience what that feels like. But he says they have something different planned for “Rapid” this Friday night.

He says the “Project Olivia” car will be taking the track to spread awareness. He says the car’s number “46-7” represents the 46 children that are diagnosed with cancer each day and the 7 that lose the battle each day.

He says they’ve also got a couple of other activities for kids.

Foster says Team KWC is a non-profit organization based out of Melvin with board members spread out from Sioux Falls to Sioux City to Worthington to Sanborn.

Again, that’s all this Friday night at Rapid Speedway in Rock Rapids.

May 22, 2018 - 1:38 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A lady who has been a lifeline for several people in Lyon County has retired. Lyon County Sheriff Stewart Vander Stoep says Barb Sprock has paged her last fire department.

Vander Stoep says Sprock has been acting as the lifeline between citizens and needed emergency help for almost 20 years.

He says Sprock was always quite easy-going, which turned out great for those she worked with, who could be a little mischevious, says Vander Stoep.

Vander Stoep says Sprock always lightened everybody’s mood and was a “super person to have at the Sheriff’s Office.”

The Sheriff says Sprock told him that they plan on going to their cabin at the lakes. He says her husband, Dick Sprock is also retiring from Central Lyon this year. They also plan on spending lots of time with their grandchildren.

Vander Stoep says they held a party for Sprock on Monday.

Vander Stoep says Sprock served as the dispatch supervisor and also the local probation officer throughout her several years of service. He says Luann Serck has been named the new dispatch supervisor. He says they don’t know yet if they’ll be hiring another dispatcher. He says they’re going to try giving their part-time dispatchers more hours and see how that works first.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office and KIWA wish to thank Sprock for her years of friendly service.

Photo courtesy Lyon County Sheriff’s Office

May 18, 2018 - 2:16 pm - Posted in News

Denver, Colorado — The final factual report has been released on a helicopter crash that happened last fall near Larchwood.

The National Transportation Safety Board or “NTSB” has released the report, which states that the crash, on Monday, November 6th, near the West Lyon School happened about ten minutes into the flight, which took off at about 1 p.m.

Those in the helicopter, which was owned by Ride The Sky Helicopters, were looking for 300 lost cattle. Lyon County Sheriff Stewart Vander Stoep says that the pilot was Robert Krier of Sioux Falls, and the passenger was Steve Ahrendt of rural Inwood, who was the owner of the cattle. The victims were taken to Sioux Falls hospitals with serious, but non-life threatening injuries. Witnesses said that the helicopter was hovering and as it started to turn, the tail of the helicopter struck the power lines.

The NTSB report says the helicopter was assisting the ground team to push the cattle towards an open gate directly beneath the power lines. They also say that several witnesses and the passenger stated that the helicopter looked and sounded normal prior to the impact.

The report says that a video of the accident taken by another witness on the ground showed the helicopter maneuvering near the power lines, with the nose of the helicopter facing away from the power lines. It says the tail of the helicopter impacted the power lines, followed by the main rotor blades. It also says the helicopter rotated once before impacting the ground.

It was known before that the helicopter descended to the ground and came to rest on its right side in a cornfield. The tail boom separated from the fuselage and both main rotors were substantially damaged.

The new report says that an official weather observation at the Sioux Falls Airport, which is 18 miles northwest of the accident site, reported the winds at roughly northeast (60°) at about 8 miles per hour (7 knots). It said visibility was about a mile and a half due to light snow, and the skies were overcast at 2,300 ft. The temperature was 30 degrees (-1° C), and the dewpoint temperature was 25 (-4°C). The barometric pressure was 30.26 inches of mercury.

However, the report says the witnesses on the ground at the accident site characterized the weather as overcast, windy, unlimited visibility, and no precipitation.

The new report says that an examination of the helicopter, engine, and remaining systems revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operations. It also says that as of the date of the report, the pilot had no recollection of the accident or the events that led up to the accident.

The NTSB investigator in charge says that probable cause and analysis are pending and will be released at a later date.