Words from the Chaplin

As we enter March 2018, if your year has been like mine, it has been a very busy time.  Most people started off their year with New Year’s resolutions to make them a better person.  The ancient Babylonians are said to have been the first people to make New Year’s resolutions, some 4,000 years ago.  According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute in its January 2018 report, 42% of Americans make these resolutions.  Americans determine to lose weight, start saving more money, start college or study harder, quit smoking, stop drinking or other good intentions.   In the first week 72% are able to maintain our promise to yourself but by then end of January 58% of those good intentions have been broken.  So if you were one of those who made a resolution and now have broken it, you are in the majority. 

 I am so glad that God didn’t make resolutions, but made promises!  In 2 Corinthians 1:20 we read “For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us”

 I praise God for his promises!

 Stay Safe!


Rickey L. Elder EMT# 13760









( October 29, 1955 – March 06, 2018 )

Rickey L. Elder, 62, of Brookland, passed from this life on Tuesday, March 6, 2018, at NEA Baptist Medical Center in Jonesboro.

Rickey was born in Paragould and lived all of his life in the Brookland area. He was a 1973 graduate of Brookland High School and worked 19 years as a Routeman for Lewis Brothers Bread Company (Bunny Bread) before they ceased their Arkansas operations. Rickey then entered full time in the construction and home building business and worked full time as an EMT-A for Emerson Ambulance Service on nights and weekends.

In any spare time that he had, Rickey enjoyed hunting and fishing and serving as a Reserve Officer with the Craighead County Sheriffs Office. He was a member of Brookland Baptist Church and was preceded in death by his father, Dale Elder.

Survivors include his wife, Vicki Kidd Elder of the home;
His mother, Irene Elder of Brookland;
1 daughter and son-in-law, Nicole and John Jacobs of Arlington, Tennessee;
2 sons and daughters-in-law, Benjamin and Kelly Elder and Joshua and Ashton Carr, all of Brookland;
1 sister and brother-in-law, Dian and John Street of Jonesboro;
2 brothers and sister-in-law: Mickey and Paulette Elder of Brookland and Wyndol Elder of Paragould; and
7 grandchildren: Kyle Jacobs, Kaitlyn Hammett, Hayden Elder, Ryan Jacobs, Laken Carr, Sonnie Elder and Kinleigh Carr.

Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. Thursday in Emerson Funeral Home.

Funeral services will be 11:00 a.m. Friday in Emerson Memorial Chapel with David Head officiating. Burial will follow in Pine Log Cemetery.

Active pallbearers include Jacob Elder, Spencer Elder, Clinton Elder, John Street, Eric Knuckles and Scotty Kidd. Honorary pallbearers include members of the Emerson Ambulance Service Team and personnel of the Craighead County Sherriff’s Office.

For lasting memorials, the family asks that consideration be given to the Fowler Family Center for Cancer Care at NEA Baptist Health Care, 4802 E. Johnson Ave., Jonesboro, AR 72401.

Jonathon Elias Staton EMT# 28738












July 15, 1991 – February 4, 2018

Jonathon Elias Staton, 26, went to be with the Lord, February 4, 2018. He was born on July 15, 1991 in Little Rock, Arkansas to Jon and Michelle Staton. Eli graduated from Bryant High School in 2009, he owned Staco Construction Company, was a member of East Union Missionary Baptist Church and was a member of the North Little Rock Fire Department and served as a firefighter-paramedic. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and cooking at the Fire House. Eli was a people person and loved making everyone laugh.
Mike Cook, one of Eli’s buddies wrote:

Asking for prayers today for the family of a NLRFD brother, as we learned of his passing this morning! First and foremost he was a very strong Christian man and when I thought of him or someone brought up his name, his passion towards his beliefs were the first thoughts that always entered my mind. And the good thing is, is that he was never afraid to admit to it or was ever shied away to talk about it.

He was a young man, a big man and about as fit as one could be. He was one of the brothers that kinda gave you the warm and fuzzies knowing you were partnered with before you entered a burning structure, a lengthy extrication, or a medical call because you know he had your back regardless of the circumstances that may lie ahead. He was a great paramedic and treated the young, the old, the sick, the drunk, the drugged, and the hurt or anyone for that matter with the passion as if they were his own mother or father. We’re gonna miss him greatly and the void that is left will be felt for a long long time. I ask that you keep his wife and family and also his work family in prayer.
Today we shall mourn!
Rest In Peace Brother!

Eli was preceded in death by his grandfather; Bob Staton. He is survived by his wife; Allie Staton, parents; Jon and Michelle Staton, sister; Abby, brother; Luke, grandparents; Pat Staton-Matlock and Bill and Sue James.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made in Eli’s name to Arkansas Fallen Firefighters Association, arfallenfirefighters.org.

Denisa Alice Poole Shipley EMT# 18216








Denisa Alice Poole Shipley, 50, passed from this life and entered heaven on January 24, 2018, after a courageous battle with cancer.

Denisa was born May 19, 1967, in Piggott, Arkansas, to Max and Billie Sue Poole. She was cheerleader and a beauty queen in her high school years. She worked as a cosmetologist for many years before becoming a paramedic. Denisa loved working as a paramedic on the ambulance for over 20 years. She loved outdoors, animals, hunting, and the river and her personality was larger than life. Denisa adored her children and loved her family more than anything. She will be greatly missed by her family and friends. Denisa was saved and baptized at the St. Francis Baptist Church when she was a teenager.

She was preceded in death by her grandparents, Dr. Wylie E. Turner, Jr., Ralph and Dolly Poole, Gaye Smart, and Rocky and Alice Hefner; her uncle, Dean Poole; and her aunt, Alice Cole.

She is survived by her parents, Max and Billie Sue Poole; one son, Beau Alex Wicker and fiancé Tarryn Tracy; her daughter, Brooke Alice Shipley; sister, Candice Holcomb; two nieces: Hollie and Tessa Holcomb; one nephew: Colton Poole and wife Hannah; and special Grand Di, Diane Cluck.

Visitation will be held Saturday, January 27, 2018, at 10:00 a.m. in the Hoggard & Sons Chapel with service following at 12:00 p.m. with Kevin Murray officiating. Hoggard & Sons Funeral Home of Piggott, Arkansas, is in charge of the arrangements. Burial will be held at a later date at Gravel Hill Cemetery near St. Francis, Arkansas.


Vital Link EMS is a private, non-profit, public benefit corporation that provides emergency, non-emergency, and disaster response services to Independence, Izard, Stone, and northern Cleburne counties in north central Arkansas.  Vital Link has been in operation since 1983 and accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services since 2003. Vital Link has a competitive salary and benefits package.

 The Paramedic will Restore and Promote patients health by administering life support and transport the sick and injured persons in the out-of-hospital setting  as authorized by established medical protocol or physician; activating and collaborating with the emergency medical system multidisciplinary team; meeting CAAS accreditation standards; and working to assure the accomplishment of Vital Link goals. The Paramedic shifts will mainly be 48 hours on and 96 hours off.



  • High School or equivalency diploma.
  • Arkansas Paramedic License; Nationally Registered Paramedic preferred.  Current CPR and ACLS certification with the American Heart Association.
  • Valid Arkansas Driver’s License.
  • Motor Vehicle Operators record which complies with Vital Link standards.
  • Must be 19 years of age.
  • Demonstrated ability in teamwork, communication, writing, and relating skills

Go to www.vitallinkems.org to download application.

Submit applications to lgalligher@vitallinkems.org  or mail applications to 1033 EMS Drive, Batesville, AR. 72501.

Expedition Medicine National Conference


Expedition Medicine National Conference in Little Rock on March 9-10 in Little Rock. The website for the conference is https://expedmed.org/


Mark A. Johnson EMT#15933







April 22, 1974 – December 10, 2017

Mark A. Johnson, 43, a lifelong resident of Cash, died Sunday, December 10, 2017 at NEA Baptist Medical Center.  He was a member of the Valley Ridge Baptist Church.  He loved to dive and enjoyed all water related activities.  His best friend and running buddy was King, his dog.  Mark was a Nationally Certified Paramedic #15933 and worked for many years at Emerson Ambulance Service.  He was an avid shooter and weapons handler.  He was preceded in death by his father, Tommy Johnson.

Survivors include his wife of 19 years, Heather Johnson; son, Lucas Johnson both of the home; mother, Jackie Johnson of Cash; brothers, Bobby Johnson (Misty); Shawn Johnson (Danna) all of Jonesboro; nephews, Hunter Johnson (McKayle) and Houston Johnson.

Services will be 1:00 PM, Wednesday, December 13, 2017 at Emerson Memorial Chapel with Bobby Floyd and Jamie Carter officiating.  Burial will follow at Johnson Cemetery with Eric Johnson, Erin Johnson, Michael Johnson, Jason Johnson, Keith Baggett and Milton Wayne Harbison serving as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers are EMT’s, Paramedics and Staff at Emerson Ambulance Service.  Visitation will be from noon until service time on Wednesday.

For lasting memorials, please consider the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, National Processing Center, Attn: Honor & Memorial Gifts, PO Box 1245, Albert Lea, Minnesota, 56007-9976 or

The American Kennel Club Government Relations Department, 8051 Arco Corporate Drive, Suite 100  Raleigh, North Carolina 27617-3390.  To sign an online registry, go to emersonfuneralhome.com.

David Covey EMT#16312












March 8, 1949 – December 2, 2017

David Michael Covey, 68, of Sherwood, passed away December 2, 2017. He was born March 8, 1949 in Newport, Arkansas to the late Lloyd and Francis Buford Covey. David served his country in the US Army as an Ammo Storage Specialist and worked at the US Postal Service and later retired as a Paramedic. He was a motorcycle enthusiast who loved drag racing with his family. He was also dedicated to his children and grandchildren, and loved them dearly. David was an avid scuba diver, and was a 32nd degree Mason.

He was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife, Jacqui Covey; two sons, Shawn (Cindy) Covey and Eric Sturba; two daughters, Tanya (Steve) Boyles and Shannon (Jessie) Bradford; six grandchildren, Justin Covey, Chase Boyles, Caitlyn Boyles, Lauren (Zach) Fendley, Audrey Bradford, and Kaleb Bradford.

Memorial Service will be 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, December 12th at First Christian Church, 2803 E. Kiel Avenue, Sherwood, Ark. 72120. A reception will follow at Dave and Jacqui’s home. To sign the online guestbook go to www.griffinleggettresthills.com

Patrick F. Moore EMT#1003










Patrick F. Moore, 68, of Conway went to be with his Lord and Savior on Monday September 4, 2017. He was born on Thursday January 27, 1949 to the late Ralph and Eva (Calhoun) Moore in Dumas, AR. He graduated from Conway High School in 1967. Pat served as the Faulkner County Coroner for 28 1/2 years. He was the first accredited Medicolegal Death Investigator in the state. He was a licensed EMT for 40 years and was recognized in 2006 by the Arkansas EMT Association as the longest tenured EMT-I in the state. He was Faulkner County EMT of the year in 1984 and in addition served as the President of both the Arkansas EMT Instructor Association as well as the National Association of EMT’s. He was the Instructor/Coordinator of the year of both the Arkansas EMT Association and the National Association of EMT’s. Pat was President of the Arkansas Coroner’s Association from 2013-2017. He was a Nationally Registered Diplomate of the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators and a Board Certified Fellow of the American College of Forensic Examiners. Pat was a Recognized Expert in Death Scene Investigation Issues. He served as a member, and officer of multiple boards and committees and over the last 10 years helped develop the Arkansas Medicolegal Death Investigation course in conjunction with the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy, and the Arkansas Coroner’s Association. This course was very important to Pat because he wanted every Coroner and Deputy Coroner in the State of Arkansas to have access to quality training that would allow every County to have the same knowledge and experience to aid in their investigations.

Pat is preceded in death by his parents Ralph and Eva Moore and Sister Corynn French. Pat is survived by his loving wife of thirty-two years Leslie Moore; his sister Norma Fletcher; three children Tate (Amy) Moore and their two children Kaylin (Skyler) Reynolds, and Talon Moore, Marti (Danny) Fife and their two children Shelby and Anna Kay Fife, and Shayla (Charlie) Cockrum and their two children Bryce Burkheart, and Braden Cockrum; dearest friend Jessica Thorn, and many nieces, nephews, family members and friends.

Visitation will be held on Thursday September 7, 2017 at Woodland Heights Baptist Church in Conway from 4:00PM – 8:00PM. Services will be on Friday September 8, 2017 at 10:00AM at Woodland Heights Baptist Church in Conway with burial following at Oak Grove Cemetery. Pallbearers will be Jim Slattery, Bubba Bell, Dennis Willheim, Mark Mahan, Bob Edwards, John Mattox, Talon Moore, and Mark Reeves; honorary pallbearer Braden Cockrum. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Faulkner County SPCA 4 Gail Lane, Conway AR 72034.

Brittany Lauren Wildhaber EMT# 27131











Brittany Lauren Wildhaber, 28, of Bryant, Arkansas passed away September 1, 2017 in Alexander, Arkansas. She was born July 11, 1988 in Sherwood, Arkansas to Michelle (Bacon) Wildhaber and raised in Saline County.

Brittany graduated from Bryant High School and earned her Bachelor degree from University of West Florida. She worked as an EMT since 2012 with Medtran and most recently, at MEMS. Her passion for serving people carried her into her role as a fire fighter with Northeast Fire Department of Saline County.

Brittany was smart, funny, and loving. She was a loyal friend-once you were friends, you were friends for life. She loved the Lord, and showed the love of Christ with every life she touched. Heaven gained a unique, endearing, sweetheart of an angel.

Brittany leaves to cherish her memory her partner, Robert “Bobby” Hawkins; mother, Michelle Wildhaber-Tackett; step-father, Rick Tackett; sister, Serena Wildhaber; step-brothers, Lynn and Ray Tackett; dearly beloved nephew, Gaige Alan Figueroa; and a host of cherished family, friends, and colleagues including her “Aunt” Shirley Yount who love Brittany and will miss her always.

A memorial service in her honor will be held at 5:00 PM, Saturday, September 9, 2017 at First Assembly of God Church, 1801 Hot Springs Highway, Benton, Arkansas. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Northeast Fire Department for the EMT Scholarship in her memory.