News Update for 2/20/19

Highlands County Sheriff’s officials are conducting a death investigation, after a man was found dead in the parking lot of AdVent Health at Sun ‘N Lake. According to reports, the body of 55-year-old Robert E Burns was found in his Mazda CX5 in the hospital parking lot.
Burns apparently relocated to Highlands County recently from New York. Said to have been a chef, he reportedly had been working for the food service division of the hospital.
Cause of his death remains under investigation.

Highlands County firefighters were busy yesterday. Units from Lake Placid and Sun ‘N Lake South were called to a trailer fire on E.A. Smith Avenue in the Highway Park community about noon yesterday. Apparently, the owners were trying to smoke bees out from underneath a trailer when it caught fire.
Reportedly it was totally destroyed.
Sun ‘N Lake South units were called out again about 8:30 last night to extinguish a fire in an out-building on Tahiti Avenue. No injuries were reported in either incident.

Sebring city council last night cleared the way for a couple of events designed to support this year’s Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring presented by Advanced Auto Parts.
Council OK’d fee waivers and road closings for the Second Annual Fan Fest to be held on the Circle downtown. Community Redevelopment Agency Executive Director Kristi Vasquez outlined plans including another transporter parade, live music, food trucks and a Pinewood Derby race.
They also waived fees for the Highlands Art League to use the Jack Stroup Civic Center for their annual race gala. The council also voted to lift restrictions on the serving of alcoholic beverages for the event.

A Lake Placid teen has become the first in the nation to receive an aviation scholarship from the Ray Foundation. The stipend, reportedly worth some $10,000 goes to Nichole Blount.
The Ray Foundation recently donated a million dollars to the Experimental Aircraft Association for a scholarship fund.
The Highlands County aviation program reportedly now is 20 years old, and advisor John Rouch told the Highlands County School Board last night, the local effort now has become the template for a national program by the Airplane Owners & Pilots’ Association.

Th Cracker Trail Riders are celebrating the half-way mark in their cross state treck today in Highlands County. They ceremonially cross Highway 27 South of Sebring at the intersection of State Road 66 and Highway 98.
This morning they made their annual stop at the Cracker Trail Elementary School. The ride re-creates the route taken by historic Florida cowmen after driving their cattle to market.
The group will overnight this evening in Highlands County, then head out tomorrow for Fort Pierce.