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Boy Donates Birthday Money to Purchase Vests for McMechen Police Officers

Rybiski, 11, of McMechen helps local police out


McMECHEN — McMechen’s police officers can hit the streets with a little extra protection, thanks to a gift from an 11-year-old boy. 

Elliot Rybski recently overheard a conversation with police in which the officers said they had to choose between bulletproof vests or other vital equipment when applying for grants, according to his mother, Danielle.

At that point, Elliot asked that, instead of presents for his birthday, he would rather receive money to donate to the McMechen Police Department so the officers could afford the vests. Other donations also came from family friends and businesses.

In April, he donated the money he collected — $4,180 — and on Thursday, Sgt. Andrew McCombs announced that the city’s four full-time officers had purchased the vests from 10-42 Tactical, a store on 29th Street in town.

“We’re very happy with the support from such a young man, who would want to help his community,” McCombs said. “The vests the department was able to purchase are top of the line which provide the best protection possible.”

Danielle Rybski hopes the donation will benefit not only the officers, but other institutions that may be making difficult financial choices.

“We’re very proud of him,” she said. “None of this, for him, was for publicity. He just hopes people hear about this understand that it’s not just charities that are lacking funding or money. Right in our own city, the department needed things to save their lives.”

The Rybskis moved to McMechen from Wisconsin when Samuel Rybski, Danielle’s husband, moved into the area for pipeline work.


Local News

10 December 2019

Marshall County Fire Departments Receive Grants from Chevron

Two firefighters listen to a speaker after more than 50 volunteer departments received a portion $241,000 grant Chevron distributed during a Dec. 3 ceremony in McClellandtown, Pa.


McCLELLANDTOWN, Pa. – Nearly a dozen Marshall County volunteer fire departments received individual grants from Chevron last that will enable them to purchase new equipment. 

The fire departments from Benwood, Cameron, Dallas, Forks Ridge, Glen Dale, Limestone, McMechen, Moundsville, Mt. Olivet, Roberts Ridge, Sherrard and Washington Lands joined dozens of their counterparts from Pennsylvania to receive a portion of the $241,000 grant the natural gas producer gave out to emergency responders Dec. 3.

In all, more than 50 volunteer fire departments were honored during the ceremony in McClellandtown, Pa. Each department received up $5,000 to fund equipment purchases. The Marshall County Firefighters Association also received a grant.

“We are proud to continue our support for first-responders in and around the communities where Chevron’s privileged to operate,” said Trip Oliver, Corporate Affairs Manager of Chevron. “Many departments are volunteer forces with limited budgets, so we are grateful for the opportunity to help ensure they have the resources necessary to protect and serve the communities in which we live and work.”

Chevron has long partnered with local first-responders across its operating area, including many all-volunteer departments in rural areas, to support training and equipment purchases.

Since 2016, Chevron has donated more than $700,000 to local volunteer fire departments and emergency responders. Such funding has provided necessities such as AED equipment, stop-bleed kits and body cameras.

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10 December 2019

McMECHEN — A man was arrested Tuesday, having allegedly killed his infant child by shaking the boy last month.

Daniel Jacob Messner, 25, of 45 E. Eighth St., McMechen, was charged with death of a child by a parent by child abuse after allegedly shaking the 3-month-old child, causing brain bleeds which eventually killed the child over three days.

On Nov. 18, police responded to a call at his home, where Marshall County Sheriff’s Deputy Nate Klempa was on scene, providing CPR to the unconscious child. According to Messner, the child vomited during feeding and went limp, which prompted the call to police.

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10 December 2019

Braden Coming to McMechen To Promote Virtual Reality Racing

WHEELING — Travis Braden is a rising star in the world of race cars. The Wheeling native is 25 years old and is already a two-time ARCA/CRA Super Series champion.

Braden is also a major player in a movement that would change the eSports landscape in West Virginia. Possible legislation is in the talking stages in the Mountain State on whether to adopt virtual reality betting in restaurants and bars.

Braden is championing the cause throughout the state. This coming weekend he will be in McMechen at Jerry’s Bar to promote virtual reality racing. Jerry’s Bar is owned by Jake Padlow, who is also the co-founder, along with Dave Ealy Jr., of PropMe LLC, an online gaming company.

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