IN BRIEF: Greenville city council approves use of special legal counsel by city manager

Members of the Greenville City Council voted unanimously Tuesday evening to approve the use of special legal counsel and to authorize City Manager George Bosanic to use the attorneys at his discretion.

During an active shooter training on Monday at Greenville High School, Montcalm County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Mike LeVand secures a hallway in the school. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Greenville Department of Public Safety hosts active shooter situation exercise

“Shots fired. I repeat: Shots fired. We have an active shooter at the high school.” These are words no one wants to ever hear. Yet, words everyone in the United States is all too familiar with as 2015 draws to a close.

Barrie’s House Director Ron Wood stands among the large quantity of clothing items available in addition to food assistance at the food pantry. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Barrie’s House of Gowen serves all who need help with food, clothing

If there is one thing Ron Wood believes in it is helping his fellow man. Wood is the director of Barrie’s House at Settlement Lutheran Church in Gowen. Barrie’s House is a food pantry and clothing distribution center that aims to help those who need it no matter what the situation.

The Porter family has made a tradition of seeking out the same Santa Claus the past several years. — Courtesy photo

Family seeks out special Santa year after year

Many families have the annual tradition of going to visit a Santa Claus each year, but for one local family, it isn’t just about seeing a Santa, it is about seeing THE Santa. Eric and Angela Porter of Greenville and their three boys — Andrew, 12, Bryce, 10, and Cullen, 6 — don’t just want to visit Santa, for the past six years, they seek out their specific Santa.

A large pine tree fell during the windstorm, breaking through a power line and causing M-57 to be shut down at about 3 a.m. on Thursday morning. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

JUST IN: Christmas wind storm wreaks havoc

Reindeer are not the best when handling turbulence so it was a good thing Santa was flying Thursday night versus Wednesday night and Thursday morning. Early Christmas Eve morning, a wind storm burst through West Michigan with wind gusts upwards of 60 miles per hour. The storm caused significant damage to power lines throughout the region, including right here in Montcalm County.

Apprentice die makers, from left, Alex VanderHoek and Ben Crawford learn the ropes from Dave Bean, a 31-year journeyman die maker, as the three inspect a drawn panel for an inner door reinforcement ran from a draw die in a 2,000-ton press at Greenville Tool & Die. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Made in Our Own Backyard: Greenville Tool & Die

There was a time in this country — seems like long ago — when a willingness to work hard and be a team player could advance an employee from trainee to head of the company. A career was comprised of a series rational advances, earned through self-improvement efforts and an increased understanding of the company’s products and processes. Companies valued their employees and promoted from within.

Releasing their balloons on Sunday in the Greenville High School parking lot, a crowd of Greenville-area people gave a silent and somber thank you to the organ donors who have saved lives in Greenville as well as the rest of Michigan and the nation. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Balloon launch held in honor of organ donors, celebrates life

A year ago Sunday, Debbi Bendon received the greatest gift she could ever receive. She was given the gift of life. On Dec. 20, 2014, Bendon received a double-lung transplant. Without the transplant, she may not be here today.

Grattan Academy Board of Directors Secretary Kim Richards and President Ruthie Blackgrove discussed marketing techniques for the school district during Monday’s meeting. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Grattan Academy board discusses marketing strategy

Looking to the future, Grattan Academy needs to attract new students while retaining current ones. The charter school’s board of directors believes one avenue to accomplish this task is to focus on exposure through marketing.

Grattan Academy boys basketball coach Robert Brown, center, breaks a huddle during a timeout with his players Friday evening, consisting of players from America, Spain and Denmark. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Grattan Academy basketball teams represent 14 nations

When members of the Grattan Academy basketball teams put on their jerseys, it’s clear they are one team, playing a team sport, with either “Grattan” or “Grizzlies” printed in bold lettering across the chest. But on the back of the jerseys, it’s the last names that are truly unique for these high school teams, as each name represents something far greater than the name of each player.

Beamers Tanning & More received a facade revitalization thanks to Michigan Economic Development Corp. funding that sparked interest in other downtown Greenville property owners to investigate applying for similar funding. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

7 Greenville business owners applying for facade funding

For many years, many Michigan cities, towns and villages have been speaking about “revitalizing” historic downtowns. Greenville is finished speaking about it and ready for action.