It was a busy week in Hamilton County, marred by the loss of a legend and more road construction.

Krissi Davis died in her sleep Friday night. The Noblesville icon was senior captain for the Noblesville High School Lady Millers 1987 undefeated state champion basketball team. She was an Indiana All-Star, a two-time inductee into the Indiana High School Athletic Association Basketball Hall of Fame and a four-year letterman and two-time MVP for the University of Notre Dame Women’s Basketball Team.
At NHS, she scored a school record 1,269 career points leading teams to 81-17 career record, including four sectionals, two regionals and a semi-state title, besides the state championship..
“Krissi Davis” became a household name when she led her team to the state finals, and probably even before that. Pete Smith, who coached NHS Millers boys basketball from 1991 to 1994, said, “It’s a very sad Monday to start the week off. It’s just so hard to lose a friend like Krissi after just seeing her and with no thoughts that she could pass away so soon. She was a friend to all of Noblesville, and it’s impacted the Notre Dame Women’s Basketball family as well.”

Ground was broken this week at the corner of State Road 37 and 126th Street for the State Road 37 Improvement Project that will result in roundabouts along one of the busiest stretches of roads in Hamilton County.
A collaborative agreement between Fishers, Noblesville, the county and the Indiana Department of Transportation will result in State Road 37 in Fishers undergoing reconstruction to improve the heavily traveled corridor. The project is designed to improve the experience of the more than 50,000 vehicles that travel the corridor every day. The goal is to address the traffic congestion and public safety challenges from 126th Street to 146th Street.
Work will start at the 37 and 126th Street intersection, converting the intersection to a grade-separated interchange with SR37 reconstructed below-grade with 126th Street converted to a roundabout interchange, similar to Keystone Parkway in Carmel.
The project will replace signalized intersections of SR 37 at 126th, 131st, 141st, and 146th Streets with grade separated interchanges, as well as convert the signalized intersection at 135th Street to a right-in right-out configuration. The resulting free flow traffic on SR 37 between I-69 to the south and Greenfield Avenue to the north will reduce congestion in the SR 37 corridor and improve traffic flow.

A Fortville man was killed when the motorcycle he was riding left the road and hit a tree.
Charles H. Theobald IV, a 45-year-old from Fortville, was traveling south on Southeastern Parkway in the far southeastern part of Hamilton County Sunday night around 9:20. The 2010 Harley-Davidson XL 1200 left the road on a curve and went down an embankment where it struck a tree.
Medics attempted first aid treatment, but Theobald was pronounced dead at the scene. Toxicology test results are pending to determine if impairment contributed to the fatal crash. Theobald was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.
The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office Crash Team investigated. They said there were no witnesses and if anyone has any information to please contact them at (317) 773-1872.

It was announced last week that Noblesville will celebrate its silver anniversary of improving the health of the White River from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdya during the 25th Annual Hamilton County White River Clean Up.
“We are looking for community volunteers to help us continue to beautify the White River by pulling trash, tires, washing machines, and more from its watery depths and scenic river banks,” organizer Tim Stottlemyer said. “You never know what you may find. There is no cost to the event other than your time and your clothes, that are sure to get dirty and wet.”
The day will kick off at 8 a.m. with participants checking in at the Moose Lodge (950 Field Dr.) and will work to remove trash from the river until approximately noon. A second clean-up site location is available at the 116th Street boat launch, 6100 Wapihani Dr. in Fishers.
Individuals and groups that would like to volunteer should register in advance at www.whiterivercleanup.org. Children under 15 years old must be accompanied by an adult. A limited number of canoes will be available on a first come, first served basis.
“Thanks to the cleanup, 424 tons of debris have was removed from 1995 to 2018. The cleanup has been so successful that the city has seen a significant decline in trash the past few years,” Stottlemyer said.

A Hamilton County farm couple, Aaron and Lacey Sheller, were named the winners of Indiana Farm Bureau’s top awards for Young Farmers & Ag Professionals in 2019, the Excellence in Agriculture Award and the Achievement Award.
Two distinguished panels of judges evaluated this year’s participants. Excellence in Agriculture candidates were judged on their involvement in agriculture, leadership ability, and involvement and participation in Farm Bureau and other organizations, while the Achievement Award candidates were judged on their leadership abilities and on what they have achieved with their farms.
Aaron and Lacey Sheller won the INFB Young Farmer Achievement Award, which recognizes young farmers who earn the majority of their income from their farms. The Shellers will receive a $6,000 cash prize (courtesy of Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance), 250 hours of free use of one M-Series tractor (courtesy of Kubota Tractor Corporation) and an all-expenses paid trip to compete at the AFBF annual convention. The winners also will be awarded the David L. Leising Memorial Award.
Winners and finalists will be formally recognized at the INFB state convention this December in French Lick.
The Shellers have farming in their blood – Aaron as a seventh-generation farmer and Lacey as a sixth-generation farmer. Together they now farm non-GMO waxy corn, seed soybeans, cattle and swine. After the unexpected death of his father in 2004, Aaron assumed management of the family farm and later earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting and management. Lacey now works full-time on the family farm with a special emphasis on freezer beef and pork sales and distribution. She has a bachelor’s degree in athletic training and was previously employed at the county hospital as an exercise specialist. Lacey and Aaron also formed an LLC in 2007 to sell seed and liquid fertilizer to several local farms. The Shellers are active in their county Farm Bureau and Aaron currently serves as the Young Farmers & Ag Professionals chair for Hamilton County.

According to community health needs assessments from both IU Health North Hospital and Riverview Health, Hamilton County's ratio of population to mental health providers is lower compared to the average ratio in the United States and Marion County.
Riverview Health's 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment Report states that Hamilton County's ratio of one mental health providers to 760 people is below the state ratio of one mental health provider to 700 people.
IU Health North Hospital's 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment has a different ratio of one mental health provider to 764 people in Hamilton County. However, it still under the state's ratio which the assessment states are one mental health provider for every 701 people.
Dr. Anne Gilbert, a psychiatrist who has been in the Indianapolis area for 32 years and currently works at IU Health North Hospital, said Hamilton County is not an outlier. Overall, Indiana is one of the last in the nation for ratio of behavioral health providers to population.
"In general . . . Indiana has very few mental health providers per population," Gilbert said.
Gilbert defines "mental health providers" as people or organizations that are licensed by the state to provide behavioral care or mental health treatment.
Dr. Nathan Parmer, a clinical neuropsychologist at Riverview Health, said mental health care has been separated from other medical care since the ‘60s when Medicare began. Both of these aspects were treated differently as a result.
The Mental Health Parity Act of 1996, which was then superseded by the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008, was passed in order to create equal treatment for mental health conditions and substance abuse disorders in insurance plans that may also provide treatment for other non-behavioral health issues like diabetes.
"For a long time period, there was really not coverage, insurance-wise, for mental health problems," Gilbert said.
"I think the larger answer to . . . erasing stigma over generations is to promote the integrated system of healthcare," Parmer said. "There should be no difference between the treatment of somebody who's dealing with a moderate depression than if they were dealing with an infection."
John Mehling, public information officer at the Fishers Fire Department which also includes EMS, said the department used to be unprepared in mental health routes. He said there would be two options when confronted with a behavioral-related issue: hospital or jail.
Because of this, a pilot program called the Paramedicine Behavioral Response Program was created as a IU Health North Hospital community health grant to reduce the number of readmits for patients with certain conditions.