Find under this headline, daily, the latest news about COVID-19 as it pertains to those who live and work in The Sentinel circulation area:


Rochester Township Trustee Jayne Tyler’s office is now open by appointment only. Call 223-3258 to make an appointment or speak with her.

Fulton County Animal Adoption and Education Center is asking people to avoid surrendering healthy pets for the time being.

Fulton County Transpo, the Community Resource Center and the Area 5 meal site are closed. The United Ministries Food Pantry is open and accessible through the resource center east door.

The Sentinel business office is closed through April 15. We are still working and encourage our customers and readers to contact us via email, by telephone or via our website forms. To reach the newsroom call 223-2111, and add extension 327 or 316 when prompted. To reach the business office call 223-2111 and add extension 319 when prompted. We also have a drop slot in the vestibule at our east entrance. Send emails to

Because we care about the health of our community and readers, The Sentinel has, and will, post all local stories and a daily local update about the COVID-19 virus on our website, in front of the paywall. Anyone can read them without paying to do so. The website address is

Food banks

Food Finders Food Bank Mobile Pantry will be distributing food, including fresh produce, an assortment of frozen items, essential nonperishable items and breads to people in need in the Rochester area.

The distribution is drive-through only, 1-2 p.m. Monday at Mill Creek Church, 1336 N. Indiana 25. The public should not arrive any earlier than 12:30 p.m. and people need to stay in their cars in order to meet current guidelines on social distancing.

Anyone in need of emergency food assistance in Rochester and the surrounding area is welcome. Call Alex Buckles of Food Finders at 765-471-0062, ext. 208, for income guidelines and other information.

There’s a mobile food pantry distribution April 14 at Matthew’s Market, The Cross church, with distribution from 11 a.m.-noon and the public asked not to arrive until 10:30 a.m. or later. The same restrictions of staying in cars will be observed.


The Indiana Department of Workforce Development reminds Hoosiers that applying for unemployment insurance benefits is completed electronically. Hoosiers can apply on a computer or smartphone.

For more information on unemployment insurance, visit There, Hoosiers can find the Claimant Handbook, Frequently Asked Questions, a link to online filing and more information.

Meals for kids

Rochester Community Schools is providing food routes and pickup locations for its students. Meal packages intended to cover five days per student are free.

Meals are automatically packed for those students on the free and reduced lunch program. Other parents may arrange by calling 223-2159, ext. 5004, by noon Thursday or emailing

Meal delivery/pickup is each Friday until school reopens. There are two options.

1. Bus drivers Brad Smiley, No 4; Stacy Ingram, No. 14; Ian Ramer, No. 19; Mary James, No. 21; and Kevin Wallskog, No. 27, will deliver meals 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Friday to the students on their buses. Someone has to be home to pick up the food or make arrangements by calling the above number.

2. From 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. meals also may be picked up at: Heart to Heart Church of the Nazarene, 1987 Southway 31; Grace United Methodist Church, 201 W. Seventh St.; Faith Outreach Church, 1125 E. Ninth St.; Mill Creek Church, 1136 N. Indiana 25; or Safe Harbor Church, 1944 Sweetgum Road.

Tippecanoe Valley School Corp. offers grab and go lunches, which include breakfast for the following day, weekdays until school reopens at the following locations from 11 am.-12:30 p.m. for students age 18 and under: Akron Elementary Door R; the Mentone Elementary main entrance; the Tippecanoe Valley High School main entrance; Palestine Lake Boat Ramp; and Westhaven Estates parking lot.

If parents or students do not have transportation available to pick up lunches, call and leave a message telling student name, telephone number, address and the number of students needing meals, for the following food service personnel: Akron, Julie Kruger, 574-598-2321; Mentone, Nikki Rutherford, 574-598-2537; TVMS, Trisha Wilson, 574-598-2230; and TVHS, Shelly Holloway, 574-598-2131.

North Miami Community Schools is providing breakfast and lunch food, takeout only. The school will provide five days of meals at a time for any household in its district with two pickup days a week. Call the superintendent’s office at 765-985-3891 or email by the end of today to arrange meals.

Wi-Fi hot spots

Rochester Telephone Company has free, public Wi-Fi hot spots throughout the area.

In Rochester they are around the courthouse and in most of the downtown, at city park with the best signal near the baseball concession stand, at the RHS football field, at Rochester City Pool, in the parking lot south of the RTC office and at the Fulton County Museum, Brent Blacketor soccer fields and The Outlet Youth Center at Sixth and Main streets.

In Argos there’s a hot spot at city park, with the best signal near the main concession stand.

At Akron, there’s a hot spot at the Little League baseball field, with one to come soon at the Akron RTC office. A hot spot at the Mentone baseball field may now be operational.

Drive-thru testing

Cass County Health Department and Logansport Memorial Hospital, have partnered to offer drive-thru COVID-19 screening off-site.

Beginning Wednesday drive-thru screening for COVID-19 will be offered in the parking lot of the Penman Building, 1701 Dividend Drive, Logansport. Based on screening results and if the patient meets the screening criteria from the CDC, a COVID-19 test will be given.

The CCHD and LMH ask that the community follows this process to utilize drive-thru COVID-19 screening: only individuals who are showing symptoms – fever, cough, shortness of breath– will be tested; those who are experiencing those or other flu-like symptoms should call their primary care provider to describe their symptoms over the phone or, if they don’t have a primary provider call Express Medical Center at 574-722-9633; people will be directed to the drive-thru screening site by their provider, by Express Medical Center, or by the Cass County Health Department after screening by phone.

The drive-thru screening site at the Penman Building will be offered from 9 a.m.-noon and 2-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Those who do not meet the screening criteria from the CDC will not be tested. All who arrive at the drive-thru will be screened on-site as well. On arrival, patients will be asked for a copy of their government ID identification and insurance card, if available. There will be a copy of each made before each patient is tested.

People will be given a number and directed to park in a parking space. Testing will be performed for the flu first, and then for COVID-19 as needed. Patients will be notified of their test results, the same day for the flu, but possibly several days later for COVID-19 tests.

– The Sentinel report

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