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Page 8-C?THE BRUNSWICK BEACOf>
BY TERRY POPE
A Yaupon Beach man has been
charged with starting a fire that
destroyed approximately 182 acres of
woodland and interrupted traffic
along N.C. 211 near Southport last
Jimmy Moore, of 27 Oak Island
Drive, Yaupon Beach, was charged
with the misdemeanor by N.c.
Forest Service Ranger Miller Caison.
BY TERRY POPE
Brunswick County Coroner
Thomas E. Gilbert IV and his wife,
Linda H. Gilbert, will face trial in
Brunswick County District Court on
July 8 for charges of violating the
N.C. Cemetery Act.
At a scheduled hearing last
Wednesday, Brunswick County
District Court Judge I >ee J. Greer Jr.
agreed to postpone the trial as requested
by the Gilberts' attorney,
Grover A. Gore of Southport. The
Gilberts were charged on April 3 by
the Brunswick County Sheriff's
Department on five counts each for
violating the cemetery act.
The charges were filed by N.C.
Cemetery Commission administrator
William Gladden III.
They include failing to make required
deposits into perpetual-care
funds and pre-construction
mausoleum trust accounts, failing to
make monthly financial reports to
the commission and failing to pay
fees to the commission for grave
spaces and crypts sold to individuals.
The Gilberts own and operate the
Cape Fear Memorial Gardens on
N.C. 211 in Southport. The charges
filed are unrelated to Gilbert's duties
as county coroner.
Following a recess for lunch last
Wednesday, both sides In the case
met in Judge Greer's chambers for
close to two hours before Gore filed
the motion to delay the case. Saying
"it will take some effort on the part of
both the commission and Mr. and
Mrs. Gilbert," Gore asked that the
case be postponed for at least 30 days
to allow both sides to "make some
Judge Greer agreed, saying "in
light of the complexity of this case,"
it required more negotiating.
"We've been discussing this case
all day long," Greer said. "I can certainly
understand the need to have it
The case had been postponed once
before when a court date was
originally set for April IV.
Under the N.C. Cemetery Act.
cemeteries are required to file their
annual financial reports within SO
days of the end of the corporation's
calendar or fiscal year. Cemeteries
are also required to pay a fee for
every vault, crypt or grave space
sold into a special fund that keeps the
commission operating, since no
general funds are appropriated by
the state to support that office.
Assistant District Attorney Wanda
Bryant, who will be prosecuting the
case, raised no objections to having it
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The fire broke out around 2:45 p.m.
last Tuesday and was brought undei
control around 7:20 p.m.
"He was burning a pile of stumps,'
Caison said, "and it got away. It wa:
just an accident"
Caison said Moore had failed to obtain
a permit before burning, but wa:
"real conscientious with hi:
burning." The pile was burning neai
the edge of the woods and got out ol
control, he added.
Fire fighters from Southpori, Boil
ing Spring Lakes, Long Beach ant
Yaupon Beach volunteer fire depart
ments battled the blaze along witl
' forest service personnel. Federal ant
> International Paper companies alst
used fire plows to help contain thi
fire, reported Brunswick Count;
i Emergency Management Coor
> dinator Cecil Logan.
The fire began near the Jo;
E Assembly Church about two mile
south of Southport on N.C. 211 befon
jumping the highway. Dense smok
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i forced the closing of the highway for
- close to 30 minutes, Logan said.
i "I'd like to commend all the fire
i departments for saving all of the
3 dwellings," Logan said. "There was
t the potential of losing several houses.
f They were able to get there in time to
- keep water on the backs of the
f Logan said a fire has occurred in
s the same area for each of the past
e three years. This year, the fire swite
ched directions before dark and
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burned itself out in an old berm
where a previous fire had occurred,
Logan was also notified last week
that the state has been turned down
for federal fire disaster assistance.
The Federal Emergency Management
Agency ruled against providing
funds to the state that would have
aided county volunteer fire departments
for expenses incurred for recent
"They can still make it," Logan
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said of the county's volunteer fire
departments. Although the departments
have incurred additional expenses
as a result of the April and
May woods fires, no department is at
a very crucial point in its budget, he
"If we had been the only state seeking
assistance," Logan added, "then
we probably wouldn't have been
turned down. They usually take the
state with more property losses,
where more homes have burned."
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