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f The Hoke County News - Established 1928
VOLUME LXVIII NUMBER 36 RAEFORD. HOKE COUNTY. NORT H
The Hoke County Journal - Established 1905
SX PER YEAR THURSDAY. JANUARY 6. 1977
BY SAM C. MORRIS
For the past several years this
column has appeared in this corner
of the front page, and when I
started to think of what would be
written this time I wondered what
had appeared for the past 52
weeks. In thumbing through the
tiles. I was amazed at the different
things that had appeared.
Comments, congratulations, let
ters and other things handed to me
or called in by people who read the
The following items appeared
last year and I will try to say why
they were put in the column.
Last January, a call at home one
flight after the Christmas holidays.
Mrs. Joe HofTman told me of the
theft of flowers from a grave in the
cemetery. Of course this had to be
put in the column.
Then someone brought in an old
Charlotte Observer that had the
sports pages that brought forth
comments on some of the baseball
A program at the Kiwanis club
by the Hoke High Chorale just had
to be mentioned.
In February an article asking for
donations to be turned in so that
the United Fund drive could be
Comments about Kathy McMil
lan being nominated for an award.
A letter and pictures from Mrs.
Lina Mae Angstadt of South Bend.
Ind. telling and showing the
amount of snow they had been
having in that section of the
The comment on the United
Fund must have done a little good
because later in the month a letter
from Ashwell Harward appeared
A^thanking Gene and Kloise Carter
tor a job well done in bringing the
I llrive to a successful completion.
^A mention of H.R. (Hootch)
Q McLean's 85th birthday and other
things concerning him.
Then in March this column took
notice of the feature article with
pictures in wildlife magazine by
Mrs. Betsy Ross Gatlin Wilson of
Sam Snead. Raeford native, who
had been living in South Carolina,
was by the office to say he was
retiring and returning to Red
Commented on the letter from
Shorty Clark about his retirement.
In April, had a phone call from
Rebecca Harrington of Congress
man Charlie Rose's office, praising
the conduct and fine showmanship
of the Hoke County High School
Chorale under the direction of Mrs.
Mary A McNeill.
Bill Andrews came by and we
talked about some mistakes in an
article about the National Guard
unit here in the twenties.
A call from Mrs. A. A. Mclnnis
to yet a replacement tor her to write
the Rockfish News. She kept on tor
many more months before finally
Nice letter from John Wilson to
Paul and myself was printed in the
In May. Jesse Gulledge brought
In an old post office record book
vhen D.J. Currie was postmaster.
This article led to several more
articles after calls and a visit from
Mrs. Floyd Monroe and Mrs. J.
Letters from Carson and Iris
Davis about the Bicentennial and
Allen Edwards on the State Track
and Field meet held here.
In June, comments about the
conduct of some in attendance at
A nice letter from Mrs. Rebecca
Bridges Tolar of Kinston and she
enclosed an old Raeford High
Robert Currie. native, honored
after 40 years teaching in Broad
Letter from Mrs. Flora McPhail
Logan and a paper from Asheville
with a feature on the new basket
ball coach at Hoke High.
In July a letter from Kay
Piotrzkowski and a writeup from a
newspaper in Oregon on tht feats
of Kathy McMillan in a track meet
Many letters on the Bicentennial
v issue of The News-Journal -- most
of them favorable.
In August, some lip service about
t he foursome playing with Joe
? Upchurch, when he made a hole
Mentioned the changes at tie
Arabia Golf Course. In September,
a nice letter of appreciation ap
peared to the law enforcement
people from Wood's Furniture.
Commented on the entering
(See AROUND TOWN, Page 1 2)
County T o Ask Legislature
T o Curb Sunday Beer Sales
In a surprise move Tuesday morning, county commissioners agreed to ask the state
legislature to act to exempt Hoke County from the state's general brown bagging
laws, and thus, halt the sale of beer on Sundays in restaurants throughout the county.
The action came after Danny DeVane, newest member of the board, brought up
the subject of the Sunday sales at the close of the board's regular meeting. The matter
of a handful of Class A restaurants selling beer for takeout on Sundays-which is
allowed by state law since Hoke County has never approved on-premise
The Hoke County Sheriffs De
partment reported the capture of
two of the alleged robbers who
entered, a Rockfish store Dec. 23
and fatally wounded store operator
Robert Leslie Brooks.
Arrested on the 401 -Bypass near
Garland's Drive-In at 4:30 a.m.
Dec. 31 was Allen Dwain Smith,
Jr.. 24. of Rt. 8. Box 910.
Fayetteville. He was charged with
murder and armed robbery and
held without privilege of bond. His
preliminary hearing date has not
Also picked up and charged with
armed robbery and murder was
Kenneth Leo Dockerv. 24. He was
arrested by the Sheriffs deputies at
10:25 a.m. Dec. 31 at his Rt. 1,
Box 390. Raeford home. Doekery is
also being held without bond
pending a preliminary hearing.
Investigation of the incident was
conducted by the Hoke County
Sheriffs Department and the State
Bureau of Investigation who are
Mill seeking a tiiird suspect for
whom warrents have been issued.
CHILL-Tlie icy fingers of winter
were everywhere Tuesday morning
after Monday 's sleet and overnight
sub-freezing temperatures put a
chili in the early-morning air. Icy
roads caused a rash of accidents
which injured nine persons.
Not Guilty Of Trespass
County commissioner James A.
Hunt was found not guilty Friday in
District Court here on a charge of
trespassing brought by a South
Hoke man and his daughter.
Hunt was accused of trespassing
in a complaint made by Luther
Locklear. Rt. 1, Red Springs, and
his daughter. Mary Lee Locklear.
arising out of an incident Dec. 4.
The warrant charging Hunt with
the misdemeanor was signed Dec. 7
by magistrate Helen S. Barrington
and served on him Dec 1 1 by a
District Court Judge Joseph E.
Dupree gave a verdict of not guilty
after hearing the testimony of the
state's only two witnesses. Lock
lear. in his 70's. and his daughter,
in her 40's.
Hunt, who represented himself
in court, presented no defense
evidence and asked only one ques
lion during examination of Miss
Locklear -- whether she could recall
what day of the week Dec. -4 was.
Hunt said afterwards that the
whole thing was a misunderstand
ing. He said a boundary dispute
occurred over some land adjoining
the Locklear property, which Hunt
had recently sold. The commis
sioner said that the Locklears
apparently thought they had lost
three feet and that surveying work
which Hunt had ordered was
Hunt said that he realized the
arrest and trial would be somewhat
embarrassing to him because of his
status but that he did not want the
assistant district attorney to drop
"No. 1 never thought of that, l
wanted to have the whole thing
heard in court", he said.
consumption-has been a topic of controversy here since last June.
Since state law takes jurisdiction over local law. the county is powerless to end the
sales at the restaurants on Sundays, unless a general Sunday closing law, or "blue
law", is enacted bv commissioners, county attornev Charles Hostetler explained.
DeVane told the other members he had done some checking in recent weeks and
concluded the best plan was to ask legislators to consider an end to a problem which
DeVane and the other commissioners considered "unfair".
" * Jingle Bells'
Tax Register Rings
. Tune Of $14 Million
By Marty Vega
Friday, Dec. 31 was a very
profitable day for the county
despite the fact that all of the
county government offices were
closed except one-the courthouse
annex which happens to house the
tax collector's office.
The tax collector took in. or
raked in as some beleaguered
taxpayers might call it, $249,680 in
the space of a nine-hour day. as
citizens stood in line to beat the
deadline. A penalty is calculated on
late payment after December.
By far. the largest chunk of the
nearly quarter of a million dollars
rung up Friday was taxes from
business and industry. Burlington
Industries paid $164,000, accord
ing to lax Collector Elizabeth
Mrs. Livingston and her assist
ants Judy Pittman and Magdaline
McKen/ie were kept busy through
out the day and a long line snaked
around the lobby of the office early
in the afternoon. The telephone
kept the women busy. too. as
resourceful taxpayers called to
check when the day's bank deposit
Since it was the last day of the
month, many with big tax bites
brought a check in the afternoon
which wouldn't be processed by the
bank until Tuesday. On Tuesday,
the funds to cover the check could
be drawn out of a savings account
and the customer wouldn't lose any
of his interest on his savings.
Legal? No. but the system works.
Of course, some people pay their
tax bills in July or August and take
advantage of a two per cent
Mrs. Livingston reported that
there was the usual amount of
grumbling from her customers this
year as most people found them
selves paying a higher tax bill. In
July, the county adopted a $0.89
per $100 of valuation tax rate, a
four cent increase over the previous
(Sec TAX REGISTER. Page 13)
TAX OFFICE -- The county lax
office look in nearly a quarter of a
million ilolbsrz i'i I'l7f>
hruluy. the last Ja\ to pa\ before
penalties stun County Tax Col
lector Elizabeth Livingston is
shown assisting Julian Wright with
Both plants of the huge Burling
ton Industries complex west of the
city were emptied at noon Tuesday
after a telephoned bomb threat was
received but a search turned up
According to police, a male
caller dialed the Burlington switch
board at 11:50 a.m. and stated.
" There's a bomb set to go oft at one
o'clock. Did you hear that? I'his
time I'm not kidding'' and huni;
Company officials ordered both
plants evacuated and the mill's tire
brigade conducted a search of the
premises. Police stood by. but no
explosives were found.
It was unknown just how many
workers were a fleeted by the ap
parent hoax. Plant manager Jack
Bradford refused any comment
whatsoever on the incident.
Hosteller was directed to
draw up a bill which would
return control of the beer
question to the county and see
to it that State Sen. Luther Britt
and the three delegates in the
House of Representatives are
The proposal is aimed only at
beer sales. It would not- affect
consumption of liquor or wine
in any establishment licensed
for brown bagging on Sundays
or any other days.
Hostetler speculated that the
proposal may draw "statewide
support", as other counties
which are without on - premise
beer sales may also be unhappy
about the situation posed by the
brown bagging cafes. ?
In other business Tuesday.
J.H. Blythe, chairman of the
county social services board,
appealed to commissioners to
consider appropriating extra
funds to locate and maintain a
storage area for used clothing
and other articles, but the four
commissioners present asked
Blythe to put the request on an
official basis by having the
social services board .ippr.n-j
Blvthe. who told commis
sioners he was representing the
other social services board
members, said he was under
considerable pressure from the
community to reopen the
"clothing closet" operated by
the Department of Social
Services before the agency
moved to its new quarters in
1975. He requested that the
county board consider a build
ing large enough to display the
items, and that it be situated
close to the social services office.
"When we've got an agency
here with a budget of a couple ot
million dollars a year, 1 don't
think we can refuse to provide
this (service to needy people)."
Benjamin Niblock. director ot
the county social services, was
present with Blvthe and told
commissioners he had prepared
a "position paper" lor them,
but that he didn't want to
discuss it in an open meeting.
"I don't think this warrants
(See COMMISSION! KS r>
1976 - The Year In Review
1976, the Bicentennial year, is
over. It was a year for celebrating
the past and planning for the
future. A year of optimism as the
economy began recovering and
signs of growth and revitalization
appeared. It brought jubilance as a
shy 18 year-old Hoke girl went to
the Olympics and won a silver
medal. It was an election year. A
time of joy for some, despair to
Most of all it was a year of
activity. The news-making events
and people of the past 12 months
are reviewed here. Part Two will
follow next week.
Political manuevering started the
year off as several hopefuls began
scrambling among Democratic ex
ecutive committeemen for appoint
ment to the vacant seat on the
board of county commissioners.
Tragedy struck in Rockfish when a
lb year-old high school youth was
killed by a freight train. Morrison's
Ambulance Service pulls out of
business with the county after six
years and is taken over by James R.
- Julian H. "Buck" Blue succumbs
to poor health at 76.
Rev. Neill W. McPhatter. one of
three recommended by Democratic
committeemen to county commis
sioners, is appointed the fifth
member and becomes the first
black ever to hold a seat on the
county governing board. The sher
iff s department makes headlines
as fired deputy Elisha Dir.i, an
Indian, accuses Sheriff Dave Bar
rington and other members of the
department of corruption during a
packed meeting of the commis
In an emotional statement the
following day. Barrington admits to
a "betrayal of the public trust" and
discloses the details of an alleged
ticket-fixing case, an action which
was to bring the three-term sheriff
into court months later.
February brought a new city
manager to Raeford as 28 year-old
Robert Drumwright. city assistant
to Graham. N.C. . took over his new
duties. The city council wasn't
budging from its offer to fund only
25 per cent of the cost of the new
National Guard Armory, leaving
unhappy county officials to pay the
other 75 per cent. State planners
say the new facility could be started
Figures released for farm pro
duction for the previous year
showed a SI. 5 million decline in
income, while the Raeford Housing
Authority announces plans to build
40 apart rnent units and apply for
up to one million dollars in lunds.
Bill Can.eror. hands in his resigna
tion as head football coach at Hoke
High after three years, citing
restrictions imposed on him.
Politicking increases during the
month as Raeford audiences see
more aspirants tor state offices
passing through ahead of the
March primary, and the local
board of elections reports a high
rate of voter registrations.
March winds brought the first in
a flurry of Bicentennial activities,
as a four-week series of forums.
"The Good Old Days" begins, a
combined project of the Sandhill
Library System, the Raeford Wom
an's Club and the Hoke County
Bicentennial Commission. At the
same time, women's club members
demanded action from the city to
clear, up blighted areas and tear
down delapidated buildings which
would mar the Bicentennial obser
Burlington announced a S5 mil
lion equipment expansion and
company executives predicted a
rosv future, while Knit-Away lays
(See 1976 REVIEW, Page 12)