The Hoke County News - Established 1928
VOLUME LX1X MUMBER 36 RAEFORD, HOKE COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA
The Hoke County Journal - Established 1905
S8 PER YEAR THURSDAY, JAM \IO 5, 1978
BY SAM C. MORRIS
The cold air from the north has
been with us for the past week. It
was not the kind of weather that
most of us who like to get outdoors
on the weekend Were looking for
over the holidays. Of course for
duck and deer hunters it would be
considered fine weather.
The forecast is for nicer weather
this coming weekend and after
being in for a couple of weekends,
my wife is ready for me to get back
to the golf course.
?So if everything works according
to Hoyle, I will see you golfers at
* * *
Raz Autry. school superinten
dent, spoke to the Raeford Kiwanis
Club last Thursday night. Eugene
Carter was in charge of the
program. Raz talked on some of
the changes and some of the
programs that are now going on in
He also said that the school
system was big business as it
pumped over six million dollars
each year into the economy of the
county. 1 believe he said that over
four million was in salaries. Of
course much of this comes from
Federal and State grants for many
He invited the Kiwanians to visit
the schools and I know this
invitation is open to everyone. A
very interesting program Raz and
Gene and both of you made the
? * *
Earl Fowler, manager of the
Raeford - Hoke Chamber of
Commerce, was by the office last
week and showed me a letter he had
received from the White House. It
'was thanking Earl for an invitation
to visit Raeford and Hoke County
while the president was in Fay
etteville. Of course his schedule did
not permit this.
Fowler said he wanted the
president to visit us. but the
purpose was two-fold, because after
a drive on U.S. 401 from
Fayetteville to Raeford, he said the
president would be behind the
move to get four - lanes on the
Nice try F.arl. but also see if you
can get Gov. Hunt and Tom
Bradsnaw to take the "risk your
* * *
I know that it must be either
sickncss. the phone lines down or
Fayetteville Street in Rockfish has
been plowed up. because we have
missed the news from down in that
section for several weeks now. Let
us here from you, Mrs. A. A.
* * *
As most of you know we humans
are all built differently and we
think differently. Some of us enjoy
?one thing and detest something
that others enjoy. Some of us play
jokes on our fellowmen and then we
have pranks pulled on us. Some
can take it and others can only dish
Of course there are jokes that are
funny and are pulled on us with the
right spirit of what a joke or prank
should be. Then along comes a
person, who must have old satan
himself in them, and does some
thing and thinks it is a joke. But it
is not a joke; it is just plain cruel.
Last week Mrs. Alfred K. Leach
called and was telling me about a
telephone call she had received.
Someone called, giving a name,
and asked her if she was Sarah
Leach. When she replied in the
affirmative, the caller asked her to
come to Fayetteville to a certain
funeral home and ask for a certain
man. The caller stated that a
member of her family was at the
funeral home and they needed her
to identify the body.
Sarah said she started thinking
about where her family members
were at that time. She could not
account for all of them, so you can
imagine the thoughts that were
going through her mind. She called
a friend to go with her to Fay
^etteville and when she got to this
^Pbenon's house and told her what
nad happened, the friend told her
she had got a similar call just a few
minutes before, but she was able to
account for her family so it must be
someone playing a joke. Sarah said
(See AROUND TOWN. Page 1 3)
Board Picks County Manager
-4 o y- 0
COUNTY MANAGER ? James Earl Martin of Fayetteville [third from left \ was appointed Hoke County Manager
at Tuesday's meeting of the Board of Commissioners to Jill the vacancy created by the death oJ'T.B. Lester. Martin
is 32 years old. a graduate of Pembroke State College, and has workfd as an accountant with Cumberland County
and the Citv of Fayetteville for the last eight years. Pictured with Martin are members of the hoard \left to right):
Neil McPhatter. Danny DeVane. John Balfour [chairman], Ralph Barnhart. and James Hunt.
Air crash Here Injures Two
The pilot and a passenger of a
light cargo plane were hospitalized
briefly Dec. 28 after their aircraft
ran out of gas and crashed just
north of the Raeford Municipal
Airport about 6:45 p.m.
The manager of the transport
company for which the two men
worked said the next morning that
tne gas cap may have been left off
the tank of the plane when it was
fueled in Kentucky.
The two men. identified by the
High way Patrol as Bruce Elliott of
Mt. Pleasant. S.C. and Bread
Gibbs of North Wilkesboro, were
taken to Cape Fear Valley Hospital
in Fayetteville where they were
treated for head injuries and
According to Ken Wheeler,
manager of Air Trans Commuter,
the air freight company for which
the two worked, the plane was
headed from Lexington, Ky. to
Fayetteville with a load of elec
tronic equipment when the pilot
discovered that he was dangerously
low on fueL
The airplane ran out of gas and
crashed in darkness about 300
yards from the runway at the local
airport, where the pilot was
attempting to make an emergency
The plane touched down in a
field, bounced under some power
lines and across the airport road,
coming to rest on the shoulder.
Sgt. D.L. Minshew, with the
N.C. Highway Patrol, described the
plane as a total loss. Wheeler said
the single-engine Piper Cherokee
was worth about S25.000.
The two men were in the hospital
about 30 minutes, according to
- ;??#!? ? >??? ;
AIRPLANE CRASHES -? This light plane was on its vt av to Fayetteville
with a cargo of electronic parts when it ran out of gas ami crashed Dec. 2#
as the pilot was trying to reach the Raeford Municipal Airport The plane
went down about 300 yards short of the runway and came to rest on the
shoulder of the airport road The two men on hoard were not seriously
Wheeler. One had seven stitches in
The starboard wing of the plane
was crumpled and the engine
cowling was split open by the
impact. The windshield on the
starboard side was knocked out of
Wheeler said the cargo, some 30
boxes weighing 27 pounds each,
was not damaged in the crash. Air
Trans Commuter has its home
office in Florence, S.C.
Surveying the wrecked aircraft
Thursday morning. Wheeler said
he was of the opinion that the gas
cap had been left off the port wing
tank when the plane was tueled in
"There's dirt in the gas tank,"
Wheeler said. "He picked up the
dirt when he came across the field.
1 didn't get in this business
yesterday. I've been in it 18 years. 1
think the cap was left oft the tank
when they tueled in Lexington."
Wheeler said a search at the
scene for the missing gas cap was
Federal Aviation Administration
investigators were on the scene
Thursday morning. The plane was
towed awav after they compiled
information for their report.
The Hoke County Bpard of Commissioners appointed a
Fayetteville man county manager at its regular monthly meeting
Tuesday morning to fill a vacancy created by the death last Nov. of
T.B. Lester, the county's first manager.
James Earl Martin was present at the Tuesday session and met
several county officials during the course of the meeting. His
appointment by the board was unanimous.
Martin will begin his new duties here on Jan. 16 at an annual
salary of $19,000 plus moving expenses. He told the board that he
and his family intend to move here from Fayetteville as soon as
The 32-year-old Bladen County native has been an accountant in
the Cumberland County Finance Department since last Juh . Prior to
that he was Assistant Finance Director for the City of Fayetteville for
seven and a half years.
Martin graduated from Pembroke State College in 1%7 with a
degree in business administration. He and his wife have two sons,
ages six and two. He is originally from Tar Heel, in Bladen County.
Applications for the county manager position were accepted by the
board until Dec. 15. Twelve were received, in all; and all were from
North Carolina. Lester Simpson filled in as acting county manager in
the interim. Simpson was officially appointed by the board as
County Tax Supervisor at Tuesday's meeting.
In other business Tuesday, the board awarded bids for
constructiofrof a new addition to the Hoke County Health Center.
The project includes renovation of the present building on Central
J. Reginald McVicker. Jr.. of the architectural firm Jordan.
Snowdon and McVicker of Laurinburg. said that actual construction
will begin in three or four weeks. The work will take about nine
months to complete, he said.
The general contractor with the lowest bid was Micham
Construction, Inc. of Raleigh, the firm that is building Raet'ord's
new city hall. Micham submitted a base bid of SI 31.065. which was
well below the next lowest bid of $155,000 submitted by Myrick
Construction Co. of Star.
The mechanical contract was awarded to Coggin Heating and
Air-conditioning Co. of Sanford. low bidder at- $27,372. And the
electrical contract was awarded to D&B Electric Co. ol Fayetteville.
with a bid of $20,700.
Since only one plumbing bid was received." the contract was
re-advertised and bids were opened on Wednesday. The bids will be
presented to the board at its next regular meeting Jan. lb.
McVicker said his firm had estimated that the plumbing contract
will be in the neighborhood of $12,500. and that wiil mean that ihc
total cost of the project will be about $205,000. or about $25,000
less than anticipated.
The new addition will increase the Health Center's Moor space by
5.023 square feet and will include: a new waiting room, nurses'
offices, examination rooms, nurses' stations, a consultation office.
(See COUNTY MANAGER. Page I
Jane Sellars Is
New Miss Raeford
Jane Sellars was crowned the new
Miss Raeford Friday night in the
Raeford Jaycee's first annual Miss
Seven local girls competed tor
the title of Miss Raeford. Trophies
were awarded to the winners in the
tour categories that were judged. In
addition, scholarships were award
ed to Miss Raeford. the first runner
up and second runner up.
Jane Sellars. Miss Raeford. re
ceived a $350 scholarship; Amy
Hemmings. first runner up. re
ceived a $150 scholarship and
Debbie Minshew. second runner
up. received a SI 00 scholarship.
Money for the scholarships was
donated by Summerfield. the
House of Raeford Turkey Farms.
Southern National Bank I he Bank
of Raeford and Burlington Indus
Miss Raeford also received a
do/en long-stemmed red roses.
Entertainment was provided by
Don' Brock and Mary Margaret
Sawyer. Andv Johnson <>f Plymouth
served as master ot ceremonies
Jayeee Ken koonce estimated
that between lour and live hundred
people attended the pageant,
koonce said the Jaueis plan to
make the pageant an annual event
In last week's cdttmr ?>t !>:<?
News -Journal. Jane V Hat-. \v.i>>
reported to he a student a: I N C -
Greensboro. Miss Sella-s. tnc new
Miss Raclord. is a student at
Greensboro ( oI1cl*c
N-J Reviews News Stories Of 1977
For better or worse, 1977 is over.
It will be remembered in Hoke
County and elsewhere as the year of
a record breaking winter, when
temperatures plunged, water pipes
froze, and thermostats were low
ered to conserve energy.
The year also saw more honors
for Raeford's most famous athlete,
Kathv McMillan. Olympic medal
ist in the long jump. It was a year of
controversy over the schools and
the locafairport and over a one-way
street in town.
It was the year a new doctor set
up practice, and the year the
community gave a vacation trip to a
local couple for their 50th anniver
sary. There were new additions to
the police department and the
highway patrol, and there were
some resignations in other depart
This article reviews the events
that made headlines on the local
scene in the first six months of the
year. The second half of 1977 will
be reviewed next week.
The county commissioners
started off the year on a sober notch
by asking the state legislature to
halt the sale of Sunday beer in
Meanwhile, the city council
voted in Jan. to ease the downtown
parking shortage by paving and
lighting a section of off-street
property bounded by Main and
F.lwood Ave. and the A&R railroad
An apartment complex, which
opened to tenants r&strnonth, was
prop'ofced in Jan. 197/tJy Weaver
Construction Co. when it came
before the city council to ask for a
Local cafes vowed to fight the
Sunday beer ban in a meeting with
the county commissioners. A third
suspect wanted for murder and
robbery in connection with the fatal
shooting of a Rockftsh storekeeper
was arrested Jan. 11 in Illinois and
returned to Hoke County.
Applications for federal funds
for the rehabilitation of sub-stand
ard homes ip low income neighbor
hoods started trickling in. The
S87.000 grant was approved by the
U.S. Department of Housing and
The infamous Winter of "77 was
making its presence known in Jan.
as temperatures in Raeford
plunged to a chilling six degrees
above zero. Water pipes burst in
town. One man claimed it was so
cold "the rabbits were wearing
Chief Deputy James E. Lamont
resigned from the Sheriff's Depart
ment. It was announced in Jan.
that Dr. Ramnik Zota would begin
a general family practice here in
May. Zota was recruited by the
Hoke County Medical Betterment
Raeford's own Kathy McMillan.
Olympic silver medalist in the long
jump, was named top female
athlete in North Carolina for the
second straight year in Feb. She
was the winner of the Lewis E.
As the Winter of '77 continued, a
propane shortage threatened the
area. Sam Morris was named Man
of the Year in Feb. by the Raeford
In Feb., county governmental
offices began a four-day work week
in response to Gov. Hunt's appeal
for energy conservation. Hunt also
asked that thermostats be lowered
to 65 degrees by day and 55 degrees
More bad economic news for the
area came with the announcement
in Feb. of the closing of Hadley
Peoples Manufacturing Co. textile
mill in Rockfish. idling approxi
mately 90 workers.
City councilmen agreed unanim
ously in Feb. to accept Bob M.
Gentry as a council replacement for
David Lovett who resigned from the
board. And letter carriers picketed
the Raeford Post Office that same
month, charging that Postmaster
Joseph Carver was taking over the
work of union members. John B.
Cameron, former clerk of court and
leading political figure, died Feb.
In March, a negligence suit filed
against the city by a motorcyclist
who crashed into a school crossing
gate was dismissed. Kathy McMil
lan set a record at the National
AAU Track and Field Champion
ships in New York with a jump of
21 feet 4'/i inchcs.
The city began letting bids in
March on a new fire station
approved by voters in a bond
referendum. Cohildia Lyons, a
third and fourth grade teacher at
West Hoke School, was selected as
County Teacher of the Year. Also
in March. Wimzy and Allen Lundy
went to Columbia. S.C., where they
met Lawrence Welk.
A tourist s brochure ot Kacford
and Hoke County was published by
the Chamber of Commerce. Rod
ney Collins was sworn in as the
newest patrolman in the Racford
Police Deparment in March, and
Louis Rector joined the Hoke
County Highway Patrol troop
More honors came to Kathv
Millan in March as she *as named
Carolinas High School Athlete of
the Year by the Charlotte Athletic
Club, becoming the first woman to
receive the award.
Sunday. April .1. was proclaimed
Lundy Sunday in Raeford in
honor of Wim/.y "and Allen Lundy.
As a SOth anniversary present, the
community raised over S2..S00 to
send them on a vacation to Hawaii
and California. The city council
agreed in April to change a
two-block section of Elwood Ave.
from a one-way to a two-way street.
Following a closed session, the
board of education voted in April
not to employ Allen Edwards as
high school principal beyond the
end of the school year. The UNC
All-Stars basketball team played
here in April. The team featured:
John Kuester. Walter Davis,/
(See RtVIEW.Pagc 13)