North Carolina Newspapers

    Roberts Recognized
By NAESP
TT-ayne a. Kooerts represented !
North Carolina in the first annual
National Distinguished Principals i
Program sponsored by the National
Association of Elementary School 1
Principals (NAESP) and the U.S. i
Departm jnt of Education. j
This program honors elementary
and middle school principals "who i
set the character and quality of <
education during the early school 1
years that shape children's future in
the classroom and in life," said 1
Secretary of Education Terrell \ H. 1
Bell.
Roberts was selected by s
:ommittee of the state Principals'
Association usine guidelines estab
lished by the Department of Educa
tion and NAESP. On Oct. 12, he
oined honorees from other states in
Washington, D.C. for a White House
reception, consultation with national
education officials, and an awards
)anquet.
A native of Duplin Countv.
Roberts has been principal of
Davidson Elementary School for 18
years and is in his 28th year as a
principal. He holds a master's
degree in reading from Appalachian
State- University as well as a
bachelor's degree from Chapel Hill
and an Ed.S. degree from Peabody
College. Roberts has been active in
various professional and community
organizations during his career. He
is a past district governor of Lion's
International and has received the
Melvin Jones Fellows award for
humanitarion service.
Bonecrusher To Fight Again
After almost 12 rounds with world
heavyweight boxing champion Larry
Holmes, James "Bonecrusher"
Smith, of Duplin County, lost the
fight but gained respect as a worthy
opponent.
The respect credited Bonecrusher
among boxing officials after the fight
k with Holmes allows the Magnolia
r native to continue in his quest to be
[ world heavyweight champion. Ac
cording to a recent article in the
Raleigh" NEWS AND OBSERVER,
Bonecrusher continues to train for
future fights that will lead him back
to another chance at the world title.
That change begins with a scheduled
fight March IS at the Riviera in Las
Vegas. His opponent is Tony Tubbs,
a top-10 contender. A victory in the
? next match would lead Bonecrusher
' to opponent Greg Page and the
World Boxing Association crown.
Bonecrusher, labeled as a worthy
opponent in the Holmes match, did
not have an easy time breaking into
competition. Bonecrusher, a late
bloomer, has been fighting only
three years ? turning pro at 28 years
of age. Managers and Bonecrusher
found his age to be a problem and
would say he was two years younger
than his true gge, Smith explained in
| the News and Observer interview.
Even the Holmes fight, Bonecrusher
was billed as 29 years of age when in
reality he was 31.
After only 15 fights, Bonecrusher
faced the world champion, who, in
his career, had fought 45 matches.
Bonecrusher attributed the fast pace
his career had taken to the top to his
; manager and hype.
"I think it was because I ran my
mouth so much," Smith commented
I in the News and Observer interview.
"It helped having my managers and
Emile. But I kept right on telling
anybody who would listen that 1 was
the best heavyweight puncher in the
world. I started believing it, they
started believing it.
"Yes, I had to convince myself.
But I was no different than Larry
Holmes when he started. He had to
convince himself. He heard that
stuff: 'You shouldn't. You can't.
Your legs are too skinny.' I heard it,
and I'd never had the benefit of
exposure, never had the attention
the Olympics bring.
"All made money by making
people mad," Smith said. "I won't
go that far. He hurt feelings, and
people paid to see it. Sure, what 1 do
is hype. At least part of it. Have you
ever applied for a job? Aren't you
selling yourself? Sure. But for me, it
stops when you're going to make
people mad. For Ali, there was no
end.
"As far as King, promotors
buying 'class' goes, 1 don't know. 1
know I was the first with a college
degree to fight for a title. And since
so many people think boxing is
related to something evil, maybe
that was a reason. 1 want to be, hope
to be, associated with something
good. If I can help change the image,
I'd love it."
Bonecrusher and his wife and two
children reside in Harnett County
where he continues to train for the
March 15 fight.
JanuaryI
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lAy
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