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Billy Bridges Jr., 4, and Kristin
Gillespie, 6, were the real troopers
in Saturday's five-mile March of
Dimes walk-a-thon in which 400
walkers raised over $52,000 to
fight birth defects.
The two children sent a message
of hope to the crowd that cheered
them for a mile.
The little boy with an oxygen
tank behind him and his grandpar-
ents ready to pick him up and carry
him and the pretty girl talking to
the crowd as she walked were a
testimony in courage.
Little Billy is terminally ill with
a rare birth defect.
Gillespie was born extremely
Gillespie, Cleveland County
Ambassador for the March of
Dimes, is the daughter of Joanne.
and Richard Gillespie of Shelby. A
kindergarten student, she is an ac-
tive little girl who tips the scales at
40 pounds but at birth weighed on-
ly one pound, six ounces.
Billy, grandson of Clarence and
Helen Barnette of Kings Mountain,
beats the odds every day that he
"We had to pick him up and car-
ry him some of the way and of
course the rescue unit brought us
back from the one mile mark," said
his devoted grandmother, a nurse
at Kings Mountain Hospital.
Billy, 30 inches tall, weighs 28
pounds. He has been hospitalized
seven times since December and
his grandparents are hoping that
someone who reads this story will
know of a source for a smaller
feeding pump they can get for the
child to give him his life-saving
medicine and food.
'His back pump is just too big
for him," says his grandfather who
said doctors are trying to find a
pump and have been told it may
take a year to locate the right one.
"Billy can't wait a year," says
Billy Bridges Day will be held
May 13 at New Hope Baptist
Church and proceeds from the hot
dog and bake sale will be applied
to a pump, which the family says is
Local industries, including
Clevemont Mills, Eaton
Corporation and the City of Kings
“Mountain walked in the event and
See Troopers, 13-A
Kristin Gillespie, left, and Billy Bridges Jr. led off the March of
Dimes walk-a-thon which raised $52,000 Saturday.
Mayor wants to add time to meetings
Citizens will soon be able to
have their say to City Council
without getting on the meeting
agenda ahead of time if Mayor
Scott Neisler has his way.
The mayor asked City Council
last week to consider adding
Citizen Recognition as the last item
on the agenda of every City
= Council meeting, giving citizens
= who sign up just prior to the meet-
= ing a chance to speak at least three
= minutes about their concerns or
= comment, for instance, about any
~ action of the meeting.
A community-wide Family. Life
= Center with a gymtorium, a dining
“room and classrooms could be on
the drawing board soon at Mount
Zion Baptist Church.
Rev. Clinton Feemster said
Mount Zion owns land off
Watterson and Cansler Streets adja-
cent to the 500-member church and
will make definite plans for the
new building program at the May
retreat of church trustees and dea-
"It's a dream we have to expand
: our church plant and involve our
* whole community in a place that is
. badly needed," said Feemster.
: Feemster says he hops to "turn
the dirt soon" since a building fund
‘ has been started. He estimated it
could take up to $800,000 to build
: the facility.
Feemster, 40, sees the center as
: a place for kids to be comfortable
* and involved, a place not only for
"We would recognize them at
the end of the meeting as other
boards such as Cleveland County
Board. of Commissioners, Kings
Mountain Board of Education and
Grover Town Board does on a reg-
ular basis," said Neisler.
Councilman Ralph Grindstaff
agrees with the mayor that recog-
nizing citizens to speak is "one of
the things we need to do.,"
"We're here to listen to citizens,"
The mayor said that for the last
six years that he has been on the
REV. CLINTON FEEMSTER
the members of his present congre-
gation to enjoy but for the whole
"Young people need an outlet
and it's my hope that a family life
center would be just that," he said.
board it has been the policy for the
public e wishing to speak at
Council meetings register their
names. with the! city manager.on
Friday before the Tuesday night
meeting so the city manager could
put their names and requests on the
If the mayor's proposal is ap-
proved at the May meeting, as ex-
pected, persons wishing to appear
before the Council would register
their names and the subjects they
wish to address with the Clerk to
the Board prior to the beginning of
Feemster said that an adult day
care center is also in the works.,
"The church recognizes that we
need 21st Century ideas for our
programs to work and that our
youth are the future of the commu-
nity," he said.
He said that the Youth Ministry,
the Couple's Ministry and the
Young Singles Ministry of the
church aim to help people where
"Why do our youth have to go to
Charlotte when we can give them a
viable program in Kings
Mountain?" he asked.
Feemster said that while all
adults do not relate to youth that he
is enlisting volunteers who do and
the ministry is meeting the needs
of the whole congregation.
Young Singles and Young
Couples do not meet in a tradition-
al church classroom setting. They
Top teacher, principal named
Middle School teacher Carol
. Elliott and Bethware Principal
Hugh Holland won the top awards
: at Monday's eighth annual Service
Awards Banquet of Kings
' Mountain District Schools.
Elliott, 7th grade language arts
: teacher, Kings Mountain Teacher
of the Year for 1996, was cited for
her success in leadership of the ac-
celerated reading program, first in
her classroom at Central School
and then at Kings Mountain
Holland, Principal of the Year
for 1996, who is retiring this year,
was praised by Supt. Dr. Bob
McRae for his genuine love and
care of children.
McRae, who was master of cere-
monies for the event, said that both
Elliott and Holland were not only
solid teachers but they "looked for
the extra things to do for kids."
Also recognized as ‘Teachers of
the Year in the eight scaouls in the
Teacher of the Year.
Dorcas Beasley, fifth grade
teacher, East School Teacher of the
Adriana Macchiavello, elemen-
tary Spanish teacher and high
school Spanish teacher, Grover
School Teacher of the Year.
Pat Regan, third grade teacher,
North School Teacher of the: Year.
Bonnie Bryson, West School
Teacher of the Year.
Carol Elliott, Middle School
‘Teacher of the Year.
Ann Bennett, director of the
food service program at the high
school and lcader of the Future
Homemakers of America, the sta-
ple program of the home cco-
nomics department, Kings
Mountain High School Teacher of
Belinda Kinder, high school
English teacher, the new Parker
Street School Teacher of the Year.
Jackie Blanton, Grover elemen-
Each presentation would be lim-
ited to three minutes.
If more time is needed, the citi-
zens would register his/her request
to be placed on the agenda of the
next regular meeting with the
Councilman Rick Murphrey
made the motion and Councilman
Jerry White seconded it that the
board table the mayor's suggestion
and take action at the May meet-
KM church plans major expansion program
meet at times in homes and take re-
treats and trips and they invite
speakers to concentrate on the
problems they face. Katherine
Hardy and Melba Clinton are lead-
ers of Young Singles and Larry and
Jane Orr are directors of the Young
"We try to make all our pro-
grams attractive," he said.
The youth program is gaining
speed and the church calendar is
full of activities for youth of all
ages. Geraldine Dye is youth di-
Lamont Littlejohn is the first
student from the church to enter
the ministry but there will be oth-
ers," said Feemster.
Feemster said that young men
and young women are finding out
that it's the "in" thing to be a
Christian and their impact on the
community will be a strong influ-
ence into the 21st Century.
City Finance Director Maxine
Parsons says the fiscal year 1995-
96 city budget will probably be lit-
tle changed from the previous
year's budget and that she will rec-
ommend that Council "continue to
hold the line on expenses."
Parsons and City Manager
Chuck Nance will lead a workshop
on the budget with City Council on
Saturday, June 13, from 9 a.m.-5
p-m. in the second floor conference
room of City Hall.
Nance has received department
head requests and is continuing to
review them prior to the annual re-
City officials anticipate no utility
increases and no tax increases.
"Mr. Nance and I are working on
revenue projections for next year
as well as anticipated disburse-
ments and we will be ready to
make some recommendations at
the budget meeting," said Parsons.
Nance said Council will hold a
workshop on a proposed wage
study at 6 p.m. Thursday at City
Becky Veasey, representing
Management and Personnel
Services, presented the result of a
study of a proposed wage plan at a
recent City Council meeting but
Council tabled a decision until
commissioners studied it further
and scheduled a workshop. If
adopted, the pay plan could result
mr ar6:8- percent hike in the city's:
weekly payroll. Adjustment of
salaries to at least the minimum of
the new range would be over
to keep sign
Dr. Deepak R. Gelot has won his
fight with City Hall to keep his
Jeff Putnam, interim planning
director, said this week that "theo-
retically Dr. Gelot's sign was in ex-
istence before the new sign regula-
tions went into effect."
City officials notified Gelot on
his first day in his new office in
town that his new sign was in vio-
lation of present city ordinances.
Councilman Dean Spears
charged at last week's meeting that
the doctor blatantly ignored in-
structions on procedures and rules.
But Gelot and several business-
men argued that majority of the
signs on King Street don't comply
with the ordinances and that
Gelot's sign in both attractive,
blocks no one's view of traffic and
Councilman Rick Murphrey
called the issue a communication
Putnam said he has informed
Gelot's attorney that he can with-
draw his appeal to the board of ad-
Signs already up, including
Gelot's, are grandfathered and per-
mitted under the new sign ordi-
mance thar went into «¢ffect last
Tuesday after a public hearing and
a unanimous vote by Kings
Mountain City Council.
HERITAGE DAY - Janet Smith, Guidance Counselor at Grover
School, shows students how to churn butter during Heritage Day ac-
tary teacher and last year's Teacher
of the Year, presented the plaque to
John Goforth, Middle School
Principal and last year's Principal
of the Year, presented the plaque to
Retirees, who represented 209
years of service to the KM schools.
were also honored with awards.
They included Linda Dover, sec-
retary at Bethware School for 18
years; Anna Duell, custodian and
bus driver at the high school for six
years; Barbara Jones, teacher assis-
tant at North School for 19 years;
Bill Hawkins, maintenance ¢m-
ployee for five years; Howard
See Teachers, 14-A :
’ ? of the Year."
Supt. Dr. Bob McRae, left, and Middle School Principal John Goforth, right, congratulate Middle
School teacher Carol Elliott and Bethware Principal Hugh Holland for winning "Teacher and Principal