June 9th, 2011
PGA and Champions Tour golfer Kenny Perry arrived in Catawba County on Wednesday and it âimmediately felt like home.â
âPeople sound like I do when I talk, and I feel very comfortable around here,â Perry said. ââBeing a country boy, I enjoy the South and itâs very comfortable being around people like this. Itâs very nice.â
This is Perryâs first trip to Catawba County for the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn, but the 14-time PGA tour winner said Monday it was an easy decision to select Rock Barn.
Despite a crowd of 35 to 40 people, the city of Claremont passed a budget Monday without any public comments or complaints.
After Claremont City Council members opened a required public hearing to the larger-than-usual audience, no one decided to speak, said Claremont City Manager Doug Barrick.
âThe commissioners held the public hearing, and nobody came up to speak,â Barrick said. âThe commissioners closed it, made a few comments and approved the budget.â
NASCAR owner and Super Bowl winning coach Joe Gibbs and one of his three drivers, Denny Hamlin, visited Catawba County on Tuesday.
Both men played in the Dale Jarrett Shootout, which is part of the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn.
Gibbs owns three Super Bowl titles with the Washington Redskins (Super Bowls 17, 22, 26). His three Sprint Cup Series championships came with drivers Bobby LaBonte (2000) and Tony Stewart (2002, 2005).
Hamlin owns four of his 16 Sprint Cup Series victories at Pocono Raceway, where the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is racing this weekend.
A former Fred T. Foard athlete is aiming to win an NCAA championship in the hammer throw today.
Malcolm Styers, a former member of the Tigersâ track and field program and current senior at Appalachian State, qualified for the NCAA National track and field championships with a career-best performance May 27 at the NCAA East Regionals.
Larry Joe Reinheardt, 84, of Claremont, died Tuesday, June 7, 2011, at Palliative CareCenter and Hospice of Catawba Valley. The Reinheardt family has entrusted funeral arrangements to Drum Funeral Home & Cremation Services in Conover.
Mack Alexander Houston, 80, of Hickory, died Tuesday, June 7, 2011, at Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem. Funeral arrangements are incomplete at Drum Funeral Home in Hickory.
Champions Tour Golfer Jay Sigel walked up to the first hole at Rock Barnâs Robert Trent Jones course Wednesday and quickly teed up his ball. He eyed the slight dog-leg to the left briefly before approaching his ball. With a smooth swing that looked as effortless as it did beautiful, Sigel blasted his Titlist Pro V1 golf ball down the middle of the fairway.
âYouâve got about 146 left to the center of the green,â said Bill LePage, a Greater Hickory Classic volunteer who has marshaled the first hole all week.
Sheriff's deputies have an alleged kidnapper in custody after a four-hour search.
Jamey Danyel Lineberger, 33, of Sherrills Ford, took his estranged wife from her home near Bethany Church Road and forced her into a van about 9 a.m. Wednesday.
"(The couple) separated in October, and he showed up at her new apartment and tried to get in," said Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid.
"When he couldn't get it the front door, he goes to climb through the window."
After jumping many hurdles in life's journey, Laporsha Vinson will make graduating high school a piece of reality with her 5-year-old daughter by her side.
Like many Catawba County seniors, Vinson, 21, will walk across the Newton-Conover High School stage Friday to receive a diploma. But Vinson's high school diploma came at a high cost with many small battles for the young mother to overcome.
"This is my biggest accomplishment," Vinson said, smiling. "I am finally finishing high school."
A Hickory man safely escaped his tractor-trailer truck after it hit an Interstate 40 guardrail and burst into flames.
The Wednesday morning accident stopped interstate traffic traveling in both directions, and it was one of two serious accidents in Catawba and Iredell counties during the morning.
"I heard something pop, and it pulled like hell to the left," said Ed Banghart, a Salem National Leasing driver who was transporting truck parts from Hickory to Statesville. "It was on fire before I stopped."
Sheriff's deputies now have an alleged kidnapper in custody after a 4-hour search.
Jamey Lineberger, 33, took a woman, who he was in a former relationship with, from her home near Bethany Church Road and forced her into a van. Lineberger then led Catawba County sheriff's deputies on a high-speed chase for about 15 miles into Lincoln County near Goodson Road.
Sheriff Coy Reid said Lineberger drove his van through a field and hit a fence, wrecking his van. Lineberger then escaped the vehicle on foot. Reid said K-9 units tracked Lineberger to N.C. 150 east, where they lost his scent.