November 11th, 2011
Through a variety of events next week, Catawba County aid organizations will raise awareness and fight against hunger and homelessness.
In the past 10 years, poverty has increased 77 percent in Catawba County, with nearby areas like Sherrills Ford being deemed some of the poorest in the region, according to data recently released by the Western Piedmont Council of Governments.
The struggling economy has also taken a toll on an area that historically employed manufacturers, farmers and laborers.
Standing side by side, Paul Gaither and Jack Little saluted an unfurled American flag on Friday at the veterans memorial in Claremont.
As the words of the "Star-Spangled Banner" filled the crisp November air, more than 100 people rose to their feet, too, during a ceremony to mark the day when the United States honors and remembers millions of American veterans.
Drivers throughout Hickory noticed numerous flashing traffic lights for about two hours near mid day Friday.
A malfunction with a recently updated traffic-signal system caused 30-40 signals to go into "flash mode," said Chuck Hansen, the city's public works director.
"It was along some of our major roadways, but not just one corridor," Hanson said. "They were spread about, not just an isolated area."
Affected signals flashed yellow in one direction and red in other directions beginning sometime after 10:30 a.m., Hanson said.
Signals were repaired by around 12:30 p.m.
Thank you veterans.
The Observer-News-Enterprise is proud to salute the men and women who served in our nationâs military, and the Veterans Day newspaper features the next in a series of o-N-E stories focused on the military members who fought for our freedom.
Pick up a copy of The O-N-E on Friday, or visit www.observernewsonline.com to read the story of Billy Hokeâs service during World War II. Also inside The O-N-E, readers find a Veterans salute from Coast Guard veteran Robert Morrison.
The holiday shopping season is here, and The Observer News Enterprise is rewarding area residents who support their hometown businesses.
As part of The O-N-E's Hometown Christmas program, Catawba County's community newspaper announced the first two $100 winners in the annual shop-local promotion.
Police are looking for suspects who stole more than $5,000 in equipment from a storage shed at Wilsonâs Airport on Tuesday.
According to the Catawba County Sheriffâs Office, unknown suspects stole motors, engines, wheels and other equipment from the Wilsonâs Airport at 5284 Pittstown Road in Hickory.
Authorities say the items were probably stolen overnight and are still investigating. The items belonged to Claude Farris Wilson, 81, of Hickory.
Some of the items include:
* $1,000 â 60 horse power electric motor
* $500 â starter engine for a crawler tractor
During his lifetime, public servant P.J. Stanley touched the lives of many Claremont and Catawba County residents.
The governor of North Carolina honored that service this week.
The office of Gov. Bev Perdue issued Stanleyâs family the Order of the Long Leaf Pine award during a ceremony at Claremont Police Department.
It is the highest award that the governor can issue a citizen of the state.
Billy Hoke worked at Warlong Glove in April 1943.
In the two years that followed, the teenage Hoke left his hometown of Conover to visit several U.S. states and walk all over Europe.
Along the way he dodged German torpedoes, avoided enemy gunfire and lost part of his left leg after stepping on a snow-covered ground explosive. He did it all as a member of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard during World War II.
âI was in the 109th infantry, 28th division,â Hoke said this week during an interview with The O-N-E about his military service. âI walked everywhere I went.
A new state law intending to punish criminals who run from police may also place an extra burden on counties.
Lawmakers approved N.C. House Bill 427 this summer. The âRun and Youâre Doneâ law, which goes into effect Dec. 1, forces police to seize any vehicle involved in a felonious speeding-to-elude-arrest incident.
According to the law, those vehicles are then handed over to sheriffs â placing more cars, paperwork and up-front costs on county resources that are already slim.
Donald Floyd Jones, 73, of S. Ave., Maiden, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011 at Catawba Valley Medical Center in Hickory. Burke Mortuary in Maiden is serving the Jones Family.
George Edwin Hoke, 81, of Claremont, died Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2011 at Catawba Valley Medical Center in Hickory. Burke Mortuary in Newton is serving the Hoke family.