Thousands of disadvantaged children and their families will have a merry Christmas this year, thanks to the generous giving of area volunteers.
The annual Catawba County Christmas Bureau expects to serve more than 3.400 children and their families this holiday season, providing them with food, clothes and gifts during a two-day distribution at the American Legion Fairgrounds in Hickory.
Little-known facts about people are interesting. Molly Rice, teacher, poet, author, actor, wife and mother owned five ferrets while she was in college and until she moved to Ireland. They were named Boogie, Scutch, Wikki, Hoss and Baloo.
“I was a strong member of the American Ferret Association,” Rice laughed.
Catawba Valleyâ€™s Tyree Griffin jumps Thursday to pass the ball along the baseline and avoids going out of bounds as Milliganâ€™s Weston McQueeney goes down. McQueeney was injured on the play. Ramon Herrera led CVCC with 15 points in the Buccaneersâ€™ 94-46 win at home.
Zahra Baker's obituary said she was a determined, outgoing child.
That spirit was reflected Thursday at the child's public memorial service in Hickory.
The service included a picture slideshow of Zahra in happier times: playing miniature golf, sticking out her tongue, hugging her father, riding on a motorcycle and playing with a snake.
Dozens attended Thursday's memorial service at Drum Funeral Home in Hickory. The number paled in comparison to the hundreds of people who participated in a candlelight vigil held in downtown Hickory on Nov. 16, what would have been Zahra's 11th birthday.
Capital defenders appointed to represent Zahra Baker's father and stepmother were removed from their positions Wednesday.
The North Carolina Capital Defender's Office in Raleigh confirmed the removal Thursday, saying the provisional counsel appointments weren't meant to be long term.
Lisa Dubs and Mark Killian, two Hickory attorneys were appointed to represent Elisa and Adam Baker, respectively, on what the Capital Defender's Office called "imminent" murder charges in Zahra's death.
James Thomas Munday, 67, of Lincolnton, passed away Dec. 1, 2010, at CMC–Lincoln following a lengthy illness. A memorial service will be held Sunday at 3 p.m. at Open Word Holiness Church in Newton with the Rev. Matthew Sparks officiating.
Norma Barnes Harris, 73, of Conover, passed Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, at Catawba Valley Medical Center in Hickory, surrounded by her three loving children. The Harris family has entrusted funeral arrangements to Drum Funeral Home & Cremation Services in Conover.
Sheriff David Huffman can still catch criminals -- it just might take him a little longer than it used to.
But that's OK, Huffman said Thursday, because a new sheriff will soon be in town.
Huffman, 65, retires Friday after 28 years as the county's top law enforcement official.
"There comes a time in a person's life when you know it's time to step down," he said. "And this is the time."
The Bandys Trojans put an 81-point whipping on Statesville at home Wednesday. The Trojans defeated the Greyhounds 94-13 at Bost-Matheson Gym in a nonconference game.
All nine Trojans varsity players scored at least four points â€”Â as many as Statesville's Kirsten Witt. Witt was the highest scoring player on her team.
Madi Story scored a game-high 19 points while Jesse Story and Brittany Moss scored 13 apiece. Tara Potter and Chelsey Queen both added 11.
The word for the Jewish Festival of Lights is Hebrew for "dedication."
The celebration, which started Wednesday, marks the rededication of the Jewish temple, which was desecrated.
Rabbi Morton Kaplan, who serves at Temple Beth Shalom in Hickory, said the eight-day holiday is a time of celebration with family and friends.
"It's really a home celebration, for the most part," he said.
Jews gather with their families at home during Hanukkah and light the candles of the menorah, which commemorates lighting the lamp in the Jewish temple more than a century before the common era.
A man was shot to death Wednesday by his girlfriend's father after a disagreement about a cell phone.
Randal Douglas Alfonso, 30, of Hickory, died from a shotgun blow to the stomach early Wednesday morning at a home on 5279 N.C. 127 South in Hickory. The man charged in the crime, Mark Steven Bell, 55, of Hickory, is the father of Alfonso's girlfriend.
Bell lives at the residence on 5279 N.C. 127 South in Hickory.
Catawba County Chief Deputy Coy Reid said the family had a domestic dispute late Tuesday night when Alfonso and his girlfriend starting arguing about a cell phone.