March 11th, 2011
First Class Petty Officer Thomas Brandt hasn't lived in Catawba County for long, but he knows its a place where he wants to live and work after his deployment.
Brandt, 30, lives in Conover, but will soon be deployed with the U.S. Navy. He doesn't know where he'll be, and he doesn't know what he'll be doing.
But he does know one thing: He's exactly where he should be.
"I wanted an adventure," said the native New Yorker, who moved to Catawba County in September. "I always wanted to do something really significant with my life."
Fewer people are living in Catawba in 2010 than were living in the town 10 years ago.
Catawba residents number 603, based on 2010 census data. That number decreased from 698 in 2000, when the last census was taken.
The 13.6 percent estimated population decrease means Catawba isn't growing at the rate officials predicted.
"We didn't quite meet the state's estimated growth rate," Catawba Town Manager Brian Barnett told residents and council members March 7 during his manager's report at council's monthly meeting.
Bennett O’Neal Harris, 71, of Maiden, passed away Friday, March 11, 2011, at his residence. Burke Mortuary in Maiden is serving the Harris family.
Rosemarie Theresa Arendain, 73, of Newton, died Tuesday, March 8, 2011, at her residence. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 12, 2011, at Asbury United Methodist Church in Huntersville. The Rev. Jimmy Howard will officiate.
A private pilot. A graphic designer. A dog groomer.
They are all employed in Catawba County, and they all came to Tuttle Elementary School's annual career day.
Representatives from about 20 different local careers arrived in Maiden on Friday to educate students about the skills, education and character it takes to be part of the workforce.
As high school conference golf season gets ready to kick off next week, one golfer has his sights set on the 2A State Tournament.
Thomas Lilly, who finished as a runner-up in the tournament last season as a freshman, will try to better that performance this season.
Last yearâ€™s finish was the culmination so far of Lillyâ€™s 12-year competitive golfing career.
William “Bill” A. Beasley, 73, of Hickory, passed away Thursday, March 10, 2011, at Palliative CareCenter and Hospice of Catawba Valley. The family of Mr. Beasley have entrusted funeral arrangements to Drum Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Hickory.
Catawba County sheriff's deputies arrested a Florida man Thursday who is wanted by United States military officers.
Michael Joseph Hinrichs, 31, was charged with being a fugitive when officers located him for the United States Army. The Army had a felony warrant for Hinrichs' arrest because Hinrichs was allegedly absent from duty without leave.
Hinrichs was living in Catawba when deputies arrested him Thursday about 2 a.m. and transported him to Catawba County jail.
He is being held with no bond until military officers arrive to take him into custody.
Hope is the one thing Steve Daniels gained in life and the one characteristic he tries to pass on to other people.
Daniels, 62, is HIV-positive and has dealt with the disease for 25 years.
"I've been infected so long," he said. "I've seen a whole lot of death and hopelessness. I try to encourage people not to give up and to just hold on."
Drugs and alcohol
Daniels used injected drugs, which led to his contracting HIV or human immunodeficiency virus. Daniels was in college when he started using heroin. As drug use progressed, he started injecting drugs for a faster fix.
The informal appeals process in the county's property revaluation ends today as results are mailed to residents who appealed their property value.
The Catawba County Tax Office reviewed informal appeals from property owners who disputed the market value appraisers established during the valuation process.
The county received 5,455 appeals as of March 7. Those appeals represent about 6.33 percent of the county's more than 80,000 parcels, according to Catawba County tax administrator Mark Logan.
As the proposed bill to lift the state's cap on charter schools continues to evolve, opponents to the legislation say it won't protect already-strained resources in the school system.
The battle over charter school funding is far from finished for schools in Catawba County, whose leaders argue that Senate Bill 8 could take away more students and funding from school systems.
"It's the worst time to create a process of opening new schools, because we can't take care of the ones we've got now," said Newton-Conover City Schools superintendent Dr. Barry Redmond.