RED OAK — Hours before roosters thought about crowing, local, state and federal authorities huddled inside the Red Oak Fire House, figuring out how they were going to shine light on a sneaky problem — sex offenders who flaunt the rules of the registry.
The result was Operation Sentry, a teaming of the U.S. Marshals Violent Fugitive Task Force, Franklin, Nash and Warren county deputies, and probation officers from across the region.
The case against a man accused of attempted second-degree murder continues.
Gary Normand was arrested in March after investigators alleged he tried to set his girlfriend on fire before burning down their Youngsville home.
Prosecutors have offered Normand a plea, which includes jail time, and he appeared in court Thursday with his attorney, Buzzy Gardner.
Attorneys and a property owner are close to completing a purchase that will allow the county’s airport to expand.
In January, the Franklin County Board of Commissioners agreed to buy 64 acres adjacent to Triangle North Executive Airport, which is located on Airport Road between U.S. 401 and N.C. 39
The deal is not yet finalized, Airport Director Steve Merritt told airport commissioners on Tuesday.
The filing period continued this week and two more local folks threw their hat into the political ring.
Commissioner Don Lancaster filed for re-election, trying to earn another term as the representative for District 5.
And businessman Michael Schriver, who ran for a Senate seat before, filed to run for Senate District 18 — putting him up against Incumbent Doug Berger.
A family dealing with a tragic loss will be able to focus on what they’ve gained next weekend — the unyielding support of the community.
R.J. Horne died from a sudden illness last month, leaving behind a wife and two sons, ages five and 23 months.
Here we go again with local taxpayers about to be steam-rollered by yet another unfunded state mandate.
In case you’re unfamiliar with the term, an unfunded state mandate is when the state requires a town or county to do something that costs money but doesn’t provide the money.
One of the latest of these mandates is the possible requirement that counties maintain a backup 911 center that is fully operational just in case the regular 911 center becomes inoperable.
GOOD MORNING: It looks like we may get a bit more badly needed rain this weekend. Daytime temperatures are expected to range in the low to mid 50’s with overnight lows around 43 on Saturday night, 29 Sunday night.
HERE WE GO AGAIN: It’s the same old refrain that we all heard back when the county’s first emergency dispatch center was proposed years ago.
It came as a bit of a surprise Monday night to learn that the West River Road school campus, part of it at least, is finally on the National Register of Historic Places.
Frankly, I thought efforts to earn that much-deserved designation had withered on the vine, but it turns out school board member Bernard Hall has been quietly bird-dogging the selection process for years.
Most of us can name one or more teachers who made a significant, maybe life changing contribution to who we have become. For me, it was my seventh grade teacher, Joyce Zeh. Turns out most others in that class felt the same, so we decided to reconnect with her and each other. When I told folks about my seventh grade class reunion, their faces registered disbelief. Why seventh grade, they would ask?
I was stunned to learn that the U.S. Postal Service is about $18 billion in the red. I don’t know if that is an accurate number, but like a lot of us, I rely on the USPS (United States Postal Service) to mail anywhere from 8 to 15 pieces of mail (including paying bills) per month.
LOUISBURG - Funeral services for Lillian Massenburg Brodie, 87, who died Monday, Feb. 13, 2012, will be held at noon Saturday, Feb. 18, at Walnut Grove Baptist Church, with the Rev. Norwood Brodie, eulogist. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
FRANKLINTON— Annie Belle Piper, a former resident of Garden Walk in Henderson, died Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012 at Rex Hospital in Raleigh. Funeral services were conducted Friday, Feb. 17, at Westwood Pentecostal Holiness Church in Henderson, with the Rev. Cleveland Harrison and the Rev. Bobby Piper officiating. Burial followed in Fairview Cemetery in Franklinton.
HENDERSON (Epsom Community) — Jean Patterson Wester, 62, died Tuesday, Feb.14, 2012 at her home. A private graveside service was held Wednesday, Feb.15, at New Bethel Baptist Church cemetery, conducted by the Rev. Robert Collier.
DURHAM - Terence B. Hawkins, 56, died Sunday, Feb. 12, 2012, at Durham Regional Hospital in Durham. Funeral services will be held Saturday, Feb. 18, at 1 p.m. at South Main Street Baptist Church, Louisburg.
ENFIELD - Funeral services for Joseph Richardson, 73, who died Monday, Feb. 13, 2012, will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, at Faith Baptist Church, with the Rev. Linwood Richardson officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
WAKE FOREST - Louis “Bubber” Willard Pearce, 77, died Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012 at home. Funeral services were held Friday, Feb. 17, at Bright Funeral Home in Wake Forest. Burial followed in Gethsemane Memorial Gardens, Zebulon.
ZEBULON - Lee Norman Sprague of Raleigh died Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012 at his residence at the Coventry House in Zebulon. A graveside service will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19, at Floral Garden Park Cemetery with Tom Slaughter officiating.
CLAYTON - Herman “Glenn” Wooten, 54, died Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 following a trucking accident. A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, at McLaurin Funeral Home.
ZEBULON - Joyce Barlow Gibson, 68, died Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 at Rex Hospital. The family will receive friends from 1-2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 18, at Montlawn Funeral Home in Raleigh, with services to follow at 2 p.m. in the funeral home chapel. A family burial will follow at Montlawn Memorial Park.
RALEIGH - Charles Frederick Odom, Sr., 65, of Raleigh died Wednesday February 15, 2012. Funeral services will be held Saturday at 1:00 at New Bethel Baptist Church, with the Rev. Jon Owens officiating. Interment will follow in the church cemetery.
BANNER ELK, NC (Boone) - Dr. Martha Ray Lumpkin died on October 18, 2011, at her home in Banner Elk, NC after a few years of declining health. She was born in Franklin County, NC on April 24, 1926 to the late Willie Lee Lumpkin & Margaret Ray Pollock.
BUNN – Charlie Leon Wilder, 69, of Bunn, died suddenly Wednesday February 15, 2012 while on a delivery for Pender Nursery in Greenville, SC.
BUNN -- Even as the two-time Northern Carolina Conference Player of the Year, Montrel Cooke has needed to share the ball -- and the scoring responsibilities -- for the Bunn Wildcats during the 2011-12 boys basketball season.
That’s because upstart sophomore Deshawn High has developed into an elite-level performer to give the Wildcats a lethal one-two combination in the backcourt.
ALL TIED UP RIGHT NOW. Franklinton’s Mecca Hicks (left) and Diamond Graham (right) force a held-ball situation during Thursday’s home victory over Warren County as part of the NCC Girls Basketball Tourney.
FRANKLINTON -- Should Franklinton win the Northern Carolina Conference Girls Basketball Tournament, the conquest will definitely be earned on the defensive side of the ball.
That’s nothing new for FHS veteran head coach Lester Wilder during his historic tenure at the school.
And it’s a trend that has continued at the NCC Tourney, which is being hosted by the Lady Rams at the new FHS Gymnasium.
WHITNEY TO THE HOOP. Bunn’s Whitney Bunn drives for a basket during Thursday night’s NCC Tournament conquest against North Johnston.
BUNN -- When everyone talks about how it seems like forever since Bunn lost a girls basketball game, it’s not an overstatement.
BHS hasn’t lost in the 2012 calendar year, and the last Ladycats’ setback came on Dec. 27.
Since then, the on-fire Ladycats have reeled off 16 in a row, including a 50-18 conquest of North Johnston during Thursday’s semifinals of the Northern Carolina Conference Girls Basketball Tournament at Franklinton.
Franklin County’s realignment pleas apparently fell on deaf ears during last month’s regional meeting in Greenville.
During that event, representatives from Louisburg, Franklinton and Bunn expressed their desire to accept an original realignment plan, which was conceived last November by computer at SAS.
FOREVER REMEMBERED. Legendary coach J. Enid Drake will have his name attached to the renovated men’s basketball locker room at Holton Gymnasium on the campus of Louisburg College.
LOUISBURG -- Fitting that the updated men’s basketball digs at Holton Gymnasium will now be known as the J. Enid Drake Locker Room.
After all, nobody has spent more time inside that room than Drake, the Hall of Fame coach whose career at LC spanned over five glorious decades.
High School Basketball
CLASS 2-A STATE PLAYOFFS
BOYS AND GIRLS
AT HIGHER SEEDS
ON A ROLL. Coach Brett Vana and the Louisburg College Lady Hurricanes have been dominating Region X competition.
LOUISBURG -- Halfway through the league schedule, Louisburg College is clearly the team to beat in the Region X women’s basketball standings.
The Lady Hurricanes have yet to be played to a tight game in region action this year -- and even blew out defending champion Patrick Henry by 32 points last Saturday.
Scott Wilder (Class of 1994) explains the impact Coach J. Enid Drake had on his life as part of Wednesday’s locker room dedication at Holton Gym. (Times photo by Geoff Neville)
Mecca Hicks sinks a free throw for Franklinton.
Cameron James Whitley of Zebulon was named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2011 semester at East Carolina University in Greenville.
The Dean’s List is composed of the names of all full-time undergraduates who make at least three and one-half grade (quality) points per credit hour (3.5) on all work taken with no grade below C and no incomplete grades.
A Louisburg woman has two weeks to remove a honey beehive from her residence or face more court trouble — including the potential for jail time.
Following a roughly four-hour court hearing on Tuesday, District Court Judge Quon Bridges found Patricia Walker guilty of violating the town’s ordinance against beekeeping.
Franklin County commissioners will be asked to provide an incentive to help turn around business prospects.
K-Flex USA is considering expanding their business to consolidate its warehousing and manufacturing at its Nomaco Drive location in Youngsville.
“Right now,” said Richie Duncan, the county’s existing industries coordinator within the Economic Development office, “they are using multiple sites for warehousing.
Richmond, Va. — The cashier at Southern States might ask you to part with an extra dollar this month.
But don’t worry. It’s not inflation on the rise. It’s for a good cause.
Southern States is supporting the National FFA Organization by selling FFA emblems for $1. The campaign takes place Feb. 24 – March 18.
Franklin County Sheriff Jerry Jones, blue shirt, went along on a few compliance checks, as U.S. Marshals and local officers checked nearly 300 sex offenders, making sure they lived at residences listed on the sex offender registry.
Franklin County Sheriff’s Det. Susan Handel holds up a picture of the man that officers were looking for on Wednesday morning. It turns out that the man, Robert Phelan, had moved to Wilson and did not register in that city. He was cited for that, among other violations.
Scott Parker, U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District, center talks about how successful Operation Sentry was during a press conference in Bunn on Thursday. The goal, he said, was to make communities safer by making sure sex offenders were following the law.
Franklin County sheriff’s deputies arrested a couple during a dispute that investigators allege put a child and motorists in danger.
Damon Ashley Poole, 37, was charged with contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile, and resisting, delaying and obstructing an officer.