Archives for November 2018

Patrick County Greenteam Plans Roadside Trash Pick-Up

With a goal of removing 50,000 pounds, the Patrick County Greenteam plans an area roadside and shoreline clean up for Saturday, December 8. Volunteers will work from 9 am through 12:00 pm along Rt. 822, Goose Point Road in Bassett from Rt. 57 into Goose Point Campground. Following a successful mission, the group will celebrate with a cookout at Philpott Lake Visitors Center at 12:30PM.Patrick County Greenteam is an anti-litter campaign created by the Rotary Club of Stuart in collaboration with Dan River Basin Association, Patrick County Tourism, Patrick County Chamber of Commerce, and Patrick County High School Interact Club.The Greenteam is open to all volunteers who love their community, their earth and want to be a part of a solution. Volunteers have already removed 12,500 pounds of trash from local roadsides, streams and trails. Interested volunteers can find out updates and information on the group’s Facebook Page.

Floyd County Man Sentenced In Opioid Case

Contributing to the death of a woman who became a face of the ongoing opioid crisis will cost a Floyd County man a quarter century in prison. Chody Lee Wayne Graham, 27, will serve 25 years after receiving his sentence from Circuit Court Judge Marc Long. Graham was sentenced to 40 years; Judge Long then suspended 15, requiring probation and drug treatment when Graham is released. The judge said “These crimes need to be dealt with in a manner to prevent them”. The sentence ends a legal saga for the man who was initially accused of second-degree murder in his girlfriend Kiersten Nicole Flynn’s death two years ago. Graham pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter – amended from second degree murder – as well as possessing heroin with an intent to distribute during a September hearing. A charge of conspiring to distribute a schedule one or two drug was dropped as a result of the plea agreement. Floyd County Commonwealth’s Attorney Eric Branscom asked the court to give a strict sentence to send a message to people who are involved in peddling opioids in Southwest Virginia. Judge Long said “heroin is ravaging Southwest Virginia and someone has to pay”.

Former Virginia Tech Student Sentenced

Natalie Keepers, a former Virginia Tech student from Maryland, has been sentenced to 45 years in prison for her role in the death of Blacksburg teenager Nicole Lovell in 2016. Forty years of the sentence were on the count of accessory before the fact, and five for concealing a body; 5 years will be suspended. After 40 years, she will be put on 10 years of probation. In September, she was found guilty of accessory before the fact of first degree murder. The trial and sentencing was held in Christiansburg.

Grim Thanksgiving Holiday Driving Statistics

The Thanksgiving holiday weekend proved deadly for at least a dozen drivers and passengers across the state, including a Henry County woman. According to a report from the Virginia State Police, over the period from 12:01 am last Wednesday through midnight on Sunday, 11 traffic crashes killed nine drivers, two passengers and a motorcyclist. Four of those killed were not wearing seat belts. State Police cited 7,419 speeders and 2,157 reckless drivers. A total of 102 drunken drivers were taken off Virginia’s roadways and arrested by state troopers. 14 people died last year during the Thanksgiving holiday.

Hometown Christmas In Stuart

Hometown Christmas is coming to Uptown Stuart Friday and Saturday November 30th and December 1st. Friday’s festivities begin at 5 pm until 8 pm. You can shop local Stuart merchants and collect holiday stamps to win local prizes. The grand Illumination tree Lighting ceremony will be Friday at 6 pm with the Patrick County Christmas Parade on Saturday at 2 pm. For a complete schedule check out

Firefighter Awards

The Francisco Volunteer Fire Department and the Francisco Auxiliary celebrated awards last week. Fireman of the Year was a three way tie between Kevin Smith, Preston George and Atherton Jessup. Rescue Squad Member of the Year went to Kevin Smith and Francisco Auxiliary Member of the Year was a two way tie between Carol Rogers and Texie Jessup. Instead of voting on a Ruritan Member of the Year, the Ruritans gave a donation to Ben Hall and the FFA Club of North Stokes High School. Two stones were added to the Memory Garden at the Francisco Fire Department. They were placed in memory of Ann Adkins and Randy Collins.

Missing Man Found Safe-Patrick County Law Enforcement Aided In Search

According to Patrick County Sheriff Dan Smith, a missing North Carolina man was found safe on Primland property near Claudville on Tuesday afternoon. Smith said that the incident began when his office was contacted on the evening of November 12th by family members of Freddie Junior “Pete” Wood, age 72. Family members told deputies that Wood had left NC in a White Ford truck pulling a trailer heading to a location on Dobyns Road to make a delivery. When he had not returned home by 9:30 pm Monday night, they contacted the Patrick County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies searched throughout the night for Wood, and Emergency Management Coordinator Steve Allen became involved in the search early the next day. Because Woods was reported missing from NC, agencies there became involved in the search and RA-Tech Aviation provided an aircraft to search for the vehicle. At 12 pm on the Tuesday the 13th, Woods was entered into the National Criminal Information Center as being a missing, endangered adult due to his diabetic condition. The aircraft located Woods’ vehicle in a wooded ravine on Primland property at approximately 3:30 PM. Woods was found unharmed at that time and was taken to Northern Surry Hospital in Mt. Airy, NC.

Fire Destroys Home In Patrick Springs

Fire destroyed a vacant house early yesterday morning on Dogwood Road in Patrick Springs. The alarm was received at 1:58 am. When firefighters from Patrick Springs Fire Department arrived, they found the house fully involved in flames. It was apparent the fire had a head-start on firefighters, who remained on the scene for approximately 3 hours before totally extinguishing the blaze. The fire destroyed the first floor of the house forcing most of the fire into the basement. Firefighters could not enter the basement because of abandoned appliances blocking the doorway. Class A firefighting foam was applied, allowing personnel to control and extinguish the fire. Engines from Patrick Springs and Stuart responded, with tanker support from Moorefields Store and Patrick Henry. The house was unoccupied and no firefighters were injured.

Christmas Kick-Off In Stuart

There’s no better place to be this holiday season than in your own hometown, and no better way to get in the spirit of the season than by participating in some of many events scheduled throughout our county for Hometown Christmas.The Christmas season officially kicks off on Main Street in Stuart Friday, November 30th at 5 p.m. with the third annual “Grand Illumination” tree lighting ceremony in front of the courthouse at 6 p.m. Merchants on Main Street will extend their Friday hours until 8 p.m., allowing plenty of time for holiday shopping. A new feature this year is “Find the Elf,” where participants are encouraged to find Santa’s 12 elves hiding among the fun on Main Street and turn them in for a prize.

Three-Time NASCAR Champion Dies

David Pearson, a three-time champion in what is now NASCAR’s Monster Energy Cup Series, died yesterday at the age of 83. Inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in its second class in 2011, Pearson won 105 Cup races, second only to Richard Petty, Pearson’s chief rival in the 1960s and 1970s. Between 1963 and 1977, the two finished first and second in 63 races, with Pearson winning 33 of them. In 1972, David Pearson was hired to be the full-time driver of the famous Wood Brothers Mercury. This choice would pave the way for one of the most successful strings of victory in motorsports history. Pearson continued driving the car from 1972 to 1979. In only seven years, the team entered 143 races and amassed a staggering 46 wins including a victory at the 1976 Daytona 500. NASCAR Legend Richard Petty said “David made an indelible mark on NASCAR history, and it is because of competitors like him that NASCAR is what it is today. We are forever indebted to David and are proud to help ensure his incredible legacy will forever be remembered.”