2020 In Review 2

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  •Patsy Quattlebaum, retired officer with First Citizens Bank is Saluda, passed away Monday, February 10.
  •Annie Elizabeth Wideman Robinson, 85, former food service manager with School District One,  passed away Thursday, February 13.
  •Marjorie Elizabeth Hipp Mills, co-founder of Marfred Dairy Farm,  passed away February 29.
  •David Leroy Padgett, Sr, 76, Saluda County farm leader, passed away February 26.

  •The Saluda County Historical Society and Museum presented The ALAMO DAY  FILM FESTIVAL, Friday March 6th at the Saluda Theater next to the Museum on the square in downtown Saluda.    In addition to The Alamo Film Festival, tours of the Museum and the Bonham House, The Saluda Historical Society has been granted for the month of March the exhibit “350 years of the 1670 settlement of Charles Town Landing.”    The exhibit focuses on the stories of the Europeans, Africans and Native Americans that came together to start the colony of South Carolina.
  •The Corona virus began to raise its ugly head. Governor Henry McMaster Sunday announced the postponement of all elections scheduled for March and April 2020.  This included the election of Saluda County Council Chairman set for March 24 between Democrat Darren Horne and Republican Jerry Strawbridge.  
  McMaster announced the closing of S.C. public schools through the end of the month, due to the coronavirus threat.   Locally, the Recreation Department activities were postponed until mid-April, nursing homes were not allowing visitors, and some churches postponed Sunday services.
  •Saluda County Council gave first reading to an ordinance that would create a county business and professional license.
  *Saluda County  passed an ordinance declaring a state of emergency due to the threats posed by the 2019 novel coronavirus (“COVlD-l9”).
  •Saluda County’s first COVID-19 case was officially reported by DHEC on Thurs., Mar. 19, a patient at Ridge Spring Family Practice.
  The Ridge Spring Family Practice sent out the following notice:
  The county has followed the directives of the Governor.
  Restaurants are serving take out orders only. Most churches were closed Sunday and services were broadcast by the pastors over the internet.
  Despite not having large gatherings, many churches are reaching out to the community. Radius Church , for instance, was the site Fri., Mar. 20, for an organized food delivery to school children. Nearly 90 bags of food were delivered.
  Stores were depleted of paper supplies and bread, but shelves got restocked as quickly as possible. The crowds at the stores got smaller as the week progressed.
  Saluda County Schools supplied over 2000 lesson packets, and a food pickup and delivering schedule was released.
    •John McLaurin Goff, 81, know locally as Johnnie Mac, passed away Sunday, March 8. A start quarterback at Saluda High School, he went on to play for Clemson. Later in life, he became the Superintendent of Education for the State of Ohio.
  •William (Bill) A. Whit-field, who devoted over 50 years to education in Saluda County, died Fri., Mar. 27, losing his battle with pancreatic cancer.
  • Faye Yarborough Crawford Mitchell, former business owner and widow of James Henry Crawford and Rudolph Mitchell, died March 28.
    •Lewie Edwin Shealy, 68, a leader in the insurance industry, passed away on Friday, March 20.

  •Despite the coronavirus pandemic, candidates filed to run for office in S.C. Mar. 14-30.
  Saluda County voters will see several contested races.
  Sheriff John Perry will be challenged in the Democratic Primary by his former Chief Deputy Chris Cockrell. The winner of that race will meet another former deputy and current Saluda police officer Josh Price, a Republican, in the Nov. General Election.
  District 2 County Councilman Wayne Grice will face opposition from current Elections & Registration Board Chairman Jack Atkinson in the Republican Primary.
  District 4 Councilman Jones Butler will have two opponents, former county employee Gary Therrell, and Carey Bedenbaugh, who has run for the office before, including 2012 as an independent because of the Republican party filing fiasco.
  •The body of a Bamberg County man was discovered along a rural Saluda County road Sun., April 5. The call came into dispatch at 9:30 a.m. about a body  on Oakdale Drive, near the Edgefield County line. The man was identified as Joseph Glenn Grubbs, Jr., 28, of Bamberg.
  •Saluda High School seniors picked up their graduation packets by the drive-thru method.
  •Three individuals have been charged with involuntary manslaughter after Sheriff’s Office discovery of a body early Sunday morning, April 5.
  Deputies responded along with Saluda EMS to the area of Oakdale Drive near the Edgefield County line. Upon arrival deputies found Joseph Glenn Grubbs Jr. of Greenville deceased on the shoulder of the roadway.
  Sheriff Perry requested the assistance of SLED Crime Scene Unit to respond to the scene. Investigators were able to quickly identify Grubbs through fingerprints.
  Investigators were able to make the first arrest Monday morning arresting Grubbs’s girlfriend Con-stance Leigh Jackson of Trenton. On Wednesday morning investigators arrested James Alex Welch of Edgefield. The third and final suspect Kaide Howell of Windsor was arrested April 9 based on the evidence that was obtained by investigators.
  •The driver of a tractor-trailer died in a Saluda County crash Tues., April 7.  According to Master Trooper Brandon Bolt of the S.C. Highway Patrol, the crash occurred around 9:20 p.m. Tuesday on U.S. 178 near Brown Road, three miles west of Batesburg-Leesville.
  •Lexington County School District Three, which includes a portion of Saluda County,  suspended its Student Feeding Program for  two weeks after learning that someone working with the program has tested positive for COVID-19.
  •In its most unusual meeting in history, Saluda County Council gave first reading to the 2020-21 school district and county budgets Mon., April 13.   Because of COVID-19, the meeting was not open to the public, but citizens could watch the proceedings over YouTube  through a link on the County website.  Council members and staff attending the meeting kept their proper distances, while Councilman Justin Anderson “attended” the meeting virtually. An iPad was stationed when Anderson normally sits, and Anderson could be seen on the screen. There were no technical glitches in the short meeting.
  •As more storms were predicted for Sun. and Mon., April 19 and 20, here is the report on last week’s storm from Emergency Management Director Josh Mor-ton:  “As storms moved through the county on Monday morning, we received numerous calls regarding trees and powerlines down from the storm.  We also had at least six homes that received damage from trees falling on them, as well as damage to equipment at a cell phone tower in which case a tree came down on a generator causing a small fire and damaging equipment causing disruption to T-Mobile Cellular service in the area.  No significant injuries were reported.”
    •A Saluda man lost his life Sat., April 25, in a shooting that involved at least three people.
  Alexander Daquan Hen-ley, 29, of Saluda was dead at the scene. The other two individuals were taken to Prisma Health Richland Hospital, one critically injured.
  The incident took place at 10 p.m. near 109 Myranda Ave. in the Town of Saluda.
  •In a matter of two weeks, Saluda County’s COVID-19 cases almost increased six times. The latest report said Saluda County had 35 reported cases, compared to six just two weeks ago.
  •Teachers from Saluda Primary School formed a car parade Wed., April 29, and drove all over Saluda to greet the students they miss so much. Students lined the side of the streets.
  •James (Jimmy) Lamar Ward, 79, former Saluda County Economic Development and Chamber of Commerce director, passed away on April 10.
  •Fred Manning Parkman, 79, of Saluda, SC, longtime pharmacist and pharmacy owner, passed away on April 22.
  •Fairey Louise Black, 100,  died April 27.

(Continued in weeks ahead)