2016-17 Teachers of the Year left to right: Jonathan Ergle, Jessica Wash, Kelli Taylor, Cecelia Yonce, Joshua Wilson
District Schools Honor
Teachers of Year, Retirees
By Mary Alice Quattlebaum
On Monday, September 12, the 2016-17 Saluda County School District Teachers of the Year and 2016 Retirees were honored at a banquet held at the Saluda Educational Complex.
Dr. David Mathis, Superinten-dent welcomed everyone for coming in support of those being honored.
After a wonderful dinner catered by Shealy’s of Batesburg, Mrs. Jane Jenkins Herlong, CSP served as keynote speaker. Those in attendance were entertained with Southern humor, folksy wisdom and award-winning singing. A recent inductee into the Speaker Hall of Fame, Jane is one of the 232 men and women to be awarded this honor. She has published several books, is a professional singer, songwriter, and recording artist. Jane and her family live in Edgefield, SC where she is active in her church and community and serves as the Executive Vice-President for Piedmont Technical College. The audience enjoyed her message of “prove people wrong and laugh while living your dreams.”
Principals and Directors introduced and recognized each of the 2016 Retirees with a gift of appreciation for their many years of service to the district. The 2016 retirees are: Sandy Butler, Renee Hauser, Mary Holloway, Helen Petterson, Evelyn Powell, Florence Weaver, and Russell Quattlebaum.
The 2016-17 Teachers of the Year recognized were Cecelia Yonce, Saluda Primary School; Jessica Wash, Saluda Elementary School; Joshua Wilson, Hollywood Elementary School; Kelli Taylor, Saluda Middle School; and Jonathan Ergle, Saluda High School. First Citizens Bank of Saluda which co-partners with Saluda County Schools Teacher for the Year Program gave each Teacher of the Year a monetary gift. On behalf of the Board of Trustees and District, Dr. David Mathis presented each teacher with a plaque.
The grand finale of the night was the announcement of Kelli Taylor being selected as District Teacher of the Year. In her application, Mrs. Taylor wrote, “I do not just have a job; I have a life-long commitment to my students, school, and community to supply the best educational experience possible. I am fortunate to work in a field where I am constantly provided with challenges that make me grow and learn as a person and educator every day.”
As District Teacher of the Year for Saluda County Schools, Mrs. Taylor will receive a check from the State Department of Education for $1000 and go on to represent the district as she competes for State Teacher of the Year.
A special thank you and congratulations to our Retirees and Teachers of the Year. May you have many more fulfilling days.
Rev. Jana Creighton, center of Saluda Presbyerian Church and church member Benjamin Williams, right, present the “Victory in Jesus” trophy, created by Richard Witt, to the congregation of Mother Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston on Sun., Sept 11.
Presentation Made To
Mother Emmanuel Church
After the tragic shooting of nine members of the Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston on June 17, 2015, Saluda native Richard Witt was touched by the family members of those killed who said they forgave the shooter.
Witt said he felt he needed to do something to recognize this congregation, so he designed and funded what he called the “Victory in Jesus Christ” trophy.
In a letter to President Obama, Witt wrote: “A lot of heartfelt love went in to creating this gift for them (Emmanuel congreation). They received their Victory in Jesus Christ when they forgave the young man who shot the pastor and members of their church. They will be healed from this tragedy.
”’They shall mount up with wings like Eagles,’ and their faith will be rewarded.”
The large trophy contains an eagle on top and all four sides contain inscriptions.
On the top front is, “Victory in Jesus Christ Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church .From the churches and Christian families of Greenwood and Saluda, South Carolina.You are in our thoughts and prayers.May God bless you and keep you in His Spirit. But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.They shall mount up with wings like eagles;they shall run and not be weary;they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31
Beneath that on the front is “The Apostles’ Creed.”
On two sides are four scriptures with the headings: “Deliverance from Racism,” Acts 17:26-30; “All are one in Christ,” Galations 3:28-29; “Protection against evil,” Ephesians 6:13-18; “Confidence,” Jeremiah 29:11.
On the back, Witt included quotes from a teacher, Linda Bodie, and coaches, Tim Turner, and David Mote, at King Academy, where Witt went to school.
Witt had the trophy created last year, and was waiting for an opportunity to present it to the Emmanuel congreation.
On Sun., Sept. 11, the Rev. Jana Creighton of Saluda Presbyterian Church, and two of the church members, Benjamin and Judy Williams, made the trophy presentation to the members of Emmaneul in Charleston on behalf of Richard.
“It was a wonderful worship service.” Rev. Creighton said. “There was no difference in color, only unity in Christ as we worshipped. The folks of Emanuel AME have showed grace to all, including all of us who have participated in amazing acts of grace. I was grateful to be a part.”
Saluda County Council gave approval to applying for a grant for improvement at one of the county’s industrial development sites.
At Monday’s meeting, Economic Development advisor Ed Parler said the grants are being offered through the Department of Commerce, and the maximum single award is $300,000.
If approved, the grant would be used to improve a county owned site on Hwy. 378 near the old Milliken Plant. Funds can be used for infrastructure extensions, road and other access improvements, clearing and grading the site.
Parler said he has been exploring the possibility of seeking a cold storage facility that would be used by the county’s farmers, among other economic development ideas.
Brooks Williamson of Johnston reported on the Construction Training School, located on Garners Ferry Rd. in Columbia.
Williamson said he is about to complete a 15-week course that will make him a certified construction worker which will qualify him to get a high paying job. He said there are many jobs available in the nuclear industry, for example, but only certified constructions workers are hired.
Williamson said the course costs $9,000, but there is federal aid available. He said if enough people from Saluda sign up for the course, a van will be provided to transport them to the school. All graduates get jobs he said.
Councilman William Pugh recommended Williamson get with the Riverside Community Development Corporation to set up a community meeting on the school.
Council approved to award architectural services to Moseley Architects of Columbia.
Councilman Frank Daniel said there is no cost involved with approving Moseley. He said the company will be used in the future if the county needs any type of architectural work. The company is experienced in working on government and educational building, etc.
In the past, the county has found itself in sudden need of an architect, and had to go through a lengthy process to hire a firm. With Moseley’s hiring, the county always has an architect on hand.
The services provided include providing needs assessments, providing feasibility studies, engineering/architectural services, bidding documents, construction documents, oversite for building expansions, renovations and/or new construction.
Council approved a $6,982.64 grant in aid for the EMS Department. The match, $384.05, will be paid from contingency.
Permission was given for the Recreation Department to apply for a Parks, Recreation and Tourism grant to build a concession stand at Brooks and Roston Park.
A 2017 Ford F150 will be purchased for $31,129 for the Building Codes Department. It will be paid from the vehicle reserve account.
Dan Neel and Jill Longshore of the Westview Behavioral Health Services were present to promote September 2016 Recovery Month. Ms. Longshore said 90 clients are currently getting help in Saluda County. She then read a letter from a wife and mother to a counselor, telling the counselor what a positive effect she had made in her life.
Council then approved the proclamation naming September as Recovery Month in Saluda County.
At the beginning of the meeting, public hearings were and held and third and final readings given on two ordinances.
Both involved the Association of Counties serving as a collection agent for delinquent accounts, and allowing the establishment of a $50 administrative fee collected on delinquent accounts set by the Association of Counties setoff debt program for ambulance service in Saluda County.
Coastal Carolina Baseball Coach
To Speak At Farm-City Banquet
Save the date. NOVEMBER 10th, Farm City Banquet.
The speaker will be Coastal Carolina Baseball Coach Gary Gilmore of the 2016 National Baseball Champions.
Tickets, $15.00, will go on sale October 3. Get tickets early at Saluda County Agricultural Building, Chamber of Commerce,Crouch’s Hardware, and F-C Committee members.
Seating limited to first 250. No ticket sales after November 7th.
Ridge Spring Fight
Leaves One Dead,
On September 5, shortly after 8:00 pm at Circle K in Ridge Spring, there was an altercation between multiple subjects in the parking lot.
During the incident, one suspect got into a car, driving into a group of people, killing Schanen Termaine Samuels of Ridge Spring. According to witnesses, a second suspect then got into the car, and they two left the scene.
The suspects were followed by two Ridge Spring volunteer firemen, who happened to be at the store at the time of the incident, updating Saluda County Dispatch. The two suspects drove into a wooded area, and ran into the woods.
One of the suspects, Gregory Slayton, turned himself into the Ridge Spring Fire Department, who then turned him over to law enforcement.
The Saluda County Sheriff’s Office Dog Team, the Aiken County Dog Team, and SLED air support were called out, and apprehended the second subject, Lamar Shannon, a short time later.
Officers from Ridge Spring, Town of Saluda, Aiken County, SCHP, SLED and the Ridge Spring Fire Department all assisted in the investigation and apprehension of the suspects.
Investigators from Ridge Spring PD, Saluda County Sheriff’s Office and the SLED Crime Scene are working with witnesses, reviewing footage from video cameras, and other parties involved to develop the timeline leading up to the incident.
Samuels was pronounced dead at the scene by Saluda County Coroner Keith Turner. The Coroner’s office will conduct an autopsy later this week to determine actual cause of death.
"I can’t thank the Ridge Spring Fire Department enough," said Ridge Spring PD Chief Mike Raffield, "it was their quick thinking and bravery that provided crucial information about the suspects in this investigation."
Saluda County Sheriff John C. Perry said that "A critical incident like this, where so many first responders, from law enforcement to fire and EMS are all pitching in and offering assistance, shows the true partnership and dedication to protecting and serving the community by these brave men and women."
Shannon and Slayton will face charges of murder for their involvement in this incident.
If you have any information about the altercation, please contact the Saluda County Sheriff’s Office Tip Line, 864-969-TIPS.
TASK FORCE CREATED
Body Found in Edgefield
On Friday September 2, 2016, the Saluda County Sheriff’s Office and Saluda County Coroner’s Office were notified by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) that the unidentified body found in Edgefield County was Saluda County’s missing person Nancy Caughman Lott.
Mrs. Lott was reported missing and was last seen on June17, 2016 in the Ridge Spring area of Saluda County. Forensic tests are being conducted on all evidence collected at the scene. The Saluda County Coroner Keith Turner and his staff have been working closely with the Sheriff’s Office and SLED to aid in the positive identification of Mrs. Lott throughout this investigation.
Sheriff John C. Perry and Coroner Turner and staff notified the family of the identification.
A task force has been assembled that is dedicated to the identification and apprehension of the person(s) responsible for Mrs. Lott’s death. Sheriff Perry wants the public to know that the person(s) responsible for this crime will be identified. The task force has consulted with criminal profilers from SLED who are experts in the field of violent crime.
A profile of the offender(s) is being prepared and will be utilized by the task force in obtaining the arrest of the responsible parties. A preliminary profile from the criminal profilers at SLED suggests that the discovery of Mrs. Lott and the subsequent investigation will become all-consuming for the offender(s). They will follow all press accounts on the investigation and may ask others if they have been contacted by law enforcement.
There will be behavioral changes of the person(s) responsible. These changes will be in their daily patterns, such as sleep and the consumption of food, alcohol and/or drugs. The behavioral changes are the result of the fear of being arrested and not actual remorse for their conduct. We recognize that people close to these individuals will not want to believe that they could possibly commit such an act. However, it is important that these people come forward and provide any information; no matter how minor the information may seem. As the person(s) responsible becomes more concerned with their apprehension they may act out violently against those closes to them.
COURT CASES IN PRINT EDITION
Missing Woman’s Body
Recovered In Lake
On Tuesday, August 24, at approximately 12:02 p.m., the Saluda County Sheriff’s Office received a report of an unoccupied boat on the lake.
Witnesses found and docked the unoccupied pontoon boat in the area of Atlas Drive in Saluda County. After further investigation by Saluda County, Newberry County, and the Department of Natural Resources, the husband identified the boat and the identity of the missing person as his wife, Mrs. Cynthia Leagan age 46 of Gold Nugget Point in Saluda County.
The husband stated that he did speak to his wife while she was operating the boat. The search began then for Mrs. Leagan in the area of her residence and approximately two miles where the pontoon boat was found.
At approximately 4:40 p.m. the deceased body of Mrs. Leagan was found approximately one and a half miles in the lake from her residence.
The Saluda County Coroners Office was called and Coroner Keith Turner and deputy coroners responded. Coroner Turner made the proper notification to the family. Deputy coroners took possession of the body. An autopsy was scheduled for later in the week.
2016 Saluda District
Hall of Fame Class
Saluda County School District One is proud to announce the Hall of Fame Class of 2016.
The inductees include:
Molly Spearman - A graduate of Hollywood High School. Mrs. Spearman spent 18 years as a teacher and administrator at Hollywood. She currently serves as SC State Superintendent of Education.
William "Bill" Whitfield - Served 33 years as a teacher and principal at Saluda High School.
Gloria Caldwell - Served 31 years as a teacher and media specialist at Saluda High School. Published several works involving Saluda schools and community.
Diedra "Didi" Clark Rankin - Clark was named All-State in basketball and an All-American in softball in 1980.
Jonell Bosket - First female basketball player in Saluda history to score 1,000 career points. She played 1977 North-South All-Star basketball game and started at point guard for four seasons at Lander University. She is a 33 year veteran of Air Force and Air Force reserves.
Tommy Hite - Head coach of the 1941 Class A State Championship football team.
10th Annual Riverfest
The 10th Annual Riverfest is Saturday, Sept. 3, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Big Man’s Marina, Hwy 391, 125 Big Man’s Rd, Lake Murray. Featured will be bands, children’s activities, food, vendors, prizes, etc. (Standard-Sentinel photo from 2014 Riverfest)