Eastern Living -September 2022

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VOL. 14, NO. 5 SEPTEMBER 2022 STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS Publisher Kyle Stephens kstephens@apgenc.com

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shines through S t o r y


P h o t o s

b y

Ke l l y

G r a d y


“There are so many life lessons

to be learned through sports, so my goal, in both teaching and coaching, is to bring awareness to girls’ sports programs,” says Misty Mooring. Misty is the physical education

and health teacher, the girls’ sports coach for volleyball, basketball and softball - and this year’s recipient of the Teacher of the Year Award - at Chocowinity Middle School. Attending Bath Elementary and then Northside High School, Misty’s passion for sports started at a young age as she attended and watched her older siblings’ games. What






monumental moment for Misty was attending one of her sister’s high school practices when the coach asked her if she would like to be the team “manager.” Being only in fifth grade at the time, she was both scared and flattered, but she took her managerial duties very seriously. Unbeknownst




he had just helped Misty reach a pivotal time in her life. To this day, she credits that coach - Coach Walt Davis of Bath - for instilling in her a love of coaching.


Growing up in an athletic family with

Misty immersed herself in her new position.

self-proclaimed - and at times extreme -

Proudly sharing again that she had such

competitiveness, Misty continued to play

wonderful sports coaches while growing up,

Her students and players know she cares

sports throughout high school and even

she is striving to “give back” that enthusiasm

about them by combining teaching and hard

played college basketball for Winthrop

and passion for athletics and good health to

work with surprises of fun.

University in South Carolina.

her students.

Unfortunately, during one of those college

Misty so loves both teaching and coaching

games, she injured her knee. However, while

she had a difficult time deciding which was

attending physical therapy on her knee, she

more important to her. She finally chose

discovered an interest in healthcare. Misty

coaching, stating with her infectious smile

decided studying sports medicine could

that she would still teach while incorporating

conquer all of these interests.

discussions on muscles and body systems

So, Misty further studied and earned her license as a physical therapy assistant. Here, with the treatment of their injuries, but the

in her position. Apart from starting her

prevention of them as well.

teaching career at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, she would like to see students

years and loved being around them. She

have access to participating in sports earlier

soon had an “AHA” moment… couldn’t she

than middle school.

combine everything she loved into one

She’s finding students - in particular

job that encompassed everything? What

girls - coming to middle school with little

about becoming a physical education and

exposure or the confidence to play team

health teacher? She enrolled at East Carolina

sports, especially volleyball. With national

University in Greenville and earned her

attention being brought to women’s sports,

teaching degree.

she wants to see a bigger and greater diversity among her own players.

position at Chocowinity Middle School, and

This specifically can be seen in this year’s

continues to feel fortunate the school took

volleyball tryouts sharing that last year, only

a chance on her knowing other people with

four new players tried out for the team. That,

different credentials had also applied for it.

compared to 32 girls who tried out for the

She was thrilled to begin sharing her love of

Coach Mooring shared about her softball players using their batting helmets to collect

moving. Misty, like many teachers, faces challenges

Misty soon applied for and obtained her

using fifth-grade “managers” for her teams.

students were using while stretching and

she could help patients and athletes not just

She continued to coach kids during these

school. Like her mentors, she had started

school’s team this fall.

teaching students in grades 5-8 and coaching

“I just want kids to love sports,” she said.

the girls’ 6-8 teams.

Misty is clearly making a difference at this



eggs at the Easter Egg Hunt she had set up for players after practice, breaking a pinata for Cinco de Mayo after a class in the gym, and a surprise kayaking/paddleboarding/lunch



practice - all done at her own cost. “I just want kids to love sports,” she reiterated. Another example of the coach’s dedication and passion is the free four-week summer camps she offers to the girls. On Tuesday evenings, they had the opportunity to learn new, or strengthen, current volleyball and basketball skills. This past summer, she even opened the camp to other schools and had between 20-30 girls participating on any given evening. Kristen Riddle, Beaufort County Schools Public Information Officer, said of Misty, “She is a great teacher and coach, making a positive impact on both her students and players. We are lucky to have her in the Beaufort County School District.” Misty has no plans to change what she’s currently doing. “(I’ll be) right here, this is what I want to be doing,” she emphasized. Kelly Grady is a retired educator and regular contributor to Eastern North Carolina Living.



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P h o t o s

b y

J i m

G r e e n


John Thompson had just completed his

seventh grade year when he made a choice that would help determine the course of his future.

and UNC-Greensboro. However, being a coach is not what he originally set out to do.

“In the summer, I opted to play summer

“I went to college originally thinking I

league basketball as opposed to baseball,”

wanted to be a high school coach and P.E.

said Thompson, who has been the men’s

teacher,” he said. “Through a variety of

basketball coach at North Carolina Wesleyan

experiences over my college career, I decided

University in Rocky Mount for the past

that was not what I wanted to do – I was going

27 years.

to pursue a career in radio and television

Thompson grew up in Durham and




including baseball, football and basketball. Baseball was his sport.

news (his father, Frank, was a news director at WTVD) and I thought I wanted to follow in his footsteps.” Thompson’s father passed away during his son’s senior year in college. He went back

“It wasn’t a hard decision

home to help his mother after graduation, and

for me, but it was a financial

the only opportunity he had in TV and radio

decision for my family,” he said. “It was $35 to play Little


was in Savannah, Georgia. “I didn’t think I could leave my mom at


that point in time,” he said. “I have a younger

and $35 to join the YMCA

brother who had some special needs, and my

and be a member so I

dad had passed two months earlier. I felt like

could play summer league

home was where I needed to be.”

basketball. My parents said I

The next year Thompson tried to figure

could do one or the other, but I

out what to do. He got a job selling office

couldn’t do both.”


For Thompson, the decision to play

“While that was a good job, it wasn’t my

basketball at the Y under Herman

love and certainly wasn’t my passion,” he said.

Paschal from the seventh to the tenth

In the middle of that, Thompson said the

grade and develop a love of the game

one thing he kept gravitating back to was

set him out on a career that started


when he played high school ball at


Durham Jordan and college ball at St. Andrews

“I was playing it, watching it and spending

time with friends who were still playing or

assistant under Jim Berkman at St. Lawrence

friends who were still coaching,” he said.

University (New York) for a year by way of

Thompson had developed a friendship with Johnny Dawkins at Duke University and told him he wanted to get into coaching.

a contact he made when he worked Jim Boeheim’s Syracuse camp that summer. After seven years as an assistant to Jack

“I asked Johnny if he could introduce me to

Jensen at Guilford College, Thompson felt

Coach K (Mike Krzyzewski),” Thompson said.

it was time to make the step up to the head

“I was blessed to be a certain age at the right

coaching ranks. He became the coach at

time in Durham, so I became friends with the

Wesleyan in the summer of 1995 after getting

guys who people referred to as “the class that

married three years earlier and starting a

saved Coach K (Dawkins, Jay Bilas and David


Henderson, among them) because we played

“I felt it was time,” he said. “I still wasn’t

pickup games together. I was always trying

making the kind of living you could sustain

to play against better players and they were

for a lifetime. As you get married and have

certainly better than I was.”

children, I had other people to account to.”

With encouragement from his college

Thompson wanted to model his Bishops

coach at UNCG (Ed Douma) and high school

program after those he’d been around as a

coach at Jordan (John Avery), Thompson was

player and as an assistant coach (Krzyzewski,

introduced to Krzyzewski by Dawkins.

Jensen, Chaney, Avery, Douma and others).

Thompson worked Coach K’s camp, where

“I studied those guys and knew the

he became friends with Krzyzewski and


assistant Pete Gaudet.

commitment and consistency, and I wanted

“Coach K became a friend and remains a friend to this day,” he said. “I give so much





to bring those things to Wesleyan,” he said. Bill Chambers, the previous coach at

credit to Pete… he’s a coach who taught me more about how to teach the game; he’s one of the greatest teachers our game has ever seen. I thought I was a pretty good student of the game as a player, then you become a coach and realize how much you don’t know. Herman Paschal was a tremendous influence on me as far as the game goes.” For several years Thompson worked the summer camp circuit – from Duke and Wake Forest to Rutgers to Syracuse. He also worked John Chaney’s camp at Temple and developed a close relationship with him. Chaney passed away in January of 2021. “I was the only non-Philly guy working that camp (in 1989),” he remembers. “I was a fish out of water but it was an unbelievable experience. Every year we went to his camp, he made time to spend with our team and I’d tag along and pepper him with questions. He was so gracious with his time.” Thompson started his college coaching career as an assistant at St. Andrews for a year under Mark Simons and then got a job as an



Wesleyan who played under Dean Smith at the University of North Carolina, had already set the foundation. Thompson had seven or eight returners his first season. “Bill knew what a winning program was all about. He had a lot of things in place; I didn’t have to reinvent the wheel,” Thompson said. “I didn’t have to come in and revamp the

hard, it probably will give your team a lack of

via various camps and clinics and will speak

whole thing. It was just a matter of putting my

success, and one who is a great teammate and

at the USA Basketball Coach Academy in

fingerprints on it.

who care about his teammates and doesn’t

October in Orlando, Florida.

“I just knew I wanted to do things the right

just simply do what’s good for himself but also

He is a 2017 Wesleyan Hall of Fame

way,” Thompson continued. “Things that were

what’s good for his teammates,” Thompson

inductee who won his 400th game last

sustainable. We wanted to recruit our kinda



guys and build the program that way.”

During his nearly three decades at

Looking back, Thompson said he has been

So what is ‘our kinda guy?’

Wesleyan, Thompson has given back to the

“Someone who is disciplined, hard working,

sport he loves so much and one that has given

“I wouldn’t change anything,” he said. “It’s

loyal and committed, and consistent in all of

so much to him by paying it forward. He has

really special to have former players come

those areas. Someone who understands the

held a coaching clinic for several years where

back to be assistant coaches, and some of

value of doing things the right way, who says

coaches share their wisdom about the game

them who played now have children who

please and thank you, one who wants to show

and about coaching. Some of his assistants

have attended our basketball camp. Those

up early and stay late, one who knows you

have been presenters.

kids in my camp are my family.”

have to earn everything and the only way to

“The purpose of the clinic was I was trying

do that is hard work because if you don’t work

to learn and to get better, and now we are

What is Thompson most proud of during his tenure at Wesleyan?

helping younger coaches who get to be in

“I’m most proud of the guys that I’ve

a room with coaches like Jerry Wainwright,

coached and the men they’ve become: the

Pete Gaudet, Tubby Smith, Larry Brown, Pete

fathers, the husbands, the professionals in

Gillen and so many others,” he said. “They get

whatever they ended up choosing to do,” he

to build their relationships, learn, get exposure


and develop their network.”

Thompson said he doesn’t plan on giving

Thompson is the all-time winningest coach in Wesleyan men's basketball history, having compiled a 402-297 record and eight regular season and/or tournament championships during his tenure. and

up basketball any time soon, but admits it can be a grind. “I am going to keep doing it as long as I feel great and it’s what I want to do,” he said. Being away from his family (wife, Laura and

He has won numerous coaching honors,




his three sons) has been difficult at times, in


particular when they (Andrew, Jackson and

noteworthy coaching achievements

Walker) were younger, but Thompson reveres

came in the summer of 2012 when

his wife of 30 years.

he was selected to be a court

“You have to have a special wife if you’re

coach for USA Basketball's

going to be a coach of any kind,” he said. “She



was a college athlete (softball and basketball

Thompson joined an elite


in addition to junior tennis) and she loves

group of collegiate coaches

sports, so that helps.

at the U18 training camp,

“I spend a lot of time away and being able

which was held at the

to run the house, raise the kids and keep all

U.S. Olympic Training

the irons in the fire hot and under control falls

Center (USOTC) in

on the wife a lot, and she is very special,” he

Colorado Springs.


T h o m p s o n continues



with USA Basketball


pleased with his career.

Jim Green is Sports Editor of the Rocky Mount Telegram and Photo Editor of Eastern North Carolina Living.





We Carry 2-Sided Mattresses



coaching the person and the

player S t o r y


When it comes to soccer, Coach Ricardo

Arias-Ruiz leads with a passion and intensity that is both inspiring to his players and the Greene County community.

b y D o n n a M a r i e Wi l l i a m s P h o t o s c o n t r i b u t e d

active and playing is one of the best feelings,”

the game, knowing when to really overcrowd

he added.

the team, … soccer is all about momentum,”

Arias-Ruiz has been at the helm of the

Arias-Ruiz said.

Greene County Middle School for the past six

“I get them young. They get used to the

“It’s the adrenaline that comes from the

years and in 2020, after serving as assistant

rules, structures, formation and the way we

game. It’s the passion and the game itself.

coach to the Greene Central High School

play. It changes as we move up because the

When you talk about playing soccer, it really

soccer team for four years, Arias-Ruiz was

level of the game intensifies. Having that

gives you a mental break. When you play with

promoted to head coach for the Greene

baseline and having the kids know you and

people who feel passionate about the game

Central Rams.

how you expect them to behave on the

like you do, it’s one of the best feelings ever.

This unique position allows Arias-Ruiz

team helps,” Arias-Ruiz said, adding that at

There’s a passion behind the game and I can

to grow the Greene County Schools soccer

the middle school players typically learn the

portray my vision to the players,” Arias-Ruiz

program early on.

basics, terminology and fundamentals of the

said. “Whether winning or losing, just being

“It starts in middle school with keeping control over the ball, setting the tempo for

game. “It helps with keeping a strong base and we can keep improving. We can work more on improving rather than establishing rules. It keeps a smooth transition from middle to high school,” he said. Arias-Ruiz also believes in developing strong leaders within the team. “As a coach, I want to look for those five to six players that’s going to be leaders. When you have them on your side, if someone oversteps boundaries they will stop it,” AriasRuiz said. “When you see the kids empower themselves it’s wonderful.” When transitioning from assistant to head coach at the high school level, Arias-Ruiz relied on his players and sought transition advice from them.


“I had been their assistant for years. I met with some of the seniors and told them I was

Greene Central soccer players got to compete in.

“You didn’t even want to look back. It was that many people. It put pressure on them

going to be the head coach. I let them know

“It was good to put us on the map. It was

for sure,” Arias-Ruiz said. “It’s one of those

what I wanted and that this is what we are

nice to have that happen. I had never been

things where you saw so many people coming

going to do and move forward,” Arias-Ruiz

through it and my players hadn’t never been

together for a common purpose and that’s our

said, adding players assured him the transition

through it. It was good to see we made it that

team. You are just so proud.”

would be smooth since they knew him. “We

far. It was something to remember,” Arias-

While passionate about the game, Arias-

are all going to be on the same goal.”

Ruiz said. “We played some private schools

Ruiz understands that soccer is more than a

and some 4A schools. It was nice to see that

sport and as a coach he

competition beyond 2A.”

the players first.

During his first season as Rams head coach, Arias-Ruiz led the high school to the 2A championships. While they fell short to

While building the team and players,

Shelby High School due to penalties, Arias-

Arias-Ruiz also desires to build momentum

Ruiz is proud of how much the team was able


and interest in Greene County School soccer.

to accomplish in just one season.

United under the banter Si Se Puede -

the kids up.

“It was tough to lose, but it was tough to

meaning we can do it, yes you can -, the Rams

get there. It was very emotional. Just one of

were able to help build morale and garner

those things you can’t explain,” Arias-Ruiz said.

support from the Greene County Community.

Players at Greene Central High School

“It was beneficial to the school. The

also had the opportunity to participate in the

community was so involved,” Arias-Ruiz said.

Kickoff Classic hosted by the town of Cary for

In the last season, the Rams have seen an

the first time. This three-day event featured

increase in game attendance with one game

teams from all over North Carolina at various

reaching approximately 1,000 people from

competition levels and was the largest event

both teams.

always puts

“My goal is to bring

I feel the community knows that. Before they are an athlete, they are a kid and it’s not just all about soccer,” Arias-Ruiz said. “I’m not just taking them in


as a player,” he continued. “I’m taking them in as a person. I love the guys and their best interest


is always going to be my best interest. Their

towards the team and himself motivates

safety is always a concern. Their improvement

Arias-Ruiz and instills in him pride.

is the main thing. My goal is to always be there

“They were able to see what I wanted

for my team. I am representing them more

them to see without me having to tell them.

than they are me.”

I want them to feel like we are a family and

Arias-Ruiz said. In the future, Arias-Ruiz would also like to establish a JV program. Currently, the county schools lack the number of participants. “We have never been able to get a JV

By creating a safe-zone for the players

I want them to come to me. I’m not a super

to be themselves, Arias-Ruiz feels he has

open person, but independently they come to

not only impacted the players themselves,

me,” Arias-Ruiz said. “That comment was one

but has improved their games by creating a

of the nicer things I’ve heard in my coaching

like a junior/senior would, it’s just not realistic,

family-like atmosphere.

career. It’s not something I’m relaying to them

many lack the years of experience,” Arias-

and telling them to feel like this. It happened

Ruiz said. “If I don’t have enough freshman


or sophomore coming in, I lose out on the

This was demonstrated to him by a player who expressed their sentiments about AriasRuiz to another teacher.

Arias-Ruiz hopes to continue to grow

“The player said ‘More so than anything

the soccer programs at both Greene County

he’s our coach and this a team that wants to

Middle School and Greene Central High

win.’ We want to do it as a family and not as


team. We can’t rely on the freshman and sophomores to come through clutch for you

chance of growing them to into a quality high school team.” With a JV team, more players would also be able to play and grow in experience, he

individuals. We are doing it for each other,”

“My hope is to continue a good feeder

Arias-Ruiz said. “There were no clicks. It was

program to the high school at the middle

just everybody together for one common

school. When you start them young and apply

Donna Marie Williams is a freelance writer


them young, they will work, work, work and

and a regular contributor to Eastern North

continue to grow to a higher level each year,”

Carolina Living.

Learning about his players’ sentiments



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IS AN EXAMPLE S t o r y b y D e b o r a h G r i f f i n P h o t o s c o n t r i b u t e d


Ron’Dayle Floyd is passionate about the

game of football; but is more passionate about the lives of the young boys he coaches. “One thing about me, I am a god-fearing

man. I want to win souls and I want to win

out.” Hired in February of 2021, it was his first year as head coach at the school. “We are expecting to do it again this year,” he continued. “I would not expect any less.”

twelfth grade,” he continued. “I teach them mentally - it doesn’t matter how big you are.” He references David and Goliath. “I am a Bible-based man. I apply my Bible to whatever situations I am in. And what I

football games,” he said. “I call it holy, hard-

His success is already garnering attention.

have in me, I instill in my team,” he said. “They

nosed football.”

“A lot of guys who played for me last year

would run through a brick wall for me.”

The Riverside Middle School Head Football

are starting on the varsity team in high school

A record number of boys, over 40, have

Coach made school history with last year’s

this year as Freshmen,” he said. “One thing we

clamored to play middle school football under

perfect 6-0 record, allowing only eight points

do is instill is toughness and grit. You can take

him this season.

all season.

that with you anywhere.







“It is the first time the school was

“It is a big jump going from middle school

Williamston’s Parks and Recreation Little

undefeated,” Floyd said. “We shut everybody

eighth-grade to playing against guys in the

League Football program, his work with the


Boys & Girls Club and his first football camp held this summer, which he named in memory of Reggie Smith, a middle school coach and captain in the Wilson Police Department, who had a profound influence on his life. “His life made me want my life to make a difference,” he said. Students-athletes are drawn to Floyd’s magnetic personality. “God has given me a gift to know how to make kids believe in themselves and be optimistic,” he said. “One of the biggest things as a coach is how to motivate your kids. You’ve got to love them so much they don’t want to let you down. You’ve got to know how to put something in them they don’t have,” he added. “You put it in there by a loving caring relationship.” His players know he cares - even when he disciplines them with old-school “up-downs,” (a lot like burpees). His discipline earns respect. “My boys know if you cut up, you have 55 up-downs. Most kids don’t want to do them. If you cut up really bad, you are going to do 75,” he said. “It’s like an invisible leash you have on them. I’ve got to keep them disciplined.” He knows some of his children come from broken homes. “I don’t want to only be known as a coach who wins games; but I want to be known as someone who can change a young man’s life,” he said. RMS Athletic Director Hank Tice said Riverside Middle School is blessed to have Coach Floyd. “Not just from a football standpoint, but as a good role model and a Christian. He lets his faith determine how he runs his program,” he said. Floyd also coaches track and teaches Career Technical Education (CTE). “Coach Floyd has a positive relationship with all the students, including the ones that don’t play football,” he added. Tice joked he has the coach locked into a 35-year contract. “We don’t need everybody to come knocking on our door for him,” he said. “They

can come learn from him, but they can’t come get him. Seriously though, he loves the game of football, but he loves his kids just as much.” Tice added his coaching goes beyond winning games. “People sometimes get caught up in the wins and losses, the x’s and the o’s. But he is a father-figure to a bunch of kids here at our school. We are fortunate to have him.” In some ways, Floyd, 32, has come fullcircle. He helped coach middle school football the last year the school was Williamston Middle, and the first year it became Riverside Middle, almost 13 years ago. He left to focus on his education. “My passion was to coach football and teach,” he said. During those 13 years, Floyd earned his


undergraduate degree at Mt. Olive College and

“I want people to say, ‘Since Coach Floyd

where we make a circle in class and we talk

obtained his masters from Liberty University.

has been coaching my son, he has been a

about life. I tell them, ‘If it wasn’t for Jesus, you

He married Tijuan Lee-Floyd and had three

different young man,’” he said.

probably wouldn’t be looking at Coach Floyd.’

“I think what works is love and relationships.

children, Ron’Dayle Floyd Jr., 13, Kharmyn, 10 and Jiyah, 8.

If they need to talk, I am here,” he said. “I talk

He also dedicated his life back to the Lord.

to them like they are my own. That’s why I am

“After that, becoming a role model and a

so hard on my son. He thinks I’m hard on him

father-figure just came natural,” he said.

about life – I want him to do the right thing.” His son, Ron’Dayle Jr., “a.k.a. Bunchie,” plays

Also during that time he was offered his first teaching/coaching job at Washington

“It breaks my heart - since I left [RMS the first time], there are young men I coached that have been to prison. There are young men I have coached that have died. So, I teach them about being in the right place at the right time,” he added.

receiving corner for him. “I tell him I don’t ever want kids at Riverside

“It’s like sowing seeds, teaching them how

to listen to me and you don’t,” he said. “I’ve

to treat people. You don’t know who is on the

“Plymouth has a rich tradition of football.

had dads tell me, ‘My son will listen to you,

verge of taking their life. You don’t know the

It was a blessing I got to go down there. I

but he won’t listen to me.’ I don’t glory in that,

told God, ‘I want you to put me around the

but if I can be the one to bridge the gap, I

County High School, which is nearer to his home in Dardens.

right people, the right resources and the right coaches to make me the best teaching coach I can be.’ So, first-things first,” he said. Evenings, weekends and summers he worked with children in Martin County through Williamston Parks and Recreation and the Boys and Girls Club. Those experiences allowed him to build relationships in the community. “A lot of these kids I remember from when they were babies,” he said. “I’m not just some coach that came in from the outside. I am a community guy.” When he left Plymouth for the job at

will. I tell my boys don’t you come in here and [be respectful to me] then go home and

kids here I knew needed a role model. Right now, Riverside Middle is my assignment.” He hopes he can be the difference some students need.

He compares respecting their teachers to respecting a boss one day.

disrespect your parents. “I always teach you’ve

He teaches them about character.

got to take care of home first,” he added.

“My kids know I am Deacon Floyd before I and

am Coach Floyd. Kids seem to love me, but I

Exploring Employment, give him a platform

can really say it is God,” he added. “My pastor,

on which he can base real-life scenarios.

Renee Pearsall, is my spiritual Mom. She





“I tell my kids, if you are disobedient now, when you are older, you might want to break the law. When you are older, consequences are more serious. Right now, you may go to ISS (In School Suspension), but as an adult, you may go to prison. I use life situations to kind of wake them up,” he said.

Riverside, he said it was hard, but: “I knew my purpose was here in Williamston. There were

background they come from,” he added.

for those kids. A lot of them don’t have it at home.’” He tells his players, “I don’t care about football. I want you to be successful. “At the end of the day, I can’t remember all

And he warns them about choices.

the scores, rushing yards, who we beat. But I

“I tell them there are men in prison who

can remember if you become a good dad, or

made straight A’s in school, but they made bad choices,” he

pushes me. She says, ‘You be a role model




Life Lesson Day,

a good husband. I hold them accountable,” he said. He said he hopes he will be remembered for that. “I may be an old man - 50 or




60 - and they’ll be talking about me in the barber shop one day. ‘Y’all remember Coach Floyd? He was hard on us… but y’all remember we used to win?’ “It’s a blessing when kids can come back to you and thank you for being hard on them,” he added. Deborah Griffin is News Editor of The Enterprise and a Staff Writer for Eastern North Carolina Living.

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thach keeps her eyes on

the prize P h o t o s

S t o r y b y Jo h n Fo l e y b y Jo h n Fo l e y & An d r e ’

A l f r e d


One might think they were walking into a

volleyball museum when they enter Kirstie Thach’s office at Perquimans County High School.

If the coach’s office is museum-like, she

is the curator of decades plus memorabilia gracing the walls, and stylishly situated on shelves. Although volleyball pictures cover the walls, there were two baseballs on her desk, possible memorabilia for a different shelf in a trophy room at home. “This is my fourteenth year of coaching varsity and JV volleyball, and the pictures of the teams and the memories are all around here,” the coach said, pointing in a 360 degree direction describing frame after frame of award winning teams and students - all champions on Thach’s wall of fame. Born and raised in Perquimans County, Thach is a member of an athletic lineage that is part of Perquimans County history. “I have a younger sister and brother and we have all played sports since the time we could walk. Our dad was one of our earliest coaches and he and my mom are still our biggest fans,” said Thach. Thach’s dad, Edgar Roberson, played baseball for the Perquimans Pirates back in the day and was an assistant coach for the softball team in the 1990s that featured the current Perquimans head volleyball coach. “My brother is also a coach for Perquimans



teachers and coaches she had when she

difference makes all the long hours worth it,”

have won the 1A Baseball State Championship

was growing up. She admits the part of her

she said.

the past two seasons,” said Thach. “Thankfully,

job she takes home most frequently is the

But it is teamwork the coach promotes

all three of my sons have had the opportunity

coaching. This is especially true when the

both on the court and in the classroom that

to play for him.”

team is in season. Thach claims she is thinking

attributes to a winning equation.

As the last name signifies, and as everyone in Perquimans County interested in baseball

about volleyball and practice and game plans constantly.

“I would say that as a Health and PE teacher, I teach a lot about teamwork, being strong

knows, and that would be everyone in

“Coaching can be one of the most

physically and mentally and being a good

Perquimans County, the athletic provenance

rewarding experiences that you could ever

citizen. I try to instill being good classmates

the Thach and Roberson names hold dear

take part in. No matter what level you coach,

and teammates in both jobs and that making

is impressive. A local sports dynasty, with

being able to positively influence young

a positive difference in other people’s lives is

national ties, is one way to describe it.

lives is so special. To know that you made a

important. I believe that having pride in one’s

While baseball stories run strong in the Thach household, volleyball has been the coach’s passion since she was a student at PCHS. Today, the terms roof, setter, six-pack, spike, stuff, dink and campfire are all part of the coach’s daily vernacular. “I played volleyball throughout middle and high school and I played a year in college at ECSU. I love volleyball,” said Thach. She went on to explain, “The game has changed so much over the years since I was a player and even since my early years of coaching, in a positive way. I love that the speed of the game has increased over the years and it’s such a fast paced game especially at the varsity level.” The spark prompting Thach to become a coach was her love of sport and the great


self as well as your school and team is a key

students, parents or in our job. Sports give

schedule go to: https://www.maxpreps.com/

component of both,” said Thach.

us the opportunity to learn skills on how to


manage those things and for many people to


For those backyard volleyball players who have visions of spiking on sand courts beachside,

gain lifelong friendships,” claimed Thach.

the coach has words

Even though she is running out of wall

of encouragement for players hoping the

space in her Perquimans office, she doesn’t

backyard is a stepping stone to the sands of

aspire to or have future plans on becoming a

Huntington Beach, California.

college coach with larger walls.

“I think anytime someone can have a

“I have had opportunities to coach at the

volleyball in their hand, that’s a stepping stone

next level, but I am beyond happy here in

for success. I encourage my players to touch

Perquimans County and I plan to coach as

a volleyball as much as possible. There are so

long as I am physically able.” said Thach.

many skills that you can work on even if you don’t have a net,” explained Thach. But one shouldn’t pack her bags just yet. The competition is fierce depending

“I am so blessed to have the opportunity to teach and coach in Perquimans County. I couldn’t dream of a better place to work and raise my children.

on whether one aspires to excel in beach or

“I believe God has a plan for our lives and

indoor volleyball. On sand or beach volleyball

I knew early on that teaching and coaching

participants play with a partner and in indoor

was my calling,” she continued. “I have met

volleyball they play with six people on the

so many wonderful people throughout my


life and some of the best are right here in this

“Sand courts are popping up more

county. I’m truly thankful to be able to give

frequently as the sport grows. We have one at

back to the school system that gave me so

the recreation department here in Perquimans

much,” Thach said, smiling, as she panned her

County and some of my former and current

museum styled office walls.

players have played on sand teams before,” Thach said, proudly. The salary range for volleyball professionals is between $19,970 and $189,500. There are also college scholarships available for both indoor and sand volleyball. Some of Thach’s students have expressed interest in becoming college volleyball stars, but none have talked about playing past that. “I think there are several things that make a terrific volleyball player other than just talent, such as; commitment, heart and a desire to get better everyday,” she said. “As a teacher, you hear about being a lifetime learner and how you can always learn new things about your content or best practices. “I think the same holds true for volleyball; to be a great player, you need to be willing to learn constantly. There are so many ways that we can all learn daily,” expressed Thach. The coach believes playing sports offers valuable life lessons. “In life, we all face failures and success. We also have to work with other people, to overcome fears at times and to strive to be better everyday; whether on the court, as


For the Perquimans High School Volleyball

John Foley is a Staff Writer for the Bertie Ledger-Advance,


Eastern North Carolina Living.



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giving his all to his players and

community S t o r y


Coaching is an essential element to

Edenton’s John Downum. For the last 25 years, Downum has been

b y

Ty l e r

Ne w m a n

baseball,” Downum said. While playing basketball at Louisburg Junior College, he ended up hurting his knee.

members of the community to help out and it snowballed from there. “It’s another way to compete when you’re

a fixture on Chowan County ballfields,

“That was kind of the end of it, which was

done playing,” Downum said. “I love all sports,

instructing youth ranging from youngsters to

fine,” Downum said. “Then I fell in love and

but with baseball, the older I get the more I

young adults. He wears it like a silent badge

went to work.”

kind of love it.”

of honor, never seeking fame or accolades

Downum’s day job involves managing

Eventually, he got into coaching recreation

for his achievements, according to those he

recreation facilities throughout the county.

department baseball and t-ball, as well as

works with.

While sitting in his office at the old D.F. Walker

high school baseball at John A. Holmes High

A native of Chowan County, Downum

High School in Edenton, he pointed towards


grew up playing ball in the area. So coaching

the gym he used to play in, just a few steps

Bob Turner, former Athletic Director at

perhaps came as second nature to him.

away and now used by a new generation of

Holmes, asked Downum to help coach at the


high school. The answer, of course, was yes.

“I was born and raised here, of course I went to high school here and I played

Fresh out of college at 21, Downum started

That was 11 years ago. Today, Downum is still

basketball, baseball, football, tennis; then

coaching boys in the senior Babe Ruth league.

seen on the ball field helping to coach each

went on to college to play basketball and

He explained that he had been asked by some

new roster of Aces as the years pass on. “Those of us here at JAH have seen firsthand the care and compassion that Coach Downum possesses,” said Holmes Athletic Director Wes Mattera. “Whether working on fields within the rec [department], coaching teams at both JAH and the little league or spending countless hours trying to make Hicks Field the best facility, Coach Downum is a true representative of the ‘blue collar’ mentality that exists here in Chowan County.” Mattera affirmed the notion that Downum never goes out of his way to seek credit or spotlight and emphasized his role as both a father and a coach for the community. “Thank you coach for who you are, what


you stand for, and what you continue to do every day,” Mattera said. Downum thanked Mattera and Holmes Principal Sonya Rinehart for the privilege to coach. Improving Historic Hicks Field, something Mattera mentioned, is another way that Downum has given back to his community. Through the local Baseball Club, both he and his wife, Tammy, as well as Tyler Russell of the Edenton Steamers, have put a lot of money back into the facility to keep it a top-notch field.

during high school, he played baseball against


“We have a concession stand at the fair

six thousand [dollars] and we put 100 percent of that back into Hicks Field,” Downum said. Historic Hicks Field is the home of both the Edenton Steamers and John A. Holmes Aces baseball teams. While helping to coach Aces baseball at Holmes, Downum was presented with what may be the most memorable moment of his career thus far, winning a state championship

becoming a vital part of Perquimans’ athletic program. “It’s special what they [the Thaches] have gone through as well,” Downum said, noting the




recently won by Perquimans. All of Downum’s sons – Jack, Patrick and Hank – have played baseball at some point, as well. Hank is the youngest and is now a senior at Holmes, while the other two have come Reflecting on years of coaching, Downum

guess five or six,” Downum added. “But coaching all three of my boys is really full of all the best moments too.” Downum also acknowledged northeast North Carolina’s rich baseball tradition, with great players coming from nearby counties such as Dare, Camden, Currituck and Perquimans. “There is a lot of good baseball in northeast North Carolina that we don’t always get a

in 2017.

Thach has coached his own sons in the game,

home after playing ball in college.

coming up in a month and it’s a weeklong concession stand there. We should raise five to

one of the coaches there: Richard Thach.

said he was not immediately sure how much longer he would stay in the game. He said it could be five years, ten years or longer, but noted that at some point, he would like to see some younger coaches come in to pump some youthful energy into area programs. Downum says what has been most important to him while on or off the field is the relationships made and how they translate to everyday life. “It's more than winning and losing, you

The cherry on top? His son, Patrick, was on

lot of credit for,” Downum said. “It’s really

know, you build relationships and friendships,”

the team at the time, sharing the chip with his

competitive and really good baseball in this

Downum said, recalling Aces of the past.


part of the state.”

“Every year each team is special, but some


Downum also noted a baseball rivalry with

of those boys – Ben Ward, Dylan Patrick,

championships] in the last ten years. I would

neighboring Perquimans County, saying that

Khalil Blount, Caleb Chappell – they’re young






2809 NC Highway 903 • Stokes, NC 27884

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Downum also recollected names of some of the folks he had coached and worked alongside

email: jmizell@stokescongleton.net

website: www.stokescongleton.com

as well. “When you’re coaching with people like Hack High, Rob Winborne, Quintin Chappell, Jim Parrish, J.P. and Mike Pippins, Travis Hardison, Luke Williford, Bob Turner, Bill and Bob Jordan,

Thanks Yall!

Travis Lilly, Doug Oliver, Howard Sutton and coach-pitch to high school is special. They’re all special.” The Chowan County community would probably agree to add another special name to that list: John Downum. “John has contributed to local baseball from every direction,” said Shannon Ray, Chowan Recreation Superintendent. “He has been some

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kids' first coach (t-ball) and then also their last coach (high school). His quiet demeanor teaches kids they don't have to show out to show up and that with effort comes reward.” Ray pointed out that Downum has been a lifelong fixture for many local youth, having coached kids to be both better baseball players and better individuals. “Baseball in Chowan County is better off because of John,” Ray said. Tyler Newman is a Staff Writer for the Chowan Herald and Eastern North Carolina Living.


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HALL OF FAME S t o r y b y C a l B r y a n t / R o a n o ke - C h o w a n P u b l i c a t i o n s P h o t o s b y R o a n o ke - C h o w a n P u b l i c a t i o n s s t a f f


Over the course of his 40-plus year career

with Hertford County Public Schools, Charles Simmons stands as a model of consistency as an educational colleague, a teacher, a coach and an athletic director.

Recently, the rest of North Carolina

learned of his outstanding contributions to the development of young athletes. Simmons joined four other men as the newest inductees into the North Carolina Athletic Directors Association (NCADA) Hall of Fame. Simmons, along with Ed Gilroy, Scott Jones, Jeff Morris, Mike Raybon, were inducted during the NCADA Banquet at the Hotel Ballast in Wilmington on April 4. “It's always a great honor to be recognized by your peers and I am humbled and grateful for the award,” Simmons said. “The N.C. Athletic Directors Association does an outstanding job of supporting high school athletics, working closely with NCHSAA and NCCA to ensure that students across the state have opportunities and access to athletic events that help them grow as student athletes and leaders. “I've been coaching and working with athletics for my entire educational career and it has been incredibly rewarding to have had an opportunity to work with amazing coaches and players,” Simmons added. “Stepping into the shoes left by Coach Richard Murray was


challenging, and I am forever grateful for his

Simmons is a native of Forest City. After

having worked with me to prepare me to do

graduating from East Rutherford High School,

so. He continued to be a friend and mentor

he earned an AA degree in Health & Physical

until his passing. I'd like to thank the Board of

Education from Louisburg College (1975) and

Education and the staff of Hertford County

his BS in Health and Physical Education from

Public Schools as well as the community for

UNC Pembroke in 1977.

their support during my years at Hertford County.”

He attended ASU for additional graduatelevel courses before accepting a position as a


State AD of the Year. He was honored by being named an inductee to the East Rutherford High School Hall of Fame in 1993. Simmons, who is nearing 700 wins as a high school basketball coach, resides in Ahoskie and is active in his local community. He is the proud father of Evan Simmons, a senior at Grambling State University. Induction into the NCADA Hall of Fame recognizes achievement and excellence in the field of athletic administration. Selection to the NCADA Hall of Fame is a four-step process, including nomination, screened by

teacher in Hertford County Public Schools in 1981. In 1991, he was named the Athletic Director of Hertford County High School. During his tenure, Coach Simmons has been active at the local and state level in athletic administration. He has served on the N.C. Athletic Directors Board of Directors (1995-99), the N.C. Coaches Association Board of Directors (2003-07), and as the President of N.C. Coaches Association in 2009. Simmons has received the following



2019 NCAAHPERD-SM School AD of the Year, 2013 NCHSAA Dave Harris AD of the Year and the 2013 NCADA

the Hall of Fame Screening Committee, rated by the NCADA Executive Committee, and finally, the NCADA Board of Directors selects those individuals to be inducted. Each new inductee will be introduced by a special video presentation and will receive a commemorative NCADA Hall of Fame ring from Southern Recognition in honor of the induction. The NCADA Hall of Fame is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon an individual in the profession. The 2022 class of five bring the total inductees to 107. Cal Bryant is Editor of RoanokeChowan Publications, including the Roanoke-Chowan


Gates County Index and Front Porch Living.



a spirit that is

contagious P h o t o s

b y


Coaches have a profound impact on the

lives of student athletes.

Whether or not a coach desires to be a role

model, they usually become one. The thrill of competing for young athletes

is guided by an adult in athletics called “coach.”

S t o r y b y L e w i s H o g g a r d L e w i s H o g g a r d , J i m G r e e n &

An d r e ’

A l f r e d

She comes from a long line of local athletes

talented natural athlete with a strong work

who have impacted local and regional sports

ethic. That combination of athleticism and

in our area.

drive can lead to a special player and that is

She started playing sports at a young age with a ball always in her hand according to her dad, Jack Williford.

In Bertie County, one of these individuals

Jack stated, “She excelled at every

called ‘coach’ stands out as a role model to her

sport that she played and her mom and I

players and has so for almost thirty years.

encouraged her.”

exactly what Jackie became. She excelled in athletics growing up through middle school and high school. Basketball is where she had her greatest success. Copeland was a multiple time All-State

Jackie Williford Copeland was raised in

Her parents pushed her to some degree

player in high school and a state champion at

Bertie County on the outskirts of Windsor.

in her athletic endeavors, but she was also a

Lawrence Academy. She earned a scholarship


to what is now named Barton College to play basketball. Jackie had an incredible career in college


leading her team to great success. She scored over 1,000 points and helped the team to their first Carolina Conference Championship title in 1991. One of her most impactful influences was her coach on that championship team, Wendee Saintsing.

Coach Saintsing has

remained the head coach at Barton since that time. Copeland was a shooting guard who was deadly from the three-point area. One of her favorite moments is hitting a three-point shot that was the go-ahead basket in the last seconds of a game against Wingate in the second round of the NAIA tournament. That shot ended a 97game home winning streak for Wingate.

In 2019, Jackie was named to Barton College Hall of Fame.

This achievement

is special for any athlete to be named to their college sports hall of fame. She is not

Further proof of her three-point prowess is illustrated by her inclusion in college in the national division two three-point contest in Knoxville, Tennessee. Jackie was thrilled to play in Thomas-Bowling Arena where one of her revered coaches, the late Tennessee great Pat Summitt coached, with great success. Not only did Copeland compete in the contest, she finished in third place. There were roughly twenty-five competitors from around the nation competing in that contest. To






vernacular, Jackie not only played well but “showed out” on the court that is now called the Summitt.

different if fact is proud to be a member of the hall of fame and to be in there with multiple teammates and her former coach. Being a great athlete does not make one a great coach in any sport. The ability to communicate and to inspire are part of what makes a coach effective. Jackie has always possessed a competitive spirit and strong desire to win at any competition that she competes. Success has been on the field and the court for Jackie at Bertie High School, particularly on the diamond coaching softball. Jackie has a long history of guiding her teams - softball and tennis - to the state playoffs. She also had


success coaching basketball and volleyball earlier in her career, including some time at the former Southwestern Middle School. Whether coaching teams or individuals, Coach Copeland truly enjoys it. Listening to her former players, one realizes the influence that Coach Copeland is having on the young people that have played and currently play for her. She appreciates being referred to as a second mom, which is meant as a term of endearment. Her players genuinely care about her and she continues to be in contact with them many years after their respective playing days are over. The words “really positive” and “full of energy” are echoed by many players, former and current. The imprint that she has made on these young athletes is highlighted by a quote from one of her current players that she “has made us a better person as well as better players.” This statement was agreed upon by a gathering of her current tennis team at Bertie High School. Her ability to connect with the athletes and watching them grow has given coach

Coach Saintsing from college.

extended family in the same neighborhood

camp at N.C. State University under legendary

that she grew up playing against the boys as

Coach Kay Yow as having a great influence on

a youngster.

her not just in basketball, but in life.

Copeland the greatest reward rather than

Coach Copeland said, “I may retire soon

any one particular result on the field or court.

from teaching in the classroom, but I hope to

The opportunity to work with young athletes

always continue coaching young athletes.”

of different personalities, backgrounds and cultures has been special to her.

and lives close to her parents, sister and

Also, she credits attending basketball

An asset to Bertie High School, Bertie

Her infectious spirit and zest for life has been evident to anyone who has ever met her and continues to this day. Jackie brings honor, talent and respect to the name “coach.”

County and, more importantly to young

Lewis Hoggard is Executive Director of the

Coach Copeland stated that her success is

athletes and students who have been taught

Windsor/Bertie Chamber of Commerce and a

credited to the Lord, her parents and to her

by Jackie Copeland, she will be missed when

regular contributor to Eastern North Carolina

coaches, including but not limited to, coaches

she does retire.


Mike Vara and Pete Oliver in high school and


Jackie is married to Hunter Copeland

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Windsor is more than a lifestyle!


R SPREAD AGES & 45 AD CANNOT BE VED Ledger–Advance The Windsor/Bertie Chamber of Commerce represents and advocates business interests, promotes economic growth, provides leadership in community affairs, enhances the quality of life for the people of Bertie County and provides services and programs for its members.

121 Granville Street, Windsor, NC 27983 www.windsorbertiechamber.com (252) 794-4277

Thankfully Serving Bertie County for 50 Years!


Community News at your Fingertips Thadd White Group Editor twhite@ncweeklies.com

Golden Skillet



In memory of Dotsie Dunlow

103 W. Granville St., • Windsor, NC 27983 (252) 794-3468

Andre’ Alfred Sports Staff Writer aalfred@ncweeklies.com



he is David Friedman says players. says concerned for State’s Pastor Amanda Hoggard B1 set a table... Hugh Davis B3 should movesays believers onward in B3 faith. Michelle$1 980 S. Academy St. Leicester Past says goodbye to the Bertie or NC 27910 Ledger-Ad time Webb Hogg A4 Ahoskie, vance. B4 to pull back ard write and let it s Its fly.

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Award recently. e cha Hospital s met TuesSOR s o r WINDSOR – Filing the Hero of Research d n i sist with may W nge Hospiday recognized – Bertie encies. associates were started quickly got s to be Vidant to appoint Cha - Lewiston inco was locat- Keith Hyman rigorThe Perdue member Gre The acom ing.fournge ns Tho Then went Friday. g tal underwent to Ber allon 100 Com s review ed and arcount silent on mps Adams, virtual missiontie Cou Monday ous, a residence near on, Pric . Ada presboards of rested the elecDuring tions. nty ers ms & 11-12. ente March on Thursday e, Sco of in Windsor Three Co.,BEACHBO people – were a look LESLIE JointdCommistt, the Inpres enta the P.A., ARD Bertie visit, all County, night. current or prospec audit things atManaging gave som evaluatedthe al yeation twofisc in reviewer sion tive current for is charged of ered the aud e Editor Hymanleaders r that in Windso related Republithe e 30, with canJun . it disc the compliance r – filed for night ended daymember WINDSOR 202 the Wednesday sstandards The election ov. 0were appoint recertification on Mon tota – Indepen 34-year-old soon of it Ber Day murderafter dence The ed afordedicated opened another tie wasl reve term. Dr. Lewis’s - thewhite including: pres Wiggins ofat noon nue ted Friday. Cou celebra the They Cancer Center. Angelec proare Timored, for 2020 andnty com enta how enthy stroke-focused tion Davis durstyle. Research status. mis with fiscalBertie Lewis W. research will study Woodland. and Firewor qualiby ing left $25,324 sion Michael HOGGARD staffing ocks yea Fields. Hoggard, BRANDICE Parker, the Presi- hancer RNA molecules can gram,som lit ,669 and board expover r up Thatwhohomicide e professionwas the sky Bobbie serves asloend the .Cashie County The Staff Writer medical a wor que fied addition In residence Execustio at a Director River and sch dent of the Bertie Cancer be utilized to treat triple-negtive tota curred townitur stroke ns, outlay edutrained most k, in the ofes Windso current als of American Democr (cap r l led sess of the in Arrowhead Mobreast cancer, the catedWindso ats James with wasnight, exp – They Chapter ital Saturda ion r/Bertie endWOODVILLE to “On behalf ative collaboration of breast celebra $26 off N.C. Lee andcare, LEWISTON Park, itur ting Society stated, ,459 Home Anthony aggressive form bile ber manAward Indepen es)America of Comme Cham,383Research” Wardmak e ’s of Bertie Relay we are very of local emergency were reappoi of Woodland. “Hero dence. rce filed . The cancer. 35 north for 24/7 Farms nted agencies, Permayor of The Perdue associto by the of the was Freedom awarded wasSee stateagement town pleased and proud working Since 1995, Perdue Another board. rapid were Windsor.female Lewiston BALA ofFirewor than by Hy- of held ks ability to perform they have been NCE, have raised more the Saturda “We shot,Inallegedly are happyand labora- at the Youn re- due, y, July of for several ates addition Roanok A5 Woodville same, locagste 3 to wel- to comediagnostic towards this goal $1.7 million in support Counincumman, bentat the rushed newtesting, ability cently. Center after e Cashie to member River rs enjoy last and have finally met it. Commissioner for Life of Bertie She was s to Northtory tion. being resched year Randy P e r d u e years Carolina’sintravenous to see it Relay uled from K. Whitake ’s drive in critical through payroll “It is rewarding electhe day before tions administer the recogr filed medica- to -thro difficult ty, primarily local fundraisteam,” for hospital was due a second through the possibil clot-busting said Karen ugh term. Newdeduction and Brinson condition. Rela for its happen patients ent ity ofnized comer BY GENE to eligible Bell, y For inclemtions weather. is charged of COVID, the payroll executiv activities. Hyman David Fordirector of Life ing MOTthe availability Bunch the Bertie and support of times filed even for Life is team pushed ofLEYthe Statee as well. The count of 1st deThet. 2021 This Relay with one Board. Ledge technol-p.m. gates opened Relay for Life deductions finally meet their year this year as r-Adv There are one count “Togeth telemedicine to at 4:30 staff ’s even anceer, we for spectato they WIND still happening gree murder, will currently received through for the two t is Satu SORcontinu when rs, with event ogy. e to ensure 1st degree seats – those Parker continued. low andvendors BRAN mer that in, 2020 families – Wit a drive through of attempted entertai rday. DICE goal,” The at more. of Research” Award held ofnment by Whitake Joint h sum Commission counts election their theto“Hero HOGThe Hero of Research second year in a row. mee develweek break our murder, two fol- $165,000and ending r FILE for Relay and accessib berWrite Staff are ting - s are at 7:30 mon raising retirof GAR D allows Perdue to fund ing Windso deadly standards aPHOTO Comme onItAug paring and sch le, safe nexand The wasforathly rce Executivcancer event will take place assault with By Award r WINDCounty.Director r 21. cure, consultation seCommis t beautifu ools boa in Bertie . breast andoped sioner SOR Life of forl sunny for ano to ope leav e cheesy Lewis Hoggard evening with intent to for thatprerd affir 10. Saturday, August. a three-year David p.m. weapon every dec – fundexperts without athe e“We crab care Don had’ta great Life eli-isio $165,000 Overton thei n on & artichok ther votenwith in the parking – that will project ing, amid gible Life.conducted rainclou reaching in mas agahealth remain counts.” 21. this research famous crowd. sight.med veh It will forg e dip, school its be on the d time, inproviders, a meaA comatr the The slight BBQ was icle for the first Satu about crowd k wea level and breeze bal- A5 Michael nationwhotand See ARREST, VID-19,newEvery to Lewis mitt raising Rela it cooler the Relaloaded trailer A5 lot. stra two byetDr. year state fries, the years, made have pleaCarolina plantrday same ee isfunnel r- PerdueRela ton than y ofcial expertside but Lewiston size North See RELAY, se y for surement Aug a gus Bertieinsrequires had, in of Schoolsstatute typical y forice cream, top the No one askingcakes, July CO- the shaved years throevening ust past.” ic hot Life There University distwe wea reviewer companies filed for re a masHawaiia The 21 from State thesum of tthree Comprehensiv ughout Cou team patients. mer thonse ice, oneBer is Satu disa guid reve Board fice in any was for the ofLine ancecones, were nty of Lineberger , alon to appoint gree tors as pare arriving k elinfour from sausage tiespectasnoother Bertie 7:30 achieve -up to dors onrday, multiple High Hero es for aled to find d seat vennationally one and somember County town. theisr it shoSee READY, forbarbecu and ing urge g with A5 for nts siteAu- held star Thithe bestSch -9 p.m turkey the ano stud uld beon whe the show. d to veh included surv ool. Eat . at theandBer evee. ents – two driv s will be Y’all put Filing Yet, Speller tie Midt at 7:15 ivor a“It nt willther. yea icle with wasther e thro , man a sign continu Windso a fantasti s be-es Monaprises, lot. Enter- dle The p.m date evecntevening driv Deep r Farmer’ be The weather ugh See APPOINTE on thei the through of surv day s rs . Maralon up South The for the . Ice Friday Hawaiian ketSchoperate D, 3 for ande others. and was num d the rowbeautifu ool in See tilthese by the ungroups r highlights g withcomnoon said luminarand ivor Shepher ber MAS Windso due par on Good sec l,” par good dec Friday, ‘do ship d charities, KS, A5 king opened They provide Food r-Bertie VID surv16.the to the ond orated civic like-minded opportunity ies then mak ade the . Tea of toJuly Cemcau Chamyea event. and or ivor their for dHigh abu a Edgewood of foods ms the sponsorvehicle s thatthrough e its of the variety If one tion and munity programs cam- r in Locally, Julynda madtwice’ a Schhome counthe are join cars s willthroughout wreaths the g hot is ool ofway to groups s atte In concernnce includin e signofhav annual Giving etery road veterans’ e COthe par honor and ship usin Thadd betw America enc ndin LESLIE BEACHBOARD s Ber and White Across s. g the try to The organizations paign. ourage for een ade. reached remember Tea the can tie See choose Wreaths Debe Proisg dedicatthe in FIREWOR and through Managing Editor eve re d Sponsorship via ing mevery KS, will par year The campaign two serv 3 email at ceremony ouricenation’sntsveterans Group to MICHELLE twhite@ year groups and indi- to hicl urged to ticipants schools folloall be for military LEICESTER THAD the ed to the wing a serincweekl ies.com. es . duty the their cember. D WHITBertie Ledger-Adv decora are active in 2007, – Throughout es Bertie WINDSOR The name viduals giving back in founding See WREATHS, A5 E Since itswith be- for Life ones atte the par of ance Ledge te thei long. the was brought while helping the nationr-Adv . B&E America be In July them has celebrated month of July,the commit communities ndin ade ance to BUEN “re- Wreaths Across hundreds e ofof r ve-Giving play WINDSOR to term “The cha organization, tee’s attentio A VIST ing musDJ Serv g Rela thenmission nonprofit that rges with - The al on whe their wrappin to share the partnered Spookta A lar 5K only used original America for identify was in last ic at ices willy Across has a new Wreaths a being name honor ther – The weecug and teach.” event to avoid shootin tion was ing our the decisio name. its member, interpre k lies the distwill orThe into upwhich event beinfeaturing event. any belief its inve was held in a neganotannual n5K (WAA) deathted of waygby that the rict tive at or near we condone its race 34-y the Hallowe now be to stig Ber will handspart atto file Jamboree of ear-oldshootin en,” use in any and See called the comClar munity. negative rney. reads. Bertie g deait aRELA County was Holleytie k of tacular 5K time way. Our “We apSpecJam their kille Jr. Clar preciate th intention nized in 2010Y, to & 1 Mile Fun A5 addressorgaBertie has been The She commit said d app kforthrig ers rece and always problem was es Run. Earl honesty teemile and Cou the released htness his riff of hunger stateme sho will be orninG nty provide, financia ivedMto concern ima nt.John Mon s froma roxi ood t G offic in Bertie this matand ing afor tely l support County by raising e is callthedisp ely toand Chu atch B3 that end, Bue day ............. were we are 9 p.mM mission at app funds changin rch itchell The & Faith two na , Church for Aug Good of ildred M fired the Good Sheriff & Fait Shepher . “Wh roxB4 Vistga the name Shepherd ..9. Food ...................... of theand a that d h ...... on injured. Food Holley foun en they Pantry. Pantry.” olerain Opinio The per 5Ksho disp ...... Busines ....A4said Thec ....... arri , ts cea d Mr. atch of y imm son B4 Opinion ...................... n ...... ...... Fun Run Clar ved, was1 Mile ...... s ............ sed Out at the sonnel ed ................ they edia & Abo ......Church subscribing! The ,” Sheriff k was ...... .....&B5 Out & 7About .................A2 tely andfor med See SPECTACU scene.you Spo Thank ....... B1 sheriff’ Holley deputieical per deder rts ...... ut ...... ........A4Faith ............ LAR, 3 ... 3...................... Good Mornin Sports the said s s to Goo ............ ...........A ........................ . • Windsor Opinio the Matt Roe directio office, G, . 6 50¢ 2 d Powellsville • Roxobel Falcons ...........n ............ • Merry Hill • M unn of buck, • Lewiston Woodville ornthelMa W • Colerain • Kelford Jean B1 • Aulander ............ Out & .... 4 alton Askewville reach Maj. worked About nie of linG ................... , carteWisto with 2 Round 4 n W of ear-oldofficers Frank Jonathaarrestn Van

Hoggard files for mayor, Whitaker, Bunch for commission er


smen h t

Audi to is just r says fu nd over one balance perc ent

Brandice Hoggard Staff Writer bhoggard@ncweeklies.com


Edito frien r Thadd Whit d and A4 men e reme tor Lann mbe y Hida rs y.

Volume 123: Volume 123: 980 S. • Roxobel • Windsor Hill • Powellsville Academ No. 26 Volum No. 27 Woodville • Merry y Heating & Ahoskie, e • Lewiston • Colerain • Kelford NC 279 St. No. 123: THURSDAY • 32 Askewville Askewville • Aulander Air Conditionin 10 JULY 8, 2021 • Aulan Askew g der • Coler ville 252.209.02River • Au ain • Kelford • Lewist Roanoke/Cashie 23 lande on Wood Chamber at the Water Street in THUe RSD ville r • Co and the Windsor/Berti • Merry Di- Center on at Hill • Powe and will kick off ber of Commercelera plan- of Commerce Executive AY are • AU Windsor THADD WHITE llsville • Roxob • Kerector Lewis Hoggard said. town of Windsor theinJuly 5 p.m. with handHeatinel • Winds lforare excited about get- GU Bertie Ledger-Advance ST 19,95.9 will be on Air ning to proceed “We d Magic g& or • Lew 202 Fireworks if Moth- ting back from theCo a semblance of to live Freedom 2 be 1 broadcast will isto crowd to THAD skies Mike,” nditio WINDSOR – The D WHIT and have na Wo er Nature will allow. Friday site and a DJ, “Mixin’25 there normalcy IndeGroup E odville 2.209 ning filled with fireworks “Right now we realizeshow- gathered to celebrate Edito r • for scattered FIREWORKS, A5 .02 Day.” Clar night.WINDSOR call See a is Me pendence plan the is at least –that’s k 23 rry Hill planning to be held A Win Or beh but weJr.are follo ers, stop ind threat The festivities will rain. ofdso ple felosome just possible,” • Po bar if atoffall win r man proceed despite A repo ny dru s facieng wellsv ChamKing g a traf charges rt by The Windsor/Berti fic Offi Stre g and mul ille • Win . weaponti- was cer Jess Windso et. Onc Roxob e Ratzlafdsor Poli s whe driving ie Mizelle r Police reached Officer el • ce Lt. on Car said ed 31-y f said n he the Win the

Freedom Cele bration

Windsor, Cha mb host honor, firework eve Perdue receerives 1 event nt Relay plans 202

Mask s by sc require d hool board


For L

ife is



in July’ featuring ‘Giving Fatal ths Across America sh Wrea Asbe New o otine, nam ll aw gw sam aitin ill beeexcellent eve g writ ten re nt planned revie ports for Octobe wed r by D In th is ed istric ition t Att In this editi In this edition orne on y

109 S. King St • PO Box 69 • Windsor, NC 27983 Phone: 252-794-3185 • Fax: 252-794-2835

history meets adventure

tie WE HAVE A NEW Ledger–AdvanceB BeBer rtNon C iee5K-Em Farmer’s Coerg unenc for slated tyyy Tran 252rts P325Ag Festival794-5334 • 252easpo 2460 nutss Thank



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line of 217 award for April 1 U.S 252 winning Event slated . Hig -794-2 Famil Helpi ay ng peanut snacks 138 •y hw info@p13 NoFamil rth y and gift com bina nuts.n , Winds et • ww or, NC tions. w.pnut s.net ganizers. off BY THADD WHITE The event will kick parade Bertie Ledger-Advance at 11 a.m. with a for 11:30 a.m. inaugu- planned following ROXOBEL – The Festival Immediately Farmer’s ral Roxobel Ag the parade, The event is taking shape. the 5K will start. for the Monday evening will offer a prize Roxobel Revitalization male and female who with dressed as Committee met Roxo- are best members of the farmers. sign bel Board of CommisThose wishing to sioners and Roxobel up or who want learn along the FarmFire Department lead- more about contact with community for er’s 5K should ers to iron out plans is the Windsor/Bertie of the festival, which County Chamber slated for April 1. the Commerce, who tradisuch Plans made for the tionally organizes festilocal festival include Run, events for Farmer’s 5K Fun and vals, at 252-794-4277. there children’s games During the day musical entertainment. will be a variety of enfestiThe inaugural tertainment, including provided val is being planned to the amusements to draw people County See FESTIVAL, A3 northern Bertie to ortown, according


pastor of the church,

Vidant Bertie celebrates heart health

which dates its history

back more than a

Dewitt Proctor ity from Samuel Virginia of Windsor. of Theology of rural area outside from Bertie SchoolUniversity. BY LESLIE BEACHBOARD Lucas graduated Union in 2004 Bertie Ledger-Advance High School. Lucas was ordained Baptist University Missionary She attended Shaw Sum- at Mt. Olive woman is WINDSOR - A local in Raleigh and graduated Church. word throughwith a BatchPastor for 12 preaching God’s ma Cum Laude “I have been a and County,” said degree in Religion out Bertie County. years in Bertie Alma Lucas elor’s The Reverend Philosophy. her educa- Lucas. ministry was a says going into Lucas continued Laude See LUCAS, A5 graduating Cum calling. of Bertie tion, degree in DivinLucas is a native with a Master’s raised in the County and was

Perry selected Chief

Oftie County Sheriff’s Atkins BY THADD WHITE fice in 2002 when was Bertie Ledger-Advance was sheriff, and to Corporal Coun- promoted WINDSOR – Bertie later. He took Holley two years a sor. assault inty Sheriff John more tie Hospital hosted Chief over sexual in 2006, Guests learned has named a new vestigations dinner to celebrate about how to “Love began workDeputy. has and then heart health month. Your Heart” in celebraKenny Perry, who areas of the Heart disease claims tion of American Heart year ing in all womserved for the past office. been sheriff’s the lives of many of Month. as Lieutenant, has “I did a little bit spot en. The keynote speaker he said. “I chosen to fill the That is why Vidant of the event, America’s vacant everything,” I was and which has been re- filled in wherever in paBertie Hospital Leader Zonya since Greg Atkins Health Nutrition evneeded – be that other Vidant Foco, invigorated investigatired. entities, East Carolina eryone with her mesmake trol or doing and “I wanted to and tions.” Heart Institute finding simple Holpart- sage of sure I took my time Last year, Sheriff to improve their physician person Perry to to things to do found the right Hol- ley promoted of the reners work together your heart health. for the job,” Sheriff place high- take the offer risk assessments Foco’s tips on healthy Hoggard. ley said. “The staff educastress and tiring Lt. Carl he began and screenings, treat- eating, exercise, ly respects Kenny time, and wise tion, advanced himself At that the entire eight management he has proven eneroffi- overseeing ment options and lifestyle choices His duas a hardworking patrol division. Heart Truth luncheons audience. cer. I have confidence our re- gized the and dinners in Foco enlisted several See PERRY, A3 he’ll do a great job.” Bergion each year. Perry joined the See HEART, A3 A large crowd attendBertie ed the Vidant Bertie Ledger-Advance

BerWINDSOR - Vidant

/ Bertie Ledger-Advance


to ministry Lucas ‘called’

Zonya Foco speaksTruth



Hospital Heart at the Social on Feb. 16 ConCashie Heritage Windvention Center in

In this edition

Obituaries ......................A2 Opinion ..........................A4 B1 Sports ............................. B4 ............. Church & Faith ....................... B6

Good MorninG, EMily ShinabErry Thank you for subscribing!

PLATE SUPPER slaw, and bread BBQ CHICKEN w/ red potatoes, $8.00

as a part of



pins the new Chief John Holley (left) Bertie County Sheriff Kenny Perry Tuesday. Deputy badge on

Volume 119: No.




APRIL SATURDAY, Serving at 4pm







Jim Green Sports Edit jgreen@nc



AS A COACH S t o r y



P h o t o s

b y

C r a i g

M o y e r

North Pitt soccer coach Lauren Wasilick

Wasilick has since stood in as a volleyball

first, especially with not many shared priorities,

always had a desire to coach, a desire that

coach at times, worked as an assistant on the

the love of soccer has always connected her

was so strong, it led to her changing her major

girls’ basketball team (including the 2A state

and the players.

during her time at East Carolina University.

champion team in 2018), but she has been a

One of her previous teams deserves

mainstay as the head of the Panthers’ soccer

most of the credit for Wasilick being so well

program for nearly the last decade.

accepted in the role.

Wasilick, who originally went to college

planning to become an athletic trainer, instead majored in health education so she could look

Wasilick not only coaches North Pitt’s girls’

“I had a group of guys a couple years back

to obtain a coaching position. The opportunity

soccer program, but also heads the boys’ team

that really just accepted me as the coach and

to coach presented itself before Wasilick even

as one of only a few female coaches to lead a

set the tone with the community and the

graduated from ECU, as she began coaching

boys’ team in the region.

parents that ‘she’s good and she knows what

during her time student-teaching at North Pitt.

She noted that while the move to coaching the boys’ team presented some difficulties at

she’s doing,’ and that’s just kind of carried on throughout the years,” Wasilick said. She added that she was hesitant at first to take the boys’ head coaching job, but she is now well accepted by everyone within the program. One reason Wasilick said she enjoys coaching so much is the extra connections it allows her to make with the athletes outside of the classroom. “It’s fun, you get to know the kids in a different setting and a different way, and I feel like you can influence them a whole lot more as a coach than you can in the classroom,” Wasilick said. The physical education teacher noted she always had a desire to coach soccer, as that was the sport she played the most herself. Like many small-school boys’ soccer programs in Eastern North Carolina, North Pitt’s team consists largely of Latin American players. While there is no issue of a language barrier, Wasilick did say the cultural differences did


have some impact early on.

coaching at North Pitt, as she went to high

on a day-to-day basis, you have tremendous

“It does (affect some players) a little bit.

school Cardinal Gibbons, a 4A private school

respect for them that they can still put on the

Culturally for them, women are not a big

in Raleigh, and had to quickly adjust to life at a

uniform, put a smile on their face and come

leader in their families and in their day-to-

more rural 2A school.

out here and play the game that they love,”

day life, men are typically the ones in charge,” Wasilick said. However, once the one team accepted her in the leadership position as head coach, the

She said seeing what the players on the team go through on a daily basis motivates her every day as a coach. “Just some of the things they deal with

Wasilick said. Craig Moyer is a Sports Writer for The Daily Reflector and a contributor to Eastern North Carolina Living.

trend has continued with each team in the following years. “I had that group that said ‘No, she’s going to be okay as the one in charge,’ and since then it’s been very easy to get that going,” Wasilick said. Wasilick certainly fits one trend in sports that is evident from high school to the pros — younger and younger coaches are becoming the norm. She said her time coaching only a handful of years removed from being in high school herself helped her be more understanding of the issues the players are facing. “You kind of understand some of the struggles that they’re going through because it’s fresh in your mind somewhat, so you can definitely relate to them a little bit more,” Wasilick said. For Wasilick, there was some culture shock when she first started teaching and


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*** N







MCP Jr’s. Presents The Children’s performance of


Drs. Mills & Matthews Eye Clinic


Friday, September 30, 2022 – 7:30 p.m. Saturday, October 1, 2022 - 7:30 p.m. Sunday, October 2 – Matinee - 3:00 p.m. Ticket: $5


Thursday, Nov 17, 2022 – 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov 19, 2022 – 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20- Matinee - 3:00 p.m. Adult ticket: $10 • Senior Citizens & Students: $8 The Martin Community Players Presents their spring musical “DISNEY’S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST” Thursday, March 16, 2023 – 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 18, 2023 – 7:30 p.m. Sunday, March 19 - Matinee - 3:00 p.m. Adult ticket: $15 • Senior Citizens & Students: $10

***All performances held at Martin County Auditorium*** 1260 Godwin Avenue Williamston, NC just off US Hwy 17 For more information, contact Artistic Director, Andy Weaver 252.661.0609

Dr. Robert C. Mills, OD Dr. Scott Matthews, OD

316 S. McCaskey Road-Williamston (formerly Dr. Skahill’s office)


Give us a call for your complete family eye care • Glasses • Contact Lenses • Management and treatment of eye disease


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veteran northampton coach relates to his players S t o r y P h o t o s


b y b y

G e n e M o t l e y An d r e A l f r e d


George Privott will tell you that in becoming

“A lot of things I do coaching-wise I got

a football coach you may believe that you’re

from him,” Privott said. “He taught me things

teaching young people how to successfully

like how to care for your players, little things

learn to play a game while also learning to be

you can do for motivation, like those new all-

responsible; but in reality it’s those youngsters

black uniforms my players debuted on Sept.

who teach the coach.


Currently the head football coach at

On that date, prior to the North Edgecombe

Northampton County High School, Privott’s

game, the Jags warmed up, did their pre-game

Jaguar teams have made the playoffs for all

– including prayer – and when they returned

13 years of his head coaching tenure, and in

to their weight room, there were all-black

a dozen post-seasons have only failed to not

jerseys and pants.

advance beyond the first round once. His 10year record is an impressive 85-45.

“And, they (the kids) went ballistic,” he acknowledged, with a grin.

“It was my early coaches – Carl Brock,

A 6’-1”, 290-pound lineman and 1994

Paul Moore, Scott Privott – that pretty much

graduate of Hertford County High, Privott

transformed me into the player I became and,

originally enrolled at North Carolina A&T in

not to be arrogant, but by the time I learned

Greensboro to play football. He returned

my position (lineman) I was a force to be

home following a freshman injury, but after

reckoned with.”

a year off returned to play all four years at

As for the transition to coaching, Brock, who died in 1996, was an especially aspirational influence on Privott.

COACHING HAS AN IMPACT ON LIVES AND HELPS ONE TO MAINTAIN A PASSION FOR THE GAME. County school system, that he had his first experience with coaching. “Shake Jacobs was the coach at Elizabeth

nearby Elizabeth City State, graduating in

City Middle School and he didn’t have any


assistant coaches,” Privott noted. “So I and a

It was there, in 2000, in the Pasquotank

teammate went out and assisted him. It was


frustrating because we were losing games and

“That comes from something that some

as new coaches we bumped heads a little bit.”

coaches frown upon,” he says. “As a young

“I would advise young coaches to learn

Still, Privott was invited back for a second

assistant older coaches told me to be friendly

the head coach’s total philosophy: that’s the

year and that team went undefeated and won

with my players, but being a video-game kid

offense, the defense and the special teams,”

the conference championship.

myself I can sit down with them and come

Privott said. “A lot of people neglect special

This success led to an assistant position

down on their level. The kids can relate to that,

teams, but we practice it every day. In the

back in his hometown at Hertford County

and even though some coaches can’t do it, it’s

past we’ve recovered onside kicks, but in my

High while teaching physical-education at

a skill to relate on their level, then switch to

opening game we kicked off and they ‘took

Murfreesboro’s Riverview School.

coaching-mode, and still be respected.”

it to the house’; so that pretty much ended

In between stints with the Bears, he volunteer coached at Bertie High in Windsor

He admits there’s a fine – but distinct – line between being ‘coach’ and ‘one of the fellas’.

who aspire to the profession.

kicking it in the air. From now on we keep it on the ground; we don’t even have a field-

then returned before then-HCHS coach Greg

“Despite playing basketball with some of

goal kicker. We let teams know that with our

Watford left for Northampton-East in Conway

them and other activities of having a good

special teams defense we make turnovers

and brought George along as his top assistant.

time, they know that once I cross the track

happen. You’re going to have to earn it on us.

He worked there from 2007-2010 when he

onto the football field, I go from ‘Coach Privott’

“The second factor is don’t try to specialize

ascended to the head coaching position.

to ‘Coach-P,’ and they know not to mess with

at one position. Learn the whole playbook.

“Everybody dreams of going to the NFL,”

Coach-P,” he admitted. “That’s the respect

While you may coach quarterbacks or running

he related. “But I knew from the arthritis in my

I give them, and that they now will give me;

backs, start to coach all positions: defensive

knees and the condition of my body that the

there’s no games (in the classroom, or) on the

and offensive line. If you have aspirations

next best thing was to be coaching so I could

field. Some players respect how one minute I

of being a head coach you need to learn all

remain close to football.”

can be ‘cool with them’ and the next minute

positions for every team you put on the field,”

I’m no-play.”

he asserted.

Privott credits ‘people-skills’ for much of his success with his players as well as his work

With over 20 years of experience carrying

“Finally, relate to your players. You don’t

with other coaches. It extends beyond X’s and

the whistle and the clipboard, Privott has

have to be their buddy, but you have to know


some advice for young coaches and those

what it takes to make that player perform at


Privott tells young players that Crossen is a prime example of establishing a solid work ethic. “I heard stories of how his parents pushed him, and how he also hit the weight room to be in top shape to avoid injuries,” Privott remarked. “There was a time I canceled practice for the team, but there was Keion running wind sprints and getting in extra work. “I reference him sometimes, but I don’t try to compare him to anyone. I just want them to know that with their hard work, they can make it, too,” he added. Crossen, who is now an ordained minister, has also played for the Houston Texans, NY Giants and now plays for the Miami Dolphins. Privott’s accomplishments demonstrate that there is football life after you play your final down. Coaching has an impact on lives and helps one to maintain a passion for the game. It can turn a dream into something that can last for

their best,” he declared. “People see we’re a

for his final two seasons of high school ball

small school at Northampton, and while my

before he headed off to play at Western

Gene Motley is a retired Sports Editor and

assistants handle a lot I find out what it takes

Carolina. Crossen later earned a 2019 Super

Sports Director and a regular contributor to

to get the best from a player.”

Bowl ring with the New England Patriots, who

Eastern North Carolina Living.

Privott coached NFL player Keion Crossen

a lifetime.

drafted him in 2018.




coach tamara

rodgers speaks about

spiking S t o r y



P h o t o s

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When Lewis Rodgers Sr. and Lewis

better students, players and people is what’s

relationships comes in. It is much easier to

Rodgers Jr., both coaches of a variety of sports

important. I tell them all the time that I am so

try and guide young people when they feel

discussed coaching, they probably weren’t

proud of them. It doesn’t matter if they lost

a connection with you. Sometimes they will

aware they were influencing young Tamara

by 20 points, the fact that they continued to

lose focus when they feel they are not doing


play and cheer each other on is what makes

‘good enough,’ so I tell them everyday that I

me proud,” said Rodgers.

am proud of them, said Rodgers. “I do this to

It wasn’t strategies or game plan knowledge

Tamara absorbed when listening to her

Although a first-year assistant coach,

let them know that no matter if they win or

grandfather and father discuss the points of a

Rodgers realizes a coach needs to connect

lose, the fact they continue to play is what I

game. The caring the two coaches shared for

with the players in order to build a strong

am proud of. I will also get out there and play

the players they coached, is what led Tamara

relationship and to have the ability to focus

with them during practice.”

to the coaching field at Columbia Middle

their passion and filter their enthusiasm.

School in Columbia.

“I believe this is where having strong

Rodgers is aware her players are at an age when emotions run high and occasionally

“I guess I can say it runs in the family. My dad and grandpa were also coaches and I enjoyed watching them,” Rodgers said. At nineteen years old the Wildcat assistant volleyball coach can relate to her players. “I played volleyball all through middle school and my first year of high school. Volleyball was the only sport that I truly fell in love with playing. I enjoy watching other sports, but volleyball is the main one,” said the Coach. While the skills of volleyball may be on the coach’s agenda, Rodgers maintains one of the main fundamentals of coaching is helping to build character in the players by building


relationships and confidence. “Winning is not everything. Becoming


tears flow when spikes fail and she uses humor

12-girl squad rotates play so everyone sees

public health education and looks forward to

as a form of contentment.

court time.

finishing her degree. For





“Another thing I do is try and joke with

“One of the highlights of my week is to

them. I try to keep practice fun so it is not

see the parents come to the games. The team

this strict environment. I want them to know

loves it when the parents show up. I believe

“I am actually interested in becoming a

it is okay to have fun, as long as you are still

the parents realize the value of the lessons we

head coach now. I love working with kids, and

learning,” she said.

are teaching. I really hope that they can see

being a volunteer assistant allowed me to see

how great their kids are and how much they

that I actually enjoy helping kids and being

are trying to improve,” said Rodgers.

able to help coach them into playing a sport.”

Winning is always on Rodgers’ radar and her playbook reflects that, but it doesn’t take top billing. “Winning is wonderful, but it is not the

The assistant coach also realizes coaching

position is a step toward head coaching.

A first year teacher’s assistant and assistant coach Rodgers gets excited when she explains

involves counseling of sorts.

the reactions her players and students have

most important thing about playing a sport.

“Volleyball is a mental sport. I really enjoy

This is something I try to make sure the girls

working with the girls and helping on their

understand. Even if we lose, you still kept

attitudes and how to keep positive. They may

“Personally I have a great relationship

not be doing well in the game and always tell

with the kids. I am their coach and I love all of

“You still keep playing the game and still

them, ‘don’t drop your head, we will get there,

them,” she said.

made sure to show good sportsmanship

it’s O.K.’ If one person is having a bad day and

Rodgers was recently excited when a

towards the other team and your own

they are mentally involved, the whole team is

player who wasn’t doing well in the grade

teammates. I know sometimes it can be

involved. That’s why it is such a mental sport.

department brought all of her grades up in

hard to keep this in mind, but I try to always

If one person is having a bad game it can bring

order to play. She said it is wonderful to watch

let them know that win or lose I am always

the whole team down,” said Rodgers. “If you’ve

that and be a part of that.

proud,” continued Rodgers.

got something going on, leave it outside. Do

going,” she said.

The team currently has one or two games a week and the

when they cross paths in the hall.

The educator was recently awarded “Wildcat of the Month” by a vote of the

not bring it on the court.” Aside from the hours Rodgers spends on the court assisting Wildcat

students. “I was so excited. One of the teachers had


their students write letters to me. I received

Ramos, she is also a

about four so far and they are still coming. I

full time student

love reading them,” Rodgers said, smiling



majoring in

broadly. Rodgers could not be more proud of her ladies. “I am truly proud of each and every one of my ladies. I have enjoyed watching them become the best young women they can be. My experience as a volunteer assistant is wonderful, and it was all because of them,” Rodgers said. “I have enjoyed becoming close to all my girls and I love how they are comfortable to come to me when they are struggling. I love all of the hugs I receive daily from them and the little pop ups at my door just to say “hi.” I just hope they know how proud I am of them.” John Foley is a Staff Writer for the Bertie Ledger-Advance,


Eastern North Carolina Living.




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webb gives heart, mind and body to football S t o r y



P h o t o s

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Wa l ke r


Cliff Webb enjoys his job.

Webb laughed a bit when he talked about

Webb, who has been coaching at South

his approach to dealing with players.

Edgecombe Middle School since 1989,

“You (a coach) can’t do it like they (coaches)

absolutely beams when he talks about the

used to do it,” he said. “Back in the day, I got hit

youngsters on his football team.

up side the head,” as he made a hand gesture

And on the sidelines during a game, he’s

not so much caught up in the game as he is in watching the players.

to his head, followed by one reflecting a hand grabbing a face mask. Webb said coaching in 2022 is listening to

On a recent Thursday, as the orange-

the players and taking the time to know what’s

and-black clad Dragons dismantled an

going on in their respective lives. He says a

outmatched Elm City Vikings team by a 40-0

coach has got to take the time to learn about

score, he was clapping for his players on the

his or her student-athletes.

“I’ve got some really good kids, I really do,” he said. “They don’t cause me or the other coaches any problems … they don’t cause problems in school.” Webb said that makes coaching the team easier. “That’s because we’ve got some good parents,” he explained. “They are really supportive.” They — at least some of them — like and respect Webb. “Oh, he’s good with the kids,” said a woman

field, but turning to look and see who could go in the game next. “Are you ready, son?,” he asked a youngster who was engaged in conversation with a teammate. “Son,” he called out again, “are you ready to play?” The player had his helmet on in a heartbeat, ready to be called to Webb’s side. The





demeanor is that instead of coming across as a coach who is not pleased that a player wasn’t paying attention, it was more like a father calling a son in from the outside. “Well, we’ve got a couple of players who are really scared, but I know they’re scared,” he said. “They want to play, but they’re not real sure they want to play … but they practice and I want to make sure they get to play.”


wearing an orange shirt with Dragons on it at the Duck Thru convenience store the day after the game. “They (kids) like Coach Webb. They know if they work and practice, they’re gonna play,” she added. After the Thursday game, Webb took the uniforms home and washed them, and had them hanging on a rack in his office. “Up until last year, we had a washer and dryer right over there” — gesturing to a spot in his office — “but they took them out, so I take the stuff home and do it,” he explained. “The kids take their practice stuff home (to wash), but I can’t let ‘em take those game uniforms home … you never know when we’ll get another set,” he said, explaining that the like-new-looking uniforms were given to the team several years earlier. During games, Webb and his fellow coaches wear a gray T-shirt with a firebreathing South Edgecombe Dragon on the front and “Thank GOD for everything” on the back. “The team came up with that slogan,” he said. “The team voted on that.” Webb said the fact is he’s dealt with good kids and good parents down through the years, along with the school’s administration. “That’s why I’m still here,” he admitted. “The kids and parents are good and great to work with and the administration is super.” But Webb won’t be at SEMS after this year, and he admitted he would be at a loss as to what he’ll do. When





expression almost turned somber. “I don’t know what I’m gonna do. I’ve problems with my knees … the arthritis is really bad in both of them. But if I can’t coach 100 percent, how can I expect my players to

ShaeLeigh, is one of the managers, along with Zytavien Mabry. “She’s kinda the glue,” he said, beaming like the proud father he is. “She makes sure

Webb said he’s had some longtime supporters, such as Dave Sharpe, who has worked his chains crew since 1997 and he was with Southern Bank.

the players don’t miss anything and she does

“There are a lot of good people like that

all the social media stuff, so they know when

who have bought shoes for kids … pants,

practices are and things like that.”

jerseys … whatever.”

He said ShaeLeigh “really helps me out

Webb said he couldn’t experience success

Webb has long days.

… and the players tell her when they need

with a good staff, which includes defensive

He works for Moore Paint & Wallpaper in


coach Chris Lewis, offensive coach Carlo

do it?”

Rocky Mount, then heads to the locker room. “J.T. Williams and his son, Joe, own Moore

Webb said he got his start when Tommy Tolson asked him to take over the program.

Paint and they let me do it (coach). Usually, I

Along the way, he’s had some success and

work 8 til’ 4:30, but during football season, I

points to a plaque when his team went 8-0

get off at 2:30. They’re good to me.”

and won the Cougar Bowl in 2009.

With Webb, the team more or less gets a two-for-one-deal, in that his daughter,


“We (South and West) play it at SouthWest Edgecombe and we won it by two points.”

Foreman and backs coach Greg Horne. “They’re good at what they do and with the kids,” he said. “I don’t know what I’m gonna do … I’m sure gonna miss it.” John H. Walker is a Staff Writer for the Rocky Mount Telegram and Eastern North Carolina Living.


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Washington High School Athletic Director

Corey Crossen is the coach’s coach. The 25-


P h o t o s

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Fo l e y

humble, never mentioning this long list of achievements.

Although Crossen’s educational background is in academic leadership and agriculture, his

year veteran of the high school has become

Aside from his athletic successes, his

an integral component contributing to the

academic achievements weigh heavily on his

“Growing up, my entire family was involved

consistency of the coaching program at

talents contributing to his ability to coach and

in sports so from the time I can remember

Washington County High School in Plymouth.

direct. Crossen has a BS degree in Agriculture

I always loved sports - especially football,”

For 34 years, athletic director and head

from North Carolina A&T State University. He

Crossen said.

football coach Robert Cody led the teams

went on to Grand Canyon University, where

He highlights the path to success - whether

to decades of impressive standings. As an

he earned a Master’s Degree in Education

on the field or in the classroom - is education

assistant coach, Crossen had the opportunity

Leadership and Administration and then

and he strives to send this message to his

to work next to Cody for many of those years.

returned to his alma mater to earn a second

students and their coaches.

When Cody stepped down because of

Master’s Degree in Agricultural Education.

family reasons in 2017, Crossen stepped up.

and much of the credit for those wins goes to the defensive coaching team of which Crossen co-directed. In the past, Crossen has been credited with helping solidify one of the best defenses in the state. Today, he walks the halls of Washington High School as its athletic director and, although he misses coaching, he enjoys his current role. “I miss coaching and being on the sidelines, but I still get to go to the sidelines if I want to,” Crossen said.

“I always try to influence student-athletes to maximize their potential, not just for

Under Cody’s direction the team won three state championships in 2007, 2012 and 2015

love of sport is deep rooted.

athletic accomplishments, but for personal


growth and career success. Education is the key,” said Crossen. A highlight of Crossen’s career to date took place in 2007 when the North Carolina General Assembly ratified a joint resolution recognizing the achievements of the 2007 Plymouth





The resolution spotlighted eight seasonal accomplishments that led to the legislative motion, one being personally rewarding for Crossen. He is mentioned in the resolution as a coach and credited, along with the other

For all of the accolades and mentions he

coaches, for a winning season and assisting

has received over the years, Crossen remains

with directing 11 of 17 seniors on the team to


attend four-year colleges and universities and

director for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school

one planning to attend community college.

system, where he was considered one of the

The state legislature recognized the

state's best athletic directors.

challenges and stress of the position. The Athletic Director has certain criteria for choosing coaches.

achievements of the players, coaches and

Crossen’s coaching philosophy, which he

“When hiring, I am looking for dependability

staff of the Plymouth High School varsity

continues to focus on with his coaches, is to

and knowledge of his and her sport. It is also

football team and honored the team on

emphasize potential in everything they do.

important to have objectives that align with

winning the 2007 NCHSAA State 1-A Football Championship with the resolution.

“I try to continually influence studentathletes to maximize their potential not just

Throughout Crossen’s tenure as defensive

for athletic accomplishments, but for personal

coordinator, before becoming AD, the Vikings

growth and career success in their lives,”

had been ranked numerous times in the

Crossen said.

Associated Press regular season poll in the top

Aside from Crossen’s school responsibilities

ten 1-A teams. From 2011 through 2015 the

he also spends time coordinating home

Vikings record showed 68 wins, against only

athletic events, all athletic scheduling, serving

seven losses. The Vikings were credited with

as Game Day Administrator, academic and

having a great defense, having held seven

athletic compliance checks while making sure

opponents to eight or fewer points.

the teams have winning seasons.

Crossen was honored again, as recently as

While Crossen once had a defensive team

2017, being awarded the Dave Harris Athletic

under his direction, as Athletic Director he

Director of the Year award from the North

now has 21 coaches under his direction.

Carolina High School Athletic Association. Named for the coach and athletic director, Harris embarked on a highly successful 20-

our school athletic department,” said the veteran of Washington County High School. In choosing athletes, Crossen looks for the passion and love of the sport the player possesses. Losses are something Crossen has not had much experience with, but he does claim to “self evaluate” before watching the game films after a loss. For those who have a desire to follow in Crossen’s footsteps, his advice is simple. “Create a career plan and have faith in your plan and follow it just as if you would a GPS

Having walked in their shoes, Crossen

taking you to a place you have never been

knows the importance of supporting his

or seen before,” said Crossen. “But you need

coaching staff.

Panther Pride.” John Foley is a Staff Writer for the Bertie

year career as head football coach and athletic

“I encourage all of the coaches and

director at Harding High in Charlotte. Then

constantly offer positive reinforcement,”


from 1967 until 1990 he served as the athletic


Eastern North Carolina Living.












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Story & Photos by Meghan Grant

Much to do in Southern North Carolina

Southern Pines is such a quaint, quintessential Southern town and it has a lot going on.

The historic district of Southern Pines is split with the still active railroad and offers delicious restaurants, fun

Initially, Southern Pines was slow to develop because

breweries, quaint shops and lots to do outdoors!

of the sandy soil, it quickly became an important spot as railroads developed in the 19th century.

Plus, it’s quite a beautiful drive, taking you past horse farms and gorgeous homes.

Enjoy a Night Cap at Ashten’s Catch Live Music at First Friday This monthly event runs May-October

Pines, having been open since 1997. Their

and is a fun community event to catch

bar offers an expansive drink selection, plus

live music on the grassy knoll beside

small bites. The interior concept is elegant,

the Sunrise Theatre. There are food

yet comfortable, inspired by an English

trucks, vendors and Southern Pines beer

manor. It also has outdoor seating, making

available for purchase while listening to

it a perfect spot to people watch.

local bands.

Enjoy a farm-to-table meal at Scott’s Table Scott’s




exceptional dining experience with welcoming service and delicious food! Scott’s Table focuses on using quality, fresh ingredients and selects produce and portents in from local North Carolina sources. Start your meal with pimento cheese, which is served with crostini. The blackened chicken sandwich and the local seafood entree are delicious options!


Ashten’s is a restaurant staple in Southern

Have a Pint at Southern Pines Brewing Company Check out Southern Pines Brewing Company’s newest location on Pennsylvania Avenue. The taproom offers gorgeous outdoor seating with views of downtown, heaters for cooler evenings and food trucks. There are lots of options on tap, including wine, too! The Mexican Lager and the Man of Law are must-try brews.

Try a Crepe at Betsy’s Crepe This gem serves breakfast and lunch, featuring sweet and savory

Dine al fresco at the Sly Fox Pub The Sly Fox offers a menu of elevated European and Indian Pub food with patio seating areas, including one area under a

crepes, plus soups, paninis and salads. Betsy’s also offers glutenfree crepe options. Don’t let the line deter you – it moves quickly!

beautiful ivy covered wall. Order the burgers because the Locavore and the Pub burgers are delicious options! Also, sub the fries for the mac & cheese! You won’t regret it.

Lunch at Bell Tree Tavern Bell Tree Tavern is a great, local spot

Grab a Cup of Coffee from Java Bean

to grab lunch and catch a game. Or, you

If you’re out for a stroll downtown, definitely stop

might opt to enjoy the expansive, dog-

and grab a cup from Java Bean. This coffee shop has

friendly patio. The chicken quesadilla and

lots of outdoor seating with great coffee and pastries.

chicken BLT wrap were fantastic! And

It is cash only, so be sure to bring cash to get your

whatever you do, order the fried okra!


Browse the Shops in Historic Southern Pines Southern Pines has such a walkable downtown, and there are so many unique shops to browse. Monkee’s of the Pines has such a gorgeous selection of women’s fashion, jewelry, and accessories. They also carry brands that are woman-owned or are eco-friendly. R. Riveter specializes in handmade bags from military uniforms, a business started by two military spouses. The shop also has a variety of gift items as well, such as R. Riveter candles. A personal favorite is audacious, with citrus and cedar notes. Against the Grain Shoppe features over 75 percent of their inventory from small businesses right in Moore County.

Check Out the NC Literary Hall of Fame at Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities This fabulous venue is claimed to have started the Southern literary revival and hosted writers such as Thomas Wolfe and F. Scott Fitzgerald! The property was the first nature preserve in the North Carolina parks system. The Weymouth Center houses the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame and the grounds are open daily. Tours of the magnificent Boyd House are offered during weekdays.

Stretch your Legs at the Southern Pines Reservoir Greenway This 2.1 mile loop is a great way to stretch your legs as you walk around the Southern Pines Reservoir. If you opt to spend the night, be sure to check out Duncraig Manor & Gardens, a historic bed and breakfast. This 12,600 square foot home offers a tranquil getaway that is just a short drive or walk from downtown Southern Pines. Caroline and Don will make you feel right at home and create such a welcoming environment on their splendid property.

Meghan Grant is the author of the blog “I’m Fixin’ To” and is a regular contributor to Eastern North Carolina Living.



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Amy Barsanti Teacher of Excellence


J Jamesville




Barsanti is the district’s Teacher of Excellence for 2022.

She was elected to the position by her

peers, then voted on by a committee formed from leaders in the county. Barsanti has taught for 32 years, the last

seven in Jamesville. It is evident to people whose lives she touches, she is crazy about her job. She grew up in Baltimore, MD and moved to New York after graduating college, to pursue her love of acting. “I was substitute teaching to support my acting habit,” she explained, laughing. Eventually, she began teaching full-time in the Big Apple. It was here she met her husband, Hank, who was in the restaurant business. They’ve been married 32 years. She credits her love of other cultures to her time spent in New York. “That opened up my mind to a lot,” she said. The





Plymouth, by way of Nags Head, where they owned property. In Plymouth, Amy taught at Pines Elementary for 18 years (now closed). She and Hank, (now retired), raised three girls there. They decided when the girls were young to travel as much as they could to give their daughters a chance to experience other cultures, as they had while living in New York. “They were young enough that [traveling] impacted them very strongly,” she said. “The experience of being [in someone else’s culture] gives you a level of empathy. I think that it is very valuable to have that sense at some point in your life, of being in someone else’s place.” Barsanti incorporates her love of travel and culture into her classroom, expanding her students’ horizons. She uses artifacts, songs

Gratitude and celebration are two things she wants her children to come away with.

and even food, allowing them insight into ways other people live. She loves to celebrate and believes a lot


can be learned by studying the holidays of

the Israel Culture Kit to come at the end of the

teachers. It is being funded by the Oak

other countries.


Foundation and its mission is to dispel myths

She orders “Culture Kits” that are filled with artifacts from the countries they study. “Carolina Navigators allows you to order the boxes online. They FedEx them to you free. It’s like a library. It’s a repository for artifacts. You keep it for a month, then send it back,” she said. They are a key she uses to unlock children’s curiosity. “I do inquiry based social studies,” she explains. “Before we talk about a country, they look at the stuff in the [Culture Kit] and see what they can figure out about the country we will be studying.”

“Then we have the one from Mexico, for

about contemporary Africa,” she said.

Dia de Muertos (Day of the Dead), coming in

“We actually got to teach in schools. Two

October. We will do the box from China for

of the schools we spent the most time at had

the Lunar New Year,” she added.

too many students and not enough trailers.

Amy has traveled the past two summers overseas with educational scholarships. “During the pandemic I had a lot of time for reflection. I applied for a Fulbright [scholarship] and got sent to Iceland,” she said. “We were gone for a whole month with educators from all over the U.S.” She continued, “I thought, if I can do this, maybe I can do something else.”

When we got there, there was a class lined up in their desks, outside. A lot of the kids walk miles to school,” she added. She was struck at how grateful the children were. “They value education so much,” she said. “They have this deep connection with the outdoors and they don’t feel under privileged. Every class I was in, there was joy, and singing.

She applied, and was granted a scholarship

I learned a lot about gratitude. I don’t know

She encourages them to figure things out

to travel with the group Go Global NC to

if that can be taught, but it can definitely be

by observing, asking questions and discussing

Africa, visiting the countries of Zimbabwe and


their theories.

Senegal last summer.

“I love watching that process,” she said.

“In Senegal, we were collecting digital

Gratitude and celebration are two things she wants her children to come away with.

As an example, Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish

artifacts. UNC is going to have a collection

“For a long chunk of my career, I was really

New Year, is in September, so she has ordered

of lesson plans and digital artifacts for K-5

committed to teaching tolerance,” she said.


“But in the last couple of years, I have realized

“Food is a great point of entry,” she said.

there is no excuse for tolerance when there

She said in her classroom Friday is FRIED-day.

can be celebration.” She realizes in Eastern North Carolina, there is a lot to celebrate about the culture.

“Monday is FUN-day; Tuesday is NEWSday; Wednesdays is FRIENDS-day and Thursday is WORDS-day,” she added.

“We think we are pitiful when we think

Every day, right after lunch, she captivates

about the things we don’t have — like

students, as she reads to them, tapping into

infrastructure and diversity. But there is

her inner actress.

something about our kids’ connection to the

“We have a really short window [after

land, their heritage, their culture, their values

lunch] and it’s not worth starting anything

and their food – that is really comparable to a

new, so we read aloud from long chapter

lot of other places,” she explains.

books,” she said.

“We should be on the map for this. Instead

She also uses her acting background

of thinking, ‘why can’t we have the things they

to write plays for her children to perform

have in Raleigh?’… They just don’t know how

throughout the year.

good we have it. And I don’t think our kids do either,” she said. She is working on ways to instill this thinking into her kids. “I love Martin County. Jamesville is a little slice of heaven,” she continued. Studying other countries’ traditions helps kids realize they have their own traditions.

Barsanti teaches her students to handwrite letters to pen pals in Raleigh. They learn

Outside the classroom, Barsanti enjoys acting with Martin Community Players. “After 30 years, I got back on the stage,” she said. Most recently she played the LaMerle Verdeen Minshew in the “Last Round-Up of the Guacamole Queens.” She is grateful to have a supportive husband. “He really is awesome,” she said. “I was gone last summer for a month, and this past summer for almost a month.” Her next adventure will be leading an E.F. Tour to the Dominican Republic, for which she will travel to Rome next month to receive training.

the proper way to address an envelope. And

“Travel has infused life into me, and into

hand-write thank you letters to each guest

my practices, and my classroom,” she said.

that visits.

“I’m 62 and I can’t imagine retiring.”

Additionally, the students have pen pals

Deborah Griffin is News Editor of The

in England, whom they communicate with

Enterprise and a Staff Writer for Eastern North

through email.

Carolina Living.



Kitchen Sylvia Hughes with her grandmother, Bertie Dameron.

Autumn is here and it is a beautiful time of year.

autumn arrives. We just want to get out and

I love putting up the autumn decorations.

do something. It could be the beauty all

There is something about the colors that

around us or the cooler air we breathe after

make your home feel warm and cozy. There

the heat of summer. Whatever the reason,

are deep reds, oranges and yellows. The reds

we are a people on the move when autumn

range from scarlet to burgundy to almost

arrives and there is something for everyone

purple. The oranges may be burnt orange or pumpkin or a bright orange. The yellows are a dark yellow to almost orange. And, oh how we love the leaves when they change to those same colors. Millions travel every fall and spend billions of dollars across the Eastern United States just to see the trees dressed in all their splendor. Millions more travel to football games, both college and pro games to cheer on their favorite team. There is a special camaraderie and unity among those who are pulling for


There is excitement in the air when

to enjoy. Those who love to cook are excited to bring out their favorite “comfort food” recipes. The Internet is full of them whether for slow cookers, casseroles or one pot meals. Some people prepare fried chicken, potato salad and other picnic food so they can sit and look at the leaves as they eat. Others are excited to prepare food for tailgating. Some carry food already prepared at home while others cook on a grill when they arrive.

the same team. There are no strangers, only

However it’s done, it is a time of sharing and

fellow fans.

enjoying meals.

Just as many travel to fall festivals and

If you are looking for something quick

fairs. You can find a festival or fair celebrating

and easy to add to the more hardy dishes of

almost everything you can think up: hog

a picnic, tailgate or home meal, think about

calling, farmer’s produce, crafts, music, food.

some old favorite recipes and serve them in a

You name it, there’s a festival for it.

slightly different way.

ItalIan SkewerS

Instead of sandwiches, use wooden skewers Place on skewer: folded slice of pastrami 1 green olive folded slice of salami small ball of mozzarella slice of pepperoni black olive


Use a jar for any kind of Ita dressing

when Use a brush to coat food d into ready to eat and slide foo paper bowl Eat with bread or crackers

DrIeD Bee f Chee Se Bal l

2 (8oz.) cre am chees e 1 jar dried beef (4.5 0 z.) chopped fine ½ tb. Worc es 1 cup sharp tershire c ½ tsp. Garl heddar, shredded ic powder 2 green on ion tops, c hopped fine

Add all in and mix w gredients to a bo wl ell. Place in p into any s lastic wrap and form hape you wish (footb for instan ce) all Chill until pecans an firm. Roll in choppe d bacon b d its

MIllIonaIre PIe ¾ cup sugar 1 (8 oz.) cream cheese pple, 1 large can crushed pinea drained black 1 cup chopped nuts (I like walnuts) 1 container Cool Whip se, Mix sugar and cream chee whipping with a fork

Add pineapple and stir ll Add Cool Whip and mix we Add Nuts paper Can be placed in 8 ounce cups and chilled. ham Serve by placing small gra p crackers around edge of cu

Sylvia Hughes is a retired newspaper editor and columnist residing in Windsor. In addition to three sons, she has a gaggle of grandchildren, many of whom love cooking with her just as she did with her mother and grandmother.


Grace & Truth

Everyone needs a coach herapist, life coach, counselor, pastor and friend are all words that different segments of our society

seek in times of decision and difficulty. I have a life coach with whom I discuss my personal, family, church and career goals weekly. He has been a great encouragement to me and my ministry. Sometimes it’s nice to have someone to bounce ideas, hurts and plans off. Some friends from California told me everyone they know has a therapist. It makes me chuckle because, growing up in eastern North Carolina, I had the idea that anyone with a counselor must be in some sort of trouble. As I got older, I realized this presumption was wrong, and I’m even grateful to have been

when we were playing a team out of Elizabeth

to walk alone, and

He told us to go into the corner of the gym so

we are better when

when we have someone who has gone ahead and can look at who we are from another perspective to help us see what we can’t. I can only view my life from the first-person view. I understand, physically, I can now video myself and gain another perspective, but internally, in my soul, I can only understand

he could let us have it before going home. “Boys, that was a pathetic display of to say about this game except that it came

who has gone ahead

down to one thing. There is one reason we

and can look at who

up - lack of desire!”

we are from another

fingers and then sheepishly said, “That’s three

perspective to help us see what we can’t.

Why do we need such help to endure life? not designed to walk alone, and we are better

City. We lost the game, and he was so angry.

basketball. Embarrassing! I don’t know what

we have someone

blessed by such professionals. What makes coaches so essential? We were

One of my favorite stories of him was

We were not designed



step with the Holy Spirit. Isaiah prophesied seven hundred years before Jesus that He would be a counselor. Jesus, the miracle worker, prophesied that it would be better for us that He send us a comforter that would be our friend. The Great Counselor says we need this Comforter. And why? Because in this life, you will have

lost tonight. One word sums the whole night One of the younger players counted on his words, coach.” I don’t know if coach heard him or not, but the whole team was sufficiently scared. We never wanted to disappoint him like that again. We worked hard because we trusted him. We wanted to win because he loved to win. We remember his love for us because he cared about us. Coach is just another word for friend. A friend is someone who has another view of you and can call more incredible things out in you than you can see yourself. A coach is able to see something greater and helps us get there. If you don’t have a friend like that, get one.

troubles, but the Spirit will help us to endure.

We are better with someone who can see

Here lies the genius of submitting myself to

He listens to you. He empowers, cautions,

more. Paul had Barnabas, David had Jonathan

someone else and asking if there is something

critiques and celebrates you! God gives us a

and Michael Jordan had Dean Smith and Phil

I can do to live this one life better. And a coach

divine coach who never leaves our side and


can do that.

knows infinitely more than we do.

my stride from one angle of view.

God bless the coaches in our lives.

I submit myself to the Holy Spirit daily.

When I hear the word “coach,” Joe Mizelle

Emanuel Webb Hoggard is Pastor at

Jesus said He would teach, comfort, empower

will always be the first name that flashes to

Askewville Assembly of God and a resident

and direct me toward what would make me

my mind. Joe was passionate. Coach loved

of Edenton. He can be reached via email at

who God wants me to be. My walk is better in

basketball and the boys he coached.



Your Your Local Local News

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109 S King St., Windsor, NC 252-329-9505

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County: Northampton Marker ID: E-91 Date Cast: 1980-P



HENRY K. BURGWYN “Boy” Colonel 26th N.C. Regt. Killed at age 21 at Gettysburg on July 1, 1863. Home stood 4 miles south.

Information courtesy of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources


enry “Harry” King Burgwyn

As a major, Burgwyn commanded Camp

Jr. was known as the “Boy

Crabtree near Raleigh. In August 1861, the



Twenty-sixth regiment’s company officers

attained that rank at the age of twenty. He

elected the nineteen-year-old Burgwyn

was perhaps the youngest colonel in the

as lieutenant colonel, making him second

Confederate Army. As a soldier, Burgwyn

in command behind Col. Zebulon B.

was a natural. Unfortunately, he never

Vance. Burgwyn’s regiment took part

lived to see his twenty-second birthday.

in operations in eastern North Carolina


and in Virginia. With Vance’s election as Burgwyn was the son of Northampton County planter Henry King Burgwyn Sr. and

North Carolina’s governor in August 1862, Burgwyn was promoted to colonel.

New England native Anna Greenough. He was born in Jamaica Plains, Massachusetts,

From August 1862 to May 1863,

at his mother’s ancestral home. Capt. John

Burgwyn’s regiment fought in eastern

G. Foster privately taught Burgwyn at the

North Carolina. In May the Twenty-sixth

U.S. Military Academy since he was too

joined the Army of Northern Virginia. On

young at fifteen to enter the institution. In

July 1, 1863, at Gettysburg, the Twenty-

1857 Burgwyn enrolled at the University

sixth regiment took part in an assault

of North Carolina; he graduated in 1859.

that resulted in the death of Burgwyn.

To further his education, he entered the

After ten color-bearers had fallen with

Virginia Military Institute.

the regimental flag, Burgwyn seized the colors. He cheered on his troops; the

Burgwyn stayed briefly in Richmond

soldiers moved forward. A private took

with other VMI cadets following the start

the colors from Burgwyn. After speaking

of the Civil War. In North Carolina as a

with Lt. Col. John R. Lane, Burgwyn was

captain, he instructed the Lafayette Light

struck by a bullet that passed through

Infantry in drill at Camp Ellis, located at

both lungs. He was buried at Gettysburg.

the original State Fairgrounds, and was

In June 1867 Burgwyn was reinterred at

sent to the mountains to raise a company.

Oakwood Cemetery in Raleigh.

US. 158 at Barrows Mill Road west of Jackson REFERENCES Archie K. Davis, Boy Colonel of the Confederacy (1985) Samuel A. Ashe, ed., Biographical History of North Carolina, VIII, 67-73 Walter Clark, ed., Histories of the Several Regiments and Battalions from North Carolina in the Great War, 1861-65, II (1901) William S. Powell, ed., Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, I, 276-277—sketch by Clyde Wilson


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Let me start with the proverbial elephant

in the room.

We made a mistake – and it was a whopper,

just to be honest.

If you’re from Washington County, you

know exactly what I’m talking about. If not, you may or may not. What it boils down to is this, there is a

As we were researching the story about

magazine and we will continue to do our best

five must-see places in Washington County,

to promote life here in the Eastern part of the

we inadvertently wrote a story that included

wonderful state we are lucky to call home.

information from both of them.

introduce you to some of the wonderful

for it. I won’t go into the hows and why

people our young people call ‘coach.’ We

because they don’t matter. It was a mistake

haven’t covered them all, but we have given

we shouldn’t have made and the kind we try

you just a sample of some of those wonderful

fervently to avoid.


difference between Lake Phelps and Phelps

We have 18 counties and the fact is we

Lake. Lake Phelps is in Washington County

don’t have local writers in all of them and we

(and a little in Tyrrell) and Phelps Lake is in

are working hard to do the best we can under


We love producing

it is a fact. I’m not trying to hide behind it because the bottom line is I am the editor of this publication and fault lies on my shoulders. If

we will continue

me and I can understand why you would.

promote life here in the Eastern part of the wonderful state we are lucky to call home. 78

those circumstances. That isn’t an excuse, but

this magazine and to do our best to

In this edition, we have endeavored to

We made a mistake and we apologize

you want to be mad at someone, it would be I can’t promise we won’t ever make a mistake again because we probably will. We are, after all, humans. I can promise two things. One, we will do

We hope you enjoy getting to know these fine folks. Next time we will return with our second “What’s in a Name?” edition where we provide stories about the people who have had buildings, parks and the like named in their honor. Our first one was well-received and we look forward to this follow-up. Until next time, remember… all who wander are not lost. Continue joining us as we wander through Beaufort, Bertie, Chowan, Edgecombe, Gates, Greene, Halifax, Hertford, Hyde, Martin, Nash, Northampton,

the very best we can to minimize our mistakes


and apologize when we make them. The

Washington and Wilson counties.




second is we will endeavor to do our best to

Thadd White is a father, a fan of Chelsea

make it up to the folks of Washington County

Football Club and a the grateful editor of this

by doing a story on the actual Lake Phelps in

publication. He serves as Group Editor of five

the coming year.

Adams Publishing Group publications, including

Thank you for your support and today, for your forgiveness. We love producing this

the N.C. Press Award-winning Eastern North Carolina Living.




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