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Complimentary October 2019

Caring for Our Pets pages 17-25

On the Cover page 12


Did you know... ...Express is an ISO registered company? This makes for a strong partner partnership to do business with any and all ISO registered companies in Iredell County! Our ISO status ensures that we not only have a detailed process for finding and screening top talent, but we also follow it. If we didn’t, we would lose our ISO certification.

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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from the publisher

MacAdam Smith Publisher mac@oasisluxuryhomes.com (484) 769-7445

Kathy Wheeler

Welcome to the October issue. “Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.” – Carol Bishop Hipps, from her book In a Southern Garden. In October, the days are shorter, and most of us have pulled at least one sweater out of storage for a cool night watching high school football or to wrap around bare shoulders during a nice stroll. We relax into mellow sunlight, appreciating aromas of apples and damp leaves, flavors of pumpkin spice and cinnamon. But we still find plenty of events listed on our fall calendars. In our October issue, we celebrate singer-songwriter Rockie Lynne’s Tribute for the Troops organization. The Statesville native’s annual motorcycle ride and banquet honors Gold Star families around the region the second weekend of this month. It’s so important that we remember, these folks’ losses are felt yearround. We also invite you to enjoy a colorful photo essay about the Carolina Balloonfest, one of America’s most prestigious and long-lived balloon rallies. The three-day event features live entertainment, an artisan village, lots of great food and drink, and amazing hot air balloons of all colors. In October, Iredell County residents can take advantage of cooler weather by participating in three running events. The 7th Annual 4

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

Halloween Hustle is a costumed 5K run at Statesville Recreation’s Soccer field on October 29th. Proceeds go to the Iredell County Special Olympics. Troutman’s Wicked Fast 5K takes place in Troutman Park October 19th. And the Allison Woods Halloween Hobble in Turnersburg offers a full slate of races on October 12 and 13. If running seems a bit strenuous, try the Hops & Harmony Craft Brew Fest in downtown Statesville on October 5th. It features 25 craft beer makers from around the state, plus great live music. Downtown Statesville also provides trick-or-treating for kids on October 31st, when local businesses give away candy to costumed children. Also in this issue, we hope you’ll appreciate our special section on pets. Our experts offer advice about traveling with your pet and what to feed your furry ones. Plus, we’re featuring some adorable pups and kitties waiting eagerly for adoption at your local humane society. Come to think of it, October doesn’t seem at all like a month to sink slowly into the chill, but one to spend as much time outside as possible, reveling in the season’s best weather at some of the year’s best local events. Until next month, thank you for reading Iredell redell Living magazine. MacAdam Smith Publisher

Design & Advertising Sales kathylivingmagazine@gmail.com (828) 238-3224

Sharon Simpson Advertising Director sharon@lncurrents.com (704) 677-9159

Linda B. Wilson Advertising Sales lindalivingmagazine@gmail.com (704) 657-0237

Don Forrest Advertising Sales donlivingmagazine@gmail.com (828) 244-6538

Myron T. Gough Advertising Sales myronlivingmagazine@gmail.com (336) 428-1700

Madolyn Snow Advertising Sales madolyn@oasisluxuryhomes.com (704) 746-8108

Iredell 10225 Hickorywood Hill Ave., Unit A Huntersville, NC 28078 (484) 769-7445 IredellLiving@gmail.com

www.IredellLivingMagazine.com Iredell Living reserves the right to deny any advertisement or listing. Submissions are welcome, but unsolicited materials are not guaranteed to be returned. Iredell Living assumes no responsibility or liability for the information, services, products, claims, statements, accuracy, or intended or unintended results of any advertiser, editorial contributors, company, professional corporation, business or service provider herein this publication. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited.


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contents OCTOBER 2019

8

FEATURES 12 • COVER STORY Wellness Source A Specialty Medical Boutique

IN THE KITCHEN 16 • Pumpkiny Petit Fours

CARING FOR OUR PETS 18 • Pet Adoption 20 • Pet Nutrition 24 • Traveling with a Fur Baby

IN THIS ISSUE 8 • Carolina BalloonFest 26 • Tribute to the Troops

contributors

22

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Kristie Darling • Meredith Collins JC Summerford

COVER PHOTOGRAPHY Lisa Crates Photography Editorial Stock photography, unless otherwise noted, is from iStock.

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019


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Let Your Dreams Take Flight

Photos provided by Carolina BalloonFest

Hot air balloonists describe flying as sublime and peaceful, like gliding through the skies in a picnic basket. If you’ve ever dreamed of this adventure yourself, check out Carolina Balloonfest, October 18th through 20th at the Statesville Regional Airport. Watch 50 gorgeous balloons float overhead—or book a flight of your own! The festival’s weekend of music, food, and family fun is one of North Carolina’s most popular and exciting events. Be sure to get there early to see these majestic flying machines lift off into the sky!

For more information, visit: www.carolinaballoonfest.com “Lean out and touch the treetops over town.” —Lyrics from Owl City, Hot Air Balloon

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

“The rest of the world was black and white, but we were in screaming color.” — Lyrics from Taylor Swift, Out of the Woods


“I wanna feel light I wanna feel high The way that balloons They just sail across the sky” — Lyrics from Kes, Balloons

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Selling Your Family Treasures Just Got Easier! Are you the executor of an estate and feeling overwhelmed? Are you relocating or downsizing your home? Has your collections outgrown your space?

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on the cover

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019


A Specialty Medical Boutique By Kristie Darling | Photos by Lisa Crates Photography

When a company is equally well-known for exceptional quality products and personal customer service and for its partnership with a significant community charity, well, that says a lot about the people in charge. Heather Little, founder and owner of Wellness Source, is one of those people. Her approach to the work she does through her company is expanded exponentially through her generous support of Shirley’s Angels. The story is compelling. A LITTLE BACKGROUND The partnership between Wellness Source and Shirley’s Angels is easy to understand. Wellness Source is a medical boutique dedicated to providing services and products for patients with several specific medical needs, one being breast cancer challenges. The customer service team has considerable expertise serving women who’ve had mastectomy, need certain maternity products, and people suffering from lymphedema or venous disorders. Shirley’s Angels, a nonprofit organization, was created to help women and men diagnosed with breast cancer. The agency’s volunteers continuously reach out to cancer patients needing comfort. The networking and support systems that Shirley’s Angels offers focus on being there during someone’s breast cancer journey in several ways. See the connection? “We’ve been a corporate sponsor of Shirley’s Angels for two years now, and we are always telling their story to our customers—to anyone who will listen—so more patients can be served,” Heather told me. “They truly are angels on earth.” Shannon Laatsch is executive director and founder of Shirley’s Angels. Shannon and her sister and survivor, Stacey Morrison, partner in running Shirley’s Angels in memory of their mother, Shirley Lawrence. “Mom said that the folks who cared and comforted her during her journey through breast cancer—the nurses, doctors, patients, and survivors—were ‘angels among us,’” Shannon explained. “Mom chose joy in the midst of pain and taught us through her amazing example about the strength and spirit that can be held within a beaten up, cancer-stricken, and tired body. When she lost her battle in 2006, we wanted to pay tribute to her love for life and to do our part to eradicate breast cancer.” So, the nonprofit was established to share a little bit of Shirley with other breast cancer patients. “We’ve actually had three generations of women in my family diagnosed with

On the cover– cover–Wellness Source, a medical boutique focused on mastectomy and lymphedema supplies, is a proud partner with Shirley’s Angels in the fight against breast cancer. Pictured from left to right– Stacey Morrison, partner in Shirley’s Angels; Heather Little, founder and owner of Wellness Source; and Shannon Laatsch, executive director of Shirley’s Angels Opposite page– page–Visit Wellness Source to view their latest products. They are conveniently located off Brawley School Road Above–Shannon, Heather, and Stacey team up in the Pink Room displaying a full collection of wigs, mastectomy bras, and breast prosthesis. Wellness Source mastectomy fitters are certified and trained to offer the best fit and quality products. IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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breast cancer, starting with my grandmother,” Shannon continued, “and I’m very happy to report that my sister, Stacey, has had surgery and is now cancer-free. So, we know firsthand patients’ struggles and challenges. We know what it means to have someone in our corner with words of encouragement, information, and a care package.” A SPECIAL PARTNERSHIP “Until we met Heather and Wellness Source became a corporate sponsor, we couldn’t give patients care packages—only if we had the money,” Shannon told me. “Mom was famous for love gifts for her nurses, doctors, and other patients, so it’s only fitting that we added care packages at the time of diagnosis and beyond. Special things like sweet-smelling bath products, movie tickets—just a little something specially tailored to that person’s diagnosis and treatment plan. We have fun packing parties to get the gifts set up—high schoolers can earn community service hours here. You feel so alone when you’re battling cancer, but you’re not. Heather’s support has broadly expanded how we’re able to help people.” Shirley’s Angels has a core team of volunteers—there’s no paid staff—and Shannon is always looking for people who want to help. “Our most famous volunteer and a huge supporter is Mooresville’s own Phaedra Pistone, Mrs. North Carolina,” Shannon said. “She’s an awesome spokeswoman for us.” The organization supported Phaedra through her own treatments, so now she’s giving back. “It was wonderful receiving their love in every little gift, each personal note,” Phaedra said, “knowing I wasn’t alone in those first confused days. It’s inspirational and hopeful.” Shirley’s Angels has grown from supporting 15 warriors their first year to over 100 just last month—thousands of local patients and families battling this horrific disease. Along with offering care packages, hosting celebrations to cheer on patients’ big and small victories, and being a central resource for information, Shirley’s Angels also supports other nonprofits that share this mission.

Photos:

Photo provided by Wellness Source

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

• Wellness Source specializes in custom breast prosthesis using 3D scanning technology. • Stacey and Heather highlight the high quality of both the synthetic and real hair wigs. • Wellness Source’s Pink Room offers an assortment of compression socks, stockings, and arm sleeves for postmastectomy lymphedema. . • A relaxing environment while undergoing lymphedema treatment.


WELLNESS SOURCE ~ SPECIALIZING IN YOU “People come to us because they require specialty medical products. And, in saying that, I mean they often need personalized assistance and fittings to make those products work for them,” Heather shared as she showed me around her store, the comfy fitting rooms, and warehouse. “Since my mom needs compression products for lymphedema that causes swelling, I realized there was a great need for patients to be custom-fitted for what they need. It’s not just buying socks at the drug store.” Swelling can appear in the arms and legs, the head, neck, pelvis, genitals, and torso. To really help relieve swelling that can occur after cancer or orthopedic surgery, wounds, radiation burns, or vascular disorders, having a certified and trained fitter assist you makes all the difference between comfort and…not so much. Custom fitting is preferable for cancer patients, for mastectomy prosthesis or custom breast prosthesis, bras and camisoles, specialty compression socks and stockings, as well as garments like sleepwear, sleeves, and wraps. And, for those who want a beautiful, comfortable wig or two or three, Heather’s synthetic and human hair wigs fill a wall display that will have you trying on these beauties all day! Or, just host a wig party! THE PINK ROOM is a private space for personalized fittings for mastectomy products. “Our fitters are all board-certified and manufacturer-trained women who are highly qualified to talk with you about your specific needs. They can measure and fit you after a mastectomy, lumpectomy, reconstruction, augmentation, or assist someone who is genetically imbalanced and needs to be carefully measured for a proper fit,” Heather said. “We truly offer complete, individualized service for all of these personal needs.” People who wear braces benefit with comfort and ease when properly fitted, too. Wellness Source offers lumbar support, abdominal binders, and knee, ankle, posture, wrist, hand, and thumb braces. Custom and semi-custom orthotics can be made. Most insurance will cover these products and services, and the staff will help with paperwork. Patients are referred to Wellness Source through physicians of all types, the YMCA’s community relations nurse, at community events and health fairs, and of course, by enthusiastic word of mouth. Please spread the word to people you know would benefit from their services and products. We all know someone who would. WHAT’S COMING UP Just around the corner, on Saturday, October 5, Primal Brewery in Huntersville will host a special fundraiser for Shirley’s Angels— Taps 4 Ta-Tas—from 3 to 10 PM. Music, beer, raffles, 50/50, and the cornhole tournament starts at 3. The brochure says it all, “Twenty percent of on-premise October canned beer and cornhole proceedings go to Shirley’s Angels breast cancer warriors.” Be there—Primary Brewery in Huntersville.

Above– Above–While these ladies focus on the fight against breast cancer, the Wellness Source also offers a wide variety of compression products for men. On Tuesday, October 29th plan to join Shirley’s Angels at Ghostface Brewing & Pizzeria for a Murder Mystery Party… details coming on Facebook or www.shirleysangels.org. BY APPOINTMENT OR WALK-IN There are so many questions you might have, so I suggest giving Heather or Shannon a call. You might find something you need, something a friend or relative may need, or you might just want to help others find what they need.

Wellness Source 125 Commerce Park Rd, Suite 105, Mooresville 704-799-2873 www.wellness-sourceinc.com Shirley’s Angels www.shirleysangels.org 704-516-0586 shannon@shirleysangels.org @ShirleysAngels4Sisters IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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In the Kitchen with Jill Dahan Photography courtesy of Jill Dahan

Ingredients

PUMPKINY PETIT FOURS

½-can (7.5 ounces) pumpkin puree or ¾-cup cooked pumpkin flesh 6 tablespoons coconut or cassava flour 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) maple syrup (grade B if available) 1 teaspoon ceylon cinnamon powder ½-teaspoon ground ginger A pinch of ground cloves or allspice ½-teaspoon baking soda 1 large egg

Jill Dahan

Frosting (optional) ½-cup, plus 1 tablespoon (4.5 ounces) goats or cream cheese 3 tablepoons (1.5 ounces) unsalted butter 6 tablespoons (1.5 ounces) organic powdered sugar 1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean powder or paste

Instructions

Butter 9-x-9-inch baking pan. Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into the baking dish, and smooth the top. Bake at 350 F convection if possible for 15 to 17 minutes. If frosting, beat the ingredients till light and fluffy. Cool pumpkin and frost. Cut into small squares and serve. Makes about 16 squares. Jill Dahan lives in Cornelius and is the author of Starting Fresh! Recipes for Life. You can learn more about her at www.jilldahan.com.

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Caring for Our Pets

For many of us, our families would not be complete without our beloved pets. In honor of their unconditional love and loyalty, we offer advice from professionals on pet nutrition and tips on traveling with your fur-ever friend. Also, if you are looking for a new family member, check out the pet adoption page!

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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A PET FOR YOU! 2106 Charlotte Hwy. Mooresville, NC 28117 704-663-3330 Apply online at www.lakenormanhumane.org

Adopt a New Furry Friend Today at Lake Norman Humane Lake Norman Humane’s Mission:

We rescue, rehabilitate and rehome companion animals so they can get a second chance at a forever home. To help reduce the pet overpopulation problem, we partner with clinics and area veterinarians to offer affordable, accessible spay/neuter services.

Brace Your Heart for Bryce! Bryce is a big, beautiful blue boy! He knows how to sit, and takes treats gently. He was pulled from an overcrowded shelter that was facing tough choices due to space. Now he’s looking for his forever home at Lake Norman Humane. This sweetie wants nothing more than to cuddle and hang with people. He’s really just a jumbo-sized lap dog!

Melt for Mercedes! Mercedes is a beautiful calico mama who came to us with her 3 kittens from an overcrowded animal control shelter. Her kittens have all been adopted but Mercedes is still waiting for her own purr-fect home. She loves lots of attention, gets along great with other pets, and will absolutely melt your heart!

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Pet Nutrition We know that a good diet is key to our own health. Well, the same is true for our furry friends! But sometimes we need help in making the best choices for them. Do you have a finicky feline? A pup who wants to eat from your table? How much and exactly what should you feed them? We asked two trusted veterinarians for advice: Dr. Denise Glander at Lake Hickory Veterinary Hospital and Dr. Tiffany Hubbs at North Iredell Animal Hospital.

By JC Summerford

©iStockphoto.com | fotyma

What foods should we choose for our pets at their different life stages? Dr. Glander: Dogs are omnivores—they require meats, vegetables, grains, and fruits. Cats are carnivores. Meat should make up the majority of their diets, with a few carbohydrates to balance nutrition. Large breed dogs may require additional vitamins and minerals to aid their growing bones and muscles. Puppies and kittens require more calories than adult animals. Geriatric pets (over seven-years-old) often require less protein or more digestible protein, for example eggs or plant proteins. Older pets may need prescription diets due to health issues. When buying pet food, what ingredients should we look for? Dr. Hubbs: The ingredients in most pet foods are about the same. Some contain byproducts, which are lower quality ingredients. That doesn’t mean the food 20

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

isn’t healthy, because the FDA and USDA approve all pet food. Feline foods must contain taurine, an essential amino acid. Are there any foods that should never be fed to dogs or cats? Dr. Glander: Never feed table food to pets, because they can cause obesity or make them sick. Toxic foods include chocolate, grapes, raisins, macadamia nuts, avocados, onions, garlic, salt, tea, coffee, alcohol, and raw dough. Lowfat peanut butter or sugar-free gum can contain xylitol which is very dangerous to your pet. Some dog owners prefer raw diets, claiming that they are more natural. But do your homework, because they can make your pet ill if not done correctly. Should pets be fed both wet and dry foods? Dr. Hubbs: Generally, pets should be fed dry food to help with their dental

health and to eliminate excess calories. Every pet food label indicates how many kilocalories are in a cup and how much should be fed. Your veterinarian can help you adjust this if your pet is not thriving or is overweight. Dr. Glander: Most dogs do well on dry food, and it is best for their teeth. The average healthy dog can have canned food twice a week as a treat. Most cats also seem fine with just dry food. Older pets, or those with dental or kidney issues, may need more liquid. Do some medical problems require a diet change? Dr. Glander: Yes, for example allergies, diabetes, thyroid conditions, obesity, skin issues, and arthritis. Dr. Hubbs: Veterinarians can recommend a specific diet based on your pet’s history, symptoms, blood work, urinaly sis, and other tests. It is best to consult with a veterinarian about any diet switch.


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Hear Sam’s story at iredellstories.org • 704.873.5661 Iredell Health System has been serving our community for more than 60 years. Our comprehensive services throughout multiple counties ensure you can always get the care you need.

“I found relief.” Sam McDowell was struggling. Frequent urges to urinate and an inability to completely empty his bladder were impeding his everyday life. Thanks to a new procedure called UroLift® and the skilled surgical team at Iredell Memorial Hospital, he’s now living life to the fullest again. We were there for Sam, and we’ll be there for you and your family too. This is your health — don’t settle for anything but the best.

My health. My Iredell. IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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©iStockphoto.com | AaronAmat

How should owners deal with finicky eaters? Dr. Glander: Start with a wellness exam that checks for intestinal worms and dental issues, plus possibly tests for kidney disease, arthritis, or infections. Less active dogs simply don’t need to eat every day. Usually dogs eat when they’re hungry, and that’s fine as long as they are maintaining a healthy weight. I recommend trying different foods until you find one your pet eats well. For truly finicky eaters, mixing wet food with dry can encourage them to eat. Don’t give them lots of treats—they can impair their natural appetites.

important health issue and calculate your pet’s needed food. I have clients who come in with pets eating 2000 kilocalories a day, when they should be getting 700. In addition to a good diet, I recommend regular exercise. Dr. Glander: When you feel along your pet’s the backbone or ribcage, you should

be able to feel the bones. If there is too much padding, chances are your pet is overweight. I agree that the best place to start is with a consult, an exam, and possibly blood work. Some disorders, such as thyroid disease or diabetes, can cause excess weight. I suggest choosing treats that are lower in calories, such as (for dogs) cauliflower or broccoli bits. It’s important to never share your own food with a pet—no matter how much they want it! Both of our DVMs recommend consulting with your veterinarian about the best diet for your pet, as every one is special.

How can we help an obese pet lose unhealthy weight? Dr. Hubbs: It’s important to consult with your veterinarian to address this 22

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

©iStockphoto.com | humonia


Shop Local! November starts the holiday shopping season and our Shop Local issue! We will have special rates for small businesses to promote their products and services just in time for the holiday season!

Call Sharon Simpson 704-677-9159 or Email IredellLiving@gmail.com IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Traveling with a Fur Baby By JC Summerford

©iStockphoto.com | damedeeso

If you have a dog or cat, at some point you’ll probably have to decide whether they should travel with you. We know it’s a difficult decision, because our pets are family members! So no matter your transport situation, here is some specific advice.

By Car

 Keep them safely inside.

Dogs and cats, for their safety and yours, should never roam around the car. Place your pet in a crate or carrier, and use a restraint to hold the carrier in place. It’s best to put these in a back seat to avoid distractions. We know how much your doggie likes to stick his head out of the window, but he could be hurt by flying debris or get cold air into his lungs. Letting a 24

IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

dog ride in the back of a pickup is the absolute worst idea. Just please, don’t ever do it!

10 minutes. That heat level can cause irreversible organ damage or death.

 Take plenty of rest stops.

 Weigh the risks.

Stop every couple of hours to let your pet exercise and relieve herself. Always put a collar or harness and leash on her before opening the door. Dogs and cats should always wear an ID tag with your contact information (name, phone number, and address) while traveling.

 Share the drive.

If possible, drive with at least one other person so that everyone can take turns at the rest stop. Never leave your pets alone in the car, especially when it’s warm out. On an 85-degree day, your car can reach 102 degrees inside in just

By Airplane Traveling on an airplane is risky for pets, so carefully consider all of your options before booking that flight. Air travel is especially dangerous for animals with pushed-in faces, like bulldogs, pugs, and Persian cats. They’re vulnerable to oxygen deprivation and heat stroke. There’s also a high stress factor that can harm older pets or those with medical issues. Overall, your little furry ones are better off staying with a trusted friend, cared for by a pet sitter, or boarded. Always make these arrangements far in advance. Personally meet with the


flights when the air is cooler. In cold months, fly afternoons.

 Affix identification to your pet’s collar and directly to the carrier. This should contain your name, address, contact information, and destination. Carry a photo of your pet so she can be easily identified if lost.

 Notify the captain and flight attendants that your pet is in the cargo area.

 As soon as you get your pet off the ©iStockphoto.com | nadisja

people who will take care of your animals, and inspect their facilities.

 Choose the cabin.

Most airlines allow you to take a cat or small dog in the cabin for an additional fee. But call the airline far in advance and book your own ticket at the same time as your pet’s, because airlines limit the number and size of animals permitted in the cabin. Only certain types of carriers are allowed on board. Inquire about the airline’s pet health and immunization requirements. If you’re flying to another country, check their requirements as well to avoid a lengthy quarantine upon arrival!

 Prepare for TSA.

Just like you, your pet is required to pass through airport security. You must securely harness your pet while the carrier is screened, or request a special screening that won’t require you to take him out of the carrier.

 Large animal transport.

Animals fly every day in airline cargo areas, and if your dog is a large breed, this may be your only option. But be

aware that extreme temperatures, poor ventilation, and rough handling have injured pets in the past. Study an airline’s pet handling track record before choosing it. If your pet must travel in the cargo hold, you can make his trip less stressful with these specific tips:

 Familiarize your pet with the carrier or crate a few weeks before traveling. It’s a good idea to trim his nails to protect against excessive scratching or having a paw caught somewhere.

plane, examine him carefully, and take him to a vet if he seems sick.

By Ship Most cruise lines don’t welcome pets and some that allow pets confine them to onboard kennels. Check with your cruise line in advance about policies and facilities. If you kennel your pets, be sure to check on them frequently.

By Train Service animals are allowed on all passenger trains, and pets are allowed on some of them, but always check on their policies in advance. As you roll along, you’ll have the opportunity to exercise and feed your pet at station stops.

 Don’t administer tranquilizers unless your vet recommends them. Make your pet’s last feeding four to six hours before traveling. You can place a few ice cubes inside the carrier, but don’t fill a dish with water, because it will just spill.

 Fly direct, avoiding problems with airline delays. Always travel on the same flight as your pet, and ask if you can watch your pet being loaded and unloaded.

 Consider the season. In hot months,

ACCOMMODATIONS You may find this website with policies for the top hotel chains helpful: https://hotels.petswelcome. com/chains *Always check with individual hotels about pet policies and fees before traveling.

choose early morning or night IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Tribute to the Troops By JC Summerford | Photos provided by Tribute to the Troops

Statesville native Rockie Lynne is best known as a singer and songwriter. But while music shapes his life, it also led him to an even greater purpose, that of supporting America’s Gold Star families. In 2004, when Rockie was living in Minnesota, a friend produced a touching video based on his patriotic song Fly Home. It inspired him to organize a group of motorcyclists to visit the home of a fallen soldier and assure his grieving family that their loss would never be forgotten. Never. That concept formed the heart of his non-profit organization, Tribute to the Troops.

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

And I can see my brothers falling Every where – God every where Mothers hide your children There’s danger in this land And Father please forgive me For I know not who I am Fly home my sweet angel From sea to shining sea Fly home my sweet angel Won’t you fly on home to me (Lyrics from Rockie Lynne’s song Fly Home from the album Songs for Soldiers)

Anyone who has seen Rockie’s live shows knows that a big part of the entertainment is his masterful storytelling. He often recounts the story of that first Gold Star family visit. “Me and twenty guys on motorcycles rode out to the country, this guy had lived in a mobile home. We met his mom and dad, stood in their yard that day, and told them, ‘it matters.’ And I remember walking back to my bike and saying to my friends, ‘I don’t care if anybody else ever does this, I’m going to do it, every year.’ We knew this was something that


has brought comfort to countless families for over sixteen years. The organization now has chapters in five states. “When the death first happens, military people come to your door, they line up on the roadways and present the casket, and there’s an outpouring of sympathy. I think that makes it even harder when the family goes back home and shuts the door, and all that goes away,” Rockie says. “So that’s what Tribute does. We’re saying, all those people might have left, but we’re still here. I’ve had people tell me, our visit actually saved their lives.” Tribute to the Troops honors families whose loved ones recently perished and also those who suffered loss many years ago. They memorialize soldiers killed in combat and also those who committed suicide from PTSD or died from service-related illness, whose families often receive little from the government. They are the truly forgotten ones. “This year’s stories are so heartbreaking,” Rockie says. “One soldier who was on active duty was murdered by her husband. He was a domestic abuser, and he killed her.” Tribute to the Troops also provides college scholarships for the children of fallen service members through its Fallen Hero Education Fund. Susan Levy Rash, Rockie’s wife and board member, says “A lot of people, especially those who don’t have anyone who’s served, want to do something to help these families. It’s an opportunity for them to engage with people who lost someone in the line of duty and change their lives for the better.” Tribute to the Troops’ riders will visit five families in Iredell, Catawba, and Mecklenburg counties on October 12 and 13. Anyone can participate in the event, which includes Sunday night’s banquet at the Statesville Civic Center. After dinner, Gold Star families take part in a name reading ceremony, followed by a Rockie Lynne concert. needed to be done. It still does. Our visit will obviously never replace that person, who meant so much to that family, but it’s important for them to know that long after the newspaper stories are published and the usual accolades are done, we will remember them. We always will.” Rockie realized that few people outside the parents, spouses, and children of fallen heroes truly connected with the deeply personal nature of their pain. So he writes a poignant bio of each soldier and recites it in a formal commemoration ceremony in the family’s front yard. His unwavering dedication to this cause, perhaps born of his own service as an Army paratrooper,

“It’s hard to put the numbers of soldiers killed into perspective,” Rockie says. “Those numbers you hear on TV become almost meaningless over time. But if I say each one of those names and punctuate that with the ringing of a bell and the lighting of a candle, you can put a face with each one of those names and finally understand the loss that number represents.” Rockie recounts another story about his friends Jim and Dianna Beardsley, whose son B. J. died in Iraq. Rockie accompanied them to B. J.’s annual birthday memorial at Arlington IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

27


Cemetery in Washington, D.C. “I’ve stood with families in hundreds of yards. I’ve held thousands of people in my arms and said I’m so sorry. But somehow or another I was arrogant enough to think I knew how that mom and dad felt,” Rockie says. “We pulled up next to that grave, and I realized, I don’t know a damn thing, not one thing, that these people go through. I had never seen Jim shed a tear, and here he was getting off his bike, shaking and crying. And these are some of the strongest people I’ve ever known. Then Dianna read a letter from their grandson. It said, ‘Hi dad, I’m in middle school now. I don’t like history, but I’m doing pretty good at math...’ And I thought what a fool I’d been. Regardless of your position or politics or who you are, it doesn’t matter at all to that kid who never knew his dad, whose dad had never held him. And I realized right then, the importance of every single thing we’re doing.”

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019


Santa Visits at the Toy Shop NOVEMBER 10TH • 9AM – 1PM

10 Min Sessions $50 You receive all the digital photos taken! LIMITED SPACE SCHEDULE NOW!

Lisa Crates Studio

335 Morrison Farm Rd., Troutman | Call: 980-253-1102 | Email: LisaCratees@icloud.com


MoTown to Memphis MSI Chamber of Commerce

New Member Spotlight Red Buffalo Brewing Co. in Statesville was born in their garages with a few batches of homebrew and a love for the craft of brewing. They embrace both innovative and old world styles of beer. Similar to a farmer’s table, their beer selections change with the seasons. They brew in small batches, which allow them flexibility to experiment with variations of beer styles for their customers. The Brewery is founded on passion for flavorfully crafted beer and the belief that the best pints are those shared with good company. Red Buffalo Brewing Company was designed to be a place where new and old friends can share a table and a pint or two. They look forward to you sharing a table with them. Owner Joe Bondi will celebrate the company’s one year anniversary on November 2, 2019 in Downtown Statesville. 121 North Center Street, Suite 101 • Statesville, NC 28677 www.statesvillechamber.org • (704) 873-2892

Business Expo Thursday, October 24, 2019 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Charles Mack Citizen Center Celebrate the History of MUSIC! Exhibitors are encouraged to dress up like their favorite bands or artists and decorate their boothswith a music theme. Win the Best Booth Awards!

WIN Tickets to Elton John’s Farewell Tour Yellow Brick Road Concert! For Booth and Sponsorship Information, Contact the Chamber: info@mooresvillenc.org • 704-664-3898 www.mooresvillnc.org

Directed by: Sharon Davies Sigler 7:30 pm Evening Shows:

October 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26 2:00 pm Matinees:

October 20 & 27

121 N. CENTER ST. ~ STATESVILLE, NC

Music & Lyrics by STEPHEN SONDHEIM

Book by GEORGE FURTH

Originally Produced & Directed on Broadway by Harold Prince | Orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick

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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019


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IREDELL LIVING • OCTOBER 2019

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Iredell Living October 2019  

Welcome to Iredell Living Magazine online. We invite you to read the October 2019 issue featuring Wellness Source. Our advertisers make it p...

Iredell Living October 2019  

Welcome to Iredell Living Magazine online. We invite you to read the October 2019 issue featuring Wellness Source. Our advertisers make it p...

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