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Daily Archives: 01/22/2019

Easley teen found shot to death on roadside

No arrests made in 16-year-old’s death

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

EASLEY — An Easley teen whose body was found on the side of Saluda Dam Road over the weekend was shot to death, according to authorities.

Pickens County Deputy Coroner Gary Duncan identified the victim as 16-year-old Robert Tyler Butler of Dayton Drive.

According to a release from Pickens County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Creed Hashe, a motorist called the sheriff’s office at 12:15 p.m. Saturday and reported a suspicious person on the shoulder of

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Keeping the dream alive

Community celebrates MLK Day

Despite bitter cold temperatures, the members of Pickens Presbyterian Church and Griffin Ebenezer Baptist Church joined hands for their 13th annual celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday. Although the event traditionally features a unity walk from Pickens Presbyterian to the Pickens County Courthouse, the cold weather led organizers to instead hold the celebration in the church’s sanctuary. The event featured words from local religious leaders, a moment of silence in memory of the late Rev. C.L. Cruell, the former pastor at Griffin Ebenezer, the recitation of the Dr. King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech by Rev. Carl Allmond and musical selections by a combined community choir. A community service cleanup day planned for Monday has been rescheduled for Feb. 16, according to organizers. To read more about Dr. King and his legacy, turn to page B1.

Rocky Nimmons/Courier

 

Man arrested on 10 child porn charges

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

EASLEY — An Easley man faces 10 child porn-related charges.

John James Fread II was arrested on Jan. 16, according to a release from South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson.

He is charged with seven counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and three counts of third-degree sexual exploitation of a

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Meals on Wheels celebrates Bowers’ ‘crazy passion’

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

LIBERTY — Pickens County Meals on Wheels said goodbye this week to former executive director Meta Bowers, who left recently to be the executive director of the Meyer Center for Children in Greenville.

“It’s been a big decision, leaving Meals on Wheels,” Bowers said.

She said her tenure at the organization “has been the best time of my life.”

“I have left my mark on Meals on Wheels, and it has left its mark on me — I dye my hair now,” Bowers said.

A going-away party was held for Bowers at the McKissick Center for Senior Wellness in Liberty on Saturday evening.

Pickens County Meals on Wheels board chairman Craig Ragsdale

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Collins’ bill may cut scholarships to help teachers 

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

LIBERTY — State Rep. Neal Collins is cosponsoring a bill that, if passed, would use lottery funds for helping teachers, instead of funding HOPE and LIFE scholarships.

During the Pickens County Legislative Delegation’s recent annual meeting, grassroots education advocate Denni Clardy Alexander asked Collins about the bill.

“Why would the Education Lottery Bill support taking scholarship money away from middle-class families and higher, when these are the only funds they can get for their children?” she asked.

His pre-filed bill would divert lottery funding from HOPE and LIFE scholarships toward teachers, Collins said.

He said the retention rates for the scholarships are among the reasons he is supporting the bill.

“HOPE and LIFE, they only have a retention rate of about 20

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‘Electrify Your Strings’ concert set for April 13

More than 700 local student musicians

to perform at Littlejohn Coliseum

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

PICKENS — Pickens County’s yearlong sesquicentennial celebration will come to an end with a concert featuring area students and a founding member of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

During their January meeting earlier this month, county tourism director Jay Pitts gave Pickens County Council members an update on the concert, slated for Saturday, April 13, at Clemson’s Litllejohn Coliseum.

“Mark Wood will be here in April,” Pitts said. “He is scheduled to be here April 8-13. He’s bringing his entire education team to teach our young people in the world of music.”

After working with Wood and his “Electrify Your Strings” program all

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Central councilman resigns

By Greg Oliver
Courtesy The Journal

goliver@upstatetoday.com

CENTRAL — A little more than a year after being sworn into office, Central Town Councilman Brandon Thomas resigned last week.

“I have purchased a home outside of town limits, and it is with a heavy heart that I am moving outside town limits and I am not eligible to serve as a town council member,” Thomas said in his resignation letter.

A local business owner, who was awarded Central Business of the Year at the 2018 State of Central banquet, Thomas said in his letter that he has enjoyed serving with his fellow council members.

“You do a wonderful job, and I only see great things in the future for Central,” he said. “I hope I have made a positive difference. I wish all the best for the town of Central. This is where I grew up, and although I will no longer live in the town limits, my heart will always be in Central.”

While council accepted Thomas’ resignation, Mayor Mac Martin and council members said he would be missed.

“Brandon did a good job, and I know if he had any idea this opportunity to move was coming, he wouldn’t have run in the first

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Whitehurst focusing on budget, roads this year

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

PICKENS — The county budget, roads and fire service are among Pickens County Councilman Trey Whitehurst’s priorities for this year.

Whitehurst, who represents the Central and Six Mile areas, was sworn in earlier this month after winning re-election to his seat in November.

“I think our budget’s going to be a big thing for this year,” Whitehurst said. “I’ve already been talking to the chairman (Roy Costner). We

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Prison ministry, industry among Feemster’s priorities 

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

CLEMSON — Industrial development, education and providing a home for a prison ministry at the county’s new jail top Pickens County Councilman Ensley Feemster’s priorities after he was re-elected last year.

Feemster was sworn in before council’s organizational meeting earlier this month.

“I’d like to continue a lot of the stuff we’re working on,” Feemster said. “For instance, on the prison, there was some

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Eyes on the admirable cooperation of crows

Early one morning this week, just as the sun was coming up, I walked out onto the front porch with my coffee.

There was a flutter of wings rising into the air from the snowball bush near the porch, where one of the feeders hangs.

I saw two chickadees taking to the air and a cardinal with his wife. From the very top of the large pine tree near the blueberries came the cry of a crow. He cawed and was answered by another crow, perched atop the red maple near the mailbox. First one, then the other called back and forth.

Clearly, they were communicating

The flock who were feeding in the grass of the front yard near the crepe myrtles took flight.

I had heard that crows have sentinels whose job is to perch high and

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