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“Mr. School Bus Driver” That was the salutation on a beautiful hand-crafted card given to me on the last day of school by a student at Freedom High School. Three years ago, the pandemic ushered …

Sharley Mendoza is in many ways a living embodiment of The American Dream. Mendoza, was born in Guatemala and immigrated to North Carolina at the age of 4. A 2015 graduate of Patton High School, she …

If you’re feeling glum about the future of the world and disgusted with the state “of people these days,” I got a sure-fire cure for your blues: Sit down and talk with Morganton’s Gary …

The aroma of fish frying wafted through the morning air with a gentle breeze awakening my taste buds. Like a bloodhound, hot to the scent, I began to follow the smell to its source, but was …

It’s formally called Generative Pre-trained Transformer. Some call it Generative Artificial Intelligence.  Most of us just refer to it as AI. Call it what you might. It does not change the …

A close friend once told me I was born several hundred years – perhaps a millennia or two — too late.  I took it the way it was intended — as a compliment. To paraphrase the great Jimmy …

I first visited Burke County many years ago as a young lawyer, sent here on a legal project by the law firm I then worked with in Charlotte. As I drove north up Highway 18 to Morganton, I was struck …

I struggled writing this column. I hit it from many different angles, pulled it apart, cut and pasted, scraped it all altogether more than once. No matter how I tried, the superlatives seemed trite. …

Hardware disease, also known as traumatic reticuloperitonitis, is really not a disease at all. It is an injury to the reticulum caused by ingestion of such things as small pieces of wire, nails, …

(In the previous column, I talked about a Vacation Bible School that was modeled after a marketplace in New Testament times. It was a creative venture that was a total success, but went amuck at the …

The 79th anniversary of D-Day, which occurred on June 6, 1944, passed quietly this week. Indeed, World War II seems to be fading from the national consciousness as the conflict retreats further into …

If you work in a small business chances are that you work in a small office with doors open to customers. Customers are, after all, why the business is in business in the first place. Nothing kills a …

Leaving the past behind has never been easy for me.  When you suffer devastating losses at a young age (in my case, losing both my parents in a span of two and a half years when I was a …

When I arrived in Morganton in January 2017, I had one goal in mind — launching a second campus of the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (well, that and locating a home for my family …

People who didn’t live back in the day roll their eyes when they hear people who did live back in the day talk about things, “Back in Day…” The day back then was fascinating when comparing …

Even though he had finished his victory speech to a wildly enthusiastic crowd in the Embassy Ballroom of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, the TV cameras remained focused on Sen. Robert Kennedy as …

I’ve been a reporter for 30 years, and I’m still waiting for a story like Carl Kolchak used to cover to fall into my lap. Kolchak, in case you don’t remember, was the protagonist of a …

I love Vacation Bible School! It is a delightful summertime tradition of many churches. It is five or so evenings of teaching/learning Biblical truths in creative ways and fun activities. Some …

Growing up I was always a daddy’s girl. No matter what my father did or said, he could do no wrong in my eyes. I’m very proud to have had the dad I did. He took care of his family and was a …

EDITOR’s NOTE: This is an American history educational moment of those who made a difference during the Revolutionary War era and how they served our country. Most people do not recognize his name, …

I’m not one to judge other people. Especially if they’re still within ear shot, are carrying weapons, or might be strong enough to twist me into a pretzel. But how can anyone with a brain larger …

The sun hadn’t yet worked up the courage to show its face on a frigid, stormy, fog-drenched, morning in early January, 2023, and I was absolutely terrified. Only days earlier, I had undergone a …

Even though I got to play 18 holes of golf with my dad and papa a few weeks ago and I'm outside kicking the soccer ball almost every day, I wanted to write about something different this week. We …

September 2004 – I’ll always remember that particular month in time. I was working then with Burke County Emergency Services as 911 Communications Manager. We were smack-dab in the middle of …

An Assassination at Rutherford College Beneath this arresting headline, the newspaper story: “The unusually quiet little village of Rutherford College, 10 miles east of Morganton, was the scene of …

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