Month: April 2020

Home 2020 April
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Unemployment data hard to get for North Carolina counties like Hoke

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • While the U.S. Department of Labor and N.C. Department of Commerce are tracking unemployment, it’s hard to say exactly how many people in Hoke have lost work due to COVID-19. So far more than 26 million Americans have lost their jobs due to the pandemic, according to the...

Storms not likely to be severe today
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Storms not likely to be severe today

The National Weather Service believes most severe weather will stay to our south as a storm front pushes through today (Thursday). There is a slight chance of severe thunderstorms. Just a heads-up… Saturday afternoon brings another round, but the risk at this point is slight.

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Hoke tops 30 COVID-19 cases since start of pandemic

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • There are now 30 known cases of COVID-19 in Hoke County, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. The five cases added Wednesday marked the largest single-day increase for the county. The COVID-19 spread in Hoke has been slow so far. Health officials have...

Storms now a little more likely tomorrow
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Storms now a little more likely tomorrow

The Storm Prediction Center has increased the forecasted risk of severe storms for Hoke County tomorrow. We’re now in the “Enhanced” category. “There is increasing concern that this could become the focus for organized severe thunderstorm development, including supercells and an upscale growing convective system by Thursday evening, if not earlier. Given strong to extreme...

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Hoke County blood drive scheduled

The Cape Fear Valley Blood Donor Center has scheduled a blood drive in Hoke County April 30. The event will be held at Stone Gables Apartments on US401across from the FedEx facility from 3-7 p.m.

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(Updated) Every family with child in Hoke public school will get extra $250

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • North Carolina officials announced this week the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program, or P-EBT, will give eligible families an extra $250 per child to help feed their children while schools are closed. Apparently, all families with a child enrolled in Hoke County Schools are eligible, because of how the school...

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Hoke at 25 COVID-19 cases

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • Hoke’s number of known positive cases of COVID-19 remained low this week, as officials continued efforts to prevent outbreaks at nursing homes and the Hoke County jail. Hoke had 25 cases of COVID-19 as of Tuesday, according to Hoke County Health Department Director Helene Edwards. Many of the cases...

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Law shuts down night club

The Hoke County Sheriff’s Office shut down an alleged illegal nightclub in Shannon last week and arrested the owner on multiple drug charges. The sheriff’s office received “numerous complaints” about an illegal nightclub operating on the 3100 block of Balfour Road in Shannon, according to a press release. The Hoke Sheriff’s Office Special Operations Unit...

Woman injured in crash at fire department
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Woman injured in crash at fire department

By Catharin Shepard •  Staff writer •  A driver allegedly exceeding the speed limit ran off the road and crashed into Hillcrest Fire Department early Easter Sunday morning, according to a report from the North Carolina Highway Patrol. Jada McLeod of the 100 block of Lantern Lane in Raeford was driving about 70 miles an...

Rep. Pierce: more money coming for hospitals
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Rep. Pierce: more money coming for hospitals

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer •  Money for rural hospitals like the two in Hoke County could be on the way in new state legislation geared toward addressing COVID-19. The work groups of the Special House Committee on COVID-19 planned to meet this week to discuss the bill meant to help medical facilities in...

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County continues budget work

By Catharin Shepard •  Staff writer •  Even as Hoke County departments continue providing services during the COVID-19 emergency, county officials are also continuing the work of putting together the county budget and completing the yearly audit. County department heads turned in their budget proposals to Hoke County Manager Letitia Edens by the end of...

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Letter: ‘Give President Trump some credit’

To the Editor:  I am writing this letter in response to the article written by Mr. Ron Huff entitled, “We Don’t Need This Kind of Leader,” which appeared in the April 8 issue of The News-Journal. Everyone is entitled to his/her opinions. However, I don’t understand why people like you and most others in the...

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Letter: ‘You are no friend of President Trump’

To the Editor:“However (political parties) may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled, men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the...

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Frog Holler Philosopher: Maybe cycle of poverty can be broken

By Ron Huff • In Hoke County, one of the poorest counties in the state, we have more than our share of poverty. Poverty in the United States can go largely unnoticed by those who are best equipped to lend a helping hand. Those of us not living in the midst of poverty on a...

Another storm system approaches, severe weather possible, but doubtful
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Another storm system approaches, severe weather possible, but doubtful

Another storm system approaching Thursday, and the National Weather Service says it again appears Hoke will not see severe weather, but there’s “Lots of uncertainty in severe threat with the evolving storm system. We are leaning toward more in the way of more cool rain and less severe threat. However, this may very well change...

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Hoke County COVID-19 news roundup for Tuesday, April 21

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • As of Tuesday there were 25 known positive cases of COVID-19 in Hoke County. Many of the people who tested positive in March have already recovered from the illness. So far Hoke hasn’t seen local person-to-person community spread, according to the Hoke County Health Department. The known cases...

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Column: FirstHealth committed to COVID-19 fight

Opinion column by Mickey Foster • Chief Executive Officer of FirstHealth of the Carolinas • Two weeks ago, I introduced you to a few of the health care heroes I interact with each day, highlighting the remarkable sacrifices they make to help FirstHealth of the Carolinas care for you.   As we continue to respond to...

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Severe storms possible tomorrow

Severe weather is a possibility tomorrow evening though the National Weather Service says current thinking is it will remain south of us:  “The boundary, and thus severe convection threat, will mainly stay just barely to our south and east Sunday and Sunday night (except for Sampson County, which is in the marginal risk area both...

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FirstHealth offers telemedicine for virtual visits

FirstHealth primary care clinics in Raeford introduced this month telemedicine video appointments for existing patients. Video visits are available during regular clinic hours at both FirstHealth Family Medicine in Raeford and FirstHealth Primary Care in Raeford. In compliance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and social distancing guidelines for COVID-19, clinics are...

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‘Operation Hero’ will help military children in Hoke County

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • A program called “Operation Hero” will start this fall lending a helping hand to children of military families in Hoke County. The free after-school program from the Armed Forces YMCA of Fort Bragg offers academic and emotional support for military children in grades 2-8. It’s designed to help...

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COVID crisis could invite child abuse

By Celeste Neumann • Hoke Cooperative Extension • During this quarantine, entire families are sheltering at home, often in close quarters. Anxiety about health, education, and finances is high. Children aren’t seeing the teachers, counselors and other adults who would normally raise concerns about their well-being. The COVID-19 pandemic has created the conditions for a...

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Principal completes leadership program

Haley Hall, principal of Don Steed Elementary, recently completed the Distinguished Leadership Program (DLP). The DLP is a year-long leadership development program for practicing school principals, designed and provided by the North Carolina Principals and Assistant Principal’s Association and sponsored by the North Carolina Alliance for School Leadership Development (NCASLD). The DLP uses a non-traditional...

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Letter: Stay home, but don’t ignore your health

To the Editor: We are in unprecedented times and must take unprecedented action. As a physician, I am urging you to stay home, shelter in place, and help us defeat coronavirus.  But it’s also important to continue to care for other aspects of your health. North Carolina’s family physicians and pediatricians have quickly implemented telehealth...

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Letter: I’d vote for the billy goat

To the Editor: In response to Claudyne S. Brock’s letter (News-Journal, April 1) regarding a billy goat being the Democratic nominee opposing President Donald Trump for the next president of the United States, I would vote for the billy goat, regardless of party affiliation, because he would not do the damage to this country the...