Editorial: The big news in 2022, Chik-fil-A coming to Davie

Published 12:37 am Thursday, December 29, 2022

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As 2022 comes to a close, it’s common for newspapers to list the top news stories of the year.

And since the editorial board here at the Enterprise Record pretty much consists of yours truly, I’ll mention a few that caught my attention while perusing through the 51 copies of the Enterprise Record that had already been printed. But I didn’t leave out this week, as the Cooleemee Police Department is closing and the town is contracting with the sheriff’s office for police coverage. That’s pretty big news for folks in that area.

What I did notice was that Davie County is full of kind, generous people – of all ages. There was story after story that outlined this benevolence, and it makes one proud.

Another sense of pride comes with the baseball players we continue to produce. Major League All Star Whit Merrifield was traded from Kansas City to Toronto; pitcher Jeremy Walker was traded from San Francisco to Tampa Bay. And Carson Whisenhunt signed a big contract to pitch for the San Francisco Giants. Wow. Three guys from Davie playing in the Major Leagues at the same time. And to top that off, a young Davie High star, Coy James, lead Team USA to the U15 World Baseball Cup title in Mexico, earning the MVP award for the tournament.

Tragedies too often make these lists, and we’re no different. I won’t dwell on details, but too many young lives have been lost due to mental illness, drug habits and questionable lifestyles. We can do better. Do something to help someone else today, someone who you likely would have nothing to do with otherwise. It’s a start.

These tragedies are sometimes nothing more than accidents, such as the death of Trent Millslagle, the Tanglewood Pizza employee who had just left work before his car crashed in front of the restaurant, taking his life. Restaurant employees mourned the life of their friend, but they took it a step further. Look on the back of their shirts today and you’ll likely see the slogan, “Don’t Start None, Won’t Be None.” It was Trent’s way of helping to keep a happy workplace, and it’s pretty darned good advice for us all.

Of course, government and our interactions with government make the list, too. You could say that 2022 was quite tumultuous for our county commissioners, who struggled with EMS service in Advance, rezonings, EMS leadership, and even the county manager’s job. We trust that Brian Barnett, who has been county manager for a half of a year now without major incident, can keep up the good work. And Joseph Ashburn deserves the job as EMS director. He’s a good guy with good intentions who has put his life’s work into the agency.

Lee Rollins also stepped down as Bermuda Run town manager, and Andrew Meadwell, the county’s planning director, became the town manager. Other planners soon followed Meadwell’s exit.

Veterans Day just wasn’t the same without a ceremony in front of the monument in Downtown Mocksville. Lynne Hicks, the organizer of this event for years, was on her deathbed and unable to do the chore. A local attorney and a friend to veterans and scouts everywhere, she later died.

Habitat for Humanity reorganized and plans to open one of the largest ReStores in the country in Bermuda Run, not long after purchasing property in Mocksville.

Bermuda Run board members went with the majority of the residents in Kinderton and voted against a rezoning that would have allowed more apartments per acre. It’s an old story that all of our boards will continue to hear, “Not in my back yard.” I don’t care where you live, if you don’t own the property you enjoy, it could change in a flash. And it will for many Davie residents in the coming years.

Dr. Francis Slate turned 100 years old. And like he did as a local surgeon and political leader, he did it with class.

Notable deaths included Julius Suiter, long-time educator who helped Davie through desegregation of its schools and guided many young people as a teacher, coach and principal.

Publishers Clearing House came to Davie County, awarding $1 million to the most humble, most deserving couple possible. It was a heartwarming story. We’ll leave their names out just in case more relatives they didn’t know they had continue to surface.

Covid? The year started with arguments over restrictions, and ended with pretty much no restrictions. It didn’t seem to change the number of cases. Let’s call it old news.

But the most important news of 2022 – Chik-fil-A announced plans to build a restaurant in Bermuda Run. Could Mocksville be far behind?

Pass the waffle fries, please.

– Mike Barnhardt