Local News

  • Stomach virus cases on the rise

    Over the last month, Carilion Clinic has seen an increased number of cases of the stomach virus formally known as gastroenteritis.

    “Typically we see a lot of reported illnesses this time of year,” said Carilion Pediatrician John Moore, M.D., “but within the last two to three weeks, there has been a surge of stomach virus complaints.”

  • There's finally a reason to smile at the DMV

    Landmark News Service

    Come on, get happy.

    Drivers won’t have to look so glum in their licenses for the first time in six years — the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles announced Monday that smiles are now allowed again in ID photos.

    Photo recognition technology has advanced to allow customers the option of grinning, or not, in their pictures.

    “We heard loud and clear from customers that they prefer posing with smiles,” said DMV Commissioner Richard Holcomb.

  • Driver's action prevents fire damage to bank

    Staff Reports

    On Dec. 16 at 1:41 p.m., the Galax Volunteer Fire Department responded to a vehicle fire at the Grayson National Bank on Carrollton Pike in Galax.

    Units arrived to find a full-size Dodge pickup on fire. Engine One firefighters quickly subdued the blaze.

  • Police department achieves third accreditation

    The Galax Police Department has received a Certified Crime Prevention Community Award from the Virginia Department of Criminal and Justice Services (VDCJS) for the third time, after meeting professional standards and undergoing a review.

    Galax Police Chief Rick Clark and Officer Kevin Hall accepted the award at the Galax City Council meeting on Dec. 14.

  • Tip leads police to moonshine bust

    WHITETOP — A joint investigation by the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) led to the discovery of a moonshine operation in Whitetop.

    Vernon Edwards Miller, 68, of 1665 School House Road in Whitetop, was charged with possession of untaxed liquor on Dec. 9, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.

  • Christmas fund reaches goal

    In 62 minutes flat, a garage full of volunteers packed 550 boxes with food, cleaning supplies and a New Testament for needy families over the holiday season at the Galax Volunteer Fire Department.

    Chief David Hankley said of this year’s fundraising efforts, “We’re right at goal [of $30,000]. We can smell it. We had a little bit of shortfall last year, but I think we’re good this time.” (The next day, the good news came in, as they did indeed meet the year’s goal.)

  • Group organizes search for Wingler on Dec. 19

    Staff Reports

    WHITETOP ― A national organization dedicated to finding missing people has scheduled a search for a Whitetop man on Saturday.

    Kenny Jarels of Help Save The Next Girl said the non-profit entity was contacted by the family of John William Wingler, who has been missing since Nov. 12.

    Wingler, 74, was last seen at his home that day. He is considered endangered due to medical conditions, according to the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating the case.

  • Suspects charged with car thefts

    Staff Reports

    An 18-year-old and a 16-year-old are charged with taking two cars and several watches from a Galax business.

    According to a report released by the Galax Police Department, between the night of Dec. 12 and the morning of Dec. 13, Galax Auto Sales at 602 S. Main Street was burglarized.

    After entry was forced into the business, keys to a 2004 Ford Mustang and a 2006 Chrysler PT Cruiser, along with watches, were stolen.

  • Carroll EMS explains billing policy change

    HILLSVILLE – According to a proposal approved in the October meeting of the Carroll County Board of Supervisors, non-county residents will be subject to a more aggressive billing method for use of EMS services.

    Currently, bills for EMS services in Carroll County have been following a “soft billing” approach. This means that patients are sent three bills and after the third bill, if payment is not received, those bills are written off and not pursued further for payment.

  • Mill site sale pending in Fries

    FRIES — The goal of seeing significant economic developments in Fries is now within sight of town officials, who with members of the Blue Ridge Economic Development Authority (BRCEDA) announced Wednesday that BRCEDA-owned properties in Fries, including the old cotton mill site, will soon be sold to a local buyer for development.

    The authority met with Fries Town Council on Wednesday morning to enter into a standard commercial agreement for all properties in Fries that are currently owned by BRCEDA.