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Columns

  • Sheriff recognizes emergency dispatchers

    By Carroll County Sheriff John B. Gardner

  • Put downtown Galax ideas into action

    The Galax City Council recently viewed the results of a survey of the downtown area conducted by RKG Associates. Over the course of several months, they carefully studied the area to pinpoint its strengths and weaknesses, and determined what could be done to spike the interests of both tourists and residents.
    Studies revealed that the area has a great foundation, with a rich history of art and music that draws in tourists from all over the world.

  • Volunteers rose to challenge in I-77 crisis

    It was a somber Easter weekend this year due to the series of crashes on Interstate 77 on March 31.
    Due to a combination of foggy conditions and precautions that were sadly not taken by drivers, dozens were injured and three are dead as a result of the massive pileup.
    When word of this crisis spread, our local police officers, EMTs, firefighters and ordinary citizens reported to the scene or gathered where they could to provide help the injured and the stranded. On The Gazette's Facebook page, readers time and again sought information on ways they could help.

  • Strength in numbers

    They say that it takes a village to raise a child, so perhaps it takes an entire region to care for the smaller communities within it.
    The announcement last week of Twin County United Way’s merger with United Way Virginia Highlands came with a lot of positivity — along with many questions about what happens next.
    What changes are going to be made?
    Where will the funding go?

  • A squad's proud legacy

    For several months, it appeared that Hillsville Rescue Squad's legacy would be one of controversy and ill will, after town officials began questioning the need for its continued existence since it had essentially disbanded.
    There were accusations and finger-pointing about funds, personnel issues, inappropriate use of vehicles, the sale of a squad building and equipment. All that negativity threatened to overshadow the good that the volunteer organization had done over the years.

  • Bluegrass, conspiracy link a real stretch for Tea Party

    This column by Dan Casey originally was published in The Roanoke Times.

  • Eyes on the road

    Driving along with a police car behind you can definitely be a stressful experience. Whether you’ve committed an infraction or not, just seeing that intimidating vehicle is enough to make even the most seasoned driver get a little antsy. Suddenly, doubt creeps in.
    Was I speeding? Did I forget to signal? Do I have a tail light out?
    Then, as soon as they appear, they are gone. Whew, no ticket.
    Recently, The Gazette has received calls to The Hotline from readers expressing their irritation at being constantly watched and followed by the police.

  • With open arms

    It has been said by many that the Twin Counties are rich in hospitality.
    In fact, it is commonly quoted by those who return to this area after traveling to other places, that they "have finally come home."
    Looking back over events that have taken place over the past couple of months, it is easy to see why people feel this way. Not only do local businesses, organizations and residents welcome newcomers with open arms, but in the most dire situations, their doors swing open, too.

  • School officers an invaluable resource

    For Twin County parents, it might be hard to understand the national debate about placing armed police officers in schools. To many, it probably seems an obvious, proven and effective security measure.
    Schools in Carroll, Grayson and Galax have had resource officers at high schools for years, and this arrangement has been praised by educators, law enforcement, parents and even students. The program is now expanding to elementary schools after the deadly Newtown, Conn., school shootings of 2012.

  • Family advocates address state's criticism of training center reports

    By Jane Powell, CVTC Families and Friends Inc., and Peter Kinzler,  NVTC Parents and Associates. Powell and Kinzler are members of parent groups fighting the proposed closure of state-run facilities for the intellectually disabled, like the Southwestern Virginia Training Center in Carroll.