75 YEARS AGO - 1944
June 24 - June 30
- Mrs. John D. Pace reported to The Item today she had received a letter from her husband, written from the battlefields of France. It was the first notification The Item has received of a communication …
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- Mrs. John D. Pace reported to The Item today she had received a letter from her husband, written from the battlefields of France. It was the first notification The Item has received of a communication coming through from the invasion front, although many Sumter boys are known to be participating in the fighting. Pvt. Pace, known familiarly as "Sam," is a member of a quartermaster outfit.
- Showing at the Rex Theater today is "The Black Parachute," Cast: John Carradine and Osa Massen. The headline story about guerrilla fighting against the Nazi conquerors in the Balkans. Wednesday and Thursday: "Crime School," Cast: Humphrey Bogart and the Dead-End Kids. Friday and Saturday: "Lumber Jack," Cast: William Boyd. A thrilling western with William Boyd in the role as Hop alongside Cassidy.
- Citizens crowded Municipal Park to view graduation exercises of aviation cadet class 44-H, Shaw Field. Ceremonies included a full formal review and a parade of 44-H cadets. A feature of the program was a war bond plea made by John J. Riley and military representatives. The Shaw Field band, directed by chief warrant officer Robert Simpson, played a concert, after which Col. Roy T. Wright, commanding officer of the basic flying school, opened the ceremonies by presenting awards to aviation cadets George H. Shedd and John R. Bruni. Col. Wright announced that the graduating class has oversubscribed its quota in the Fifth War Loan and commended Sumter County for being the first to go over the top in the state.
- Cpl. Robert W. Wells has written his wife, the former Annie Laurie McCormick, that Sumter boys are featured in the newsreel pictures of the fall of Rome. The picture is showing at the Sumter Theater. Cpl. Wells stated that a group of Sumter boys (all of the 178th Field Artillery) were "filmed" by the cameraman as they stood near St. Peter's cathedral.
- Dr. James Keith Palmer of Sumter has received an appointment to a fellowship in urology at the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minnesota. Dr. Palmer graduated from the College of Charleston and from the Medical College of South Carolina in 1943. He was a member of AKK National Medical Fraternity and president of the student body. He was commissioned a lieutenant (jg) in Navy Medical Corps Reserve upon graduation and was licensed to practice in South Carolina. At present, Dr. Palmer is interning at Bethesda Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, and will report to the Mayo Clinic on Oct. 1. He is the son of Mrs. L. D. Jennings of Sumter.
- Rehearsals are proceeding splendidly for "Victory Vanities," the local talent show being sponsored by the Lions Club which will be presented June 29 and 30 in the Edmunds Auditorium for the benefit of the Lions sight conservation program and the Boy Scouts of Sumter. The play is under the direction of Miss Freda Cloe Foster of Kansas City, who has had much experience in this type of work. Miss Foster said today that she is greatly pleased with the cast and anticipates one of the finest shows that she has ever directed.
- Newest U.S. award to military, naval or civilian personnel for heroic or meritorious achievement against the enemy is the Bronze Star, recently authorized by the president. Decoration consists of acid-toned bronze star pendant from a ribbon, with small modeled star in center of larger one. Ribbon, worn on service uniform instead of medal, is red, piped in white, with vertical blue stripe, also white-piped, in center.
- City Manager J. A. Raffield asked authorization at a council meeting to charge off taxes amounting to $2,786.95 on June 30, due to the fact that the citizens owing that amount are now in service or have moved away. Last year, $3,609.36 was charged off. Uncollectable water bills for the year amount to only $27.70, Raffield said. The water department has collected an approximate amount of $62,000 for the year.
- The award of the Distinguished Flying Cross to 2nd Lt. Thomas Neal Beall Jr., of Sumter, husband of Mrs. Mary B. Beall, Samford, Texas, and grandson of Mrs. J. S. Lancaster, Newton, North Carolina, has been announced by Ninth Air Force headquarters. Lt. Beall, 21, a pilot on a B-26 Marauder bomber, has previously been awarded the Air Medal with nine Oak Leaf Clusters. He was cited for "extraordinary achievement while serving as a pilot on a B-26 airplane on 25 bombardment missions over enemy-occupied continental Europe. Lt. Beall's superior flying skill and untiring energy materially aided in the successful completion of these missions. His steadfast devotion to duty and his gallant courage reflect great credit on himself and upon the military forces of the United States."
- City council adopted an amendment to a section of the ordinance granting a franchise to the Sumter Coach Co. to operate in the city, which will allow the coach company to charge a maximum fare of seven cents. Heretofore, the maximum fare has been five cents. Conditions of the amendment are that the higher rates will be charged only during the emergency period and will be lowered to the five-cent maximum upon the termination of the war with Germany. It is understood that the bus company will sell four tickets for a quarter and may possibly use bus tokens.
50 YEARS AGO - 1969
Feb. 23 - March 1
- Airman James R. Revelle was named January's Airman of the Month by the Sumter Merchants' Association in its monthly recognition project for Shaw Air Force Base personnel. Revelle is in teletype operations with the 728th Tactical Control Squadron. He has been in the Air Force since May and at Shaw since October.
- "Former President Dwight D. Eisenhower is resting as comfortable as can be expected," Walter Reed Army Hospital officials announced after late-night emergency abdominal surgery. A brief statement issued said the general's heart condition was stable. The combination of Eisenhower's 78 years and history of seven heart attacks had made the surgery a decided risk.
- Hillcrest's Wildcats clawed their way back from a 13-point deficit late in the third quarter to overturn Timmonsville 68-64 in the finals of the Upper 6AA Conference championship. Carl Sprouse's 36 points triggered the Hillcrest comeback in the second half. The win puts the Wildcats in the 6AA finals.
- A film, "Candidate for Stroke," will be shown by Mrs. O. T. Hobbs at the Du-We-Go Grange Hall. Dr. Charles White of Sumter and a native of Oswego will be on hand to comment on the film and answer questions. Dr. White attended Sumter schools and graduated from Wofford and the Medical College of South Carolina.
- The Rev. Ralph McCaskill, pastor of Bishopville Presbyterian Church, was named Lee County's "Outstanding Young Man of the Year" at the Jaycees' annual Ladies Night and DSA banquet. Rev. McCaskill was chosen on the basis of character, service to the community, civic leadership and religious outlook. In accepting the Jaycees' highest honor, Rev. McCaskill said, "I can't accept this for myself alone but will accept it for all of you who have worked so hard to make Bishopville a better community."
- Gen. Kendall S. Young, commander of the 363rd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing, donned his silver stars in a promotion ceremony. Maj. Gen. Timothy F. O'Keefe, commander of the Ninth Air Force, and Mrs. Kendall S. Young pinned the silver stars on Gen. Young. As commander of the 363rd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing, Gen. Young is responsible for the largest wing in the Tactical Air Command.
- Simpson Hardware Store will have a grand opening for its new store located in Palmetto Plaza. The new store, which was completed in early December, has two-thirds as much floor space as the old store. Carl Simpson, manager and owner, said the new store has more outdoor space for the expansion of the lawn and gardening department. "We are upgrading the lawn and gardening department, expanding our sporting goods and our gifts and hardware departments," Simpson said.
- Business and industry will have a chance to learn about the new South Carolina Apprenticeship program being offered through the Chamber of Commerce and Sumter Area TEC. Speakers at the seminar will be Marion C. Caldwell, director, Division of South Carolina Apprenticeship, and Glen Pearson, owner of the TV Service Center in Sumter. Pearson will talk about the practical applications of setting up an apprenticeship program.
- The V.K. Quattlebaums and the R.A. Wegers of Manning have been recent hosts to two young natives of Brazil, Itamar Carrijo and Claude Wuillaume. According to 21-year-old Itamar, his stay in a small Southern town in the United States has been "very different and very interesting." Being from Sao Paulo, Brazil, which is large and bustling, he found Manning a contrast, "friendly, restful and quiet." An ambitious student, he works all week at his father's electronics store in order to be able to attend college two days a week. He meets classes on Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is his first year of college where he studies law and hopes to practice when the five-year course is completed.
- Tech. Sgt. Allen Weber of the 363rd Transportation Squadron has been chosen Shaw's NCO of the Month for February. Sgt. Weber is assigned to the Traffic Management Office as NCOIC of Terminal Service Unit which deals mainly with freight, air freight, packing and preservation. The Gladstone, Michigan, native is a graduate of Gladstone High School.
- Mrs. R.A. Bradham Sr. is showing her collection of Madonnas at the YWCA's Professional and Businesswomen's Club. She has been collecting for 48 years. She received her first Madonna, a framed picture, 48 years ago as a wedding present. Most of her collection is imported from Italy and Japan. She has over 100 Madonnas made of ceramic, glass, china and also those framed. Her real loves is an Andrew Del Sarto painting of the Madonna and Child.
- Local response to the District 17 Board of Trustees' decision to reject the zoning plan for schools next year has been very favorable, according to John W. Godbey, chairman of the board. Godbey said that people he doesn't even know have called him to congratulate the board on its decision to stick to the freedom of choice plan opposed by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. He said, "I have received nothing but favorable comments, and this sort of praise is very unusual for a school board member."
25 YEARS AGO - 1993
Nov. 26 - Dec. 1
- There were a couple of questions to be answered during the Hillcrest Basketball Jamboree at Hillcrest High School. Will the defending state 4A basketball champions miss Ray Allen, who's now playing with the University of Connecticut? Can Thomas Sumter Academy hold its own against the public schools now that it has three exchange students with excellent basketball skills? The answers were clear after Hillcrest routed Mayewood 46-16 and Furman downed the Generals 39-17 in the two-quarter format tournament.
- Lee County Memorial Hospital laid off seven employees this week because fewer patients are using the facility. The hospital laid off five full-time and two part-time workers in an effort to cut $150,000 in spending. "We are only doing what other hospitals are doing," hospital trustee Al Holland said. "The number of patients has dropped, and our revenue didn't meet our budget. Our goal is to just break even this year."
- Even as the U.S. military is downsizing by about 25 percent, more and more high school students are getting a taste of military life by joining Junior ROTC. The number of Junior ROTC units is expected to nearly triple over the next decade, and right now in the three-county area, Junior ROTC is becoming one of the most popular extra-curricular activities on campus.
- The parking lots and streets of Sumter were backed up with cars as shoppers turned out in strength for the first big Christmas shopping day, traditionally the biggest of the year. Sales were reported to be heavy across South Carolina and much of the nation. While some Sumter shoppers said they would be more cautious about their holiday purchases this year than last, others said they planned to spend more on gifts, and retailers said they are confident sales will be higher than in 1992.
- By now, you probably have heard that your community YWCA will have its annual Hanging of the Greens on Dec. 1, and the public is invited. Your response may have been, "What, you mean that they want me to come and help decorate their administrative building?" No, that's not what it's all about. Hanging of the Greens is sponsored by our Cooperative Development Committee annually for the benefit of the National YWCA's World Mutual Service Fund - now known as the World YWCA Resource Sharing Program. The YWCA provides an envelope for your contribution, and you hang that envelope on its Christmas tree. In short, the "GREENS" are your donations, not cedar, pine or mistletoe.
- Country music star Aaron Tippin electrified a Sumter audience in a concert that was a prelude to an award backstage for the South Carolina native. Kindergarteners, senior citizens and people of every age in between were a colorful combination of blue jeans, cowboy boots and rip-roarin' spirit at the Sumter County Exhibition Center as Tippin heated up the stage.
- Hillcrest head basketball coach James Smith says his Wildcats are under no pressure as they prepare to defend their 4A state championship this season. "The pressure was last year," said Smith, whose team finished with a 27-4 record last season, including a 71-63 win over Byrnes in the state title game. "We had the best player in the state, and everybody expected us to win. There is no pressure this year. We just have to go out and play good basketball."
- Andy and Peter Ford were at Sumter High School visiting friends and their high school football coaches when they heard the news that their college coach, Ken Hatfield, had quit his post at Clemson. It was a not-so-surprising surprise to the identical twins. "It took me by surprise," Andy said. "I think he (Hatfield) had a good enough season for another year at least. There was talk about him leaving all season, so in a sense it wasn't a surprise. But when you're 8-3 and making a bowl game, that should be enough. So it was something of a surprise."
- South Carolina's largest public boat landing opened on Lake Marion. The John C. Land III Public Boat Landing in Clarendon County, named for Sen. John C. Land III of Manning, is designed to accommodate a host of professional tournaments. Located on the Clarendon County side of Lake Marion, the facility has six launching ramps, four boarding docks and a separate 120-foot event pier accessible by land for weigh-ins and judging about a quarter-mile from the landing.
- Twenty-two members of the Sumter High School Chorus have been selected to perform with the South Carolina All-State Chorus at Winthrop College. Of the 22 students, nine were selected to perform with the Women's Chorus, a special All-State Honors Chorus. The remaining 13 students will perform with the All-State Chorus.
- Sumter's two public school districts are having greater success in recruiting minorities for the classroom despite a drop in minority teachers statewide. The state's overall numbers keep dropping, even though South Carolina's school system has a 42 percent minority population. It's a national problem too. Eight percent of teachers are minorities, compared with a 30 percent minority student population nationwide.
- Sumter, Lee and Clarendon County schools will receive more than $220,000 in school incentive awards for student performance during the 1992-93 school year. The money is part of the School Incentive Program which rewards schools whose students meet the state's performance standards for achievement. Qualifying schools can earn extra money for meeting student and teacher attendance standards and improving dropout rates.
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