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Local

  • Midterm vote draws heavy early turnout in Lancaster and statewide

    Going into Friday, more absentee votes had already been cast in Lancaster County and across South Carolina than in the entire 2014 midterm election – and there were still three days of voting to go.
    “Based on absentee, I feel like we will be busy on Tuesday. That usually mirrors Election Day,” said Lancaster County Elections Director Mary Ann Hudson.
    As of Friday, according to the S.C. Election Commission, more than 260,000 absentee ballots had been issued across the state, 80 percent more than in 2014 and an absentee voting record for a midterm.

  • Habitat rehab project almost family-ready

    Brianna Carter and fiancé Quinterrus Shropshire are rejoicing in the transformation – a dilapidated, termite-damaged Lancaster house, made sturdy and beautiful again by the couple, their relatives and a band of Habitat for Humanity volunteers.
    Carter is a Southside Early Child Development schoolteacher who has never had a home of her own. She, Shropshire and their 1-year old daughter, Ava, hope to be moved into the 1,600-square-foot, three-bedroom home on Woodland Drive before Christmas, but there is still a lot of work to be done.

  • Murder on a lonely street, a family waits for answers

    At the end of a string of loud, terrifying street killings that had lasted months, the murder of Terry “Butch” Thompson one year ago barely caused a stir.
    A patrolling police officer spotted his body on Dunlap Street near downtown Lancaster at 1:17 a.m. The 47-year-old had been shot in the back of the head. There was no 911 call, no crowd of bystanders.
    One year later, there are few clues to what happened. No follow-up stories ever appeared in the newspaper. It has felt like a lifetime to Thompson’s family.

  • Be careful if you’re voting straight ticket

    If you’re planning to cast a straight-party voter machine ballot in Tuesday’s election, don’t forget about the local nonpartisan races.
    “We want to make sure that every vote that should get counted gets counted,” said Lancaster County Elections Director Mary Ann Hudson.
    A little confusion has risen among some voters casting straight-party Democratic or Republican ballots because nonpartisan races aren’t included in the straight-party process.

  • Firefighters raise $4,500 for MDA

    The Lancaster Fire Department raised more than $4,500 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association during its annual Fill the Boot fundraiser this month, 40 percent more than last year.
    MDA helps kids and adults struggling with muscular dystrophy, ALS and other muscle-debilitating diseases. It also contributes to research efforts, support groups and care centers.
    The Lancaster firefighters presented an MDA representative a check Monday afternoon, and also on hand was 23-year-old Talf Wrenn of Kershaw, who wanted to be there to thank them for what they had done.

  • Winthrop Poll: Trump’s S.C. support steady

    Winthrop University

    ROCK HILL – With less than a week before the nation’s midterm elections, President Trump’s approval rating is at 44 percent among S.C. residents, according to the latest Winthrop Poll.
    The 45th president has a disapproval rating of half of Palmetto State citizens. His approval rating among S.C. adults has remained in the mid-40s over his two years in office.
    Among respondents who lean Republican, Trump has an 83 percent approval rate, which continues to climb in one of the reddest states in the country.

  • Feds OK Lancaster ‘opportunity zones’

    Lancaster has been approved for the new federal “opportunity zone” initiative to create jobs and affordable housing in economically distressed areas – a shot in the arm for downtown revitalization efforts.
    U.S. Treasury officials designated two opportunity zones that encompass everything inside Lancaster’s city limits and some small adjacent areas. The program creates new federal tax breaks for investors who spend money in the zones on projects – industrial, commercial or residential – that will produce jobs.

  • Where is the ‘crazy quilt’ whose origin was so tragic?

    Editor’s note: This haunting Kershaw tale comes from local spook-meister Joe Timmons and the book “Ghosts of the Carolinas,” by Nancy Roberts.

    Annette Larson clutched the new quilt her betrothed, John Gerber, had just bought her as their stagecoach began swaying in heavy winds.
    John had fought tooth and nail for that quilt at an auction just minutes before, so she held it tight, hoping it wouldn’t get taken away by the oncoming storm.

  • Time running out for handling absentee ballots solely by mail

    Voters who intend to cast absentee paper ballots by mail in the Nov. 6 election may be out of luck if they haven’t already started the four-step process, said Lancaster County Elections Director Mary Ann Hudson.
    Counting today, there are only six days to complete the process by mail and get the paper ballot back to the elections office by 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 6.

  • Authorities, family search for Great Falls store owner

    Nancy Parsons
    Landmark News Service

    Family and friends of Great Falls store owner Doug Sumner are asking for help in locating him. Sumner has not been seen in more than a week.
    According to a Facebook post by one of Sumner’s relatives, Sumner, owner of Sumner’s Deli & Grocery on Ridgeway Road outside the town limits of Great Falls, was last seen in his black 2014 Dodge Ram truck with a utility trailer on the back in Lancaster on Sunday, Oct. 21. He was said to be helping a friend.