https://www.thelancasternews.com/todaysnews/rss.xml en Caisson ride, 21-gun salute for a dear brother-in-arms https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/caisson-ride-21-gun-salute-dear-brother-arms <img src="https://www.thelancasternews.com/sites/www.thelancasternews.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/img_0576.jpg" alt="A moment from the funeral of John Helms at Arlington National Cemetery last week." title="A moment from the funeral of John Helms at Arlington National Cemetery last week." align="left" hspace="6" width="64" height="85" /><p> Just over a week ago, George Flanders, an 80-year-old Vietnam War veteran and Lancaster resident, drove eight hours to Arlington National Cemetery to bury his friend and brother-in-arms, John Helms.<br /> Harold John Allen Helms, a retired Army colonel from Union Springs, Ala., died Nov. 14, 2017. His last wish was to be buried at Arlington among his fellow servicemen.<br /> Almost a year later, Helms was finally laid to rest Nov. 1 among the iconic straight rows of white markers, in a ceremony with full military honors.<br /> <br /> Wells Fargo inches closer to donating library site to Kershaw https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/wells-fargo-inches-closer-donating-library-site-kershaw <img src="https://www.thelancasternews.com/sites/www.thelancasternews.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/wells_fargo_photo_kv_0.jpg" alt="The Kershaw branch of Wells Fargo, which closed its doors on Hampton Street in October, may soon be home to the Kershaw Branch Library if the county and the bank can reach an agreement on the donation of the building." title="The Kershaw branch of Wells Fargo, which closed its doors on Hampton Street in October, may soon be home to the Kershaw Branch Library if the county and the bank can reach an agreement on the donation of the building." align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> Lancaster County is one step closer to obtaining a high-profile new building for the Kershaw library branch.<br /> Kershaw Town Administrator Mitch Lucas said there are still a few hurdles left before the newly vacant Wells Fargo building on Hampton Street houses the library branch, but the county is much closer to owning it than a month ago.<br /> Maj. Matt Shaw honored as top S.C. law officer https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/maj-matt-shaw-honored-top-sc-law-officer <p> Maj. Matt Shaw has been named Officer of the Year by the S.C. Law Enforcement Officers&rsquo; Association, the fifth officer with the Lancaster County Sheriff&rsquo;s Office to win statewide honors this year.<br /> Shaw was recognized at the association&rsquo;s annual conference in Myrtle Beach on Tuesday. He was nominated for the award by Sheriff Barry Faile.<br /> &ldquo;He serves this agency with 100 percent dedication,&rdquo; Faile said. &ldquo;He is here early, leaves late and responds to major incidents. He sets the pace for our employees.&rdquo;<br /> Forty Acre Rock adds key parcel that shelters Carolina heelsplitter https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/forty-acre-rock-adds-key-parcel-shelters-carolina-heelsplitter <img src="https://www.thelancasternews.com/sites/www.thelancasternews.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/pee_dee_river-2018.jpg" alt="The new acreage at Forty Acre Rock Heritage Preserve includes a half-mile stretch of Flat Creek that is home to scores of endangered Carolina heelsplitter mussels. The purchase was made possible through a $270,000 grant from the Lynches River Conservation Fund and the nonprofit Open Space Institute." title="The new acreage at Forty Acre Rock Heritage Preserve includes a half-mile stretch of Flat Creek that is home to scores of endangered Carolina heelsplitter mussels. The purchase was made possible through a $270,000 grant from the Lynches River Conservation Fund and the nonprofit Open Space Institute." align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> Adding another 159 acres to the nearly 3,000 that make up Forty Acre Rock Heritage Preserve might not sound like a big deal.<br /> But the new land purchase by state officials is important because of where it is and what it protects.<br /> Known as the Ardrey Tract, the property contains a half- mile of frontage along Flat Creek. The stretch is home to one of the 154 remaining colonies of the endangered and federally protected Carolina Heelsplitter mussel.&nbsp;&nbsp;<br /> Gathering to honor vets buried at Clinton Memorial Cemetery https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/gathering-honor-vets-buried-clinton-memorial-cemetery <img src="https://www.thelancasternews.com/sites/www.thelancasternews.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/clinton_flags_gs_110918_186_color.jpg" alt="Shawn Carter looks for a marker in Clinton Memorial Cemetery. YouthBuild put American flags on 57 graves there on a rainy Friday morning. They take care of the cemetery as a community service project." title="Shawn Carter looks for a marker in Clinton Memorial Cemetery. YouthBuild put American flags on 57 graves there on a rainy Friday morning. They take care of the cemetery as a community service project." align="left" hspace="6" width="56" height="85" /><p> The 57 military servicemen and women laid to rest at Clinton Memorial Cemetery were honored Friday during a brief, no-frills remembrance in the cold rain.<br /> &ldquo;Every time I think about the sacrifice men and women have made in this country, I&rsquo;m honored&hellip;. Because of their service, we have our freedoms today,&rdquo; said YouthBuild director Reggie Lowery, before his nonprofit&rsquo;s students placed American flags on the graves of soldiers buried there.<br /> Local election results certified https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/local-election-results-certified <p> At a 3&frac12;-hour meeting Friday, the Lancaster County Election Commission certified Tuesday&rsquo;s elections, adding 150 votes to the final countywide results, but changing no outcomes.<br /> Of the 200-plus votes that were challenged, 61 could not be counted. The county received clean audits back from the state.<br /> Votes can be challenged for a variety of reasons, such as not bringing a photo ID, having active registration in another county, or not having matching signatures on the absentee-ballot application and the actual absentee ballot.<br /> Van Wyck: County’s most spacious town https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/van-wyck-county%E2%80%99s-most-spacious-town <p> <em><strong>Stephanie Jadrnicek</strong><br /> For The Lancaster News<br /> </em><br /> VAN WYCK &ndash; The town of Van Wyck has geographically grown into the largest municipality in Lancaster County since its incorporation in August 2017.<br /> Van Wyck Councilman Richard Vaughan said the town now includes 219 property parcels.<br /> &ldquo;The original incorporated target area was 1.4 square miles and less than 900 acres,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;We have now reached approximately 10 square miles and 6,000 acres.&rdquo;<br /> Festival ‘better every year’ https://www.thelancasternews.com/content/festival-%E2%80%98better-every-year%E2%80%99 <img src="https://www.thelancasternews.com/sites/www.thelancasternews.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/dsc_0193color.jpg" alt="Zola Labban, 9, rides a pony from His Barn at the Indian Land Fall Festival Nov. 3." title="Zola Labban, 9, rides a pony from His Barn at the Indian Land Fall Festival Nov. 3." align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> The Indian Land Fall Festival entertained thousands of visitors at its 13th-annual event last weekend.<br /> Featuring dozens of performers, hundreds of vendors and many festival rides and activities, the event was the largest to date. There were three main areas at the Indian Land schools complex, using the student parking lot, training field and stadium.</p>