Local News

  • Memorial, Welcome Center teaming up

    Tickets for the National D-Day Memorial will now be sold at the Bedford Welcome Center.

        Up until March 9, visitors to the Memorial bought tickets at a hill-top booth as they entered the Memorial. Those who wanted a guided tour would purchase a ticket for that at the gift shop. Now, both will be purchased at a booth in the Welcome Center.

        “We do visitor surveys,” commented April Cheek-Messier, the D-Day  Memorial Foundation’s executive director. She got the idea for the change from reading those surveys.

  • N.C. man pleads to robbery of Forest bank

    A 20-year-old North Carolina man could face up to life in prison after pleading guilty in Bedford County Circuit Court Tuesday to robbing a Forest bank last February.

        William M. Smitherman of Clemmons, N.C., pleaded guilty to robbery and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony in connection with the Feb. 3, 2009, robbery of SunTrust Bank. He also faces bank robbery charges in Galax and Roanoke.

  • Bedford Memorial Hospital goes totally tobacco free

    Bedford Memorial Hospital has been a smoke-free facility for a long time, but that policy has now expanded.

        Beginning on March 1, the hospital became a tobacco-free facility. Not only is smoking banned inside the hospital, it’s also banned outside on hospital grounds. And not only is smoking banned, using smokeless tobacco is also now against regulations.

        “We call it tobacco-free because it covers smokeless,” said Curtis Lynch, the director of facilities services.

  • Woman guilty in death of live-in boyfriend

    A Bedford County woman who says she can’t remember what happened to her live-in-boyfriend who was found dead of a gunshot wound in January 2009 could face up to 10 years in prison after being found guilty Tuesday of voluntary manslaughter in connection with the case.

  • It's finally time: Earnest trial set for March 23

    After more than two years since his arrest, the first-degree murder trial against Wesley Brian Earnest is set to begin in less than three weeks. On Tuesday, Earnest was in court for a hearing on several pre-trial motions, including one regarding a 2005 journal entry written by his wife who he is  accused of killing in December 2007.

  • Black ties and blue jeans

    The Bedford Community Health Foundation chose an unusual format for its annual awards event.

        It was a gala, held at the Elks National Home, with suggested attire consisting of black tie and tuxedo coats combined with blue jeans. It also included what Health Foundation members say is a historic event — Michael Cross wearing blue jeans. Cross, the foundation’s director of development, does not like jeans.

  • Water line project moves ahead

    The city of Bedford has awarded a contract for the extension of the 460 West water line. The hope is that the project will spur commercial development in the revenue sharing zone west of the city.

        The winning bid for the project was $316,000 by George E. Jones and Sons. The bids had ranged from that winning bid up to $423,000.

        City Manager Charles Kolakowski said developers like to know that the utility service is in place prior to committing to a project. 

  • Going for the green

    Eddie Lotts is excited about this year’s Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) shamrock fundraiser. Lotts is manager of the Apple Market in Bedford.

        The annual fundraiser generated money to send youth with muscular dystrophy to a summer camp. The camp is specifically for children with this problem. This means that everything is geared toward accommodating their needs and, as Lotts points out, nobody is going to make fun of anybody.

  • Planning commission gives thumbs up to sewage plant

    The Bedford County Planning Commission gave a reluctant thumbs up to a private sewage plant near Smith Mountain Lake.

        The plant would be built by ACS Design, of Roanoke, for John Buday, a developer. The plant would serve a 275-residential unit subdivision. The 98-acre property is located on Harbor Heights Road, off Smith Mountain Lake Parkway.

  • School raises funds for Haiti

    The project at Otter River Elementary School that raised $1,642.59 for relief efforts in Haiti was the brain child of a student.