FBI confiscates documents from Allendale Town Hall

Allendale Town Hall has reopened for business as of Thursday morning.

The municipal building in Allendale was shut down and searched by state and federal law enforcement agents on Tuesday, Oct. 5 who reportedly took documents from the facility.

Town Administrator DeWayne Ennis said, “I can’t comment on the investigation” but confirmed that the town hall is back open for municipal business.

Ennis said no one to his knowledge has been arrested in connection with the investigation.

Hazel Carter Main (Sycamore)

Hazel Carter Main, 84, passed away at her residence in Sycamore on October 2, 2017.

Mrs. Main was born December 16, 1932 in Walhalla; she was the daughter of the late Henry Carter & Ola Mae C. Gibson. She was married to James Main for 64 years and helped him manage M & M Variety Store and Greyhound Bus Station in Fairfax for 43 years. She also worked at Thomas Electric & Plumbing Company for 47 years. Mrs. Hazel was a member of the Fairfax First Baptist Church. She loved God, her family and friends and was a perfect model of kindness, compassion, and hard work.

Shirley Ann Wright Rice (Fairfax)

Mrs. Shirley Ann Wright Rice, age 53, was born on March 21, 1964, in Crescent City, Fla. to the late Oregon and Aretha M. Wright.

Seeking God’s direction and guidance, she joined the Trinity Church of God in Allendale, where she served faithfully as Mother of the Church, and on the Kitchen Ministry until her health began to fail.

She graduated from Allendale-Fairfax High School in Allendale, and worked at Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton for 12 years, and Cracker Barrel for 16 years as a Chef and Cook.

Walter Chappel (Barnwell)

Walter Chappel was born on July 30, 1939, in Union Hospital, Brooklyn, New York, to the late Joseph S. Chappel and Edna Mae Smith Chappel. Walter was the third of four siblings and was preceded in death by his younger brother, Marvin, and older sister, Lorraine.

Walter received his early education in Brooklyn, New York, and after the family moved to Queens, he attended and graduated from Newtown High School in June 1957. Soon after graduation, Walter joined the United States Navy, where he served on the USS/LUCE for four years and was honorably discharged in 1962.

Susie Mae Barker (Allendale)

Ms. Susie Mae Barker, age 65, was born on November 25, 1951, in Allendale to the late James and Eva Nell Barker.

She received her education in the public school system of Allendale. She worked as a cook in the school cafeteria, at E.T. Barwick for four years and Burlington for four years.

Susie will be remembered for the love she had for her family and friends, and she will be missed by all those who knew and loved her.

Our Heavenly Father called her from labor to reward on September 26, 2017, at the Select Specialty Hospital in Augusta, Ga.

Mary Gantt Wilson (Allendale)

Mrs. Mary L. Gantt Wilson, aka “Blue Juice”, age 60, was born on November 8, 1956, in Allendale to the late Eddie and Maggie Gantt. She received her education at CV Bing High School in Allendale before moving to Florida.

“Blue Juice”, as she was affectionately known, will be remembered for the love she had for her family and friends, and she will be missed by all those who knew and loved her.

Besides her husband, parents and grandparents, she is preceded in death by, two sisters, Margarette Gadson Youmans and Helen Gadson Freeman; two brothers, Larry Gadson and

Kishon O. Priester (Alabama)

Mr. Kishon O. Priester, aka “Bleek”, age 31, was born on September 2, 1986, in Charleston to James Priester and the late Gloria Bellmon.

He received his education in the public school system of Allendale and later moved to Opelika, Ala.

“Bleek”, as he was affectionately known, will be remembered for the love he had for his family and friends, and he will be missed by all those who knew and loved him.

Dr. Richard E. 'R.E.B.' Boyles Sr. (Barnwell)

Dr. Richard E. “R.E.B.” Boyles Sr., age 94, husband of Gladys S. Boyles, died Friday, September, 29, 2017 at his residence.

Mr. Boyles was born in Seigling and was the son of the late Jamie and Lucille Creech Boyles. He was a U.S. Air Force WWII Veteran and an Optometrist having practice in Allendale for over fifty years.

Dr. Boyles loved the Town of Allendale and served as Mayor, Councilman and Judge. He was a member and served in many capacities of The Episcopal Church of the Holy Communion.

Catherine Merle Folk Hindman (Bamberg)

Mrs. Catherine Merle Hindman of Bamberg entered into eternal rest on September 28, 2017 surrounded by loved ones at her residence.

Merle was the widow of Chester Eugene Hindman. She was predeceased by her parents, Hammie Oscar and Ida Mae Folk. She was also predeceased by four brothers, Perzie Folk, Jim Folk, Herman Folk, and LaVerne Folk; and two sisters, Shirley Myers and Carolyn Kirkland. She was survived by one brother, Franklin Folk. Merle was born September 24, 1931.

Two schools receive bomb threats

Investigations are underway after bomb threats were made against two area high schools on Thursday, Sept. 21.

Barnwell High School received a bomb threat at 12:25 p.m. While Barnwell County Sheriff Ed Carroll would not say exactly where the call was received, he said it was not called into the school or the 911 dispatch center. Around the same time, a bomb threat was called into the Allendale-Fairfax High office, according to Allendale County Sheriff Tom Carter.

Dr. Ashe quits as Williston superintendent

Williston District 29’s superintendent has resigned, just three weeks after she was placed on leave following the discovery of a tape recorder.

The school board unanimously accepted the immediate resignation of Dr. Missoura Ashe after meeting in closed session with their lawyers during the Sept. 20 meeting.

“The board and Dr. Ashe believe this decision is in our mutual best interest, the best interest of students and the best interest of the Williston-Elko communities,” according to a public statement provided by the board after the meeting.

Payne sentenced to 35 years in jail for murder

A jury did not believe a Barnwell man’s claim of self-defense in a 2015 shooting case.

Demontay Markeith Payne, 28, of 25 Wingo Estates Road, Barnwell, was found guilty of the May 23, 2015 murder of DeVante Quintell Odom. The jury rendered the verdict on Tuesday, Sept. 19 after approximately three hours of deliberation following a two-day trial at the Barnwell County Courthouse.

While Payne didn’t deny shooting Odom, he claimed the shooting was in self-defense after Odom allegedly shot at him first.

Economic marketing moves to SCA after vote

A new contract was approved by Barnwell County Council on Tuesday, Sept. 19 which effectively moves marketing of the county’s economic development property as well as the Economic Development Commission’s executive director position under SouthernCarolina Alliance (SCA). The contract also quadruples the county’s payment to SCA from $15,000 annually to $60,000 annually.

The contract was approved unanimously with the exception of David Kenner who was absent from the meeting.

Williams retiring next year as county administrator

Barnwell County Administrator Pickens Williams Jr. has announced his plan to retire next year.

Williams, 59, shared his intentions to retire within the next five to six months with the Barnwell County Council on Tuesday, Sept. 19 during a closed session of the council’s regular meeting. Williams then met with county department heads the next day.

“I don’t plan to move. I’m not upset or anything like that,” said Williams. “It’s something I have been talking with my wife about for nearly a year. I have no reason other than I think it’s time for me to do something different.”

Police, fire could remain downtown

Barnwell City Council now hopes to keep the police and fire departments downtown.

While the city originally planned to purchase property off Marlboro Avenue to build a new public safety building that would jointly house the fire and police departments, one property is held up in probate court. A number of councilmen also want to see the departments maintain their presence downtown, said City Administrator John Zawacki.

“They want it to stay in the city center,” said Zawacki.

DNR officers assist in evacuation, recovery

Barnwell County’s four S.C. Department of Natural Resources officers recently assisted in hurricane evacuation and recovery efforts.

Sgt. Rocky Salter, Lt. John Bedingfield, PFC Matthew Smith and LCPL Steve Terry were assigned to different coastal communities in advance of Hurricane Irma’s arrival to the Palmetto State. They joined other DNR officers from across the state in the evacuation and recovery efforts.

“Our first concern is safety,” said Salter.

Firefighters thanked by Airport Commission

Dear Editor,

To: Timbo Williams, Barnwell County Fire Coordinator; Jessie Elmore, Barnwell Rural Fire Chief; Andy Hogg, Long Branch Fire Chief; and Thomas Sharpe, Hilda Fire Chief.

On behalf of the Barnwell Airport Commission, please accept our grateful thanks and appreciation for an outstanding job by all the volunteer firefighters from Long Branch, Hilda and Barnwell Rural who responded to the fire at the Barnwell Airport on September 19.

Though five planes were destroyed, the firefighters were able to contain the fire to one end of the T-hanger building.

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