2012, a last look back

Dec. 30, 2012 @ 01:54 PM


3: Elizabeth Taylor Mejia-Melgar, 6 pounds 11 ounces and 19.5 inches long, as the first baby of the year in Union County. Her parents are Yanci Erickson Mejia and Ana Elizabeth Melgar Garcia.

4: South Piedmont Community College opts out of program that offers federal loans to students.

5: Union County Public Schools Superintendent Ed Davis announces he will retire on June 30. Vasti Colmenares Gutierrez, a Marshville runaway, returns home after three years.

6: Tanika Vanesia Ingram, 37. of Charlotte, is charged in connection with the 2010 shooting of two people at the North Carolina License Plate Agency in Monroe. Marvin Ridge High junior Maddie Cutrone is selected for the American Choral Directors Association Southern Division choir.

7: Traffic circle planned in Weddington on Highway 84.

8: Adaobi Obika, a Waxhaw woman earns Phi Theta Kappa honors.

10: District Attorney Trey Robison says he will not prosecute former Monroe Police sergeant Joe Pressley on charges of taking indecent liberties with a minor.

11: Union County jury finds Joseph Brian Tarleton, 52, guilty of first degree sexual offense and sentenced him to 24-29 years in prison.

13: County Commissioners tell County Manager Cindy Coto to work a tax cut into the county budget this year.

14: New anti-meth lab law requires all pharmacies to electronically track sales a precursor drug that is commonly found in many cold medications.

17: Anna Theresa McCartan. 87, of Indian Trail dies in a two-car wreck that injured three others. The driver of the second car was charged after his speed was estimated at 70 mph in a 45 mph zone.

18: Unionville Town Council denies Griffin Farms’ application for a landfill franchise.

21: District Attorney Trey Robison drops murder charges against Bogdan Nikoloevich Rudenko, a former minor league hockey player, after a key witness recanted. Riley Laymon, a Weddington teen, dies in a one vehicle crash that injures four others.

22: County makes deal to buy 3 million gallons of water more each month from Lancaster, S.C. Fifty-seven year old Lee Estridge is reunited with his 90 year old father after an estrangement of more than 10 years.

26: N.C. Highway Patrol trooper Mark Helms retires.

27: Monroe Middle School chapter of the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club cuts the ribbon to open. Crime stats show small decline in crimes in Monroe.

29: The Sons of Confederate Veterans install a marker on the grave of Aaron Perry, an African-American who served in the 35th Battalion of the Confederate Army.

31: The family of Dura Mae Hall, who died in a head-on collision with a truck driven by a Union County Assistant Fire Marshal turns down a six-figure settlement with the county.


1: County school ahead of state regulations which require lower fat school lunches with more vegetables. Tires on 13 cars slashed in West Ridge neighborhood.

2. The stabbing death of Harry Lee Blakeney was Monroe’s first murder since 2010, and the second member of his family to be killed. His son was murdered in 2009.

3: County may be forced to conduct revaluation in 2015.

5: Eleven year old James Gale of Weddington won the prize of delivering the football for the kickoff of Super Bowl XLVI .

7. Indian Trail Council member Darlene Luther settles an alienation of affection lawsuit brought against her by Teresa Jacobs-Allen, wife of Council member Robert Allen, for $3,600.

8. Stallings Police Chief Michael Dummett is placed on administrative leave while an investigation is conducted into complaints from several members of his department.

9. County commissioners approve a 7 percent increase in water and sewer rates. Wingate University breaks ground on a new residence hall. A Union County Department of Social Services worker and her boyfriend are charged with 42 counts of food stamp theft.

10. Pilgrim’s Pride faces $107,000 fine over ammonia leak at the plant last August.

11. County Performance Ensemble prepares for presentation of “The Phantom of the Opera” at Central Academy for The Arts.

14. Monroe Housing Authority lands $240,000 grant for remodeling.

15. County waives park fees hoping to boost facility use. Outside investigator hired to look into Stalling police chief complaints. Lawsuit against Dr. Michael Land’s home shooting range is dismissed.

16. Indian Trail Council member Darlene Luther proposes leash law for the town.

17. Five CATA students are injured when car runs red light and hits school bus on Goldmine Road.

18. Union County man accused of animal cruelty when authorities raid South Carolina farm.

19. Heavier than normal flea and tick infestations are forecast as a result of mild winter temperatures.

21. Three are injured when a Union County Public Schools van rear-ends another vehicle on Highway 601. Grave marker dedicated for Aaron Perry, a black Confederate Civil War soldier.

24. Remodeled county homeless shelter holds grand opening to show off its new look.

25. Gary Sica, a Wesley Chapel Elementary custodian, gets a new car from Anderson Cooper and Fox Charlotte.

26. Lowes and anonymous donor provide fencing, shelter for 25 chained dogs in Monroe. Turning Point picks Angela Bower as target for its annual fundraising roast.

28. Local gasoline prices hit $4 a gallon for premium.


1. Frank Aikmus and Richard Helms, both Republicans, are the only candidates for two county commissioner seats up for election in November. District Attorney Trey Robison and Register of Deeds Crystal Crump are also unopposed and assured of re-election.

3. Enquirer-Journal wins North Carolina Press Association award for investigative reporting for stories on food and travel charges made by the Monroe City Council.

4. Maria Rochelle Jordan, 34, of Monroe, is shot to death outside a private social club in Marshville after a domestic dispute.

7. Joshua Zimmerman of Waxhaw dies in motorcycle crash when he collided with a car driven by an off-duty police officer. Ban on video sweepstakes machines is struck down by state Court of Appeals.

9. Jerome Waters charged in murder of his sister-in-law in Marshville March 4. Marshville Library collects memories of local residents for a history project.

11. Wells Fargo says it will add a $7 fee to checking accounts. “From Inmate to Mayor,” a new book, details Franklin Deese’s life and transformation.

12. James Christian Boshers gets 20 to 25 years in prison after being convicted of the first degree murder of Sandra Wengerd in July, 2009. Local Girl Scouts celebrate the organization’s centennial.

14. County commissioners direct county manager to reduce tax rate by one-half cent. United Technologies buys Goodrich which has a Monroe plant employing 240.

15. Indian Trail agrees to pay for improvements to the intersection of Old Monroe Road and Wesley Chapel Stouts road. John Holtkamp is picked from a field of 100 to be the county’s new Department of Social Services director. Sixty people are trained as weather observers.

16. Carolinas Medical Center-Union plans new women’s center, bed tower which will create 100 new jobs. Public schools announce plans to save $3 million by creating a technology depot.

17. More than 7,700 apply for admission to Wingate University, a new record. Stallings first grader Benjamin Wheeler wins national contest to promote legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.

20. Twenty applicants from eight states want to be the next Union County school superintendent.

21. County commissioners vote to support Amendment One, which would add a ban on gay marriage to the state constitution. County commissioners vote to support a memorial for ten black men who served in the Confederate army in the Civil War. County schools say they will not serve ground beef with “pink slime’ filler.

22. Hearing airs plans for improving the Highway 74 corridor. Javier Villareal becomes first Hispanic to serve as supervisor in Monroe Police Department. Appeals court hears challenge to environmental development impact study for the Monroe Connector and Bypass.

23. Dawn Moretz wins Terry Sanford Award. Meth lab busted in Stallings.

25. Charles Frech Jr., 70, and Martha Hendrikson Frech, 65, are found dead in apparent murder-suicide. Monroe City Council members say they want to reduce the number of rental units in city by half.

27. ARC of Union County request rezoning to build five apartments in Monroe. Dwight Van Zanen of Maple Valley, Wash., is killed when his Avid Flyer Mark IV crashes at JAARS airstrip.

28. Wingate University students wear hoodies to protest the shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman in Florida.

30. County withdraws notice of violations against Cross Creek arena owner, saying changes in the law negate the violations.

31. Stallings Police Chief Michael Dummett resigns, had been target of complaints by members of his department.


1. County says it will explore a new partnership to promote economic development. City budget proposal would cut 21 jobs and hold the line on taxes. One hundred people endure rainy weather to march, raising awareness about the rights of victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse.

3. Louis Bradshaw and Franklin Deese are honored by A Few Good Men for their contributions to the community.

4. Public tells Monroe city manager to make even deeper cuts in spending.

5. UCPS cuts 53 teaching jobs; all aides would be laid off to save $9.5 million. Judy Whitley of Charlotte Pipe & Foundry is inducted into the Chamber of Commerce’s Business Leaders Hall of Fame.

6. Marshville businessman Charles “Shot” Tomberlin, his son and two others are arrested for running a meth lab.

7. A 90-bed skilled nursing facility is approved by the Monroe city council.

8. Josh Crowley, 22, is struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver as he is walking along Potter Road.

11. PDQ South Injection Technologies says it will move its Monroe plant to Pageland. S.C.

12. Diesel fuel processing plant will locate in Marshville.

13. Frost threatens local wheat crop.

14. Car show, art walk draw hundreds to downtown Monroe, while antique tractor show draw crowds of its own.

17. The body of Ashley Rogers, 26, of South Carolina, is found in a car on Austin Grove Church Road.

18. County votes to spend $1.8 million for new Department of Social Services site. County Commissioner Jonathan Thomas accuses the public schools’ central office of spending money like “drunken sailors.”

21. Langford Chapel CME Church celebrates its centennial. Jose Rosario Hernandez Ortiz dies in high speed crash on Austin Chaney Road.

25. Denise Patterson, whose $15,000 pay raise sparked a controversy last year, leaves job as assistant superintendent of schools for job as chief academic officer in the Hickory City Schools.

26. Filming begins in Monroe for Cinemax drama “Banshee.” Moldovans visit county to learn farming techniques.

27. A 28-year-old Baltimore man is charged with the murder of 16-year-old Phylicia Barnes, a Union Academy student who was visiting relatives when she disappeared. Wingate University breaks ground on track and field facility.

28. Maxie Johnson Jr., an East Elementary teacher, is named UCPS teacher of the year. Wingate University wins the annual spelling bee held by the Literacy Council of Union County.


1. Union County Public Schools asks county for $16.3 million so it can rehire teacher aides and pay teacher bonuses.

2. Three Union County schools have elementary teams in the world finals of the Odyssey of the Mind competition.

3. City of Monroe votes to change waste haulers, signs with Waste Pro.

4. A three judge panel of the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals rules that state officials bungled the environmental impact student for the Monroe Bypass and blocked the project until a new environmental study is done. Plans to send school staff to training session in Orlando draw criticism as being wasteful.

5. Elgie Lee Gray, 91, the city of Monroe’s first black police officer, dies.

9. James Rivers of Marshville charge with felony child abuse; his two-month-old son remains in critical condition. County orders audit of school spending.

10. Waxhaw, Stallings tell commissioners to boost funding for schools, save teacher aide jobs.

11. Southern Business & Development magazine names Monroe among Top 10 in aviation and aerospace industry.

12. Former JV basketball coach Bart Shartzer, 23, is fired, arrested for having sexual relations with 17-year-old student. SPCC graduates 408 in Class of 2012.

13. Wingate University graduates 521, its largest class ever. Sherri Whitley and Heather Parr win the EJ’s annual mother-daughter look alike contest. Creola Starnes turns 100.

15. County manager Cindy Coto opposes funding for teaching assistants. Wesley Chapel Fire Department shows off its new firehouse at an open house.

16. Assistant school superintendent Mary Ellis is chosen to succeed Ed Davis as the head of the county school system. Ellis is a Union County native who bested 20 applications from across the nation to win the job. Speed is cited as the cause of a wreck that killed David Mungo II, 27, on Wesley Chapel Road in Indian Trail.

17. Citizen South and Park Sterling banks merge. County eyes Yadkin River water source in Norwood.

19. Marvin Threatt takes over as manager of the Union County Farmer’s Market.

20. First Baptist Church in Monroe undertakes major renovation.

22. Waxhaw Mayor Daune Gardner is accused of neglecting property she owns in New Bern.

23. County manager Cindy Coto recommends $224.1 million budget that includes a half cent tax cut and uses $1 million from fund balance.

24. Pat O’Malley, a Walter Bickett Elementary teacher since 2004, resigns after being accused of putting soap into two students’ mouths. Traffic stop leads to seizure of $150,000 worth of methamphetamine.

25. Weddington Mayor Walker Davidson launches effort to draft Tracy Kuehler for county commissioner. Kuehler declined to seek reelection earlier this year. John Jacobson, 14, an eighth grader at Piedmont Middle School collapses during physical education class. Indian Trail may need tax increase to pay for budget.

26. County ranked 54th out of 100 in recycling per capita in state. Barbara Brown of Monroe survives collision with cement truck on Old Charlotte Road in Monroe.

29. Ticks spread across the region. Some are a species not previously seen.

30. Michael Gordon, owner of the pit bulls that mauled and killed five-year-old Makayla Woodard pleads guilty to involuntary manslaughter and is sentenced to 20-24 months in prison.

31. Music legend Doc Watson dies. Wingate prepares to open its first ABC store.


1. Spencer Griffin, 13, loses his battle with cancer. The Piedmont Middle Schooler who captured hearts of community is laid to rest.

2. Former commissioner I.F. Plyler, 79. dies.

3. Monroe considers ordinance regulating the tethering of animals.

6. Turnpike Authority says it is committed to build the Monroe Bypass despite court ruling that blocked the project. County calls for a new plan to standardize volunteer fire departments funding. Filming of the Cinemax drama, “Banshee,” begins in downtown Monroe.

7. Monroe settles lawsuit over extension of airport runway. Dean Arp steps down as chairman of the board of education.

8. Union County Public Schools earn 10th award for transparency in its financial dealings.

9. Judge David Lee sanctions Monroe Police Department for failing to turn over all evidence collected against murder suspect Lamate Anderson, but says withheld evidence was not critical to the murder case. City is fined $10,000. School board agrees to $190,000 a year contract with Superintendent Mary Ellis, plus benefits.

10. Union County Public Schools graduate 2,500 in Class of 2012.

13. Fire displaces a family on Charles-Franklin Street in Monroe.

14. Husband and wife, James and Eva Robinette, busted for operating a methamphetamine lab in Monroe. Indian Trail Council rejects hold-the-line on taxes budget presented by the Town Manager Joe Fivas and instead raises taxes by 27 percent without any clear project to fund.

15. United Way increases funding for half of its non-profits in Union County. Moving Wall exhibit opens in VFW post in Indian Trail. Indian Trail ABC board member continues to serve even though his term has expired.

16. State crime lab analysts failed certification tests, but prosecutors are not advised.

19. Town of Stallings names Minor Plyler as police chief, succeeding Michael Dummett who resigned amid complaints from within the department.

21. County audit of school finances find school practices are sound. Monroe City Council’s split vote denies Police Chief Debra Duncan a bonus.

22. Rolling Hills Country Club celebrates its 50th anniversary. County’s new DSS director John Holtkamp is placed on administrative leave as the county investigates employee complaints.

23. County restores money for teacher aides, adopts budget. Drug sweep in Waxhaw nets 16 suspects.

25. Amanda Reid takes over as Marshville’s new town manager. Red Cross says blood supplies are dangerously low.

27. Carolina Waterfowl Rescue moves into a new facility on Poplin Road in Indian Trail.

28. Marshville opens a new outdoor produce market.

29. Monroe’s WWII vintage plane, The Tinker Belle, leaves for an air show in Oshkosh, Wisc. Monroe City Manager Wayne Herron says he will hire a mediator to work out problems between Police Chief Debra Duncan and District Attorney Trey Robinson; Robison says he and the chief have already worked out differences.

30. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rejects the N.C. Department of Transportation request for a rehearing of the Monroe Bypass case. Area braces for heat wave.


1. Temperatures reach 105 degrees. Ed Davis ends 35-year career in education, retiring as school superintendent.

3. Monroe Fire Department snuffs blaze at Dellinger Inc. on Old Charlotte Highway. Andy Griffith dies at his home.

6. Sudden, violent storm batters Monroe.

8. Jerry Marsh, Ronnie Overcash and Crystal Dawn Hicks are found shot and stabbed to death in Marshville.

10. Shaquille Dominique Belk, 19, dies after being struck by a CSX train in Marshville and having his legs severed.

12. Neighbor Randall Hank Morrison, 24, is charged with committing the triple murder in Marshville. Heat, algae bloom blamed for fish kill at Lake Twitty.

13. School board critic Kevin Stewart challenges longtime board member Carolyn Lowder for seat on board of education.

18. Lexi Davis, softball pitcher at Porter Ridge High, is selected as national player of the year by ESPN.

19. Monroe City Manager Wayne Herron resigns. Conservative Republicans Richard Hudson and Robert Pittenger win U.S. House runoff elections in the 8th and 9th districts respectively. City council approves tax incentives for Great American Appetizers Inc.

20. Monroe Bypass loses its record of decision with the Federal Highway Administration. Lynn Keziah says he asked Wayne Herron to resign as Monroe city manager, triggering a clause in Herron’s contract that made him eligible for a six-figure severance package.

21. Officials say county rainfall is 10 inches below normal. County agrees to fund to more assistant district attorney positions.

22. Smart Start rebrands itself as Alliance for Children.

23. Monroe council names assistant city manager Greg Demko as interim manager.

25. Sharonda Turnipseed of Monroe dies in South Carolina wreck.

26. Beth Ann Cox of Indian Trail is sentenced to three years in prison for defrauding the Yamauchi Corporation of $700,000.

28. Unionville VFD gets new tanker truck.


1. Union County EMS plans reorganization, elimination of quick response vehicles in eastern Union County. Chick-fil-A supporters jammed the Monroe restaurant and clogged nearby roads after gay rights activists targeted the restaurant for a boycott over company policies.

2. Waxhaw Police sergeant Richard Wade Wallace is charged with driving while impaired, is suspended.

3. County schools graduation rate climbs to 89.5 percent. Stallings Mayor Lynda Paxton breaks with GOP and endorses Democrat Jennifer Roberts for Congress in the 9th District.

4. Matt Sentendrey, Matt McCoy and Matt Mounie plan to hike the Appalachian Trail to raise money for county’s Literacy Council.

8. N.C. Turnpike Authority engineer Jennifer Harris meets with local officials to discuss flawed study that led to blockage of the Monroe Bypass.

9. Waxhaw police shut down two marijuana grow houses; 77 plants seized and two arrested.

10. Xavier Garcia, working on pump station on Stafford Street extension, is severely injured in a fall. County wastes 23,667 tons — or 350 pounds per person — of food each year.

11. James Robinette, arrested June 12 for running a meth lab, is again charged with making methamphetamine at a local motel; bond set at $950,000. Carlo Curley, Monroe native and international organ virtuoso, dies.

12. Union County Schools meet 79 of 80 targets in ABCs of Public Education testing; officials vow to do even better.

14. Randall Allan Hill of Fort Mill, S.C., dies in a wreck near Hilltop Restaurant.

15. Monroe Fire Department receives national accreditation. City plans to hire headhunter to find new city manager to succeed Wayne Herron. Anthony Derkachev of Waxhaw dies in a wreck on New Town Road. Humane Society’s spay-neuter clinic celebrates 1st anniversary; over 3,000 animals neutered.

16. Eva Marie Rankin, also busted with James Robinette in June, is charged again in connection with his arrest on June 14.

17. Eric Roger Sobel, 43, is charged with second degree murder in connection with a wreck in June that killed Tammy Tucker Eudy, 48.

18. Igor Borodin of Indian Trail is charged with selling counterfeit airbags in major multi-state ring.

21. New Salem Baptist Church celebrates its 150th anniversary.

22. Sheriff’s deputies investigate apparent double homicide on Lanesboro Road in Marshville.

23. Bradrick Layne Wolf is charged with killing his father-in-law, David Lee Bass, and his brother-in-law, David Clay Bass. Three assistant DAs — Marsha Goodenow, Thomas Clark and Sharleen Sullivan, leave the district attorney’s office. Monroe police raid another meth lab on Sells Street.

24. Union County Community Action receives $5.3 million federal grant.

28. School bells ring for 39,000 public school students in Union County. New Salem Baptist Church celebrates its 150th anniversary. Catherine Long, an Indian Trail hairdresser, finishes third in CMT-TV reality show “Redneck Island.”

29. Jeff Yates is hired as Union County’s new finance director.

31. Deputies hunt for killer of Charles Godwin, 60, of Holly School Road, the sixth victim of homicide in the Marshville area this year.


1. Angry residents of eastern Union County tell county commissioners, EMS leaders they need the service of quick response vehicles that deliver emergency medical care in the rural areas.

2. HealthQuest tops $50 million in prescription drug aid to the community.

7. County orders architectural planning for a new health and human services building. Chad Baucom of Monroe, aboard Walk Time Charlie, wins the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration World Grand Championship.

8. Forest Hills grad Rachel Parker Cullen is now head of Ruiz Food Products.

11. Monks from the Drepung Loseling Monastery visit Wingate University and create Mandala sand painting.

12. DA Trey Robinson dismisses murder charges against Damien Lamont Allen, Damien Farod Thompson and Lacey Cathleen Carnes. The three had been charged with killing Michael Richardson. The number of county home schools increases but the number of students in home schools decreases.

15. Randy Travis’ brother, David Traywick, is arrested for running a meth lab with two others. Marvin Ridge Women’s Performance Ensemble has a performance broadcast to 400 million in China.

19. County approves new human service building. Monroe approves new lake buffer rules.

20. Monroe and Union County agree to cooperative effort at economic development in the county, with city economic director Chris Platé at the helm.

21. Lee Park Baptist Church employee Donald Chaney is arrested for delivering cocaine using the church van. Wingate’s only branch bank, Sun Trust, closes. Road rage wreck leaves Christina Morris, daughter of Indian Trail council member Darlene Luther, in critical condition.

26. John Parker, business leader and school board member, dies at age of 43. EMT Belinda Gale Rivers dies when the ambulance she is riding in runs a red light and is struck by a tractor trailer.

28. Summons issued for driver of ambulance that ran red light in fatal wreck.


2. Monroe City Council orders $50,000 study to find out why turnover is high among city managers.

3. Grenier Bio-One cuts ribbon on 100,000-square foot plant, part of $25 million expansion.

5. Sheriff’s deputies bust meth lab on Goldmine Road and arrest five. Indian Trail, Matthews, Mint Hill and Stalling discuss forming economic development partnership.

6. Steven Wray of Weddington Middle School is named Union County Principal of the Year. SPCC installs tournament-rated disc golf course on campus.

9. Family and friends of the late Joshua Crowley gather at courthouse to call attention to fact that investigation into his hit-and-run death still has not reached a resolution.

10. A table tennis club forms in Monroe.

11. National safety officials call counterfeit air bags an extreme safety risk. Mark Brody, candidate in the new state House district, is targeted by critics for personal financial problems.

13. Michael Wayne Aycoth, 45, dies when his pickup is hit from behind; Robert David Jones is charged with felony death by motor vehicle. Teacher workload and budget are themes of school board election campaign.

14. Don C. Lowery, 73, is struck and killed as he uses a string trimmer outside his church. Robert Steven Sutton of Lancaster, S.C. is charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle.

18. Monroe approves $52,000 grant for Cyril Bath which plans to hire ten and invest $2.5 million in the existing plant. Crystal Jordan takes the witness stand to tell how she was shot outside the N.C. License Plate Agency and nearly died.

19. Jury convicts Otis Redding Howie Jr. on all counts for the 2012 shooting of Robbie and Crystal Jordan as he robbed them. Kerr family farm in Waxhaw earns designation as an historic landmark.

20. Gary James Woodring, 44, dies in a wreck on Goldmine Road. Otis Redding Howie, Jr., is sentenced to 72 years for shooting Crystal Jordan and her husband, Robbie.

21: Judy, John and Hunter Latham, owners of Latham Nursery. are named Union County’s Farm Family of the Year.

23. Carolina Thread Trail, which will one day connect 15 counties, opens a segment in Mineral Springs.

24. A judge throws out Jay Brown’s suit against Union County for illegally trying to regulate his rodeo business.

26. Former Fayetteville scoutmaster now living in Monroe admits he molest Boy Scouts.


1. Former officer Harold Norman Smith sues city police department and Chief Debra Duncan for interfering with his employment in Stallings. Teacher Kris Neilsen quits job at Union County Public schools, resignation letter goes viral on blogs and Facebook.

2. Sheriff’s Deputy James Kirkley loses his battle with brain cancer. School board adopts 180-day school calendar. Union Academy breaks ground for new gym, science labs. Unionville Elementary barbecue sets record, selling 13,700 pounds of pulled pork. Kelcey McClung is crowned Christmas Parade princess. Chef Brian Campbell helps U.S. team win silver medal at international culinary competition.

6. The face of the school board changes with the election of four new members, Kevin Stewart, Michael Guzman, Christina Helms and Richard Yercheck. Indian Trail voters approve $8.5 million bond issue to build new parks. Nearly 55,000 of the county’s 130,000 registered voters took advantage of early voting.

7. Flu arrives in Union County. County sends pair of historic fountains off to be restored.

9. Melinda Plue will oversee ARC activities in both Union and Cabarrus counties.

11. Popular Parkwood student Haley Smith succumbs to cancer.

15. Teen pregnancy rate declines in North Carolina, 213 girls aged 15 to 19 became pregnant.

16. Bobby Ihab Ismail shoots and kills his wife, Mary Overman Ismail, and then kills himself in Unionville. Their 9-year-old daughter witnessed the shootings. 

21. A leak in six-inch gas main spews gas into major Indian Trail intersection at rush hour.

28. Martha Allen and Johnny Pigg are named Union County Man and Woman of the Year. United Family Services changes its name to Safe Alliance.

27. Haley Sutton, 15, a CATA student, is featured on TLC’s “Extreme Couponing” show. Recount confirms that Kevin Stewart defeated Carolyn Lowder for school board seat.

29. NCDOT rejects Indian Trail’s request for wayfinding signs on I-485.

30. Prosecutors asked Highway Patrol to do additional investigation in the Joshua Crowley fatal hit-and-run case.


1. Wingate holds its first-ever town Christmas tree lighting ceremony.

4. A 100-store outlet mall chose to locate in Steele Creek instead of Stallings.

5. Juan Pablo Guarda is arrested for embezzling $888,000 from Boggs Paving where he worked as a project manager. Brandy Mills of Midland wins the Crumley Roberts Safe Driving Billboard Contest. Jerry Simpson is re-elected chairman of the board of commissioners.

6. Autopsy shows that shotgun blast killed Ronnie Overcash and that stab wounds killed Jerry Marsh in the triple homicide earlier this year. New board member Richard Yercheck is elected chairman of the Union County Board of Education.

9. Monument dedicated for Union County’s Confederate Pensioners of Color for their role in the Civil War. Southern Environmental Law Center chides N.C. Turnpike Authority for downplaying a court ruling that blocked construction of the Monroe Bypass and says the group will sue again if needed to get a proper environmental review.

11. Study finds that aviation and aerospace companies generates 2,700 jobs in the county and the airport generates roughly $400,000 in tax revenue to Monroe and the county.

13. Midway Aircraft Instruments plans to invest $2.3 million and create 36 jobs in its move from New Jersey to Monroe.

14. Former school superintendent Ed Davis and longtime educator and school board member Carolyn Lowder receive state’s highest civilian honor, the Long Leaf Pine Award. Chad Shoultes is named Monroe Police Department’s Officer of the Year, chosen by vote of the department.

16. Bank of America donates 2,000 homes to Habitat for Humanity; some may be in Union County.

18. Child poverty rate in North Carolina exceeds national average.

19. Former Waxhaw mayoral candidate Lisa Thornton is charged with forgery.

20. State Bureau of Investigation agent Brandon Blackmon is named the John R. Vanderford Agent of the Year Award.

21. Newly elected U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson says he will not support stricter gun control measures in the wake of the school shootings in Newtown. Conn.

22. Indian Trail council member Darlene Luther says her town should negotiate for a better value from its contract with the Sheriff’s Office.

23. Habitat for Humanity dedicates its 100th home. Former Monroe city manager Wayne Herron lands new job as planning director in Cornelius.

26. Marie Crook and Jennifer Hunt of Stallings die in a Matthews wreck. The driver of the other car, Justin Robert Jones of Matthews, was arrested in 2010 in Monroe and charged with driving while impaired. The charges were dismissed though he blew a 0.08 in the Breathalyzer test, the level of legal intoxication.

29. The trial of the accused killer of Union Academy student Phylicia Barnes is scheduled to begin Jan. 22 in  Baltimore,