2020: The Year In Review

By Betsy Finklea
2020 has been a year like no other.
Here are some of the headlines that made news in the year 2020:

JANUARY
JANUARY 2: Bond hearing held for Joshua D. Manning in murder of J.W. Bailey…The Dillon Herald and East Dillon Baptist Church’s toy and food drive is a success…Harbor Freight Tools and Help For Veterans team up to help those who served our country… Dillon County Sheriff’s Office investigating property crimes…Deputies still seeking information on location of Allen Little, Jr., who is charged in murder.
JANUARY 7: Officer Jackson Winkeler killed in the line of duty at Florence Regional Airport…Gracen Grainger to compete for Miss Teen USA…SCDMV Mobile Unit to be at Wellness Center to help public get REAL IDs…Downtown master plan discussed at Dillon City Council meeting.

JANUARY 9: Fallen Officer Jackson Winkeler returns home…Huber Engineered Woods LLC opening facility in county…Charges filed on James Edward Bell in murder of Officer Jackson Winkeler…Joe Williamson, Melinda Robinson, and Abbott Shelley sworn in as Latta Town Council members.
JANUARY 14: Fallen Officer Jackson Winkeler laid to rest…Sheriff’s Office investigating death in Little Rock…Armed robbery occurs at Dollar General…Bond denied on suspects in murder of J.W. Bailey…S.C. Ports Authority has best calendar year in history.
JANUARY 16: Herald Office Solutions giving back to community with Red Cross Blood Drive…Local college student Jacorie McCall meets with Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette.
JANUARY 21: Citizens march in memory of Martin Luther King, Jr…O’Darius Lakeith Page, age 25, of Dillon, identified as victim in Little Rock murder…Cayden Mishue of Dillon District Three recognized for making perfect score on SC READY math test…Little Pee Dee Baptist Association to receive check for center improvements.
JANUARY 23: Reward offered in Julandon McCallum disappearance…Communication tower proposed in Fork…Gas prices dropping.
JANUARY 28: Dillon High School player, Jykya Bell, scores 1,000 points… Counterfeit $5 bills given to paper sellers…Fallen officer Jackson Winkeler and Inland Port Dillon get mentions in Governor’s State of the State address.
JANUARY 30: Today is the last day to register in Democratic Presidential Primary…2020 Census available online for the first time in history…The Criterion Club celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

FEBRUARY
FEBRUARY 4: Humble Beginnings, Proud Heritage, Bright Future: Dillon County celebrates 110th birthday… Latta Library renovation committee formed…Suspects sought for accessory after fact of murder.
FEBRUARY 6: EQUUS breaks ground on spec industrial building in county…Death on Harllee’s Bridge Road determined to be homicide; Sheriff’s Office arrests Nicholas Lampley…Candace Sierra Bethea and Tyrone Douglas Rose turn themselves in accessories after the fact in murder of Montresse Dudley…Dillon County’s 110th birthday celebration continues.
FEBRUARY 11: Brandon “Peanut” Graves missing for 10 years…Second annual Economic Development and Achievement Summit held at South of the Border Convention Center.

FEBRUARY 13: Pat Laird named Dillon County Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year…Body of Brandon Lamar Brown found on Ninth Avenue in Dillon…Mayor Pro-Tem Phil Wallace presents State of the City of Dillon…Dillon County Historical Society elect officers.
FEBRUARY 18: Proposed J.V. Martin project awarded funding…McLeod Hospice expands to Dillon And Marion counties…Latta FFA team competes in state wildlife career development event.
FEBRUARY 20: Sunday alcohol sales discussed at Dillon City Council meeting…Opportunity zones explained…Latta group working on
FEBRUARY 25: Raleigh, NC, man killed in wreck… House fire occurs on Lakeside Court…South Carolina Democratic Presidential Primary is Saturday.
FEBRUARY 27: Bids approved on Latta water and sewer upgrade…Lake View English II honors students learns about crime scenes and court.

MARCH
MARCH 3: First Citizens Bank in Dillon robbed…New water tank discussed at Latta Town Council meeting…Joe Biden carries Dillon County, wills State Presidential Preference Primary…World War II veteran, James Olin McPherson, celebrates 100th birthday.
MARCH 5: Dillon Middle School Band Program and Director Kevin McLellan receive Program of Note award…Sen. Greg Hembree recognized BHSA legislator of the year.
MARCH 10: 22-year-old Adina Doctor of St. Pauls, NC, killed in wreck…American Legion National Commander James Oxford visits Dillon Post No. 32…Concerns grow over coronavirus.
MARCH 12: CSC actively monitoring COVID-19…Coronavirus sanitizer kit giveaway held in Latta…The Great Fire of March 12, 1910 recalled.
MARCH 17: Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting in Riverdale…Filing for public office begins…City holds annual Saint Patrick’s Day celebration…Marlboro Electric announces 8 percent rate decrease…COVID-19 causes closures, cancellations.
MARCH 19: Victim of shooting in Riverdale dies…Governor prohibits in-house dining…More candidates file for office…Balloon release commemorates birthday of missing man, Brandon “Peanut” Graves.
MARCH 24: Dillon County has first reported case of COVID-19…schools use homework packets while schools are closed…Marquis Antoine McRae, age 22, killed in deadly shooting in Riverdale… Two people killed in shooting in Little Rock… The Dillon Herald will continue printing through Covid-19
MARCH 26: Latta Police Officers get hand sanitizer donation from distillery… Dillon County Council declares state of emergency… Ryheem Omar Odom charge with murder in Little Rock… Sheriff’s office warns of scammers…School to remain closed.
MARCH 31: Dillon County Economic Development Director Clay Young says 2019 was a great year… Congressman outline highlights of CARES Act… Stewart Heights teachers hold parade… 24-hour fire departments and EMS get pet oxygen kits.

APRIL
APRIL 2: Gravel project will improve some of the county’s worst roads… Churches hold outdoor services in cars… Several healthcare offices offering Telehealth services.
APRIL 7: Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting on Highway 57 North… Eye Health America acquires Dillon Eyecare Associates and Pee Dee Eye Associates.
APRIL 9: Sheriff’s Office investigating multiple shootings… Growing Good Health spring plant distribution held… American Red Cross assisting person in Hamer after fire… MEC provides another rate decreased.
APRIL 14: Sheriff’s Office investigating deadly shooting… Twinkle Lights event recognizes Dillon Healthcare workers… Harbor Freight Tools provides protective equipment for Dillon County… Farmer James McColl directs donation to Humane Society

Robert Crowley

APRIL 16: Robert Allan Crowley, age 52, charged in murder… Harbor Freight Tools outlines steps being taken to protect associates form COVID-19…Work on Pine Street Neighborhood Project begins.
APRIL 21: Sheriff’s Office investigating another shooting… Jerry Allen Wright, age 33, killed in fatal wreck… Elizabeth Snipes is new 4-H agent…Coroner releases names in recent shootings.
APRIL 23: Yellow Jessamiune Garden Club donates masks to Pruitt Health…Gov. McMaster creates coordinated economic revitalization plan
APRIL 28: One person dead in shooting on JoAnn Branch Road… F-165 Fly Over McLeod Health Dillon to humor medical professionals and first responders… Railroad crossing improvements occur in Dillon.
APRIL 30: Datorus James Dixon, age 30, arrested in Dillon shooting…James Murphy killed in JoAnn Branch shooting… June 9th primaries to go on as scheduled… Majayla Page elected as Claflin University’s SGA Chaplin… Shenika Jones promoted to Associate Professor…Darius Jones promoted to Petty Officer Third Class in U.S. Coast Guard

MAY
MAY 5: Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting in Newtown area… New ditcher will aid in improving county ditches… Governor lifts work or home order
MAY 7: Trevor Fierson and Keishawn Davis killed in shooting at Southside Apartments… Jimmy Jones, age 47, arrested for kidnapping and other charges in hostage situation in Lake View… Addie Jane Hayes celebrates 100th birthday.
MAY 12: Car overturns on Kentyre Road… SLED issues warning about scammers… National Day of Prayer held… Three people shot in Dillon… MEC continues rate decrease… County nears 100 reported cases of COVID-19.
MAY 16: New state Director of Mental Health is Dillon native, Kenneth M. Rogers… Wreck occurs at North Fourth and East Washington… Dillon City Council discusses COVID-19, Reopening Wellness Center and city offices, Sunday Alcohol Sales and more.
MAY 18: Passenger killed in one-vehicle wreck on Gaddy’s Mill Road… William Tedder arrested on child pornography charges… vehicle overturns on I-95.
MAY 21: COVID-19 death reported in Dillon County… Wreck occurs on I-95… wreath-layering ceremony to be held
MAY 26: Two business owners charged with tax evasion… Memorial Day service held… Isham and Mary Watson Descendants Association cancels reunion… Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting on Highway 38.
MAY 28: County Administrator Tony Clyburn removed…Busy hurricane season predicted

JUNE
JUNE 2: Aggre Nora Stackhouse Grooms celebrates 100th birthday… Debra Morris retires as principal of Latta Elementary School… Firefighters practice rescue skills for hurricane season
JUNE 4: Altercation results in stabbing… Motor fuel uses fee increases July 1st… Driver chases, evades law enforcement… Teddy Yarborough, age 42, killed in 2-vehicle collision… South Carolinians reminded to take action to limit spread of COVID-19… Democratic and Republican primaries to be held June 9th.
JUNE 9: Public hearing set on removal of county administrator… Patrick Bass of Fairmont, NC, killed in wreck on High Hill Road.
JUNE 11: Finklea, Miller win primary, headed to November; other candidates in run-off… 4-H to hold “Grab and Go” camps
JUNE 16: Allen Little, Jr., picked up in Maryland… Vehicle wrecks on interstate… Death of inmate under investigation
JUNE 18: Accusations fly, tempers flare at public hearing to remove county administrator… Two people dead, one seriously injured in shooting
JUNE 23: Joshua I. Norman charged in deadly shooting of two people… Dixie Youth baseball begins

JUNE 25: Democratic Candidates poised to make history in November… COVID-19 update given
JUNE 30: Sheriff’s Office investigates shooting on West Canal Road… Sales Tax Holiday is August 7-9

JULY
JULY 2: Unity in Christ March held… SCDOT announces road paving and improvement plan
JULY 7: Soldiers honor fallen officers in flag walk… City Officers investigating murder.
JULY 9: Rowland man charged in fatal Dillon wreck… Man shot on 11th Avenue identified… Coroner working to identify man fund in burned car… Man found dead by Railroad track identified by coroner.
JULY 14: Group gathers in remembrance of missing man on one year of his disappearance… Carley Wiggins, long time Herald columnist, passes away.
JULY 16: Mrs. Carleene Jordan passes away… Rowland man reported missing
JULY 21: Lutherine Williams making history as new chief magistrate… Death under investigation in Latta.
JULY 23: County School Board delays start of school until September 8th… Dillon County Theatre Board receives two COVID-19 relief grants.
JULY 29: Mullins man charged in local murder… Chase is newest addition of Latta Police Department… Town of Lake View back in the trash business

AUGUST
AUGUST 4: Sheriff’s Office investigating deadly shooting in Newtown… Missing Rowland man found in river… Firefighters respond to car fire in Oak Grove area.
AUGUST 6: Mayor Pro-Tem Phil Wallace proclaims Farmers Market Week which was also observed by the Dillon County Health Initiative… Tax-Free weekend coming up
AUGUST 11: City of Dillon Police Department investigating shooting… Eradication effort nets 500 + marijuana plants… Dillon County Long-Term Recovery Group dedicated two more homes.
AUGUST 13: City of Dillon passes budget with two-mill increase… Man charged with three counts of attempted murder
AUGUST 18: Dillon’s Downtown Master Plan presented… SUV runs through Zaxby’s… Man charged with attempted murder for cutting woman

Zephaniah Baker

AUGUST 20: District Four Athletic Director talks about how athletics is proceeding during COVID-19… Zephaniah A. Baker charged with murder for deadly shooting in July… County School Board talks about COVID impact
AUGUST 25: $100,000 Palmetto Cash 5 ticket sold in Dillon unclaimed… Nan Carmichael is new principal of Latta High School… Stephanie Johnson is new principal of Latta Middle School… Superheroes golf cart and parade held
AUGUST 27: Former student, Dr. Michael McRae, returns as Gordon Elementary’s new principal… Update given on Latta Library renovation project… Park manager Emily Nicholson hopes to “make her mark” on Little Pee Dee State Park… Wreck causes power outage

SEPTEMBER
SEPTEMBER 1: Reward offered in vandalism of Carolina Presbyterian Church cemetery… Woodle site selected for Duke Energy Sit Readiness program… East Elementary School holds LEAP Day
SEPTEMBER 3: VFW names meeting room in honor of George Pullie… Vision test required to renew driver’s license
SEPTEMBER 8: Push continues for census participation… CareSouth awarded $100,000 grant.
SEPTEMBER 10: Dillon County Council approves budget in 4-3 vote… Overturned truck delays I-95 motorist for about four hours
SEPTEMBER 15: Census response efforts continue… Dillon County continues tradition of honoring first responders at 9-11 ceremony despite COVID-19… Whittaker, LTRG provides PPE for families.
SEPTEMBER 17: State to take back over Latta’s roads… Latta Town Council takes up Dillon County’s fire fee… Pee Dee Electric, Marlboro Electric announce partnership agreement… Vehicle flips multiple times on I-95
SEPTEMBER 22: Drive-thru planned for census completion, flu shots, and free COVID testing… All voters can vote absentee in upcoming election… Two-year-old shot… Darius Leonard named Indianapolis Colts team captain
SEPTEMBER 24: Kelli Floyd named District Four teacher of the Year… Sheriff’s Office warns of scam
SEPTEMBER 29: Mother and boyfriend charged in connection with shooting of two-year-old… Dillon County Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting in Rowland… Dillon Herald staff wins awards in advertising and news… Shipp Daniel awarded scholarships for excellence in prosecution.

OCTOBER
OCTOBER 1: Local pastor Stan Rankin shares the lessons he learned from his COVID-19 experience… Latta Police Drone Program will help improve officer and public safety… New fuel pump software will save county money and improve monitoring… Sheriff’s Office investigating shooting of adult and child in Latta.
OCTOBER 6: MANN & HUMMEL to close company’s Dillon location… Dillon County gets a second chance to do it right the first time in 2020 census.
OCTOBER 8: City of Dillon receives grant for pump station upgrade… ATV Mx event takes place at South of the Border… McLeod Health receives certificate Zero Harm awards.
OCTOBER 13: Ports Authority has strongest numbers since beginning of pandemic possible tornado strikes Oak Grove causing snapped trees and other damage… DHEC officials stress importance of flu vaccines amid COVID-19
OCTOBER 15: City voters to decide on Sunday Alcohol Sales… One person dead in incident on Mosswood Drive… 4-H Scarecrow decorating contest in success… Marlboro Electric announces rate decrease…. Help for Veterans health fair cancelled due to COVID-19… Tornado in Oak Grove confirmed by National Weather Service.
OCTOBER 20: OSI-Conserved Riverfront Property transferred to Pee Dee Land Trust and Dillon County… Three people shot on Magnolia Road… Approximately 120 cases heard during virtual term of General Sessions Court.

Shiffon Wells

OCTOBER 22: Body of Shiffon Wells located by law enforcement… Becky Williamson charged in shooting on Mount Calvary Road… City of Dillon officers trick-or-treat guidelines during COVID-19.
OCTOBER 27: Shots fired at McDonald’s… Person shot on South Fourth Avenue… Pee Dee Electric to decrease rates… One dead, several shot in incident on Bunker Hill Road… Dillon man, Gerald Powell, shows woodworking skills with pandemic project… Latta native, Daniel Shelley, to be architect on Latta Library addition.
OCTOBER 29: Trico receiving USDA funds to improve water system… Beck Williamson charged with murder.

NOVEMBER
NOVEMBER 3: Marlboro Development Team announces new spec building in county… Two charged in drug case after search warrant executed at Latta residence… Town of Lake View receives Hometown Economic Development Grant from MASC… Dillon District Four to provide meals at no charge… SC Ports poised for growth, big year ahead.
NOVEMBER 5: After 12 years, Douglas Pernell wins Sheriff’s Race and becomes first African American in Dillon County to win a countywide office… USDA awards $1.6 million in grants to NETC.
NOVEMBER 10: American flags placed on the graves of Veterans… Veterans to be honored at special ceremony on November 11th.
NOVEMBER 12: Veterans Day observed despite COVID-19 pandemic… CareSouth celebrates 40 years of service to Pee Dee Region.
NOVEMBER 17: Fourth Circuit Solicitor’s Office issues mandatory court appearance list… State health leaders encourage South Carolinians to stay vigilant to reduce spread of COVID-19 this season.
NOVEMBER 19: Body of missing man, Julandon McCallum, found… Former County Treasurer, Mary Louise Parham, passes away… Annual Dillon County Community Thanksgiving Service set planned.

NOVEMBER 24: Farm-City Week Awards presented… Two people charged in murder of Julandon McCallum.
NOVEMBER 26: K-9 Chase sworn to protect and serve… Church Street Tree Project celebrated… Man charged in death of Shiffon Wells.

Samir Dixon

DECEMBER
DECEMBER 1: Sheriff’s Office investigation shooting on Saw Mill Road… Christmas is in the air at the City of Dillon’s Holiday Goodness… Darius Leonard holds Thanksgiving giveaway.

DECEMBER 3: First Bank breaks ground in new branch location… One SC Fund awards grants to groups who will use funds to aid Dillon County.
DECEMBER 8: Lake View football team finishes season as Lower State Champions… South Carolinians urged to continue proactive actions to fight COVID-19.
DECEMBER 10: First Annual Floyd Dale Christmas Parade held… Whittaker Head Start students participate in Camp Noah… School districts give details on where they stand with rapid COVID testing.
DECEMBER 15: First Holiday food boxes distributed as canned food drive for needy local veterans continues… Perdue Farms sends letter to governor urging prioritization of meat and poultry workers and their families in COVID-19 vaccine rollout… County Sheriff’s Office investigating death.
DECEMBER 17: Jackie Hayes steps down as Dillon High School head football coach… Lake View Elementary students get winter coats.
DECEMBER 22: Toy Drive is huge success… COVID-19 cases rise.
DECEMBER 24: Path out of pandemic has some light with release of COVID vaccine, experts say… A. LaFon LeGette, Jr. named Latta Rotary Club Citizen of the Year… Town of Lake View purchases Page’s Mill Pond.

DECEMBER 29: Archie Scott honored by S.C. Association of Counties for service to board… Mandatory court appearance list issued.
DECEMBER 31: See today’s issue.