WFRD receive new swift water rescue equipment

Drew DeHaven

Through a grant from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) the Winchester Fire and Rescue Department (WFRD) report receiving swift water equipment.

Included in the grant were funds for training to help personnel to become familiar with the equipment and how to respond to certain incidents.

The training will include individual instruction on personal flotation devices, techniques on rope throw, and safely removing a patient while taking spinal precautions.

The Winchester Fire and Rescue Department will be the Winchester Parks and Recreation’s indoor pool facility for some of the training exercises.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Lefty

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Greetings from The Booth!

As February comes to an end and we start heading toward college basketball’s conference tournaments and March Madness, I wanted to share a few thoughts about coaching legend Charles “Lefty” Driesell, who passed away recently at age 92 in Virginia Beach.

The Norfolk-born Driesell has an extensive resume. As a player, Lefty led Granby to a state championship in basketball, went on to a full scholarship at Duke, and eventually made his way into the coaching ranks, where he guided Newport News High to a Virginia state title. His success at that level earned Driesell a head coaching job at D-I Davidson. It was there that Lefty posted three Southern Conference tournament championships and five regular season titles between the years 1960-1969.

But most of my memories of Driesell were confined to his time at The University of Maryland. Growing up in this area, Saturday afternoons during the cold months between the Washington Redskins and baseball’s Opening Day were filled with Soul Train, The Pro Bowlers Tour, and The ACC Game of the week (a nod to Jim Thacker & Billy Packer, wherever you are). The Atlantic Coast Conference was a hotbed of basketball, and every Saturday, names like Phil Ford, David Thompson, and Tree Rollins filled my TV screen.

Full disclosure–I was not a Maryland Terrapins fan. Quite the opposite, especially when Driesell boldly proclaimed that he was going to make Maryland “The UCLA of the East.” That never quite happened, although he led the Terps to eight NCAA tournament appearances and a 1972 NIT championship. That era of Maryland hoop featured stars like John Lucas, Len Elmore, and Tom McMillen, and the Terrapins were always a tough “out” in the ACC Tournament.

In 1974, the Terps finished on the short end of one of the greatest college basketball games of all time, losing to Thompson and NC State 103-100 in OT in the ACC Tournament final.  In those days, only the ACC tournament champion advanced to the NCAA tournament, so a great Maryland team was left out in the cold (the Terps elected not to play in the NIT after that heartbreaking loss), despite finishing at number 4 in the AP Poll.

It was under Driesell’s watch in June of 1986 that Terrapins star Len Bias died of a cocaine overdose, and although the school could find no wrongdoing on his part in the tragedy, Lefty resigned in the Fall of that year as Maryland’s head basketball coach.

Redemption for Driesell would happen in the college town of Harrisonburg, Virginia, where he brough basketball relevance to James Madison University. In his time at JMU, Driesell would lead the Dukes to multiple CAA championships and an NCAA Tournament bid. The Shenandoah Valley was on the basketball map!

But Lefty wasn’t done. He would finish his career with another successful run at Georgia State, where he took the Panthers to the second round of the 2000-01 NCAA Tournament, and to the NIT the following year. He would retire in the middle of the ’02-’03 season, his 41st, with a career record of 786-394. With the possible exception of Maryland, it would be fair to say that Driesell left all his programs in better shape than when he arrived.

But more than that, Lefty was a believer in himself. In 1954, he left the Ford Motor Company to take a high school coaching job, supplementing a sizeable cut in pay by selling encyclopedias. He won that bet on himself, and the memory of Driesell walking off the court with both arms raised in the air, hands in the victory “V” salute will live forever in  Davidson, College Park, Harrisonburg, and Atlanta.

RIP, Charles “Lefty” Driesell…

RW

 

 

 

The Duke’s Championship Preview: Strasburg vs Page and Clarke vs Luray

The Regional Championships will feature two matchups of teams VERY familiar with each other but have yet to play with this much at stake.

The Region 2B Girls Basketball Championship Game will be a rematch of the Bull Run District Championship Game with Strasburg taking on Page County on The River 95.3, Fox Sports Radio 1450, theriver953.com and the Tune In App at 5:50 pm.

The Panthers got the better of Strasburg in that game, 52-31, but the Rams were without star guard Macy Smith.

Smith is coming off a dominant 26 point performance against cross-county rival Central in the Regional Semifinals.

The Rams ran away with that one, 68-37, thanks to a 26-2 run in the second quarter.

Page County has played in tight games throughout the Regional Playoffs.

The Panther girls are coming off an overtime upset over the reigning Class 2 State Champions Clarke County, 73-71.

The Boys Region 2B Championship will follow the girls matchup with Clarke County taking on Luray for the fourth time this month, also on The River 95.3, Fox Sports Radio 1450, theriver953.com and the Tune In App.

Clarke County leads the series 2-1 with the most recent win coming in the Bull Run District Semifinals, 79-56.

The Eagles dominate the second period with a 25-5 run including 5 of 7 from long range.

Luray will enter the game coming off a thrilling overtime upset of Madison County, the #1 seed in the Region.

The game was tight throughout with 14 lead changes and four ties in the second half.

Luray was led by Matthew Owens with 16 points including five three-pointers.

Defensively, the Bulldogs were able to limit District Player of the Year Bryce Breeden to 13 points.

Both games will go down to the wire with the Rams knocking off the Panthers 53-50, and Clarke County knocking down free throws late to defeat Luray 60-55.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Attorney General weighs in on student-athlete likeness ruling

Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares backed a federal judge’s ruling that bars the NCAA from enforcing its rules prohibiting name, image and likeness compensation for recruits, calling it a ‘significant victory’

“Today’s decision is a significant victory in our effort to protect Virginia’s student-athletes from the NCAA’s restrictive and unfair rules,” said Attorney General Miyares said in an emailed statement Friday. “The students putting in the countless hours of hard work, sacrifice, and determination should have the freedom and capability to negotiate and benefit from their skills and abilities. Student-athletes generate millions of dollars for the NCAA, its members, and corporations within the college sports industry – it’s only fair that they have more freedom over what they earn. The NCAA has taken advantage of talented young athletes for too long.”

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Warren Heritage Society seeking executive director

Warren County Virginia new logo used by permission by Warren County Director of Technology Todd Jones

The Warren Heritage Society is searching for a new executive director.

The agency is seeking a dynamic and experienced individual to play a pivotal role in driving the Society’s mission forward and fostering partnerships to further its impact. The ideal candidate has a strong background in history, business, nonprofit management, or a related field, along with leadership capabilities and a passion for community engagement.

The Executive Director search is being conducted by the Executive Committee of the Society’s Board of Directors. The full job description can be found on the Warren Heritage Society website at warrenheritagesociety.org. Resumes for the position will be accepted through March 15, 2024.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Furever Friday Meet Asphalt

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Each week, we spotlight an adoptable pet from the Humane Society of Warren County.

This week we are featuring Asphalt a very affectionate male black cat. He loves attention especially head scratches and being close to you. Asphalt needs special wet food which you should discuss with the shelter. Like all animals at the humane society Asphalt is up to date on his vaccinations, microchipped, and altered.

Animals at the humane society are cared for by the Low Cost Spay and Neuter Clinic at 840 B John Marshall Highway Front Royal.

If you would like to give Asphalt or any of his friends a forever home, please fill out an application at humanesocietywarrencounty.com.

Once you apply and are approved, a staff member will contact you with the next steps.

You can also check out the Humane Society of Warren County’s adoptable pets on petfinder.com.

You are welcome to support the Humane Society of Warren County through the Pick of the Litter Thrift Shop 450 Commerce Avenue Suite E and F.

Furever Friday is proudly sponsored by Shear Elegance Pet Boutique.

Shear Elegance Pet Boutique has been giving pets the love, care and respect they deserve since 2011.

Visit them today off John Marshall Highway and on Facebook.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

WFRD staffer is recognized by Governor Youngkin

Drew DeHaven

Governor Glenn Youngkin reports the recognition of Winchester Fire and Rescue Department (WFRD) staffer Adam Small.

The recognition came while Governor Youngkin was attending the annual Virginia Fire Chiefs Association Expo and symposium.

The Governor recognized and awarded several Virginia Firefighters.

Still is responsible for facilitating a recruit class, overseeing the incumbent training, and managing the transition of recruits to field operations at WFRD.

As a WFRD staffer Still is heavily involved with development of the active assailant program, and mass casualty incident training as well.

Still is also responsible for the Department’s first aid CPR courses offered to city employees and some private business.

A total of 11 awards were handed out by the governor for both individual firefighters as well as fire departments across Virginia from Winchester to Virginia Beach.

In the Governor’s remarks Youngkin acknowledged the incredible contributions made by first responders and support staff.

For a full list of those receiving recognition and awards click here.

Youngkin referenced the recent Loudoun County tragedy and loss of firefighter Trevor Brown during his talk at the symposium.

Governor Youngkin commended and showed his gratitude to those fearless heroes who turn towards danger to protect and serve their fellow Virginians every day.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Winchester man is convicted of obtaining money by false pretenses

Virginia’s Attorney General Jason Miyares reports the conviction of  a Winchester man for  obtaining money through false pretenses.

A Winchester City Circuit Court jury convicted Ajarhi Roberts on those charges Wednesday, February 21.

With that conviction Roberts will face five years in prison with all but 4 months suspended, on condition of supervised probation and restitution.

Roberts is ordered to pay $100,000 in restitution to the Virginia Employment Commission.

Back in March of 2022 the Virginia Employment Commission asked Attorney General Miyares to help in the prosecution of fraudulent unemployment compensation claims.

The Roberts conviction and others are the result of the joint investigations by Virginia State Police, the Inspector General’s Offices of the U.S. Departments of Labor, and Postal Service.

Miyares called Unemployment Fraud a cruel way to take advantage of the system that was designed to help Virginians who were down on their luck.

The Attorney General’s Fraud Unit is dedicated to bringing these cases to justice.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.