Editor’s note: This article features news and photos from past editions of the Watauga Democrat.

April 7, 1975

“High winds lashed the area last week, leaving behind much damage. Winds clocked at 90 miles per hour were reported in Boone, and Grandfather Mountain reported winds at 140 miles per hour on Thursday after an intense winter storm moved through the area,” stated an article in the April 7, 1975, issue of the Watauga Democrat.

According to the article, two mobile homes that were being transported down U.S. 421 were overturned by the wind and the road had to be closed until the next day.

Other reported damages including numerous signs. According to the article, a sign for Lowe’s Food Store was knocked from its foundation.

“Hardest hit was the Watauga Village Shopping Center area, where glass was blown from the Piedmont Federal Savings and Loan sign and the Watauga Village Shopping Center sign,” the article stated.

“Several” trees were also reported to be broken as knocked-down limbs resulted in power outages.

April 8, 1985

“Bo Flash, a chestnut quarter horse stallion, is up for sale along with saddles, other tack, a carpet and an unfinished house,” according to an article in the April 8, 1985, edition of the Watauga Democrat.

According to the article, the property belonged to a Banner Elk couple who were accused of engineering a “large, illegal drug network.” The property was for sale due to a law that allowed the federal government to seize and dispose of goods that were bought with the proceeds of illegal drug sales.

“Until the sale, the federal government is footing the bill for Bo Flash’s boarding at Moody Creek Farms, a local stable,” the article stated.

“According to Jack Fussell, owner of Moody Creek Farms, the four-year-old horse stands at 15 hands, has two shite stockings and a white blaze, has a good disposition and some riding work. Although he is listed as a registered quarter horse, there are no papers,” the article stated.

According to the article, the proceeds from the auctioned items would go to the U.S. Treasury after the expenses had been paid off.

April 5, 1995

“A budding ice diva, Kelly Ward has captured two gold medals after just two seasons on the ice skating rink,” according to an article in the April 5, 1995, edition of the Watauga Democrat.

Then a senior at Watauga High School, Ward was quoted as saying she began skating at 8-years-old.

“A couple winters ago, she was skating on the Beech Mountain Skating Rink when owner Jimmy Durham offered her a job, and began her official lessons in the art of figure skating,” the article stated.

According to the article, Ward later won gold medals in freestyle and interpretive events.

“Despite the two golds, though, Kelly is still 18 and is most likely too old to hope for the Olympics. Her goal, beyond a degree in English from Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C., and a career in communications, is to skate in shows like ‘Disney on Ice,’” the article stated.

“That would just be on the side,” Ward was quoted as saying. “I want a career in some form of communications — possibly broadcasting. I do wonder, though, how well I would have done by now if I had started much younger.”

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