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Most Read Stories of January 2013


Compiled by Jesse Wood

Most Read Stories of  January 2013

The flood in January foreshadowed the rains that would drench the High Country in the months to come. The image of the Boone Mall parking lot with cars standing in high water went viral, shared across regional media outlets.

The year also began on a somber note with long-time Watauga County librarian Evelyn Johnson passing away on Jan. 14 after a sudden heart attack and Boone hotelier Ashok Patel, unbeknownst to some at the time, committing suicide on the Blue Ridge Parkway days earlier.

During the first month in 2013, readers in Avery, Watauga and Ashe counties also checked out a compilation of data from the N.C. Department and Treasurer of more than a $1 million of unclaimed money and property of local residents. At the time, the state department held more than $344 million of unclaimed cash and property.

Also, Jimmy Crippen of Crippen’s Country Inn announced that he was closing his restaurant to shift his focus to the now statewide competitive dining series that began in Blowing Rock nearly a decade ago.

And former Watauga County Schools Supt. David Kafitz. In January, his Mellow Mushroom tirade and another incident involving Elections Director Jane Ann Hodges came to light, eventually snowballing into Kafitz exiting his post less than a year into a four-year contract.