To the city of Mount Airy, property owners who granted easements, and every other individual and entity involved with the development of the city’s two local greenways.

With a recent groundbreaking, work on the final leg of the project to join these two trails begins. The greenways are most definitely facilities which add to the quality of life for city residents, those in the surrounding area, and even tourists. They provide a nice, relaxing, safe area for walkers, joggers, and cyclists to get out in nature without actually ever having to leave the city.

This — the eventual joining of the two trails — has been many years in the making and most definitely took foresight to envision, and to see it through took commitment over the years. The city is better off for that effort.

*****

To the more than 100 individuals who turned out last weekend to help Surry County Emergency Services authorities search for Joan Alice Atkins, an 82-year-old Rockford woman who went missing Sept. 19.

A helicoptor, dog search teams, police, rescue officials, and dozens upon dozens of volunteers turned out to search for her after she had wandered away from home. Suffering from dementia and with limited mobility, rescuers were worried the situation could quickly turn dire.

Eventually, after more than two days, she was found in relatively good health.

That so many people took time out of their lives to help speaks highly — but not surprisingly — to the type of folks who call this area home.

*****

To Surry County Commissioner Larry Phillips, Sheriff Graham Atkinson, and Elkin Mayor Lestine Hutchens for going above the normal expectations of their offices by serving on, and taking leadership roles, in various statewide organizations.

Phillips serves as second vice president for the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners, which will eventually lead to him taking on the presidency; Atkinson is first vice president of the Sheriff’s Association; and Hutchens, first vice president of the League of Municipalities, will be ascending to the post of president in October.

Taking on such roles increases the workload on these three officials tremendously, but it also puts them in a significantly stronger position to affect public policy in North Carolina and, in the process, give local residents a louder voice in those policy debates.

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