“Entered into eternal rest on Sunday, May 11, 2008, in the Republic of Iraq, Lt. Melissa Hope Grant, US Air Force, the beloved daughter of Mrs. Melody Grant …”

The opening line from what turned out to be a fake obituary by a local woman trying to get creditors off her back by fabricating a daughter who died in Iraq. Source: The Post and Courier

Search “Cook,” Find Bostic

It’s odd to call anything involving the internet an “old political move,” but we noticed a local candidate for County Council is employing a well-worn technique of driving those interested in information on his opponent to his own website.

County Councilman Curtis Bostic is fighting off a GOP primary challenge from Nancy Cook. Voters looking for information on Cook at www.nancycookforcouncil.com or www.nancycookforcountycouncil.com will be redirected to Bostic’s website.

Cook’s website is www.cookforcountycouncil.com. —Greg Hambrick

High School Principal To Resign Over Gay-Friendly Club

Irmo High School Principal Eddie Walker will resign from his position at the school at the end of the ’08-’09 school year because the district has approved a gay/straight alliance at the school. In an open letter to district officials, Walker says the club goes against his religious principles (just apparently not that tolerance one we keep hearing about).

Speaking of tolerance, district spokesman Buddy Price made far from a ringing endorsement, making it clear the district had to allow the new club.

“Our attorneys have advised us that because Irmo High School has permitted the formation of a number of non-curricular clubs at the school, the federal law known as the Equal Access Act does not permit the school to discriminate against a club based on the club’s purpose and viewpoint by not allowing it to form,” he says.

The S.C. Equality Coalition has called on Walker to immediately resign, noting that his statements and continued presence in the school over the next year could fuel a dangerous environment for gay and lesbian students.

“This principal has emphatically and publicly stated that he does not support a significant portion of his student body. He has created an atmosphere where intolerance is considered a principled stand,” says Ray Drew, executive director of the statewide gay rights group. —Greg Hambrick

Charleston names interim fire chief

Mayor Joe Riley announced last week that he will name Assistant Chief Ronald Classen as acting fire chief when Rusty Thomas retires in late June. Riley said the acting chief will be committed to the changes recommended after the June 18, 2007, sofa store blaze that killed nine firefighters. Classen has been with the department since 1971 and plans to retire once the city completes its national search for a new chief. — Greg Hambrick

“You look beautiful … wait, that’s not funny.”

Luke Hamilton, a Folly Beach oyster farmer, when asked by DeAnna Pappas to tell her something funny on ABC’s The Bachelorette. Pappas sent all three South Carolina contestants home, though she did seem quite smitten with a fellow she mistakenly thought came from South Carolina (hey, we’ll take a win any way we can get it). Charleston’s other Romeo, Donato Capodanno, apparently sealed his fate when he suggested Pappas’ BFF should come sit on his lap.

To Burn or to Bury?

County council voted 8-1 last week to proceed with a “Green Dollar Savings for Making Charleston Greener” proposal from council members Colleen Condon and Curtis Bostic. With the aim of a “holistic overhaul” of the county’s solid waste management, they’re seeking a consultant to recommend methods of reducing the 1,200 pounds of trash generated annually by the average county resident by as much as half. “We need an aggressive plan that makes it easier to recycle than to throw something away,” says Condon. The county spends

$41 million to burn, bury, and process the 350,000 tons of waste and recycling collected each year, an amount she says can be reduced through better recycling at schools, businesses, and apartment complexes. In conjunction with council’s new Green Ribbon Committee, Condon says she hopes for monthly proposals over the next year to make the county more environmentally responsible. Even with the measures taken, Condon says that council is “still very much pursuing the incinerator contract” because of the overwhelming quantity of waste that would otherwise be shifted to the Bees Ferry landfill, and due to the EPA’s stance that “waste to energy” trash incineration is healthier than landfilling. “Hopefully we can encourage a paradigm shift,” says Condon. “My eyes have been opened to the possibilities that exist. I’ve gone back and reread The Lorax (Dr. Seuss) in the last couple weeks and realized that we can all do a little bit better.”

—Stratton Lawrence


That’s the worst-case estimate for Atlantic tropical storms this year, including up to nine hurricanes, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. After two years that have largely been duds, the experts say they’re not sure they’ve nailed down this year’s number. Source: Reuters