Ward’s request speaks as to his values and character


I read, with great interest, a response comment from Matt Ward, candidate for sheriff, regarding negative comments/cyberbullying. Matt expressed his appreciation for the interest and support he has received from the community, but requested that everyone, especially his supporters, treat the other candidates with the respect that the office of sheriff deserves.  If this doesn’t speak volumes as to the values, character and class of Matt Ward, I don’t know what will. Very well said, Matt.

With comments like this, you can’t go wrong voting for Matt Ward for sheriff of Botetourt County. Matt is a great friend of mine. His Mom and Dad certainly raised a great man and this shows in his character and comments. How could anyone not vote for him? I talk to a lot of people every day and I tell them what a great friend he is. I talk about his qualifications, dedication to the county as a deputy sheriff and to this country as a Marine.

My family and I really believe in you, Matt.  Not many people would have reacted and responded the way you did regarding the facebook post. I am proud to call you my great friend.

Botetourt County citizens, take some time, look closely at the candidates running for the office of sheriff. I know you will agree with me when I say, Matt Ward for Sheriff of Botetourt County.

W. David Horton, Retired Sergeant

Botetourt County Animal Control


Blood drive tomorrow in Fincastle


Thanks to all our volunteers and sponsors for their help in holding blood drives in 2018. Thanks to Steve and Beck Johnston for conducting the February drive while Robbin and I were out of town.

We collected 22 units at our last blood drive. Biscuit’s from Bojangles and pizza from Tizzone were provided for donors and volunteers and we thank them both for their participation.

Our next drive is Thursday, April 11 at the Fincastle United Methodist Family Life Center from 12 noon until 6 p.m. Donations have been very slow this year and the need for blood has risen! I have received several additional e-mails this time expressing the need for more blood. Recent disasters and weather have played together to deplete supplies of blood to critical amounts on hand. Please help us out by coming to the drive and donating blood. Please mention this drive to everyone you know and bring a friend to help us start the new year with a record drive.

Thank you for your support.

Sam Saunders

Bloodmobile Coordinator


This is Work Zone Awareness Week


Each spring, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and other state DOTs recognize Work Zone Awareness Week to remind drivers of the importance of avoiding distractions and driving safely through work zones. We invite you to join VDOT in the annual observance of National Work Zone Awareness Week April 8-12. This week is a reminder that work zone safety is everyone’s responsibility.

Our employees and contractors put their lives on the line in work zones every day while working to improve travel for motorists in Virginia. This is true in mobile operations like mowing, paving and plowing snow, as well as in our established work zones for long-term construction projects like bridge replacements, 10th Street in the City of Roanoke, I-81 at Exits 105 and 114, and US 220 in Botetourt County north of Fincastle and north of Eagle Rock. Although signs, cones and safety vests can be effective in warning motorists of a work zone, these tools are no protection against a fast-moving vehicle or an inattentive driver.

Did you know…

In 2018, there were 2,523 work zone related crashes leading to 1,256 work zone injuries and 9 fatalities.

Every time drivers take their focus off the road – even for a moment – they put their lives and the lives of others in danger.

Four out of five persons who die in work zone crashes are motorists – drivers and passengers – not highway workers.

All motorists – whether a seasoned driver or someone new behind the wheel – should follow these instructions when driving through a work zone:

When you see the orange work zone warning signs, be alert for changing conditions ahead.

Slow down in work zones and be aware of your surroundings at all times.

Minimize distractions. Avoid using mobile devices when behind the wheel.

In addition, to show support for National Work Zone Awareness Week, VDOT encourages you to participate in these activities during the week:

Wednesday, April 10 is national “Go Orange Day.” Everyone is encouraged to wear orange in support of work zone safety across the country. Share your pictures with us on Twitter and Facebook! #GoOrangeVa

Follow our Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/VDOTSalem and our Twitter page @VaDOTSalem and share our messages, pictures and hashtags throughout the week.

We appreciate your efforts to keep our roads and work zones safe for everyone.

Ken King, P.E.
District Engineer
Salem District


Wants answers to rumors about sheriff’s candidates

I read with interest the letter from Matt Ward in last week’s Fincastle Herald regarding not attending forums. I have also been following each candidate’s Facebook Page closely. I am interested in all three candidates, their viewpoints, their campaign, ethical character, their ability to handle public concerns, criticism, as well as the tough questions. I see comments supporting Ward’s decision to not participate in public forums.

I have heard rumors and innuendos about all the candidates and I appreciate the article from Ward, stating his desire for everyone, especially his supporters, to refrain from negative comments. I have not had any of the candidates knock on my door, and the only opportunity I get to see or hear from candidates is to attend a forum organized by others.
Each candidate seems to be holding many events, fundraisers and such across our county, and all seem very busy. I can see that all of the candidates are working hard for their place on the ballot as the Republican nomination for November. But for the life of me, I cannot understand why Mr. Ward refuses to participate in these forums. I want my sheriff to be able to speak to our community, to the media and if, God forbid, we have a crisis, be able to articulate effectively in an emergency. I want my sheriff to be able to stand among a group of people who want answers and respond with confidence regarding the constant problems that besets a sheriff. At some of the forums, the candidates are allowed to review the questions beforehand and have time to thoughtfully produce their answers. This is not a bad thing. I appreciate well-thought-out plans.
Are the rumors of Ward’s previous demotion in the sheriff’s department, Stritesky’s lack of road experience and Vineyard’s impulsivity true? If not, please stand up and address those matters and please do it in a vocal format and not behind a smokescreen of writers or your campaign team. The office of sheriff IS a political position, elected by the people and each candidate should address the people as is required by the office.
Liz Parker