DALEVILLE – Board of Supervisors Chairman Billy Martin gave his final video address of 2020 discussing COVID-19 and honoring former Supervisor Ray Sloan and welcoming Amy White.
Martin stressed there is hope, even nine months into the worst pandemic in a century, and stressed better times are within sight.
He continued that the end of one year and the beginning of another is a good time to reflect and memorialize the 16 people who lost their lives to the pandemic as of Dec. 21, 2020. Since this address on New Year’s Eve, the number of deaths in Botetourt County has risen to 18 by the following Monday morning.
“While it doesn’t sound like a lot, those were 16 fathers or mothers, sons or daughters, sisters or brothers, coworkers, neighbors and friends,” he said. “The impact of their deaths ripples outwards into the community…”
He asked that the victims not be forgotten.
More than 1,300 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the county, and he hopes those people recover quickly and Botetourt County experiences no more deaths. But, he warns, “the pandemic is not over.”
Approximately 300 doses of the vaccines were given to Botetourt County residents, he said, with more shots given daily to county residents.
“It will be exciting when we finally have more people vaccinated than the number of cases,” Martin said, adding that residents need to practice the three-W’s: Wash hands, Wear masks and Watch distance of at least six feet apart.
During his address he also bid a fond farewell to former Supervisor Ray Sloan, who resigned the post after three years. Sloan, who represented the Buchanan District, named Amy White to replace him until his term ends Dec. 31.
“Ray has a heart for service and while I’ll miss him on the board, I know he is pursuing something he loves,” said Martin.
Sloan resigned to dedicate more time to the Buchanan’s EMT/Fire service.
“Ray’s impact on Botetourt County can be seen in many different ways, through his time on the board he dedicated himself to helping the people of Buchanan and the entire county,” said Martin. “Ray’s love for this community is exceptional.”
Martin praised White for her dedication to education in Botetourt County. White, the dean of sciences at Virginia Western Community College, has served on a number of boards aimed at industry and education.
White “has a strong passion for serving the community,” he said. “I’m thrilled to have her as a colleague.”