Tag Archives: Deerfield

Supervisor Pyles, Walking the Walk

“Tracy has helped improve the lives of many in his District over the years.” –Augusta County resident

Augusta County Supervisor Tracy Pyles stood comfortably at the front of the Deerfield fire station’s meeting room at his Tuesday night town hall in the far western reaches of Pastures District. It’s an area he knows well. Growing up in the scenic beauty of the Deerfield Valley, he was a child of the generation allowed to roam freely, climb trees, explore creeks, scramble the mountain slopes, and spend hours away from parents’ watchful eyes.

Within that district is the tiny unincorporated area known as Deerfield, elevation 1739 feet, located approximately 45 minutes west of Staunton, in a picturesque valley on the western side of Elliott’s Knob, the highest point in Augusta County. It peaks out at an elevation of 4463 feet atop the North Mountain range.

To know the area is to know the man.

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Augusta County: Tracy Pyles wins re-election in Pastures District

Tracy PylesBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Augusta County’s Pastures District, on the western edge of the county and bordering with Bath and Highland counties, has three library branches, more than any of he seven districts. That is a direct result of Supervisor Tracy Pyles’ work to bring that community resource to his far-reaching areas of Deerfield and Craigsville in addition to Churchville.

That is just one of the improvements Tracy has brought to Pastures, where there is more national forest land than private land, and houses can be few and far between.

Tracy won a close re-election Tuesday night against Chris Morrison whose family owns the IGA grocery store in Craigsville, bringing in 52 percent to 48 percent.

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Celebrate autumn with Augusta County Library’s Fall Fun Days

??????????By Lynn R. Mitchell

Fall! Cooler temps, colorful leaves, and fun Saturdays with the Augusta County Library and its branches. To celebrate this exciting time of year, there are free Saturday events going on throughout the county.

Fall Fun Day will take place at 1 p.m., Saturday, October 18 at the Churchville Branch Library and 1 p.m., Saturday, October 25 at the Fishersville Library. Children of all ages will decorate locally grown pumpkins, play games, and make a scarecrow. Participants should bring old clothing for their scarecrow—the library will provide the stuffing.

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Day 3: Air National Guard pilot killed in Virginia crash identified

Deerfield F-15C jet crash pilot

By Lynn R. Mitchell

After releasing the sad news Thursday night that the Massachusetts Air National Guard pilot died on impact when he crashed in the mountains of the George Washington National Forest in western Augusta County (see F-15 pilot killed in Augusta County, Va, crash), the 104th Fighter Wing released his identity on Friday:

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Search for pilot moves closer to Staunton

By Lynn R. Mitchell

From the Staunton News Leader:

“UPDATE 11:54 A.M.: Searchers are concentrating on the southeast area of Crawford Mountain, which is part of the Great North Mountain Trail, which is a line including Elliot Knob.”

This area is practically my front yard so we’ve had helicopters and airplanes flying overhead all day. The crash site is further west near Deerfield but this current search area for the pilot is located about four or five miles west of Staunton at Buffalo Gap.

Weather conditions today are sunny, hot with temp in upper 80s, barely a breeze, and white puffy clouds dotting the dark blue sky. It’s a typical hot late August day.

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Military jet crash: Search continues through the night

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Local newspapers are covering the military fighter jet crash in western Augusta County with reporters on the scene interviewing and photographing events.

Reporter Bob Stuart spent most of the day in the crash area and filed this report with the News-Virginian (see Search continues for missing pilot):

As part of a program to upgrade earlier model aircraft, the plane was en route to New Orleans to get a new radar system when it went down.

At the Staunton News Leader, Brad Zinn, Laura Peters, Megan Williams, and Calvin Trice contributed to the continuing coverage (see Search for pilot to continue through the night):

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Military fighter jet crashes in western Augusta County mountains – UPDATED

Jet crashBy Lynn R. Mitchell

A military F-15 fighter jet crashed early Wednesday in the western part of Augusta County in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

A lawyer friend, Sabrina Chester in Churchville about eight miles west of my house, first posted on Facebook Wednesday morning around 9:00:

Does anyone know what the huge explosion was just a bit ago?? Shook my entire house & spooked all the animals…smoke from Deerfield side of the mountain….possible airplane crash???

At my house, we had not heard the boom but were hearing helicopters overhead. Still not sure if they were heading toward that crash area, or whether they were military, or the Pegasus helicopter  with University of Virginia Hospital out of Charlottesville.

A search and rescue mission is underway but word has trickled out the pilot ejected before the crash. There is still no confirmation of that or if he has been found.

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Augusta County Library expands services

Library booksBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Returning books to the Augusta County Library just got easier.  Thanks to a partnership with Blue Ridge Community College, county library users can now return items to the Houff Library or its book return on the Weyers Cave campus. In addition, materials checked out from Houff Library can now be returned to any ACL location. A courier will shuttle the materials to the correct location on a weekly basis.

Later this year, library users will be able to reserve ACL books from home for pickup at Houff Library.

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