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Our thoughts... Hometown heroes
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As opportunities present themselves, we will editorially salute those who we cover in the paper and who we consider hometown heroes. Last Sunday we started the series by acknowledging the accomplishments of Detective Daniel Seals with the Covington Police Department and Blue Willow Inn owner Louis Van Dyke. Today we add two more heroes to The Covington News Hometown Heroes Hall of Fame.

Our Mother’s Day edition featured a front page story a local mother who has and cares for not one, but three special needs children. She also has one fully capable child.

Kelli Hopkins and her husband Mike easily could have broken under the pressure of raising children who demand 150 percent of their time and energy — but instead they find refuge in their faith. They have showered love on all of their children despite their inability to express reciprocal affection.

The Hopkins family, despite their challenges, has still found time to become involved in their community, as they are strong advocates of the all-abilities Chimney Park in development behind the Newton County Library.

We admire the loving spirit of perseverance exhibited by Kelli, Mike and Marlee Anne Hopkins.

Generosity also is a quality we believe heroes possess. Sam B. Hay Jr., a successful local businessman and founder of Sunbelt Builders, has played an active role in the positive development of our community for years and has raised his children to be energetic supporters of our community as well. He is also a hero.

In these tough economic times, we are seeing local governments in crisis as they cut services and delay any planned expansion or growth.

The Newton County Fire Department needed more space for their central offices than the 1,200 square feet of space from which they were formerly operating. Chief Mike Satterfield went to Hay to inquire about renting some office space on U.S. Highway 278.

The fire department could not afford rent in the prime real estate location, so Instead of renting the 8,100 square-foot building, Hay and his and his out-of-the-county partners donated the million-dollar piece of property to the fire department and county.

NCFD officials have already moved into their spacious new quarters and because of their generous donation Sam B. Hay Jr. and his partners’ names will be added to The Covington News Hometown Hero Hall of Fame

Once a year in January we will honor our hall of famers with a luncheon and a full-page color salute. We will ask our readers to vote for the hero of the year and honor the person they select at the luncheon.

The stories that sparked our editorial can be seen on our website, If you think you know someone that we should feature as part of our Hometown Hero series, please contact us.


Click Here to read our story on Hopkins and Here to read abou Hay