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Many people want to honor Clarence Lightner, Raleigh's first
and only black mayor, who died last month at the age of 80.
But his son, Bruce Lightner, wants to make sure that any
tributes are tasteful.
Lightner, in his role as administrator of his father's estate,
says those who wish to use the former mayor's name must contact
the family first and be respectful that only weeks have passed
since his death.
Earlier this month, Bruce Lightner learned that the
Raleigh-Wake Citizens Association, a group instrumental in
getting his father elected, wanted to plan a political banquet in
Clarence Lightner's name.
In an e-mail message to the dinner's chairwoman, he wrote that
"the Lightner family has not granted you permission to honor, pay
tribute, bestow posthumous award or otherwise utilize or mention
my father's name in any manner whatsoever in conduction with your
This week, Lightner said the RWCA bucked longstanding "social
protocol" by overlooking the family's permission.
"We have a high regard for what the organization has
represented down through the years," he said. "But for the RWCA
to even consider using Mayor Lightner's name for a political
fund-raiser without having the presence of mind to first seek
input from the family does not represent respectful diligence and
On The Spot: Stephen Halkiotis, a candidate for Orange County
commissioner, shifted uneasily in his seat last week when a
moderator at a League of Women Voters' forum in Chapel Hill
tossed out an unexpected question.
With North Carolina among the states with the worst obesity
problems, the moderator wanted to know what county commissioners
could do to battle fat.
When it was Halkiotis' turn, he cast his eyes downward, then
back up and offered: "One novel thing we could do is eat less."
Like the the three other commission candidates at the forum, he,
too, spoke about county- and school-sponsored nutrition programs.
Then the truth came out.
"I have to plead guilty," he said with a red face and a
sheepish grin. "I had french fries today. I was in a french-fry
mood, and now I feel terrible."
These weren't just any french fries, either, he 'fessed up
later. He got them over the line in Durham County, at a point
halfway between his workplace and his wife's. He did not even
"Shop Orange," as commissioners have encouraged residents to do
to give the local economy a boost.
- Libertarian Party Candidates will hold a rally from 10 a.m.
to 10 p.m. today at the State Capitol in Raleigh.
- North Carolina Citizens For A Sound Economy will sponsor a
discussion on the state budget from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday at
N.C. State University's McKimmon Center at the corner of Western
Boulevard and Gorman Street in Raleigh.
- Linda Coleman, a Democrat seeking re-election as Wake County
commissioner in District 1, will hold a meet-and-greet event from
6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Wingate Inn, 1542 Mechanical Blvd.