Veteran, volunteer

‘Smilin’ Al’ dies

FAYETTEVILLE — Lt. Col. Alfred A. Alvarez landed at Omaha beach, fought in Korea, the Dominican Republic and Vietnam and chased Che Guevara across South America during a lengthy military career.

But he was best known in recent years not for past adventures, but for the friendly face he offered visitors to the Airborne & Special Operations Museum.

“Smilin’ Al,” as he was known to many, died Monday, according to officials. He was 93.

At the museum, Lt. Col. Alvarez served as one of the original members of the board of directors, a docent coordinator and provided countless volunteer hours since the museum opened in 2000.


Officer cleared

after shooting

LUMBERTON — No criminal charges will be brought against a city police officer involved in a shooting in November that left a woman seriously injured.

“There were no findings of criminal wrongdoing on the officer’s part,” District Attorney Johnson Britt said Tuesday.

Officer Daniel Maurice Smith shot Rebecca Muse Hunt on Nov. 22 as the officer was attempting to make arrests in the parking lot of the Dollar General store on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Lumberton. Britt found Hunt was using the car as a weapon to attack Smith.


Water customers

deal with shutoffs

FAIR BLUFF — A good number of utility customers in the town of Fair Bluff suffered two water outages of less than an hour each Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning, but all problems are thought to be resolved.

The problems began Monday afternoon when a crew from Frank Horne Construction Co. working on upgrades to the town sewer system inadvertently cut a water main near Railroad and Bardin streets. Because no there was no cutoff valve in the immediate area, service to most of the town’s customers had to be temporarily disrupted for repairs to be made.

A similar shutdown had to take place again Tuesday morning to finalize the repairs.


Traffic deaths

remain low

CLINTON — The N.C. State Highway Patrol says traffic fatalities in Sampson County are “way down” through seven months of the year.

To date, the county has seen just six fatalities — nine less than were recorded through July in 2016.

The N.C. Highway Patrol in Sampson ultimately investigated 23 fatalities in all of 2016.

— From staff and wire reports.