EDITORIAL: Honors and contributions from 2023

Published 2:24 pm Wednesday, December 27, 2023

It’s hard to believe, but there will be only one more edition of The Ironton Tribune before 2023 is over.

As the new year approaches, we would like to take a moment to again recognize a few people from the county whose achievements and contributions were of note in the past year:

• State Rep. Jason Stephens — The veteran political figure from our county pulled off a major upset at the start of the year, becoming Ohio’s speaker of the House, through a coalition of his supporters in the Republican caucus, as well the chamber’s Democratic members.

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Having a local voice in such a position of prominence in Columbus is a major win for the county and southern Ohio and ensures that our voice will be heard in state business.

• Lloyd Richmond, the former choir director of Zoar Baptist Church, and the congregation’s oldest member. Richmond was celebrated when he returned to the church this year on the occasion of his 103rd birthday, and he was invited to again direct the church’s choir, which he did without missing a beat.

• Ironton Mayor Sam Cramblit II, who won a second term in a close election against a well-qualified challenger, Amanda Cleary. Cramblit was able to point to major improvements in infrastructure for the city, and historically won the backing of the police firefighters and city workers’ unions.

• Fairland High School’s cheerleaders, who, after qualifying to compete in the ESPN UCA National High School Cheerleading Championship in Orlando, Florida in February, came in fourth place, out of 51 schools, in their division.

• The Village of South Point, who were a hit at this year’s Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade. With their entry of a 1929 Model AA fire truck. The vehicle, the first ever used by the village, was recently donated back to South Point and workers and volunteers there meticulously restored it to its former glory to be used as a show truck.

• Former Det. Sgt. Aaron Bollinger, of the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office. Just days before he retired after 25 years of service, Bollinger learned that he been named Ohio Prosecuting Attorney Association’s Officer of the Year for 2023. It was a well-deserved honor for a man who dedicated his life to the county.

• Ironton Elementary School students, who earned a five-star rating on this year’s school report cards. In addition, the school was announced the winner of the 2022/23 Heroic Game Day, a statewide online academic skills competition.