Page 3 - The August 2021 Edition of The Fayetteville Press Newspaper
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The Fayetteville Press August/September 2021 Edition                                                                                Page 3

                                                                                                                                            to his son, Willie Jr.   The following questions and
                                                                                                                                            answers give a glimpse into our discussion with the
                                                                                                                                                 Did you have a role model who helped you
                                                                                                                                            navigate life?  I can’t say I really did, but I knew
                                                                                                                                            I had to do something different rather than working
                                                                                                                                            for $90/wk on I-95 making asphalt.  Although this
                                                                                                                                            was a job; in my mind and heart I ultimately de-
                                                                                                                                            cided that I needed to do something different.
                                                                                                                                                 How did you decide to run for the office
                                                                                                                                            of Mayor of Godwin?  Good question.  It origi-
                                                                                                                                            nally began with Mrs. Pauline Burnette, a Godwin
                                                                                                                                            school teacher and concerned citizen. She asked
                                                                                                                                            me to become a commissioner in support of issues
                                                                                                                                            surrounding the community and town of Godwin in
                                                                                                                                            Cumberland County. Originally, I was appointed
                                                                                                                                            Town Commissioner  and  six  months  later  I  was
                                           Spotlight on Armstrong High School Legacy                                                        elected as Mayor.
                                                                                                                                                 What  are  some  of  your  accomplishments
               For many years Armstrong School, located in Eastover NC, served as the only secondary school east of the Cape Fear River, for blacks  as Mayor?   We  rebuilt  the  Godwin  Community
          in Cumberland County.  The school closed it’s doors as a High School with the last graduating class marching in 1969.  In 1975 the Armstrong  Building (capacity to accommodate 200); built the
          Alumni Association was organized, and continues today with Dr. William Murphy, MD, class of 1965, as the current president.  The associa-  picnic shelter, walking trail, community playground,
          tion is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the present school as it continues to educate the minds of our youth.  Also the  volleyball and basketball courts, and a splash pad
          Alumni Association is committed to sustaining the rich legacy and history of our beloved Armstrong High School.  We hope to share more of  for hot weather cooling relief.  Currently we are
          our history in a later issue.  There is a vast number of graduates and attendees of Armstrong High School.  Many of these individuals are  working  to  expand  the  water  lines  to  areas  that
          great contributors to our communities and society at large today.  If asked, many of them would tell you that indeed; Armstrong was more  need safe drinking water.  We’re now looking to-
          than a building; it served as an institution in our lives.  Join us as we spotlight some of those individuals.  Our first honoree is Mr. Willie  ward the next 2-5 years.  He envisions bringing in
          Burnette, Mayor of Godwin, NC.                                                                                                    industry to the community that will bring employ-
               Mayor Willie Burnette, born July 23, 1940 in Godwin, NC,  to Mr. Roscoe and Mrs. Katheen Burnette.  He is married to Shirley Burnette  ment to at least 500 people.  As Mayor he contin-
          and they have three children.   Mayor Burnette attended Armstrong High School, graduating in 1959.  In 1961 he and his family relocated to  ues to serve the community with pride and a desire
          New York.  There he worked as a truck driver with Jomar Plastics and Avon Products.  After 15 years working with Avon, the company  to sustain and expand the work begun.
          relocated to Delaware.  After turning down the offer to relocate with Avon, he ultimately realized that he could own and operate his own  Thanks to Mayor Burnett for his service.  We
          business.  In 1981 he and his family returned to Godwin NC.                                                                       truly believe it is stories like this that help to keep
               Equipped with his knowledge of mechanics, he built the independently owned and operated business known as Willie’s Garage located  our legacy and our history alive.
          on Highway 82 in Godwin.  The business provided many services from engine repair to preventative maintenance, including serving as an  For further information about the Armstrong Alumni
          official North Carolina Certified Inspection Station.  His wife, Shirley played a key role in this endeavor by performing all critical day to day  Association go to
          management functions as the office administrator.  The business has been very successful over the years, and he has since passed it down

                                                   family meals

                                                    ready when you are

                                  Visit                         Place your order by                            Pick up your order
                                    or stop by the deli at your                    filling out the order form                      from the deli at a time
                                             local store.                              online or in-store.                           that works for you.
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