TODAY'S NEWS

Page News and Courier

Luray-Page County Chamber president steps down

LURAY ― After nearly three years, the Luray-Page County Chamber of Commerce will say goodbye this month to its president, John Robbins, who is headed south to be closer to family. “There's nothing driving this except family,” Robbins said. “We've got two grandchildren in North Carolina and we're watching them grow up on Facebook, and that's not what 'family' is to us.” On Sept. 30, Robbins and his wife, Marion, will make the move to Hampstead, N.C.

Luray seeks new town attorney; deadline for applications is Sept. 21

LURAY — The Town of Luray went into executive session last month to discuss employee performance and exited with a unanimous directive of no confidence in its attorney Jason Allen Spitler. During closed session at the Aug. 10 Luray Town Council meeting, the subject was brought forth by Luray Town Manager Charlie Hoke. In response, the town issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) seeking a new attorney. Applications are due Sept. 21. Luray Mayor Barry Presgraves said the town attorney is a contracted employee and that his contract is up every two years for evaluation. Spitler has been the town attorney since 2004, when his uncle John R. Bushey Jr., left after 32 years in the role.

Hotel Laurance: rebirth of a landmark

LURAY — A million dollar real estate rebirth will take place Friday on the corner of West Main and South Court Street. In 1884, for $2 per night, the Laurance Hotel opened. Next month, the Hotel Laurance will open as an internet-driven boutique lodging establishment with $150-a-night suites. The website will feature in multiple languages. When a $150,000 purchase becomes a $1 million launch in Luray — the entrepreneur must demonstrate staying power and deep pockets. With prior success resurrecting historic hotels, owners Melinda and Rand Kramer of Loudon County believe Luray is on the way up.

Maryland man falls to his death while hiking Dark Hollow Falls Trail in Shenandoah National Park

LURAY ― A Maryland man fell to his death Friday afternoon while hiking in Shenandoah National Park. Joseph Yanovich, 66, of Silver Springs, Md., was hiking the Dark Hollow Falls Trail (mile 50.7 on Skyline Drive) with his 15-year-old daughter and her friend, according to park officials,when the pair hiked ahead of him. About 45 minutes later, around 12:45 p.m., park visitors discovered Yanovich unresponsive, facedown in the falls. Bystanders began CPR on tYanovich, who “had no pulse and contusions and lacerations on his head and body,” until National Park Service officials arrived, according to a SNP internal report.

Three missing river tubers found

LURAY ― It took more than 20 search and rescue responders four hours to locate a group of missing tubers early Friday morning. The Page County Sheriff's Office received a call from the husband of one of the tuber's around 4 a.m. Friday, Aug. 14, notifying authorities that the group of three hadn't returned from their river outing. The three tubers, said Page County Sheriff John Thomas, put their tubes in around 5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13, at the Alma boat landing near Stanley. The group planned to float to the White House landing near Luray, but were unaware that the float takes about seven hours on average, the sheriff added. As it began to get dark, the tubers got out of the water to wait for help until morning. None of them had a cell phone, flash light or “appropriate footwear,” said Thomas.

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