Charges Against UNC BOG Member Parrish Dismissed

***UPDATE: A member of the Wake County Clerk of Court’s Office has told WCHL that the charges against Parrish have been dismissed.***

A member of the UNC Board of Governors is due in court Wednesday morning.

61-year-old R. Doyle Parrish is scheduled to appear in Wake County Court on a simple assault charge following his arrest at his Raleigh home on May 12 after a report was filed by his wife Nancy Parrish – who the report lists as the victim.

READ MORE: UNC Board of Governors Member Arrested in Alleged Domestic Assault

Parrish was appointed to a four-year term on the Board of Governors by the North Carolina House in 2013. Parrish began a leave of absence from the board in July and resigned his post on the search committee, which is looking for the next leader of the UNC system after the board announced in January that Tom Ross would be removed from that position.

READ MORE: Parrish Resigns from UNC Search Committee Amid Domestic Violence Allegations

UNC System Spokesperson Joni Worthington wrote in an e-mail to WCHL on June 29 that, “While many members of the Board of Governors are likely aware of news reports about the allegations regarding Mr. Parrish, this matter remains in the hands of law enforcement and the judicial process, which are in the best position to address it at this time.”

Worthington was responding on behalf of University Governance Committee Chair Joan MacNeill, who was the recipient of WCHL’s original e-mail requesting comment.

READ MORE: Removing a Member of the Board of Governors

University policy states that the Chair of the University Governance Committee, MacNeill in this scenario, would be responsible for submitting a written specification of reasons to consider the board member’s removal.

Clear guidelines are put forward in university policy detailing the removal of a board member for missing a number of meetings or being appointed to a conflicting board, however, there is no clear policy for handling criminal charges being levied against board members.

Researchers Use Smartphones To Track Flu on College Campuses

Katherine Heller is a statistician and assistant professor at Duke University. She and UNC epidemiologist Allison Aiello teamed up with researchers at the University of Michigan to see how a smartphone can help report and predict the spread of influenza on a college campus.

“This kind of data collection technique where we’re recording more data on a personalized level, on a more frequent basis, about people’s health, can be really beneficial in terms of the predictions that we’re going to be able to make or the advice that we’re going to be able to give people,” says Heller.

Using an Android app called iEpi, Heller and associates tracked the health and location data from 100 students at the University of Michigan over a 10-week period during flu season.

Students logged their symptoms on a weekly basis while their phones used GPS, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technologies to monitor where they went and who they came in contact with.

Students also offered throat swabs for testing if their symptoms suggested they might have the flu. Taken together, these data made it possible to successfully predict who might get the disease next, and to offer iEpi app users a personalized daily health forecast.

Heller says this is part of a trend towards more individualized health care.

“Trying to record more individualized information about each person is really helping allow us to develop these kinds of algorithms where we can do prediction and recommendation about much more person-specific kinds of health advice.”

At the larger level, Heller says this kind of reporting could change how epidemiologists track the outbreak and spread of infectious diseases.

“This gives us much more insight into how disease is being communicated from one person to another, so something like an isolation intervention we might find is very effective in terms of trying to get some disease under control.”

Heller suggests it may prove useful for those with chronic health conditions as well.

“I think it also applies to a lot of other areas of medicine where we can potentially do a much better job if we’re tracking information about patients like diabetics or various other kinds of chronic diseases much more carefully and more continuously than we are currently. That will really aid physicians in being able to treat them.”

Flu season ramps up in October and runs through the spring. This year, one in five college students are expected to get the flu, and close living quarters can help fuel its spread. Officials say vaccination is the best protection.

UNC Launches New Academic Support Website for Student-Athletes

UNC has launched a new website centered on academic services for student-athletes.

The Academic Support Program for Student-Athletes at UNC announced the new website that offers information regarding all of the academic support services offered to student-athletes at Carolina, according to the ASPSA Director Michelle Brown.

“The website doesn’t change or doesn’t present new services,” she says. “It gives us an opportunity to showcase the services to the prospective families and student athletes, our current students and our faculty members.”

UNC has an estimated 800 student-athletes spanning 28 sports.

Brown has been at UNC for nearly two and a half years. She says that, since the uncovering of the paper-class scandal at UNC, several new programs have been implemented.

“One of the largest, and the newer, services that we offer is the MAP program,” she says, “which is My Academic Plan. It replaces a traditional study hall program.

“My Academic Plan is more of an individualized plan where it takes into consideration the student’s needs.”

Brown adds they are working to continue the support beyond traditional programs.

“We are taking the skills and knowledge from each individual, putting the learning specialist in there and cross training across from academic counselors,” she says, “so that we can understand how a student would need to study and what they might need to focus on.

“We also have some guided study sessions where we then, in the study hall-environment where they will be studying, practice those skills.”

The university’s website says ASPSA “helps student-athletes explore their interests and abilities and provides numerous academic services, including tutoring, secondary academic and career advising, and University and NCAA eligibility.”

Brown says the new website will better showcase the services being provided to current and prospective student-athletes as well as faculty and administrators.

“This is a place where faculty can come to, to see what services we’re providing [and] find out other faculty committees and groups that are there for them,” she says. “One of the premier parts of the website is the place to showcase the students and their academic achievements.”

Brown adds general population students at Carolina are offered similar services as the student-athletes are provided, but the oversight of the students is not as regimented.

Alcohol-Related Incidents Keep Chapel Hill Police Busy

As the first week of classes at UNC wrapped up, it kicked off the first full weekend of parties with the full student body back on campus. And as the campus was filled with revelers, the UNC student charged in the triple-fatal wrong-way crash on I-85 in July was served new charges.

The police blotter is full of alcohol violations from Thursday through Sunday night.

Chapel Hill Police responded to multiple calls of loud music and parties in Fraternity Court, on the UNC campus, and on Church Street, in Chapel Hill, leading to 10 citations for underage possession of alcohol being issued to citizens between the age of 18 and 20.

It wasn’t only the under-21 population breaking the rules, police also issued six open container citations for the over-21 crowd, along with a 21-year old charged with resisting arrest and public urination, and a 22-year-old cited for being drunk and disruptive and resisting arrest.

More students were issued citations this weekend than compared with move-in weekend earlier this month.

Chapel Hill Police Lieutenant Josh Mecimore told WCHL recently that authorities are typically very active early in the semester.

“Our hope is that parents will have set those kids up with some good decision-making skills,” he says, “and then when we set clear expectations, that they’ll choose to follow those. We know that some people won’t.

“But we try to set clear expectations, and then we’re going to have some consequences for those who don’t follow those expectations. And that’s especially true at the beginning of the school year.”

He adds police also have concentrated efforts and a larger volume of calls on certain occasions, including football games and the days surrounding breaks in the academic calendar.

Renewed focus has been aimed at underage drinking on the UNC campus after a rising junior was involved in a triple-fatal wrong-way crash earlier this summer.

20-year-old Chanlder Kania has been charged with three counts of second-degree murder after allegedly driving his 2005 Jeep Wrangler the wrong way on I-85 for at least six miles before crashing head-on into another vehicle, killing three of the four passengers.

Kania was cited on Friday with two additional charges of obtaining alcohol with a false ID, according to court documents.

Kania is currently under house arrest in Asheboro after posting a $1 million bond. He is scheduled to be back in court on his initial charges on September 25 and has an appearance on October 8 for the additional allegations.

UNC School of Government Preparing to Train Officials Across NC

The UNC School of Government has received a donation to continue training elected officials to best serve residents of North Carolina.

Donna Warner is the Director of the Local Elected Leaders Academy at UNC, and she says their programs will serve several hundred newly-elected municipal leaders across the state following this fall’s elections.

“Our job is to help public officials – and that’s elected and appointed – to lead and govern their communities,” she says. “And to provide the knowledge, the skills, and the context that help them make strategic decisions that are going to move their communities forward.”

This training will consist of budget simulations, conducting mock meetings, and other obligations to bring newly-elected officials up to speed and help veteran politicians bring new thinking into their process.

“One of the things that newly-elected people feel is that they are surprised that no one is in charge,” she says. “The way that our Republic is set up is that the power is distributed.

“People are elected, and they come with an agenda. And what they have to learn is they may campaign as an individual but now you govern as a body.”

Warner says a recent $100,000 gift from Prudential Financial will provide continued funding of initiatives, including an upcoming session with a mix of veteran county commissioners and municipal leaders.

“We don’t know of any other state in the nation that is doing what we’re doing,” she says. “We are bringing together 10 county commissioners and 10 council members for a week of intensive personal-leadership training.

“That gives them an understanding about themselves as well as gives them an understanding about others.”

Program participants are selected from among those who attend educational programs and volunteer for their statewide associations, the North Carolina League of Municipalities and North Carolina Association of County Commissioners.

Danny Lotz Passes Away

A member of the 1957 UNC national championship team passed away on Wednesday.

Dr. Danny Lotz passed away at Rex Hospital, surrounded by his family, on Wednesday shortly before noon, according to a statement from the hospital.

Anne Graham Lotz – who is the daughter of Reverend Billy Graham – found Danny unresponsive in the couple’s pool at their Raleigh home on Monday afternoon. The hospital’s statement reports Lotz’s heart stopped while swimming. Emergency responders “restarted” his heart and transported him to Rex Hospital, where he remained hospitalized.

Lennie Rosenbluth was a teammate of Lotz on the ’57 championship team. He tells WCHL’s Blake Hodge that he had just recently spoken with Lotz while planning a team reunion.

Listen below:


Lotz was 78 years old.

UNC released the following statement regarding Lotz passing:

“The University of North Carolina and the Tar Heel basketball program extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Danny Lotz. He was a true gentleman and beloved member of our Tar Heel family. His brother, John, who passed away several years ago, was also a wonderful ambassador for the University as well as an outstanding basketball coach. Danny and his teammates permanently etched their names in the history books as members of the undefeated 1957 national champions, but his positive impact on people went far beyond basketball. Our prayers go out to the Lotz and Graham families and all of Danny’s friends, colleagues and teammates.”

The Lotz Family released the following statement through Rex Hospital:

The Lotz family appreciates all the prayers and expressions of love and support that have poured in this week, which the Lord has used to sustain them during this time. They respectfully ask for privacy as they mourn their loss and celebrate the life and legacy of a great husband, father and man of God.

Gov. Pat McCrory released the following statement:

Ann and I were saddened today to hear the news about the death of Danny Lotz. Danny was a champion in so many ways. First as a member of UNC’s 1957 undefeated national basketball championship team and then later in life as his faith led him to be a strong supporter and mentor of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and as a dedicated Bible study teacher. He was truly a North Carolina legend. We send our prayers to his wife Ann and the rest of their family in this truly difficult time.

From Afghanistan to Chapel Hill

There are many amazing stories among the thousands of incoming students at Carolina for the fall semester, including Zach Johnson’s course to UNC.

The 25-year-old has not followed a typical path to the Carolina campus.

“I don’t think I’m too much different than any other student,” he says. “But my story is a little bit different in the sense that I didn’t go straight into college when I was 18; I joined the military on my 18th birthday.

“I was finishing up high school, and I just wanted something different. I was trying to challenge myself. I was young and thought I was invincible, that led me to sign up for the Marines.”

Johnson says seeing everything that was going on in Afghanistan made him want to get involved.

“By the time I was 20 years old, I was over there,” he says. “I completed one deployment, and I came back home [and] heard about the bomb-dog handling position opening up.

“That’s how I met Gus.”

Gus is the Golden Labrador Retriever Johnson was matched up with after telling instructors that he wanted a challenge. The relationship between human and canine didn’t get off on the best foot.

“When we got to the kennel – you can’t see the dogs, you can only hear them – there’s about 35 dogs and there’s one growl that you can hear over all the rest of them,” he says. “They looked at me and said, ‘You hear that growl? That’s your dog.’

“He’s an unassuming looking dog, a beautiful golden retriever, and I went in there and he bit me on the hand on the first day.”

After their initial relationship troubles, Johnson says Gus was an amazingly loyal dog for a year and half, joining Johnson on hundreds of patrols and searches before retiring in 2012.

Johnson joined the Carolina Student Transfer Excellence Program after enrolling at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington. Now that his transfer to Chapel Hill is complete, he has eyes on another challenge.

“Next goal is to earn my place into Kenan-Flagler,” he says. “I think Chapel Hill has one of the best business programs in the country, especially for undergrads.

“I’ve had my eyes on that prize since I applied for C-STEP about a year and a half ago at Cape Fear.”

Johnson adds there is one part of the Chapel Hill experience, outside of the classroom opportunity, that he is most looking forward to.

“I keep hearing about Halloween night on Franklin Street,” he says. “Everywhere I go I hear about Halloween on Franklin Street.”

And while a final costume decision hasn’t been made, he says a military-theme is highly likely.

Former UNC Football Players Rally Around Teammate Battling Cancer

A former UNC Tar Heel football player is battling major health issues and his teammates are coming in for support.

Quincy Monk played linebacker for Carolina from 1998 through 2001, finishing second on the team in tackles in his senior season, before being selected by the New York Giants in the seventh round of the NFL draft.

Monk played two seasons for the Giants before finishing his football career with the Houston Texans. But now Monk is facing another aggressive opponent, cancer.

One of Monk’s teammates during his time at UNC, Kory Bailey, tells WCHL’s Blake Hodge more about Monk’s situation and why so many former teammates are coming to his aide.

Listen below:


You can donate to the fund through this link.

Stroman On Sports: A New “Day”

The fall semester begins this week at UNC, and that means the fall sports season is just around the corner. On Monday, sports commentator and UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School professor Deb Stroman told WCHL’s Aaron Keck she’s especially looking forward to watching Carolina men’s and women’s soccer take the field; both teams are ranked in the national top 10 this year.

Stroman also shared her thoughts about Jason Day’s PGA Championship victory – officially declaring this the “post-Tiger era” – and the National Labor Relations Board’s decision not to allow Northwestern football players to unionize, a ruling that maintains the status quo in college athletics but is unlikely to quell the ongoing debate.

Listen to their conversation.


Deb Stroman appears on WCHL during “Aaron in the Afternoon” every Monday at 3:30.

“Who is Sandra Bland?” Spray Painted on Silent Sam and Post Office

Silent Sam, on the UNC campus, and the Post Office, on Franklin Street, were spray painted with the words, “Who is Sandra Bland?”

The paint was discovered early Tuesday morning, as thousands of students were making their way to the first day of classes at Carolina.

Silent Sam spray painted with "Who is Sandra Bland?" Photo via Blake Hodge

Silent Sam spray painted with “Who is Sandra Bland?”
Photo via Blake Hodge

Bland’s name has been a rallying cry for advocates after the African-American woman was found hanging in her jail cell in Texas. Police say she hanged herself, while family members contend that foul play was involved on the part of law enforcement.

READ MORE: Pressure Washing Silent Sam

This is the second time that Silent Sam has been tagged in recent months. Over the July 4 weekend, the words “Black Lives Matter,” “Murderer” and “KKK” were spray painted on the monument that serves as a memorial to soldiers who died fighting for the Confederacy in the Civil War. University workers quickly covered the graffiti after the first tagging. On Tuesday, the lettering was left uncovered throughout the morning.

UNC Director of Media Relations Jim Gregory released the following statement on Tuesday morning, “Over the past few days hundreds of faculty, staff and members of the Carolina community have come together to welcome first-year and returning students. This is what Carolina is all about, and this includes our commitment to free speech and open dialogue on all issues, no matter how emotional and at times painful. Vandalism like this is unfortunate because it is the antithesis of open discussion and the traditions and principles for which the University stands.”

Silent Sam has not been the only memorial in the spotlight as of late. In May, the UNC Board of Trustees voted to rename Saunders Hall to Carolina Hall; the building was originally named for William L. Saunders, who was a Colonel in the Confederate Army and purported leader of the KKK in North Carolina.

READ MORE: Saunders Hall Now Officially Carolina Hall

Crews from the Town of Chapel Hill were out around 10 o’clock Tuesday morning cleaning off the columns of the Post Office.

UNC officials said after the July tagging of Silent Sam that a protective layer would be placed on the monument to ease cleaning efforts for future situations.

In late July, the North Carolina legislature passed a bill making it more difficult to remove or relocate Confederate monuments.