WMRA News

Faith E. Pinho

The legacy of segregated cemeteries is seemingly everywhere in Virginia, including in Lexington.  Every year, hundreds of tourists flock to Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery to pay respects to the old Confederate general. Few visitors are aware of the graveyard on the other side of town – or its storied legacy. WMRA’s Faith Pinho has this report.

Sefe Emokpae

A historic, but neglected, cemetery in Charlottesville is forgotten no more. As WMRA’s Sefe Emokpae reports, an effort to restore the Daughters of Zion Cemetery is finally gaining momentum.

A group of mental health service providers in the Staunton area have pooled their resources to push for the creation of a new facility aimed at treating people in crisis.  In our final report in a series on mental health care in Virginia, WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

Jordy Yager

A new approach to handling mentally ill criminals employs a special court docket to keep them out of prison and get them into treatment.  As part of our investigation into the state of mental health care in Virginia, Jordy Yager has this report.

Courtesy Western State Hospital

Mental health services in Virginia progressed leaps and bounds over the last 40 years. But many experts argue that more needs to be done.  May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so WMRA’s Jordy Yager caught up with some veterans of the system to get a sense for how we’re doing, in this first of a series of reports on the state of mental health care in Virginia.

Brit Moorer

If you’ve had trouble finding an outfitter to take a trip on the Rivanna River near Charlottesville, one local couple has launched a business to fill that gap, and help explorers take advantage of the physical, and aesthetic, features the river offers. WMRA’s Brit Moorer reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

In January the government’s new definition of “chronically homeless” took effect. The agency says this new definition, which has been years in the making, will aid in eliminating chronic homelessness by 2017, two years after an earlier deadline for that same goal. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports that when it comes to defining chronic homelessness, however, little seems definite.

In our region, the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline has aroused controversy.  So has another proposed natural gas line through Southwestern Virginia.  A new study takes a look at local costs of the pipeline that would stretch from West Virginia to a compressor station in southern Virginia. WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

About 30 people came to hear local NAACP leader Dr. Rick Turner speak in Charlottesville on Sunday evening about racial discrimination. WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

Jessie Knadler

Before urban sprawl and big box stores, folks in rural communities did their shopping at the local general store. Many of these stores have disappeared from the rural landscape, but one in the town of Middlebrook in Augusta County is not only surviving, it’s thriving.  WMRA’s Jessie Knadler paid a visit and has this report.

Devils Backbone, the eight year old craft brewery headquartered in Nelson County, was recently bought for an undisclosed sum by global beer giant Anheuser-Busch InBev. Now, some Virginia fans of the scruffy indie brand are questioning whether the label has sold out. Jessie Knadler sat down with CEO Steve Crandall to find out what’s in store for the Virginia brewery.

Children as Prey

May 9, 2016
Nashville designer Merry Eccles

The News Leader in Staunton spent six months investigating the scope of child sexual abuse in Virginia, for an in-depth report into the problem.  It's called Prey: Sexual Predators are Hunting Our Children.  Bob Leweke spoke with the lead reporter on the series, Brad Zinn.

Brit Moorer

The Music Resource Center in Charlottesville is bringing the music outside… to the streets.  Students play for drivers stuck in traffic right in front of their building, hoping to get people interested in what’s going on inside.  It’s part of an all new concert series called ‘Traffic Jam.’  WMRA’S Brit Moorer reports.

More than 1000 people from 27 congregations came together Tuesday for the 10th annual Nehemiah Action Assembly hosted by IMPACT. Each year the group chooses a social issue affecting the greater Charlottesville community and devises an action plan to tackle the problem. As WMRA’s Sefe Emokpae reports, this year’s focus was on drug and alcohol abuse recovery in women and care for the elderly.

5/6 - 2:10pm Thursday Update: Virginia State Police have reported that the child was safely recovered this afternoon. 

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5/5 - Early Wednesday evening, State Police issued an AMBER ALERT for a missing Spotsylvania child.

Scholars from all over the world convened at James Madison University in Harrisonburg this week to discuss how we as a species can continue to survive in an increasingly troubled world. And it all boils down to our core beliefs. WMRA's Jessie Knadler headed to JMU to find out more about the science behind values and beliefs and how they dictate the sort of world we live in.

Poor for a Day

Apr 27, 2016

This past Saturday, a few Charlottesville residents had an opportunity to experience the struggles their poorer neighbors go through on a daily basis. WMRA's Jordy Yager met them at the Charlottesville High School to capture the experience of going through Piedmont CASA's Poverty Simulation and has this report.

There are 80 million feral cats in the United States, according to some estimates, and the question of how best to curb over population on the local level has been a real issue in Rockbridge County. Cat advocates are alarmed by the high rate of euthanasia at the County shelter, arguing for a more humane approach. WMRA reporter Jessie Knadler heads to Buena Vista, ground zero of the cat controversy, to find out more about this new approach and whether it actually works. 

NPS Photo: A.William

The Rocky Mount Fire began burning in the Shenandoah National Park on Saturday, and in the past 5 days, it has grown larger each day. On Wednesday, the fire was officially classified as a type 1 disaster and multiple local, state and federal agencies are now coordinating their efforts to fight the blaze.

UPDATE 4/22/16 12:12pm - As of Friday morning, officials are reporting 7,935 acres consumed by the fire.

More than 1 out of every 4 residents in Harrisonburg and Charlottesville live in poverty. Saturday, May 23, a non-profit is offering those who don't live in poverty, a chance to experience the struggles their poorer neighbors go through on a daily basis.

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