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Pender Co. Commission to pay tribute to Andy Griffith

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The agenda for Monday’s Pender County Commission includes time devoted to a TV icon. The first item on the agenda is "Tribute to North Carolinian and Actor Andy Griffith."

According to the agenda, Commissioner David Williams requested five minutes for the item as part of the meeting’s public information section. The text of the tribute it below.

The Pender County Commission meeting starts at 4 p.m. Monday in the public assembly room in Burgaw.

DATE OF MEETING:  July 23, 2012

REQUESTED BY:  David Williams, Pender County Commissioner

SHORT TITLE:  Tribute to Andy Griffith

BACKGROUND:   Andy Griffith, a North Carolinian and actor who will always be best remembered for his role as Sheriff Andy Taylor, died July 3 at his home in Manteo.  His TV network show was first aired from October 1960 to April 1968.  Still popular and loved, broadcasts of the program by individual TV channels continue all over America to this day.

Andy was sheriff in the fictional town of Mayberry, NC, a sleepy little town populated by a host of memorable characters that endeared themselves to the audience for their personalities and the humorous predicaments that happened to them. It was usually up to Andy Griffith, as Sheriff Taylor, to resolve the problem using his level headed common sense approach to life.  He played a kind natured man, a widower and single parent, raising his good hearted little boy, Opie. He was helped by his spinster Aunt Bee who kept the kitchen hearth warm and provided the motherly touch. This sheriff never needed, nor carried, a gun to maintain law and order.

As a father to son Opie, Andy’s parenting skills were constantly tested and found to be as wise as they were loving, but firm.  Andy also played the straight man to the bumbling, nervous and self-important Deputy Barney Fife, played by Don Knotts.  Andy repeatedly extracted Barney from hilarious situations. A host of other simple-minded, heart-warming and endearing Mayberry citizens also set up story plots where Andy would come to the rescue, resulting in life lessons. The show even spawned a Bible study of personal values developed around the TV episodes.

These are lessons of old fashioned family values and basic morality. They include doing the right thing, honesty is the best policy, showing love and respect for one another, and the error of jumping to quick conclusions by prejudging others.  Another frequent theme was taking responsibility for your own actions by facing and dealing with the consequences of your choices.  Other themes found in the TV show include considering others before yourself, the value of friendships, the wisdom of choosing your battles, the prudence of using wisdom over force, unconditional acceptance of others, and the power of forgiveness.

These are lessons which are not really old fashioned at all in the sense of being out-of-date. They are critically needed today for developing character and integrity for the young and old alike. These are values which can help people find satisfaction and success within your own heart despite difficult and challenging circumstances that may come your way.  We salute the memory of Andy Griffith and may the lessons of Mayberry live and grow in this and future generations.  

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