A look back at 2013's biggest stories - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

A look back at 2013's biggest stories

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The scene of the Georgetown fire on September 25. The scene of the Georgetown fire on September 25.

2013 started with a looming bus strike, though an agreement was eventually reached and no child was left behind.

School campuses were on high alert all year long after the Newtown, CT shooting. Most local districts increased or demanded permanent resource officers. North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey led that charge by putting an officer in every school.

In February, private school Ashley Hall had the scare of a lifetime when Alice Boland attempted to shoot a loaded gun on campus which never fired. That incident spiraled a change in many laws, requiring mental health to come up in a background check obtained for gun purchases. The state was one of a handful of conservative states that actually tightened gun laws this year.

Then in a special election, South Carolina did something many never thought would happen again:
voters accepted former Governor Mark Sanford's apologetic advertisement and put him back in office.

Primetime TV put Charleston on the map, choosing contestants for the X-factor and praising the North Charleston Police Department on, "Dateline."

The world stood still as Pope Francis took his spot as the 266th pope of the Catholic Church, and who was named, "Time Magazine's," person of the year.

In April, News 2 broadcast from Washington D.C. on the case of Baby Veronica. The hearing was the second time in history that the nation's highest court heard a case involving the Indian Child Welfare Act. At the same time, Massachusetts was dealing with tragedy after a bomb went off at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

Months later, the nation's justices handed down their opinion on the Veronica case, and many more legal fights ensued in family and Oklahoma Tribal Court. Today, the child once again lives in the Lowcountry with her adoptive parents.

On May 1, Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb celebrated their weekly "thirsty Thursday" with a trip to the Holy City and broadcast from the Cistern Yard.

As summer heated up, 19 Arizona firefighters were killed in a wildfire, which took the title of most firefighters lives lost since 9/11 from our own Charleston 9.

In August, downtown Charleston showed pride, allowing the Gay Pride Parade to take to the streets of the historic district for the first time in history.

On September 25, the town of Georgetown was changed forever as one of the largest fires ever ripped through and destroyed 7 historic buildings on Front Street. In the days and weeks of the fire, concerns over asbestos began to spread throughout the town.

In October, DHEC released a report to News 2 stating that there were two different buildings that had asbestos at unsafe levels. Just last month, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division released their report, which said investigators were unable to come to a conclusion about the cause of the fire.

The report did state that investigators are not seeking any criminal charges.

Other highlights of the fall include: the government shutdown, which forced local attractions to close; the Dorchester sales tax met defeat in a 2-to-1 vote; Ryan Deleston was found guilty of murdering 17-year-old Marley Lion; John Graham Altman passed away, and because of your generosity Toys for Tots helped give 11,000 children something to open on Christmas.

There's much more that we follow into 2014: a lawsuit brought on by the Charleston firefighters claiming they've been short changed for years; Daniel Island may secede from Berkeley County; and the Common Core debate is sure to bring more educators out of the classroom.

By this time next year, Charleston International Airport will look totally different after undergoing major renovations, but wherever you fly, you'll be the best of the best because wherever you go, you top all the rest.

Here's to hoping for the fourth time as the Conde Nast number one city and a happy New Year.

  • Students suspended from Haut Gap Middle School

    Middle school students suspended for trying fire trick with hand sanitizer in classroom

    Middle school students suspended for trying fire trick with hand sanitizer in classroom

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:17 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:17:05 GMT
    Two students are suspended for three days after they were caught trying to start a fire with hand sanitizer on Wednesday afternoon. Erika Taylor, spokesperson for the Charleston County School District, said the students were alone in a classroom at Haut Gap Middle School and were caught by a teacher after noticing the smell of something burning. The children were not injured and the fire department did not respond. Taylor said the students were suspended for 3 days. It is not known if the stu...
    Two students are suspended for three days after they were caught trying to start a fire with hand sanitizer on Wednesday afternoon. Erika Taylor, spokesperson for the Charleston County School District, said the students were alone in a classroom at Haut Gap Middle School and were caught by a teacher after noticing the smell of something burning. The children were not injured and the fire department did not respond. Taylor said the students were suspended for 3 days. It is not known if the stu...
  • SC House meets to vote on 2 vetoes, costs taxpayers $34,000

    SC House meets to vote on 2 vetoes, costs taxpayers $34,000

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:12 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:12:59 GMT
    The South Carolina House of Representatives met for a one-day special session Wednesday to vote on two bills Governor Nikki Haley vetoed. The session cost taxpayers about $34,000 in mileage, hotel, and meal costs. House Speaker Bobby Harrell says the bills couldn't have waited until lawmakers return in January. “If you didn't come back until after the elections, the next General Assembly doesn't have the authority to deal with vetoes from the previous General Assembly. This General Assembly i...
    The South Carolina House of Representatives met for a one-day special session Wednesday to vote on two bills Governor Nikki Haley vetoed. The session cost taxpayers about $34,000 in mileage, hotel, and meal costs. House Speaker Bobby Harrell says the bills couldn't have waited until lawmakers return in January. “If you didn't come back until after the elections, the next General Assembly doesn't have the authority to deal with vetoes from the previous General Assembly. This General Assembly i...
  • DHEC: GenEarth, Berkeley County Plant accused of awful odor, is breaking state law

    DHEC: GenEarth, Berkeley County Plant accused of awful odor, is breaking state law

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:41 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:41:04 GMT
    GenEarth, the bioenergy plant near Moncks Corner that has many people in Berkeley County complaining of horrible odors, is now being accused of breaking state law. The SC Department of Health and Environmental Control sent the company a letter August 21st accusing the company of violating the law. The letter was sent two days after News 2's Raymond Owens talked to residents at some Moncks Corner neighborhoods about a strong odor, described as being similar to burned sewage, that was in the ar...
    GenEarth, the bioenergy plant near Moncks Corner that has many people in Berkeley County complaining of horrible odors, is now being accused of breaking state law. The SC Department of Health and Environmental Control sent the company a letter August 21st accusing the company of violating the law. The letter was sent two days after News 2's Raymond Owens talked to residents at some Moncks Corner neighborhoods about a strong odor, described as being similar to burned sewage, that was in the ar...
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