Belhaven alumni to host 55th homecoming

Published 7:44 pm Friday, May 5, 2017

From the Belhaven General Alumni Association

The Belhaven General Alumni Association will host its 55th homecoming celebration May 12-14.

The theme for this year is “Recall, Relive, Renew and Reflect.” Festivities will officially begin with the arrival of alumni that Friday morning, and the highlight of the day will be the alumni banquet at 7 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club, located on Pantego Street. Attire is semi-formal and donations of $30 are requested. Tickets may be purchased in advance from any member of the Belhaven Alumni Club.

The keynote address will be delivered by Diane Barber Whitaker, the daughter of Mary M. Barber and the late Willie L. Barber. Though she was born in Brooklyn, New York, and spent her early childhood there, she considers herself a Belhaven native. She attended Belhaven Elementary School and John A. Wilkinson High School before leaving Belhaven to complete high school at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, becoming one of the first students from Beaufort County to attend.

After high school, she continued pursuing higher education and holds a bachelor’s degree in health and family services management and a master’s in public administration. She returned to North Carolina 12 years ago to take a position as the assistant director for the Down East Partnership for Children in Rocky Mount. Whitaker currently lives in Raleigh, where she is the executive director of Mothers and Their Children Inc., a nonprofit inside the N.C. Correctional Institution for Women that provides services to the state’s incarcerated women, their children and the children’s caregivers.

The evening will culminate with the presentation of Alumni Awards and special recognition to the Belhaven High School class of 1967, which is celebrating its golden reunion anniversary. The presentation will be followed by a memorial service.

Saturday’s activities will begin with the mile-long parade featuring a number of local marching groups and community organizations. Members of the American Legion Post No. 249 will serve as color guard. Parade formation is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. on Railroad Street. Any individual or organization interested in participating should contact Vernalette Rosa at 252-945-3044, or any member of the Belhaven Alumni Club.
The Triangle Chapter will coordinate vendor sales on the lawn of the former Belhaven High School throughout the day. Class reunions will be held throughout the day and will be announced by class coordinators. Individuals and groups interested in reserving space should contact Steve Barber at 252-945-0653, or Craig Ward.

Alumni worship services will be held at the St. Reddick Missionary Baptist Church, Pamlico Street, at 10 a.m. Sunday. The guest speaker will be Daphne Carter Brewington, the daughter of the late Mike and Lillie Holloway and a member of the John A. Wilkinson class of 1980. A licensed registered nurse, she received an associate degree in nursing from the Beaufort County Community College in 1985. She then attended East Carolina University where she received a bachelor of science in 1990, a master’s of science in 1998 and a doctorate in 2013.

She is currently the director of the Professional Practice and Magnet Program for Vidant Medical Center and served briefly as the director of nursing at the Vidant Pungo Hospital.

A cordial invitation is extended to all to share in the festivities.