Published: Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 17:36 PM.
During the activities of the 33rd Annual BBQ Festival on the Neuse on Saturday, two Kinston residents were honored by the city’s mayor.
B.J. Murphy honored John Jones and Shirley Herring during the “Key to the City” ceremony at Pearson Park, where each was presented with a ceremonial key to Kinston and a dedication.
Murphy said he didn’t make his decision alone on honoring the two.
“I asked for Mayor Pro Tem Joe Tyson to assist me in the deciding process,” Murphy said. “Certainly, the two people we’re recognizing have gone above and beyond what a citizen is asked to do in Kinston.”
Jones, a 1968 graduate of Adkin High School, was an active member of Kinston public schools, serving as a teacher, guidance counselor or principal at several schools, including Rochelle Middle School and Kinston Charter Academy.
“It is indeed a pleasure to receive this award,” Jones said, addressing the crowd in attendance. “I accept this award on behalf of my family members, community and everyone who has impacted my life — positively or negatively.”
Herring is currently the chairman of Pride of Kinston and has worked with the organization for 28 years.
“This is truly an honor and I never dreamed of this,” Herring said. “I want to thank everyone who has been working on downtown Kinston. It brings me pride and joy to help in the beauty and progress of the city.”
Tyson said Jones and Herring deserved the recognition.
“When you look throughout the community and look at individuals who serve the community, there are several in the city who would qualify, but we can’t elect everyone,” Tyson said. “We recognize those who don’t get awards every day, but are great citizens who represent Kinston well. John Jones is someone who was committed to mentoring, helping young people, coaching and was a highly respected citizen.
“Ms. Herring is someone who dedicated her time to help improve the city of Kinston. She is an outstanding leader, and when it comes to volunteering and services, she gives and asks for nothing in return. She exemplifies a good citizen of Kinston.”
Junious Smith III can be reached at 252-559-1077 andJunious.Smith@Kinston.com. Follow him on Twitter at @JuniousSmithIII.