Two Bags of Blood Saved Her Life, Now She Asks You To Donate.

by David Kellin,

Ashlynn Plyler looks out over the field where she was injured in a car wreck

A single moment changes us forever. On November 29th, 2018, a dog that 16 year old Ashlynn Plyler had in her Jeep, jumped into her lap as she was driving. The Jeep drifted into the ditch and hit the crossover into a field and flipped several times. Ashlynn was thrown from the vehicle and sustained a many injuries. Injuries to her neck, ribs, spine, pelvis were instantly life threatening.

Ashlynn’s Jeep -Photo supplied

Her younger sister traveling ahead of her was able to get help quickly, and Ashlynn was airlifted to Charlotte. She was in the pediatric intensive care unit for three days and had two surgeries to place rods and pins in her pelvis and spine to stabilize her bones.

Ashlynn’s scars

In those first few hours, she received two blood transfusions that saved her life. Two bags of blood that she commented on. “Two people, I did not know, gave me blood and that saved my life.” An event that changed her forever.

Plyler Family

Ashlynn is the middle sister of three girls. She is well known not only in Pageland, but around the region. She has competed in several the region’s pageants and captured the crown several times.

She is an excellent student and had been attending Central High. Since the accident, she has been on home-bound instruction and working to regain the ability to walk and adapt to neurological pain that has accompanied the placement of the rods in her spine.

A purpose has grown in the days and months since the accident. A deep desire to make a difference in other’s lives. Encouraging people to donate blood, so others can live also. Ashlynn is partnering with the Red Cross and community agencies to hold a blood drive at the end of August. She has become aware of the critical shortages on the blood supply locally and nationally. The blood drive will be Thursday, August 29th 1:30pm-6:30pm at First Presbyterian Church of Pageland Fellowship Hall, 207 S Maple St, Pageland, SC 29728 . She hopes to make this an annual event.

Bags Transfusion Blood

“The first night when I was airlifted to the hospital before I could have any surgeries, I had to have two blood transfusions because I was bleeding internally. Those two blood transfusions saved my life and I’m truly thankful for them and whoever took just a little time out of there day to donate blood to save my life” said Ashlynn. “You could save someone’s life just by taking out a little time of your day to donate blood and whoever receives that, i am sure will be so grateful. If you have the chance to save someone’s life, what is stopping you?”

It is important to call and make a commitment to attend as it helps the Red Cross to know the level of commitment and the number of people to send to help. Contact Ashlynn at 843-337-8372 or Elaine Robinson at 843-680-3027 to arrange for a time. You only need to give your name and an email. If you have given before, you will already be in their system.

Ashlynn’s mother Kristin Plyler added “Throughout all of this, we have learned that life is precious. We have been blessed to have good doctors.” She talked about a time when Ashlynn was looking for prom dresses and she had commented to Ashlynn that her scars were showing. Ashlynn’s reply was “My scars are what makes me who I am.” 

As we talked, some Bible verses connected to where Ashlynn is now. James 1: 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Ashlynn is going to save lives. She is determined to get as many people as she can to donated. Those donations will go to the next person in need, and help them to live another day.  It is moment in time that will impact many in months and years to come. From depths of pain come healing for Ashlynn and countless others.

Editor Comments: Some articles are so very close to home. I have know Ashlynn for years. To stand in the roadway, and to see her scars sent chills down my spine. I continue to be amazed at the strength of Ashlynn and how she is turning a really bad experience into a positive. I am grateful for the two donors that gave blood without knowing who might receive it. I am grateful that Ashlynn is alive to ask you to donate. Please help save another life by donating a pint or two -David

Common Law Marriage Ends In South Carolina

by David Kellin,

It seems like a thing of the past. The consequence of cohabitation beyond a certain point resulting in being common law married. No longer is that the case in South Carolina. As of July 24th, 2019, couples will need to have a license to be married. Common Law Marriage is no longer allowed in SC.

The SC Supreme Court noted several reasons why Common Law Marriage had been established. Most notably the early colonies were sparsely populated and access to judges or officiants was limited. The practice was recognized by the British and accepted in the early states.

Another reason it was allowed was the morality of the couple, and the assurance that women would be cared for by someone beside the state. The financial security of women and children was a driving force.

The justices note in their opinion that times have changed. The acceptance of a unmarried woman and the ability for her to provide and care for her children was no longer just by the husband and the state. Women can and do live unmarried and are accepted well in society. Thus the need to be married to be moral or financial stable is greatly reduced.

One other element impacted the decision. Very few people knew of what constituted a common law marriage. The SC legislature had never codified the practice, so it resided in the common laws of the state. The main tenet was mutual agreement that the parties would be considered married. If you both agreed to be married, you were.

The change in the law will apply from this date forward. Those who were considering themselves husband and wife yesterday, still are. The court did not decide to apply the law retroactively. No need to break up families.

Homicide by Child Abuse

From Release

Homicide by Child Abuse

Two people were arrested Tuesday, July 2, 2019, as the result of an investigation into the death of a child last November. On November 6, 2018, at 5:30 p. m. deputies of the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to 989 14 th Street, Lancaster, concerning an unresponsive child, De’Yontae Miller, Jr., a male who was 14 months old.

The child lived in the home with his father, De’Yontae Monterio Miller, Sr., age 25, and Miller’s girlfriend, Ramesha Monet Brantley, age 23. Brantley is not the mother of the child. Another one-year-old male child who is the child of Miller and Brantley and a now three-year-old female child of Miller who is also not Brantley’s child also lived in the home. Deputies rendered aid to the child until personnel of Lancaster County Emergency Medical Services arrived and took over. The child was transported to a medical facility and was pronounced dead at approximately 6:40 p. m. Criminal and crime scene

investigators arrived along with a Special Agent of the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) Special Victims’ Unit which investigates child fatalities. A search warrant for the home was obtained, and the home was searched. Investigators determined the home had no running water and little food. They also found conditions unsuitable for small children including the presence of over-the-counter and prescription medications, hard candies, and rodent poison in locations accessible to the children. Evidence of narcotics was also located, and Drug Task Force agents found approximately two grams of suspected Crack Cocaine and approximately 2.8 grams of suspected Marijuana along with two sets of digital scales.

An autopsy of the child’s body was performed the next day. The cause of death was determined to be nonaccidental blunt force trauma of the head, the neck, the torso, and the extremities. The child had fractured ribs and a fractured leg. Some of the injuries were recent but others were weeks old.
This Tuesday investigators served an additional search warrant on a different home now occupied by Miller and Brantley seeking additional evidence concerning the child’s death and found 14 grams of suspected Marijuana and scales. The case has been investigated extensively since the incident occurred by the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office, SLED, the Lancaster County Coroner’s Office, and the Sixth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. Sufficient evidence was obtained to charge Brantley and Miller.

Brantley is charged with Homicide by Child Abuse, three counts of Unlawful Neglect of a Child or Helpless Person, Possession with Intent to Distribute
Crack Cocaine, and two counts of Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana. Brantley’s bond was denied.

Miller is charged with three counts of Unlawful Neglect of a Child or Helpless Person, Possession with Intent to Distribute Crack Cocaine, and two counts of Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana. His bond was set at $90,000.00. He posted bond
earlier today and was released.

“This has been a long but thorough investigation,” said Sheriff Barry Faile.
“Multiple agencies have been working on the case for several months. Many interviews have been conducted. The backgrounds of these adults and children have been examined. Forensic evidence has been tested. When we were satisfied we knew what happened to this child, we sought warrants from the magistrate and made the arrests. This has been a
difficult investigation for all those involved and certainly a sad and tragic end to the life of this child.”

Anyone with information about this or any other case should call the Lancaster
County Sheriff’s Office at 803-283-3388 or contact Midlands Crimestoppers in one of the following ways: dial 888-CRIME-SC (888-274-6372), log onto and click on the “Submit a Tip” tab, or download the P3 Tips App for Apple or Android devices.

Fourth of July Parade

by David Kellin,

The parades on the Fourth of July have always been an exciting event. An event that showcases the local flavor of the community. It is a time to draw together and celebrate our freedoms and independence. It marks part of who we are as people.

Parades have changed over the years. I remember decorated floats, marching bands, cotton candy and candied apples. Parades like those still exist. This year it seems that in our area, the ATV and Four Wheelers reign supreme.

Each year, the South Carolina community of Charlesboro hold what I view as one of the area most unique parades. It is a 2 mile + route on Taxahaw road in the rural community. It is the only bi-directional parade I know of. The entrants of the parade travel two miles down Taxahaw road, and then turn around and backtrack to the starting point on a two lane road. Depending on the spot you are watching, you will get to see the parade twice.

The parade has begun

This year it was bright and sunny. the heat was almost oppressive. The shadowy spots in the route fill up early. Sunny spots sprout umbrellas and 10 x 10 popups. Friends speak to each other across the road, neighbors hand out plastic grocery bags to the kids to hold the candy that will rain across the grassy strips in front of homes and churches.

The procession creeps behind the sheriff’s cruiser and fire trucks as come down the winding country road. The parade starts at 10:30am and it may be 15 to 20 minutes before it reaches you.

What follows is a long train of all-terrain vehicles, classic cars, bass boats, and semi tractors. The sole requirement for entry is that the vehicle sports an American flag.

In the election years, candidates drive heavily campaign slogan covered cars. This year, there were few of them. Most all were individuals that just wanted to be in the parade.

What separates this from the big city parades is the recognition of family and friends. The riders are people you know, love and see most everyday. The waves are genuine and so are the smiles.

Before long you notice the return stream of riders coming back. Some people have dropped out at the turnaround point. Cars for up at the start of the parade fill in behind the parade and creep towards the end and a return to the holiday festivities to come. Another Charlesboro parade is in the books. Cookouts and swimming are the order of the afternoon. Happy Fourth of July.

Local Volleyball Player Competes Nationally

by David Kellin,

For Alexis Roberson, summer is a commitment to be better than yesterday. Two days a week, she, and her family made a 144 mile round trip to Lexington SC to be part of the Intense Volleyball team.  As part of that training and team participation, she tried out for the 15 Intense Adidas Elite Jerry team and was selected. This is the third year on the Elite team.

The 15 Intense Adidas Elite Jerry team traveled to Florida in June to compete in the AAU National Volleyball Championships. In the 15 Classic division there were 196 teams competing. The first two days were pool play with each team playing 3-4 matches each day. The competition is a single elimination meaning that you have to win each game to advance. Lose a match and you are eliminated.

The 15 Intense Adidas Elite Jerry team advanced as winners through their first 12 matches, and defeated EEA 15 Chancie from Kentucky in the semifinal match. They advanced to the Gold Championship Bracket to play against Kokoro Volleyball from Minnesota.  Kokoro won in three sets 25-22, 14-25, and 15-6.

The 15 Intense Adidas Elite Jerry team placed 2nd out of 196 teams. Alexis was named to the All-Star Team. All Star Team is considered AAU All American ranked #1  “I love to compete, and love volleyball.” Said Roberson. “We worked well together. We were all friends and the coaching was good.” Her team has been together for two years.

Lexi is excited for the upcoming Andrew Jackson High School Volleyball competition season to begin. She was the only player from the Kershaw/ Lancaster area to compete in her division at Nationals. She plans to bring the things she learns at Nationals back to help improve the Volunteer’s game this coming year.

Lisa Roberson spoke of the dedication that was needed from both the athlete and the parent. “Every parent wants to see their child on top. We are dedicated. When we sign the contract, we know that we can’t be ill with each other, and we put forth our best efforts.”

Jerry Dorneker, Head Coach commented.  “The 15 Intense Adidas Elite Jerry have a great understanding that winning isn’t everything, working and playing hard for each other is. Giving thanks to God and our large and supportive intense family and partners Adidas and Baden.

It was exemplified throughout the AAU national tournament. All of the players played with all of their heart on every play. Winning second in the nation in their division.

 Everyone’s personality played a role on the team including Lexi who is a strong physical force and a strong competitor. Lexi has a strong work ethic and desire to compete every time she practices and steps on the court in competition. Her fearless can do attitude is contagious to her teammates and strikes fear in her opponents.”

Lexi has some advice for those young people who may be thinking about getting into volleyball. “If you seem to be like the little guy from a small town and running with the big dogs, hang in there. Always try to do your best.”