STANLEY––Staffers of the Food Lion in Stanley recently recognized co-workers in the class of 2020.
Among them is part-time cashier Chloe Billings of Stanley, soon to be a graduate of East Gaston High School. Miss Billings, 17, is a three-year veteran of the school’s marching band drum line. She is also well known locally for her efforts as a member of the American Heritage Girls. The daughter of Robert and Judy Billings, she was instrumental in the creation of a local community garden last year.
Mrs. Billings, a detective for the Stanley Police Department, spoke this week about her daughter, who is known to Food Lion customers for her winsome smile and friendly helpfulness.
“Chloe is a delightful girl,” her mother observed. “I’m not sure what we, her family, did to deserve such a goodhearted person. I like to think we raised her right. But we all know how that goes on a daily basis. Her sweet smile tells you all you need to know about her before she speaks or you see her in action!
“I’m a bit conflicted about her graduating from high school this year,” she continued. “She is my baby, and it’s hard to believe she has grown into such a responsible young lady. We are very proud of her accomplishments in school and her community. She is graduating from East Gaston and has decided to attend Gaston College for a couple of years, before transferring to an undecided four-year college. She is unsure of what she wants to be when she grows up, so hopefully the next couple of years will help her make that decision. No matter what she does, I’m sure she will do it with style and grace.”
Billings added that her daughter would complete the American Heritage Girls (or AHG) program at the end of this troop year, coming up May 31, having accomplished all she set out to do. A member of the First Presbyterian Church of Stanley and its American Heritage Girls Troop NC0512, Miss Billings has earned multiple awards and volunteered well more than 1,000 hours during her eight years in the organization.
“She successfully planned, implemented, built and opened the Mustard Patch Community Garden at Common Ground (at the First United Methodist Church of Stanley) on May 18, 2019, as her final project,” Detective Billings explained. “She was recognized as the 569th recipient of the AHG Stars and Stripes Award on Jan. 11. The Stars and Stripes Award is the highest award a girl can achieve in the program.
“The garden is thriving,” she added, “and a new season of crops has been planted. Ten percent of the produce raised by bed renters will be donated to the Common Ground Food Pantry. Chloe was recognized by the Town of Stanley for her contributions to the community at the Stanley Town Council meeting on Jan. 13.”
And as Miss Billings recently told The Herald, she just wanted to help folks.
“I really liked the idea of something that would benefit the community a lot,” she said.
All in all, as her proud mom noted, she and her family are pleased as punch with this remarkable young lady.
“I think we have nurtured Chloe into a responsible citizen in her community,” she said. “Isn’t that what any parent aspires to? It certainly warms my heart to know she will go into the world with a firm foundation and a family and community that support her in all she does. She has accomplished quite a bit in her 17, soon to be 18, years. I am confident her strength, thoughtfulness and grace under pressure will enable her to continue to thrive and achieve any goal she sets before her.”