Senator Richard Stuart is using the 2023 General Assembly to secure recognition for two Westmoreland icons--Carl Fletcher Flemer III and Birddogs County Store.
Flemer, known to many as “Fletch,” was an esteemed nurseryman, businessman, and honorable veteran, says the resolution honoring him.
In 1969, Flemer joined the Army and served his country with honor and distinction for three years as a commissioned rotary wing aviator with the 174th Assault Helicopter Company, the document states.
While in the military, he flew more than 1,000 hours of helicopter missions during the Vietnam War and was recognized with the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Army Commendation Medal, and 22 Air Medals.
In 1972, Flemer, who had had a horticulture degree from North Carolina State University, joined the family business, Ingleside Nurseries, and was fundamental in “developing the nursery into one of the biggest on the East Coast.”
In addition to that accomplishment, Flemer is recognized for his contributions in the horticulture arena, which includes president of the former Virginia Nurserymen’s Association, the former Southern Nurserymen’s Association, the former American Association of Nurserymen, and the Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show.
Flemer’s “commitment to his community manifested itself through his service,” the resolution also notes. He served as a board member of the Virginia Farm Bureau, Peoples Community Bank, Christchurch School, St. Margaret’s School in Tappahannock, and the Westmoreland County Wetlands Board. Not to mention that Flemer was also one of the founders of the Oak Grove Volunteer Fire Department.
Flemer died June 30, 2022. The resolution, which has passed the House and Senate remembers him as “a treasured member of the Northern Neck Community whose kindness and generosity touched countless lives.
Senator Ryan McDougle and Delegate Margaret Ransone were co-patrons of the resolution celebrating the life of Flemer.
Birddogs Country Store
Stuart put forth another resolution that McDougle co-patroned recognizing Birddogs Country Store, which operated for over 13 years before closing its doors in 2022.
Darlene Dyer founded the store in 2009 alongside her mother, Delores Wathen, who has operated country stores in the area since the early 1990s, the resolution notes.
“Located along Route 3 near Westmoreland State Park, Birddogs Country Store fostered a greater sense of community in the region by creating a space in which individuals, particularly local watermen and farmers, could gather and converse.”
In addition to offering an array of merchandise from spark plugs to groceries, the store was known for its chicken salad and other deli items that drew people from across the Northern Neck.
The resolution also recognizes Dyer for the helpful role she played by keeping Birddogs County Store open to those in need throughout the depths of the pandemic and establishing a delivery for those who couldn’t safely leave home.
“Through a steadfast commitment to quality and service, Birddogs Country Store exemplified why the Commonwealth is a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family,” the resolution also states.
This article is made possible through Spotlight PA’s collaboration with Votebeat, a nonpartisan news organization covering local election administration and voting. This article is available for reprint under the terms of Votebeat’s republishing policy.
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