Good News Friday: You Won’t Believe How This 100-Year-Old North Carolina Man Celebrated His Birthday

A Rocky Mount, N.C. man recently celebrated his 100th birthday by flying a plane (not this one!). Check it out below. (Shutterstock)

By Leah Sherrell

July 7, 2023

A sky-high celebration for a North Carolina man, and an amazing new animal sanctuary is coming to Chapel Hill. 

If it’s Friday, it’s time for some good news from North Carolina. Here’s our weekly Good News Friday roundup. And for past good news roundups, go here

Let’s get started:

100-Year-Old Man Celebrates His Birthday by Flying a Plane 

100-year old John Hartness of Rocky Mount has a pretty spectacular birthday this year when he got to fly a plane at Triple Tree Aerodrome, where he’s been volunteering for a few years now to instill  a love of flying into their students. He’s been flying since he was 16 and said in this WRAL clip that “this was the best flight [he’s] ever had.”

83-Acre Animal Sanctuary is Being Built in Chapel Hill 

Beautiful Together combines an 83-acre animal sanctuary in Chapel Hill with youth programs for at-risk children that help foster connections between pets, people, and nature. The sanctuary is currently being built and is striving to create a world where no pet is euthanized for not having a home.

5 NC Cities are the Best Places to Raise a Family in the U.S. 

Stacker compiled a list of the 100 best cities (with 100,000 or more residents) to raise a family. The data is based on data like neighborhood safety, education, recreation and affordability, and five NC cities made the list!  Cary, Raleigh, Concord, Charlotte and Winston-Salem, in that order, are the places to be for families, and that’s pretty cool.


  • Leah Sherrell

    Leah Sherrell is a multimedia reporter for Cardinal & Pine. A graduate of UNC-Wilmington, she's a resident of Kernersville with a background in video production and communication. Leah uses many forms of media to explore the multifaceted lifestyles and cultures present in North Carolina.

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