Look back to 2022: Personnel in flux and local projects take shape

by Geoff Fox

Another year down, another year starting.

Let’s take a look at a few stories from 2022 to remind us of what we are now leaving in the past…


Early 2022 saw the first snowfall of the year on January 6 and January 7 with about six inches of snow covering the ground. A second round of snow hit the area as another six inches fell.

The foundation of the new travel plaza was laid giving a base for the future Little Caesar’ s, IHOP , Burger King, and convenient store. A year later and the buildings are just about close to being complete and ready to welcome customers.


Carrington Hall, a White Plains, Md., man was arrested in the Clear Spring area after fleeing from police in Hancock and stealing a vehicle in the Dollar General parking lot.

Councilwoman Misty Cubbage resigns from Hancock council because a change of residence.


Hancock Fire Company was on the receiving end of a $500,000 grant toward a new tanker for the department. Fire officials said it could be 2023 or 2024 before they get the new tanker.

Hundreds of people covered bridges and sides of Interstate 70 in the Warfordsburg and Hancock areas showing support for a convoy of truckers heading to Washington D.C. to convince lawmakers to end the declaration of national emergency concerning the Covid-19 pandemic. The convoy would set up base at Hagerstown Speedway and travel daily to D.C

Steve Douglas sells his family’s car dealership, Douglas Chevrolet, to Hagerstown Ford owner Rick Kelly and closing the book on 80 years of the Douglas family owning the Hancock car dealership.

Gov. Larry Hogan and Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford walk through Hancock in October.

Michael Faith is appointed to the Hancock council to replace Misty Cubbage.


An unauthorized release of a letter regarding an alleged forgiveness of utility bills causes a stir. The letter was released on social media and provided to The Hancock News. Mayor Tim Smith told the paper the town incorrectly billed the former property owner for trash and the new owner needed the bills taken care of before settlement.

A social media post causes a police presence at Hancock Middle-Senior High School for two days in mid-April.

The posts threatened there would be acts of violence against anyone at the school on Tuesday, April 19, and Wednesday, April 20. The posts had been removed from social media but had been shared by concerned parents and community members. May

Progress on the Hancock Truck Plaza continued throughout 2022.

After sitting empty and closed for a number of months, Park-N-Dine is sold to Ben Lewis for $500,000. Lewis only bought the real property, which is the building and land, but not the personal property inside. Lewis’ business partner would later propose town officials move Town Hall to the property.

For the fourth time since 2017, Hancock Middle-Senior High School was slated to get a new principal. During their May 3 meeting, WCPS officials approved the transfer of Hancock Principal Amanda Mulledy to Clear Spring for the same position and Springfield Middle School Principal Jennifer Ruppenthal to the same position at Hancock Middle-Senior High School. It will be Ruppenthal’s third time at the school – the first as a student, graduating in 1988, and the second as a teacher from 1992 to 1997.

For the first time in its 108-year history, The Hancock News adds a website — – – for an online presence.


Hancock Police lost an officer but gained two more in the matter of three days. On June 4, Officer Quentin Brown resigned his position as an officer in Hancock. A day earlier, Officers Donnie O’Brien and Jesse Walls graduated from the Police Academy. Both O’Brien and Walls are sworn in as Hancock Police Officers on June 8 during the town meeting.

Town officials approved a $4 million budget for fiscal year 2023.

Senator Ben Cardin requested federal $13 million

be earmarked for Hancock’s wastewater project.


Hancock Fire Company will be getting one of four new emergency boats and custom trailers from Washington County through funds from America Rescue Plan.

A quick moving storm rocked the Hancock area as it uprooted trees, knocked out windows, and leaving some residents in the dark without any power on Saturday, July 23. Because of forecasted heat the following day, Hancock Fire Company and Interfaith Service Coalition opened their doors to those who didn’t have electricity.

Mike Faith resigns from the Hancock council to take the job of Town Manager.


Hancock officials began awarding applying businesses up to $10,000 in grant money through their Trulieve funds. The current grant process closed on December 31 and will reopen when officials feel they are ready.

Hancock council members appoint Patrick Norris to fill the council seat left vacant by Faith’s resignation.


Five parking kiosks were installed as town officials began using the digital parking kiosks instead of the regular meters. While credit/debit card based, the kiosks still accept coins for parking.


Governor Larry Hogan and Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford come to Hancock to meet with town officials as part of their “Walk Across Maryland” tour of towns and cities. Hogan and Rutherford

walked through town with town officials, met with police officers, and even drank a milkshake at Potomac River Grill.

Hancock town advisor Bill Valentine, who worked with the town during the vacancy of the Town Manager position, is let go by town officials.


Seth Bowman, 20, of Hancock, is killed in a single vehicle accident near Funkstown.

Hancock Rotary celebrates the 75th anniversary of their annual Halloween Parade.

Ashley McCusker attends a WCPS Board of Education meeting raising concerns about books containing sexually explicit material being in Washington County schools’ libraries.

Voters in Hancock and Washington County back GOP candidates in county races as Maryland voters in general trend Democrat in 2022 Gubernatorial Election.


After 46 years as veterinarian in Hancock, Dr. Dan Murphy hung up his stethoscope after seeing his last patient on November 30.

Precipitation and cold temperatures turn into an ice storm in mid-December, shutting down schools and government offices.

Arctic temperatures during the Christmas week pose a hazard, and several public agencies offer up space as warming and food centers to protect residents without sufficient heat.