Echoes Spotlight, 'Bowling Decides To Run For Mayor Of Spa City Once More'

The following is an article that ran in the West Virginia News on February 3, 1997.

“Bowling Decides To Run For Mayor Of Spa City Once More” By Christine Jerman

John Bowling, Jr., who entered municipal politics in 1971 when he was elected mayor for the first time, has filed for mayor in the Spa City.

Bowling was president of the Greenbrier County Commission until December. He lost his bid for a second term on the commission in the primary elections last May. He was defeated by Joe Feamster. Following his last meeting with the County Commission in December, Bowling said he had no aspirations to run for any office. He also jokingly said that he would be leaving the area during the filing period just so he wouldn’t be able to run for any office.

In a telephone interview this morning, Bowling said, “My vacation was cut short.”

He explained that he did travel to Florida for two weeks and had intended to travel to California, but his plans changed. He said, “When I returned from my vacation, a number of people came to me and almost insisted that I run for mayor.” He asserted that he has no ulterior motives. “I love my community; I have an obligation to them: they provide a living for me,” Bowling commented. He said after being in public office for nearly three decades, “I’ve been with it too long to just ignore it.”

Also running for mayor is former Spa City Police Officer William Wallcoen. He is currently a security guard at The Greenbrier.

Councilman James Perrow and Delores Swann have filed for the recorder’s position.
Three councilmembers are seeking reelection to office. John Lawhorn, Margaret Hefner and Debbie Fogus are seeking a second two-year term.

Also running for council are Kathy Sullivan, secretary/clerk at City Hall, and Jim Fife, president of the rescue squad and former member of council.

Others running for council are Arch Knighton, Jennifer Brooks and Paul Hobbs.

There are five seats on city council.

Mayor G.P. Parker and Recorder Reese “Bo” Belshee announced at the January meeting of council that they would not be seeking reelection to council.

Some candidates may have filed by mail, a City Hall spokesperson said. Those filings may not arrive at City Hall until today.

All filings by mail must have been postmarked by midnight Saturday to be valid, the spokesperson said.

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