13 in ‘13: Looking back at the biggest news stories of the year

Divers search for Ethan Kazmerzak.

Tornadoes, traffic lights and a treacherous spring snowstorm were but a few of the top stories that graced the front pages of the Hampton Chronicle in 2013. Some of those events had a larger community-wide impact than others, but all left a lasting impression on Hampton and the greater Franklin County area last year.

     What follows are the Top 13 stories of 2013 compiled by the Chronicle news staff. Some of the stories aren’t yet finished, and they will no doubt continue creating headlines in 2014 and beyond. However, they all played an integral role in making 2013 the memorable year that it was.

1. Ethan Kazmerzak

     The disappearance of Hampton man Ethan Kazmerzak, 22, has captivated both local residents and people from throughout the state since he went missing during the early hours of Sept. 15.

     Kazmerzak was well-known throughout the community for his involvement with local plays and other programs at the Windsor Theatre. His disappearance sparked a week-long, multi-pronged search on Sept. 16 that included aerial patrols, foot and vehicle searches, and a dive team scouring gravel pits where Kazmerzak was last seen. The searches yielded no new clues, and eventually leads began to dry up.

     Many tips on Kazmerzak’s potential whereabouts and clues regarding his disappearance have gone nowhere. Neither he nor his silver Volkswagen Jetta have been seen since Sept. 14, when Kazmerzak was reported visiting various bars throughout the area with friends.

Read the full article in the Jan. 1 edition of the Chronicle.