Friends, colleagues remember Clinkscales

By Reggie Ponder

The Daily Advance

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Hugh Clinkscales, a two-term Pasquotank County commissioner and proponent of the regional airport, died Wednesday at the age of 90.

Clinkscales represented the Southern Outside District on the Pasquotank Board of Commissioners from 1992-2000.

Pasquotank Commissioner Bill Trueblood, who followed Clinkscales in the Southern Outside seat on the board, remembered Clinkscales as a good friend who was very community-minded, serving both as an elected official and in his work with the Lions Club and other civic causes.

Trueblood said Clinkscales helped him get his start in county government.

“He was the one that encouraged me to fill out an application for a position on the planning board,” Trueblood said.

Later, when Clinkscales decided not to see reelection, he encouraged Trueblood to run for county commissioner, Trueblood said.

Chowan County Manager Zee Lamb, a former county commissioner in Pasquotank, remembered Clinkscales as a “great public servant.”

“Mr. Clinkscales was a strong supporter of education,” Lamb said. “He helped push through the construction of River Road Middle School and Pasquotank High School. Clink was a hard working public servant who never sought personal credit or glory for his good deeds. Pasquotank County is a better place today because of Hugh Clinkscales.”

Pasquotank Board of Commissioners Chairman Lloyd Griffin, who is a member of the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank County Airport Authority, said Clinkscales was interested in aviation and a staunch supporter of the airport.

“That was a very big passion of his,” Griffin said.

Griffin was on City Council in Elizabeth City while Clinkscales was on the Airport Authority Board. The two worked together on airport issues, and Griffin said Clinkscales was very supportive of the development of the Aviation Commerce Park.

Griffin and Trueblood both noted Clinkscales was the interim manager at the airport before the arrival of Scott Hinton, the current manager.

Griffin mentioned that Clinkscales became a licensed pilot when he was in his 70s.

Clinkscales also was chairman of the Pasquotank County Solid Waste Commission in the 1990s and backed county recreation projects such as Fun Junktion and Sawmill Park, Griffin said.

“He was a good commissioner,” Griffin said

Trueblood said he had known Clinkscales since the late 1960s and got to know him very well through their work together in the Weeksville Lion Club. Clinkscales was an active Lion across six decades.

Trueblood said Clinkscales was from Kansas but came to the Elizabeth City area through the Navy and ran an upholstery shop in Elizabeth City.