Being a native of Asheville, I attended local schools and earned my four degrees from North Carolina institutes of higher learning. With a major in English, I taught seven years at Buncombe County high schools before becoming an instructor at one college and one technical institute elsewhere in this state.
After my retirement in 1986, I returned to this city and became one of the first supporters of the Asheville Urban Trail. As a member of the committee that composed titles and historical descriptions for bronze plaques at stations downtown, I gave considerable thought to the task.
My proposal is to rename the shaft of stone on Pack Square as Peace Monument. Through the generations since the obelisk’s dedication, local citizens and visitors have become accustomed to saying the one-syllable last name of five letters (Vance) as part of the title. My recommendation of “Peace” within the inscription retains that easy sound of one syllable and that simple spelling of five letters. Unlike the name of a deceased person whose popularity may plummet, “Peace” represents harmony, order, security and reconciliation.
— John C. Young Jr.