Wahoo’s quiet contributions and attitude earn
By Heather Berry
Weaverville – Sometimes it takes a lifetime for folks to appreciate the special contributions different members of a community make. Recently, some Weaverville residents are taking note and making an effort to appreciate the contributions of “Wahoo.”
Many locals are familiar with Wahoo, known for pulling a trash can from Flat Creek to downtown Weaverville daily, but don’t know much more.
Wahoo started weed-eating, mowing and doing other odd jobs in 1978 when he was in high school at North Buncombe. Scott Shope, owner of Shope’s Furniture in downtown Weaverville, has known Wahoo since they were in school together. Shope said he is always impressed at how hard Wahoo works and doesn’t complain.
“I’ve asked him if he needed help many times and he never does,” said Shope, “and, he never complains.”
According to Shope, Wahoo began calling himself “Wahoo” after a popular wrestler named Edward “Wahoo” McDaniel. “That’s the story I heard,” said Shope. “Back in the day when he was young, he loved wrestling. Wahoo is still just good-hearted, great person and gentle soul,” said Shope. “He’s one of ours.”
When asked to tell a little bit of his life story, Wahoo responded, “Sure! What do you want to know?”
Born in Indiana, David Arrington (Wahoo’s given name) made his way to Weaverville with his family when he was a “little bitty thing.” He has lived in Flat Creek for many years, he said.
Wahoo may have the best glimpse of all when it comes to the goings on in this area. “I’m out every day doing mowing, weed-eating and doing all kinds of stuff and talking to people,” Wahoo said. “I also pick up aluminum cans and other recyclables,” he added.
Wendy Reed, owner of New Beginning’s Spa and Salon, recently asked area residents to drop off their recyclable aluminum at the salon in order to help Wahoo with his collections. Wahoo stops by daily to pick up what is left.
“He pulls that huge trash can all the way from Flat Creek and all over Weaverville and never complains, never whines,” said Reed. “When I asked him what he did with all those cans, he told me, ‘I just use them for extra spending money,’” said Reed.
According Wahoo, the help from New Beginnings has made a difference. “Oh yeah, I pick up from them every day,” Wahoo said.
Reed, who grew up in Weaverville, remembers Wahoo from softball games. “I played ball for many years and Wahoo was at our high school games and women’s league consistently,” she recalled. “He was there as a bat boy and showed up at every game faithfully.”
Wahoo has a big family in this area. “I live with my mother and brother and have all sorts of uncles and brothers, sisters and nephews in this area. He describes the area as “friendly and peaceful.” When asked if there were any improvements he would make, Wahoo responded, “The football team could be a little better,” with a laugh. Wahoo counts high school and college football among his passions.
Reed encourages residents to take the time to help. “We are talking about items that most of us don’t see as having any value, but it can mean a little extra spending money for Wahoo,” she said. “We just take these items and trash them. I want people to be aware of what they are doing,” she continued.
“I want people to know they can use this location as a drop-off for canned goods or other items, which can help those around us in need,” Reed said. “We’ve got a lot of hurting people,” she added.
Reed hopes to continue this community outreach with other projects in the future.
Anyone interested in helping Wahoo out by dropping off recyclable aluminums can drop items off at New Beginnings Spa and Salon, 285 N. Main St., any time during business hours. If items are large, Reed suggests calling the salon ahead at 828.484-7785. Wahoo also wants the public to know he is willing to do odd jobs like mowing, weed-eating, cleaning out storage areas, etc… Call him at 828.645.5608.