What a year in local news for the Federal Way community. Here’s a look at some of the top stories from 2022.
In January, South King Fire and Rescue Fire Chief Vic Pennington stepped down from the department. The department also welcome its first female fire commissioner, Caroline Vadino. On Jan. 19, former fire commissioner James (Jim) Fossos died at age 75. He dedicated over 27 years of service as a fire commissioner.
On Jan. 11, Good Shepherd Youth Outreach of Federal Way won the West Region category for Chick-fil-A’s True Inspiration award and $150,000 was delivered to the nonprofit in the form of a giant check.
In January, Federal Way Police began wearing body cameras for the first time in department history.
On Feb. 25, the City of Federal Way raised the Ukrainian flag above City Hall in solidarity with Ukraine and the Ukrainian-American populations locally and nationwide.
Former State Rep. Jesse Johnson, who faced major controversy for introducing and implementing police reform laws in Washington state, announced he would not be seeking re-election. Months later, voters elected Kristine Reeves, D-Federal Way, to take over the role.
The City of Federal Way welcomed Rivne, Ukraine as a sister city; this is the third sister city relationship for Federal Way.
Federal Way native Jamony Young hosted the third annual Ja’Zai Young toy drive, a tribute to his late son, on April 30.
Federal Way City Council voted to ban “reckless” use of fentanyl. The ordinance makes the reckless use of fentanyl in public spaces a gross misdemeanor, punishable by up to 364 days in jail, a $5,000 fine or both.
The Hub: Federal Way Higher Education Center hosted a ribbon cutting for its new campus building in Federal Way. The higher education opportunity was created from a partnership between Highline College, the University of Washington Tacoma, Federal Way Public Schools and the City of Federal Way.
Federal Way Public Schools seniors graduated at indoor ceremonies for the first time since 2019.
On June 11, George Weyerhaeuser Sr., the great-grandson of the company’s founder Frederick Weyerhaeuser, died at 95.
SKFR’s new fire boat takes to Puget Sound, with the ability to assist any emergency situations along coastlines or waterways near Federal Way, Des Moines, Vashon and Maury Island communities and beyond.
Local nonprofit FUSION helps teens find self-sufficiency and adventure by partnering with Peak 7 Adventures for the teens’ first-ever multi-day hiking trip.
A Federal Way police officer was suspended for one shift after publicly posting an expletive-laced TikTok video. In the video, the office stated: “I can go 90 miles an hour, you can’t. You can’t do that. So get the f—- out of the way. If us officers stay behind you long enough, we can find a reason to pull you over.”
Firefighters respond to 3-alarm fire at a Federal Way apartment complex where approximately 100 people were displaced.
The highly anticipated Amazon Fresh store opened its doors to the public on Aug. 10.
The City of Federal Way’s Rhythm and Brews festival, and the Red, White and Blues festival on July 4, both returned to hosting in-person events welcoming summer crowds.
In August, community members celebrated the rescuing of Camp Kilworth, a 30-acre outdoor recreation site in Federal Way. Forterra purchased the land with plans to grant a long-term lease to the YMCA of Greater Seattle to use the land as an outdoor day camp for youth, family events and environmental education. Local nonprofit KEEP is responsible for the historic and community engagement aspects. The expected opening date is in 2024.
Pattison’s West found a new owner — El Centro de la Raza — who will keep the roller rink open after the nonprofit bought the building and property in a $6.5 million sale this fall.
On Sept. 27, the South King Fire board of commissioners voted to authorize Fire Chief Dave Mataftin to let firefighters who were let go because of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate be allowed to come back to work.
In October, Weatherly Inn Assisted Living in Tacoma donated a van to Christ’s Church weeks after their own van was destroyed in a fire.
On Nov. 2, Dick’s Drive-In hosted a groundbreaking ceremony in Federal Way for the incoming restaurant which will stand along Pacific Highway South on the west side of The Commons mall.
In November, the Federal Way City Council passed an ordinance that makes it illegal to push or possess a shopping cart in any city right-of-way. Some council members argued the new law criminalizes homelessness while others praised the law for improving the cleanliness and appearance of city streets.
On Dec. 7, Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced a lawsuit against Federal Way Discount Guns faces lawsuit for illegally selling high-capacity magazines.
Federal Way Public Schools district will pay a $5.25 million settlement to the parents of Allen Harris, a 16-year-old student who died during a summer football practice in 2018, from sudden cardiac arrest.
Most viewed online stories of 2022:
- Federal Way police arrest suspect in fatal carjacking of 20-year-old Ruvim Stukov (Jan. 21) / 41,800 pageviews
- Federal Way Police Department investigating officer’s controversial TikTok video (July 8) / 26,500 pageviews
- Federal Way officer receives suspension for TikTok video (Aug. 11) / 23,6000 pageviews
- Dick’s Drive-In to open new location in Federal Way (April 28) / 18,400 pageviews
- Amazon Fresh grocery store opening in Federal Way (Jan. 4) / 10,900 pageviews
- FW Councilmember Erica Norton slams the vaccinated on social media (Feb. 4) / 8,400 pageviews
- Man shot, killed after road rage incident in Federal Way (Aug. 8) / 6,600 pageviews
- Man killed in drive-by shooting in Federal Way (Feb. 5) / 6,200 pageviews
- 8 King County libraries passing out at-home rapid COVID tests (Jan. 14) / 5,200 pageviews
- Amazon Fresh opens for business in Federal Way (Aug. 11) / 5,100 pageviews