Board Orders Guardrail Removal, Passes Budget

[Writer's Note: The Union County School Board meets the second Thursday of each month at UCHS. The Board uses a workshop prior to the meeting to discuss agenda items. After the workshop, the Board approves, rejects, or takes no action on individual items during the meeting.]

The Board discussed these agenda items during the workshop.

John Fugate requested approval for fifteen UCHS students to attend FFA Chapter Development Training from July 26-28 at Big Ridge State Park.

Finance Director Ann Dyer offered Budget Amendments to add the Safety Grant, move money to proper line items, and generally cleanup the budget for the yearend report. In SB 177 (Capital Outlay) Ms. Dyer noted that the cost of two new buses be added to meet the required 120 days needed to have the buses before the start of the school year in August 2019. Andrew Reed (6th District) asked how many buses had already been bought. Transportation Supervisor Lenny Holt explained that with this purchase, the system would now own five buses that are two years old or less.

Ms. Dyer reported that all parts of the school budget were functioning as planned. She further stated that Food Services Supervisor, Ms. Mary Effler, through careful money management had brought that budget from a negative balance when Ms. Effler assumed the job to the currently mandated three months of operating expenses in the fund balance.

Ms. Dyer recommended that the Food Service Contract with HDS be extended for one year and that the Grace Rehabilitation Contract be renewed.

Dr. Ronnie Mincey announced that the required TSBA Workshop for Planning would be June 7-8 at the Hyatt Regency. Dr. Jimmy Carter noted that the Central Office Administrators would be giving their views on the Strategic Plan on Friday. Dr. Mincey said that no definite start time was available at the moment but Saturday would be a half day.

Dr. Mincey advised the board that he was not ready to report the results of the Director's Evaluation since he needed time to calculate the ones submitted just before the meeting.

Dr. Mincey stated that there were virtually no changes from the First Reading to the Second Reading on the TSBA recommended Board Policy Changes to 4.701-Test Security, 1.803 - Tobacco Free Schools, 4.209 - Alternate Credit Opportunities, and 4.603 - Promotion and Retention.
Ms. Roxanne Patterson, Attendance Supervisor, requested that Board Policy 6.204-Attendance be amended by deleting the required notice and allow nonresident and out of zone students to make applications during the school year.

Dr. Mincey explained the Consolidated Application for Federal Funds. Title I at $1,112,534 decreased by over $29,000 and caused the cutting of one paraprofessional position. But due to a cost sharing arrangement between the Federal and the General Fund, no employee will be cut. Title II at $139,236 decreased nearly $17,000. This fund is used mostly for professional development training and supplies for teachers and a portion funds only one salary, the Professional Development Coordinator. Title III is used to supplement teaching supplies and instruction for English Language Learners. The funds decreased by nearly half to $807.07 because so many tested out of the ELDA, a test for students whose primary language is not English. Dr. Mincey stated that this decrease was “really a good thing”. Title IV saw an increase by nearly $3000 to $82,467. Title IV funds portions of salaries for a music teacher, a social worker, and the purchase of STEM materials and supplies. Title V will have $75,482.08 to support Title I and II and provide a paraprofessional position at SCES and a county wide Family Interventionist. Dr. Mincey also remarked that from FY 2016 to FY 2020 the overall Title Funds had decreased by $182,876.81 meaning “there would most likely be an overall decrease in funding each year”.

Dr. Mincey continued to explain that Federal funding also includes IDEA Part B at $1,103,455 and IDEA Preschool at $24,010. IDEA Part B increased by $127,182 while IDEA Preschool realized a $240 increase. The total amount of Federal funding for FY 2020 is $2,538,051.15.

Dr. Carter and Ms. Dyer noted that the Board would need to bid the security project funded by the Governor's Safety Grant, since the amount exceeds the purchase limit of $25,000 and the vendor that was originally contacted is not under an approved state wide contract. Dr. Carter further applauded Sheriff Breeding and the 911 Office including Ms. Marty Smith for “spotting an intruder in one of the schools about 4:00 A.M.”

Ms. Dyer and Dr. Carter offered a balanced school budget to the Board. Some $80,000 in Chrome Books as well as $50,000 in transportation were cut from the SB141 in order to achieve this result. Ms. Dyer stated that this budget is based on the current BEP Proposal sent in April. Both believe that BEP Funds will increase by June when the final BEP funding projection arrives. In any event, Ms. Dyer said that there was an alternate plan to fund the chrome books if the increase does not occur. She stated that funds could be moved from SB177 if necessary. Dr. Carter expressed gratitude to Ms. Dyer and her staff for doing all of the budgets, not just the School Board. Dr. Carter also individually thanked Missy Brown for her efforts to oversee the day to day school finances and commended her on her knowledge of the budget operations. Gerald Smith (7th District) said that he thought Ms. Dyer and this kind of handling of finances was the “best thing that we have ever done”. Ms. Dyer and Dr. Carter also explained that the actual amount of projects for SB177 was $791,000 but some two million was budgeted due to some FY 19 projects not being completed until FY2020.

Brad Griffey (2nd District) recommended that the UCHS Softball Field be named in honor of Lance Lay. Mr. Griffey cited Mr. Lay's record of excellence not just in win/loss but also in district, regional, and state tournaments. He stated that Mr. Lay works concessions alongside players and parents at UT Football Games to raise money for the team. He also noted that Mr. Lay attends social functions, even baptisms, to show support for his girls on the team.

Marty Gibbs (1st district) was unable to attend the meeting, so Dr. Carter related his concern regarding the transporting of athletic teams by school bus. Dr. Carter said that he hoped the Board could begin a conversation and discussion regarding how to fund bus transportation to away games as well as how to determine which sports to transport and from which schools. As an example, the transportation cost for football is $8,000 to $12,000 per year. Title IX requires that sports be treated equitably without discrimination. Dr. Carter noted that the boy’s basketball team cannot be transported and not provide a bus for the girls basketball team. Mr. Holt also mentioned that bus drivers were needed. Dr. Carter said that coaches need to look at getting CDL's (Commercial Driver's License) and wished more teachers would also. “I would love to have every teacher have a CDL. Then I would never have to want for a bus driver again”, he exclaimed.

The Ground Lease with the Union County Historical Society was discussed. Andrew Reed (6th), who missed the April Board Meeting called Dr. Carter and inquired if the Board had taken action or changed its position on a guard rail at the Union County Museum. When Dr. Carter told him the guardrail was not on the agenda nor discussed, Mr. Reed informed Dr. Carter that a guardrail had been erected. Dr. Carter related that he traveled to the museum and took pictures of the guardrail and sent them to Ms. Mary Ann Stackhouse, the Board's attorney. According to Andrew Reed, the Board met a year ago and agreed not to put up a guardrail. “We agreed to do nothing, said Mr. Reed. There were two conflicting surveys and they were supposed to work together until this was settled.” According to Mr. Reed, the Historical Society was to make no modification without the Board's approval and he stated that he felt the Board had been disrespected by going around and there should be some legalities, too.

Dr. Carter explained that the Board had not seen two different surveys. Mr. Dyer, the business owner, said that he had a survey that was different from the survey which the Union County Historical Society purchased and paid for with its own funds.

Mr. Reed continued by asserting that the guardrail was blocking access to the residences by emergency vehicles and the residents themselves. Ms. Stackhouse stated that according to the ground lease, the Historical Society had no right to put up a guardrail saying, “I don't know if it was a unilateral executive decision or one made by the Board.”

Danny Wayne Collins (5th District) inquired if Ms. Stackhouse could send a letter. Ms. Stackhouse responded that she could. But she also stated that she told Dr. Carter that the lease was made until 2066 at which time both Dr. Carter and she would be deceased. Ms. Stackhouse further explained that she was also concerned that the Board may not be a named insured which would allow the Board to declare the lease in material default. Then the Board could renegotiate a four (4) year lease as is the current law for contracts. She then requested to send two letters: one on the guardrail and the other on the insurance and suggested 10 days to remove the guardrail or the Board would remove it and send the Society a bill. Some Board members commented that it did not take long to put it up, so could it not be removed sooner. Mr. Reed and Mr. Collins asked who would fix the holes and Ms. Stackhouse answered that since the Historical Society had damaged the property, they would have to fix it back. Mr. Collins said that he had talked to Greg Dyer and Mr. Dyer has no ill feeling toward the Board, that Mr. Dyer just thought “we had an agreement”, and that the Society had come over and asked him to sign so they could use his property to park cars during an event cause they don't have enough parking.

In response to Mr. Collins and an agreement, Ms. Stackhouse stated that the minutes indicated, “Frankly, the Board would do nothing”. Discussion then ensued on the width of the drive between the building and the guardrail as well as the wording of the letter.

Dr. Carter turned to another matter about vacation days and when they could be used. A new policy is causing confusion in that some employees accrue one vacation day a month but the policy states that they must accrue 6 days before any can be taken. Dr. Carter suggested that the wording be deleted and employees take days as they are accrued until a statement regarding a probationary period can be inserted.

The Workshop was completed and the Board meeting began.

The agenda was approved. No one from UCEA addressed the Board. No special recognition and the TSBA Planning Workshop was the only announcement. The consent agenda was approved. Budget amendments passed on a roll call vote. Contracts with HDS and Grace Rehab were approved. Permission to bid out the camera project was approved.

The UCHS Softball Field was named in honor of Lance Lay on a voice vote of a motion and seconded by Mr. Griffey and Mr. Moore. The second reading of Board Policies passed. The first reading of the Attendance Policy 6.204 changes passed. The 2020 Consolidated Application for Federal Funding was approved on a motion and seconded by Mr. Collins and Mr. Reed.

Ms. Stackhouse requested clarification that two letters would be sent to the Union County Historical Society. The letter on the guardrail would state that the guardrail should be removed forthwith, the property fixed, and if this is not done then the Board would remove the guardrail and invoice the Society. The other letter would be for the insurance. Dr. Carter asked if both letters could be done in one motion. Ms. Stackhouse agreed. Andrew Reed moved and Danny Wayne Collins seconded the motion to send both letters. Approval was by voice vote.

Two items were in the Addendum. Vacation Days will be taken as accrued. The 2020 Budget passed on a motion and second by Mr. Collins and Mr. Griffey with a roll call vote.

The next School Board Meeting will be Thursday, June 13, at UCHS.

Board of Education sends workers to remove guardrail.

Union County Public School maintenance worker repairs holes left by recently removed guardrail.

Union County Public School maintenance worker repairs holes as guardrail is removed by order of the Board of Education.



Family Fun in Knoxville's Backyard

As Dena Oakes walked her children through a field of bright orange pumpkins in 1999, she realized that she may be able to put her own twist on a pumpkin patch.
Three generations of Oakes have made a living in the Corryton community, while operating two agribusiness endeavors . One being Oakes Pumpkin Patch and farm, one of the largest agritourism spots in our area. This destination is filled with a corn maze, pick your own pumpkin patch, an animal exhibit and much more.

National 4-H Week: Something to Celebrate

Whether it be your first experience in the 4th grade as Mr. Bill Morgan walked into your classroom or your last experience as you traveled to National 4-H Congress, 4-H has impacted many in our community.
Last week millions of members, supports, and alumni across the nation celebrated National 4-H week while those in Tennessee had something a little extra to celebrate.

UCBPA seeks man and woman of 2021 nominees

Nominations are now open for Union County Business & Professional Association Man & Woman of 2021. Anyone in Union County may make a nomination. Nominees shall be residents of Union County or gainfully employed in Union County or a current member of UCBPA. Nominees may perform service as a result of their job or as volunteers and demonstrate good citizenship for others to emulate.

Horace Maynard FFA Seeking Alumni and Supporters

Horace Maynard FFA was established in 1928. Over the years many families have been involved in the organization and have molded their lives around agriculture in some shape or form because of the incredible impact from the experience. Currently the UCHS agriculture program holds around 130 active members, including current students and at least four who are currently in college and working to achieve their American Degree, the highest accomplishment within the organization.

Heritage Ribbons Awarded

Maddy Collins smiles with 4-H exhibit entries

Heritage Festival happens every year the first Saturday of October. Great music, great food, learning about heritage skills, and the pride of supporting our local community are just a few of the reasons that this festival is such a treasure here in Union County. However, there is a lot happening leading up to festival weekend. UT Extension Union County holds a haybale decorating contest, pie baking contest, and judging of festival exhibits each year the week before the festival.

Let's Do Launch

For me, it was a once in a life time experience and I wasn’t going to miss it.
Many, many years ago, we were visiting were relatives in Ormond Beach Fla. Being the geek that I am, I had checked the NASA website for Space Shuttle launches. Yes, they were still launching them at that time. Anyway, it so happened there was a scheduled launch during our visit.

Mind Your Own Business

I had never seen an episode of Leave It to Beaver until just a few years ago. One thing in the show that I found interesting was Wally’s use of the phrase, “Aw, you’re giving me the business” whenever someone said something that to him was unbelievable.
Now let’s turn our thoughts to the movie version of A Christmas Carol that featured George C. Scott as Ebenezer Scrooge. At one point, Scrooge tells the ghost of his seven-year deceased partner Jacob Marley that he was always a good man of business. “Business! Mankind was my business,” the ghost replied.

What Makes Great Fall Colors

Fall coloration of trees in our area is always looked forward to. The presence of a large number of trees having brilliant fall foliage is more unusual than you think, as the only other places in the world with a similar abundance of foliage colorations are northern China, Korea, and Japan. A common question this time of year is: will the colors be good or not? The answer is meteorological.


'Take a Country Road' to the 16th Union County Heritage Festival

tents at a festival

Craft vendors and demonstrators at the 2018 Festival

As the 2021 theme says, tourists from area counties as well as several states plan to “Take a Country Road” for the Union County Heritage Festival on Saturday, October 2.
Just follow Thunder Road (Hwy 33) and Wilson Lane to all of the festivities in Wilson Park. Visitors can board the free shuttle (the big yellow bus) sponsored by Monroe Bus Lines, State Farm Insurance, and City of Plainview to view the Quilt Show, talk to the authors, and eat some country cookin' at the Union County Museum.

"Cutting Time" by Betty Bullen is Heritage Fest collectible print

A field of tobacco with a tractor and a barn.

"Cutting Time," the 2021 Union County Heritage Festival collectible print by Betty Bullen

When the Union County Heritage Festival (UCHF) committee announced the theme for the 2021 Heritage Festival to be "Take A Country Road," my mind immediately went to what a one might have seen as he or she traveled down a country road in Union County some fifty-plus years ago. For sure, one would have seen a tobacco patch, or 'bakker patch' as it might have been called back then.

Locals prepare to kick off global project Operation Christmas Child

The local area team of year-round volunteers are Connie French, Rev. Jody Winstead, Cheryl Wells, Casie Demetroff, Amie Winstead, Rachel Goodman, Missy Middleton, Jessica Chambers, Roy Walton. (Not photographed: Holly Simmons, Melissa Johnson, Brenda Graves.)

Maynardville, TN, October 2021— Union County residents want children in need around the world to receive a gift this Christmas season and to experience the love and hope that can only be found in Jesus Christ.
“Anyone can be a part of making an eternal impact on the lives of children this holiday season simply by packing a shoebox gift filled with school supplies, toys, hygiene items like a toothbrush and a “WOW” item like a stuffed animal or soccer ball,” says Amie Winstead, Area Coordinator.

Heiskell's Pumpkins in the heart of Maynardville

When a five-year-old boy trotted through the patch of bright orange pumpkins, his future in agriculture was just beginning.
Jacob Heiskell, son of Jason Heiskell and a junior at Union County High School, can be found at his dad and grandfather James' service station, Heiskell’s, at the corner of Hwy. 33 and Heiskell Road in the heart of Maynardville, selling his pumpkins directly across from where they were planted.
What started out as Jacob helping his father grow pumpkins at the young age of five has now led to a young entrepreneur taking on the family tradition.

Some in Chapel concerned over chicken farm

Mary Johnson with Friends of the Chapel speaks about pharmaceutical chicken farm

Mary Johnson addressed the Union County Commission at its September 27 meeting regarding the construction of a pharmaceutical chicken farm by Alpes Sanfer, Inc., in Sharps Chapel.
The company would place eight barns with 9,000 chickens in each barn on one of the oldest farms in Sharps Chapel, according to Johnson. Sanfer will be developing pathogen-free eggs to be used in making vaccines. The facility will employ approximately 30 people at an hourly rate of $13 to $17 but have made no promise to hire Union County residents, according to Johnson.

Danger Of Heavy Handbags

Big bags — hobos, totes, messengers, the names change over years — are always in style. They’re functional, too, because they can hold a lot of, well, stuff. But that’s precisely where the risk can come in. Slung over one shoulder, they can eventually cause neck and shoulder pain similar to the kind of problem chiropractors see in kids who carry ill-fitting heavy backpacks. Women — and men — carrying such bags are contorting their posture to counterbalance a heavy bag that is pulling on one side. This can wreak havoc with muscles and with the spine.

Biscuit baking: A tradition 4-H shares with the fair

Union County 4-Hers Samuel Helton, Jessica Garcia, Elijah Helton rolling out biscuits at the TN Valley Fair

There is nothing that can compete with the smell of fresh baked biscuits!
Biscuit baking is a tradition in this region and there are many who will share fond memories of baking biscuits with their family. However, there are many who have never baked biscuits and would like to learn! Every year, 4-H combines education and the nostalgic reminder of baking biscuits with family by setting up a booth at the Tennessee Valley Fair.
Groups of students come in shifts to learn how to make biscuits and pass them out to patrons visiting the fair. It is a hit!

4-H-ers explore government at Congress

left to right in 2021 Delegates outside capitol – Rheagan Collins, Jacie Hawkins, Jeremiah Tindell, Jonathan Tindell

In August, four Union County 4-H members participated in Tennessee 4-H Congress: Rheagan Collins, Kaleb Hanna, Jacie Hawkins, Jeremiah Tindell and Jonathan Tindell. They served as a delegates and competitors at the 2021 Tennessee 4-H Congress in Nashville.
This will be the 74th anniversary of this event. Since its beginning in 1948, 4-H Congress has given some 32,400 4-H-ers and volunteer leaders firsthand experience in state government.

Farmers Market online now open

Would you like to purchase farm fresh products all year? You can!
You won’t have to miss any of that farm fresh beef and pork, dairy products, eggs, honey, soaps, balms and other products from your favorite vendors. You’ll also be able to order some of those late peppers, potatoes, winter squashes, greens as they are harvested, and, be the first to purchase fresh spring produce!

Vol State designation for UC 4-H-er Kaleb Hanna

Kaleb Hanna, Union County 4-Her received highes 4-H honor of Vol State Award.

Kaleb Hanna of Union County was one of 83 4-H members recently recognized with the Vol State award at the University of Tennessee at Martin during State 4-H Roundup.
The Vol State award is the highest level of recognition a Tennessee 4-H member may achieve. The award is presented to high school juniors and seniors in recognition of excellence in all phases of 4-H work, as well as service and leadership rendered in their communities.

4-H students compete in regional Outdoor Meat Cookery competition

left to right: Jeremiah Tindell, Jonathan Tindell, Kaleb Hanna, Travis Hanna, Jada McMurray Dyer, Jessie Garcia, Zeeva Boucher, Gracie Tindell. Members of the Union County 4-H Outdoor Meat Cookery Team

Every August, on a bright and sunny summer morning, students from across East Tennessee load up their grills and meet at the Appalachian Gray Fair in Gray, Tennessee, between Kingsport and Johnson City.

Come and dine

John 21:12 KJV:
[12] Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine.
It’s the third meeting Jesus is hosting for some of his disciples after his Resurrection. Like any good host, Jesus wants everyone to be relaxed before they really get into the serious business at hand for them. So he starts his meeting with a fish fry as it were. Fish sandwiches to be exact or at least their version of a fish sandwich, which was simply bread and fish—a highly appropriate meal for a meeting with a bunch of fishermen, cooked by someone that once said, “man does not live by bread alone.” (Matthew 4:4)


Tennessee state symbols

The state of Tennessee is the greatest place on earth. I have not lived anywhere else so I might be a little partial but most that live here, or visit will agree it’s a pretty great place.
Tennessee has a list of things that are symbolic to the state. One of the most recognizable symbols is our state flag. The flag has the iconic three stars that represents the three parts of the state that have their own qualities due to geographical and cultural differences. Those differences come together to make a state like no other.

Cucumber and Onion Salad

In the summertime, fresh from the garden, Mother would stir up a cucumber and onion salad. She never put sugar in her dish. I do. She combined vinegar, salt and water with the sliced cucumbers and onions. Mother never used sour cream in anything. We didn't have a refrigerator back in the day.

Going to school almost a century ago

I started school eighty-six years ago. I was four years old. We lived in a tenant house on the farm owner’s land. Dad earned forty dollars a month milking cows and working in the fields. The Great Depression was well under way. Farm work was the only job Dad could find. He had worked previously as a lineman, setting poles and stringing telephone wire. Most country people didn’t have phones until them.

Heart and soul

Tim and Brooke Prom 1982

I was at the tender age of 16 when I received the message. It wasn’t a text since we didn’t have smartphones back in the ’80s. And no, it wasn’t a note somebody slipped to me during class. This one came from a higher source.

Apple Knowledge

With autumn comes the nostalgia of the apple harvest, a fruit whose history goes back a long way. Legend and art have made the Tree of Knowledge that led to the downfall of Adam and Eve an apple, but the Bible only refers to a fruit. What follows is more apple knowledge of this famous fruit than you probably care to know.
Apples were first brought to America from England in 1629 by Massachusetts Governor John Winthrop. The first apples probably came from the trees Winthrop planted in Boston, from which “ten fair pippins” (apples) were picked in 1639.

The Crow’s Nest

Country Connections by James and Ellen Perry
It’s early autumn now, nights getting cooler, days getting shorter with cool mornings and warm afternoons. Some trees are showing color and goldenrods are bright yellow with flowers.
Goldenrods are the last honey flow for the bees before winter sets in. The reptiles are searching for underground places to overwinter in. Black bears and groundhogs are hunting food to build fat reserves for their upcoming hibernation.

Advertise it!

After helping my mother put up our humble, four-foot artificial Christmas for a few years, the responsibility was turned over to me. I’m not sure Mother was ever really fond of putting up a Christmas tree. I had an unspoken rule that the tree was to be put up two weeks before Christmas and taken down the day after.

TAEP application period October 1-7

The annual application period for the Tennessee Agricultural Enhancement Program is October 1-7, 2021. New application materials are available online and at the UT Extension office.
Please note Hay Storage and Hay Equipment rotate each program year. Hay Equipment will be offered in 2021-2022. Approval notifications are scheduled to be mailed mid-December.
Program purchases can be made starting October 1, 2021, and must be completed by the program’s final reimbursement request deadline.

Deep Rooted History in the Mountains of Grainger Country

It was 1972 and Bill Nickle was walking the steep mountainside of Hogskin Valley when he realized that his dream was becoming reality.
A dream born in the late 1960’s was starting to come to fruition as his vision of Narrow Ridge was laying before his eyes.

Getting Out With The New Baby

After the experience of a nine-month pregnancy and delivery, few of life’s pleasures measure up to taking the new baby out to meet the world. That could be in the form of a walk, run or hike. The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) has some thoughts for you to keep in mind on how to best enjoy that experience and avoid injury.

It Just So Happened

Some people believe in them. Some don’t. No, I am not talking about aliens or
ghosts. I am referring to coincidences. Or as we say here in East Tennessee: “It just so happened.” Recently, we experienced quite a few of them in one afternoon.

Do You Find This Offensive?

I was on my way to work the other day. I was tuned in to the BBN radio station and heard a preacher tell a joke. A preacher was in the pulpit preaching his sermon. He noticed all through the sermon that a lady kept staring directly at him.
When the service ended, the lady marched up to the preacher and said, “There are frayed strings on your bow tie and they have been driving me crazy all through your sermon. Your attire is offensive to me!”

September Dew

September is noted for having heavy dews that bejewel cobwebs and soak your feet when walking through grass. The reason is that nights are getting longer, which allows the grass and other objects more time to drop below the dew point temperature and moisture in the air condenses on the cooled surface. Dew forms on vegetation more readily than other surfaces such as pavement because leaves and grass typically are thin and suspended in the air, causing them to cool more readily to reach dew point temperature.


Education and Imagination... It All Starts Here

Holding true to the belief of freedom in reading, learning, imagining, discovering and creating, the Maynardville Public Library has three events on the fall calendar that students do not need to miss.
Providing an opportunity for independent education for our community since 1959, the Maynardville Public Library is continuing that through library card month which is currently taking place.

Driving to Maynardville

Most people in my family asked, “Maynardville where? Why in the world are you going there?”, which of course required a long answer. Here is the shortest version I can manage. Actually, it isn’t very short.

Take More Breaks To Avoid Back Injury At Work, Study Says

Workers who lift for a living need to take longer or more frequent breaks than they now do to avoid back injury, according to a new study at Ohio State University. The study also suggests that people who are new on the job need to take breaks even more often than experienced workers, and that the risk of injury is higher at the end of a work shift.

Write It Right

When I on occasion have the opportunity to look at documents from the past, there are times that I am impressed with the penmanship written by those who have long since departed this earth.

Pink Snow

I didn’t grow out of my fascination with trains. To this day, I still get excited when I see one and I also love to hear its lonesome whistle. But the one who actually witnessed the raw power of a train was my mom.
Back in the early eighties, she worked at a business in Powell that sat across the road from the railroad tracks. One day, she stepped out of the building and heard the loud revving of an engine. She looked toward where the train tracks crossed Emory Road and saw a delivery that was truck stuck on them. Yes, stuck.

Fall Traditions are Steeped in History

The Autumn Equinox is one of two times of the year when the Sun is exactly above the Equator and day and night are equal in length. That’s as far into the science of what’s going on that I’ll go. It’s the astronomical beginning of fall, which is my favorite season of the year. After a long hot and humid summer, the crisp cool mornings, balmy temperatures, and visual clarity of lower humidity are very welcome.


Let Them Read Books

Both authors and readers alike, rightfully romanticize the role of fantasy in their lives. But we often underestimate how drastic its potential is in influencing children. Centuries of storytellers have used memory to invoke tremendous imagery, to relay tales of long dead heroes,

It's Fair Time in Tennessee

As the young child walked through the rows of chickens her eyes lite up as she lifted her head to see a lighted Ferris wheel spinning in circles waiting for her to catch a ride.
This moment is one many of us have experienced walking through the fair as a young child and even still we feel a small glimmer of child like happiness when we see the line of carnival rides, games, and those delicious, candied apples.

Vintage vehicles, bands, and fireworks thunder in the park

Man standing next to a vintage car

George Massey explains why his Galaxie 500 is a 1963.5. The 1963 was modified with a slant rear window to make the car more aerodynamic for racing.

“Wow, it sure is nice to come to one of these [cruise-ins] with a good crowd,” commented a participant who relaxed under a shade tree at the 2021 Thunder in the Park. Gary England manned England's Sound Machine as “Elvis” opened with the National Anthem. The crowd had some 200 vehicles to inspect, admire, and photograph while the sounds of “Achy, Breaky Heart” and other traditional favorites played in the background. One enterprising young man was selling his truck and revved the engine to a roar in keeping with the thunder theme and the pleasure of the crowd.



Leonard Weaver

Leonard Weaver-age 62 of Luttrell, born October 15, 1958 passed away Thursday, October 14, 2021 at Claiborne Medical Center. Member of Ailordale Baptist Church and attended New Pleasant Gap Baptist Church. Preceded in death by parents, Silas and Nelma Jean (Chesney) Weaver.
Survived by wife of 40 years, Tessia Weaver; brothers, Everett (June) Weaver, Charlie Weaver, Harold (Angela) Weaver, Dayrrell (Kathy) Weaver, Daniel (Shirley) Weaver, Rusty (Cindy) Weaver; sisters, Eva Nelson, Charlotte (Bobby) Isgette, Barbara (Terry) Thomas. Numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

Dollie Cooper Muncey

Dollie Kay Cooper-age 45 of Knoxville was taken from us Tuesday, September 28, 2021. Dollie Kay was born February 18, 1976 to Sherlene Childress Cooper and Gary Cooper. She was one of 10 children. Preceded in death by father, Gary Leroy Cooper; paternal grandparents, Guy and Dollie Cooper; maternal grandparents, James and Martha Childress; sister, Judy Ann Cooper-Mebine, several aunts, uncles and cousins.

Reverend Douglas Dewayne Kitts

Reverend Douglas Dewayne Kitts – age 50 of Sharps Chapel, born November 2, 1970, went home to be with Jesus Thursday, October 7, 2021. He was saved April 4, 1980 as a 10 year old little boy at Chestnut Grove Baptist Church. Dewayne was married to his best friend, Crystal for 30 years and they enjoyed driving on the open road. Dewayne was the best daddy, father-in-law and an even better papaw. He was his family’s Superman and will be greatly missed.

Johnny Munsey

October 30, 1956 – October 6, 2021
Johnny was a hard-working man who loved his Lord, his Family and his Friends.
He will be greatly missed and he will be forever loved.

“The only scars in Heaver won’t belong to you
Nothing there is broken and you’ve been made brand new
We can smile even as our tears are flowing down
Because we know the only scars in Heaven
Are on the hands that hold you now”

Adam Edwards

James Adam Edwards, age 34, of Sharps Chapel, TN, born July 5, 1987, left this earthly life on Sunday, October 3, 2021. Adam loved living life, his friends and family. He was always cheering someone up. He was a proud employee of Glen E. Mitchell & Co. for several years. Preceded in death by grandfather, James Claudie Sharp and uncle, Marty Edwards.

Jerry Don Givens

Jerry Don Givens age 73 of Knoxville, originally from Taylor, MI, passed away Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at his home after a long battle with cancer and other illnesses. He was of the Pentecostal Faith. He was a Veteran of the U. S. Army.
He is preceded in death by his parents Ruben and Hilda Horner Givens; granddaughter Angelina Givens and infant grandson Jayden Givens; brother William and sister Carol.

Infant Ryver Rayne Hopkins

Infant Ryver Rayne Hopkins-born and died Sunday afternoon, October 3, 2021 at North Knoxville Medical Center.

Survivors: mother, Madison Hopkins of Maynardville; brother, Ethan Dykes; grandmother, Shannon Hopkins; great-grandmother, Tamra Buckner; aunt, Lauren Holmes; uncle, Landyn Centala; cousin, Dakota Wallace.

Graveside service and interment 2 p.m. Friday, October 8, 2021 at Community Cemetery, Luttrell. Family and friends are asked to meet at the cemetery by 1:45 p.m. Friday. Arrangements by Cooke-Campbell Mortuary, Maynardville.

Monica Lawson

Monica Lynn Lawson-age 46 of Luttrell passed away Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at her home. She attended Circle Assembly of God Church in Mascot. Preceded in death by her parents, Ricky and Brenda Lawson.

Survivors: husband, Ernesto Antonio Martinez; children, Joshua Eugene Simmons, Jocelyn Victoria Lawson and Jillian Marie Lawson. Brother, Thomas Coldwell.

Graveside service and interment 9:30 A.M. Thursday, October 7, 2021 at Community Cemetery, Luttrell with Rev. John Lawson officiating.
Arrangements by Cooke-Campbell Mortuary, Maynardville.

Jesse N. Elkins

Jesse N. Elkins – age 96 of Andersonville, passed away peacefully at home on October 3, 2021. He was a member of Valley Grove Baptist Church. Jesse retired from JFG Coffee Company with 41 years of service. He was also a member of J. C. Baker Masonic Lodge #720 for over 60 years.

Betty Sue organ

Betty Sue Organ-age 63 of New Tazewell, born July 22, 1958 left this earthly life Saturday, October 2, 2021 due to complications of Covid 19. She was married 43 years to the love of her life, Jerry Organ. She was momma to four children, Jason Bell, Shasta Cottrell, Jennifer (Tommy) Cockrum, Casey (Michael) Anthony. From these unions, Sue was Nana to 18 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She loved each and every one of them unconditionally. Sue loved her Lord and Saviour and loved everyone as Jesus loves us.

Haynes, Charles

Charlie L. Haynes (Chuck) - Age 84

Charlies’ earthly life ended at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, October 1, 2021, with his family by his side. Leaving behind his faithful wife of 63 years, Imogene Haynes; his loving children Rhonda (Steve) Widner, Keith (Karen) Haynes; grandchildren: Mandy (Craig) Foster, Anna (Nick) Maples, Daniel (Liz) Haynes, Nicholas Haynes (deceased); great grandchildren: Owen & Tayler Blake, Skyler Foster, Carson & Luke Maples, Bella & Levi Haynes.

Jerry Lynn Burchell

Jerry Lynn Burchell-age 58 of Corryton passed away Thursday, September 30, 2021 at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center. He attended Redemption Harvest Church and was a retired employee of Knox County Parks and Recreation. Preceded in death by father, Coy Allen Burchell; mother, Betty Ruth Grubb Burchell; brother, Jackie Leonard Burchell; sisters, Judy Ann Burchell and Barbara Jean Burchell; sister-in-law, Loretta Burchell.

Mink, Kelley Leann Dyer

Kelley Leann Dyer Mink, age 24 of Powder Springs, TN, passed away suddenly Thursday, September 30, 2021 at home. She was a former member of Lake Shore Missionary Baptist Church and present member of the Fellowship Christian Church. She was the owner operator of Sweet Southern Roots Boutique and online auction company. Kelley was the most loving, caring, and kindhearted person that anyone could meet. She loved the Lord and truly cherished her friends and online auction family. She loved her family dearly and will be greatly missed.

James Michael Elkins

James Michael Elkins, of Washburn, TN, died unexpectedly on September 28, 2021 in a car accident. The family is deeply saddened by his sudden death. He was born on August 23, 1968 in Landstuhl, Germany on U.S soil, graduated from Grissom High School in Huntsville, AL, served in the Alabama Army National Guard, and lived mostly in Tennessee towards the end of his life.

William Leon Collins

William “Leon” Collins-age 49 of Blaine went to be with his Heavenly Father Wednesday, September 29, 2021 at Jefferson Memorial Hospital.

Survivors: Mother of his daughter, Kelli; daughter, Leah Collins; Leon was her number one fan in softball and she was the love of his life. Parents, Lonnie and Shirley Collins, brother, Wayne (Loretta) Williams, niece, Brianna (Michael) Hickman; great-niece, McKinley Hickman.

Jesse (Jay) Capps

Jesse (Jay) Hubert Capps-age 81 of Powder Springs passed away Sunday, September 26, 2021 at Morristown-Hamblen Hospital. He was preceded in death by parents, Jesse and Estie Capps; sister, Maggie and brothers, Eugene, Frank, Kermit and Duane.

Survivors: wife of 59 years, Linda Jean Capps; two sons, Brian Capps and Bradley (Avery) Capps; grandchildren, T. J., Virginia, Rebecca, Jesse, Caty, Marcus, Callie, Chole, Cassie and Ava; Eight great-grandchildren. Brothers, Ira and Ronnie Capps.

Janice Marie Pimental

Janice Marie (Hensley) Pimental-age 61 of Maynardville passed away Wednesday, September 22, 2021 at U. T. Medical Center. She was of the Christian faith. Former employee of L.B.C. Utility. Preceded in death by parents, James Kelly and Georgia (Brown) Hensley; brother, Kenneth Hensley; husband, Reo Strevel.

Judith Ann Martin

Judith Ann Martin-age 78 of Maynardville passed away peacefully Thursday, September 23, 2021 at her home with her family at her side. She was a retired CAN with Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center. Preceded in death by her parents, Paris and Mary Lee West; three brothers, Gary, Bobby Ray and William West; one sister, Selma Wylie.

Jackie Lynn Atkins

Jackie Lynn Atkins-age 40 of Luttrell, born November 19, 1980 passed away Thursday, September 23, 2021 at North Knoxville Medical Center. His family ws his whole world. He loved to go camping and fishing. He is preceded in death by grandparents, Jack A. Atkins, Sr and J. B. Wyrick; father, Jack A. Atkins, Jr.

Nellie Edmondson

Nellie Ruth Edmondson (Coffey), age 85 of Maynardville, TN. Born Feb 6, 1936 in Tazewell, TN passed away at her home in Maynardville under the care of UT Hospice, Sept 24, 2021. She was a member of Chittum Chapel Baptist Church in Tazewell. She was preceded in death by her husband: Ray E. Edmondson of Maynardville, whom she loved and cared for so well, for better and for worse, even through a debilitating stroke. Parents Rev.John H Coffey and Mrs.

Eva J. Bull

Eva Jeanette (Oaks) Bull-age 74 of Maynardville went to be with our Lord and Saviour Tuesday, September 14, 2021 at her home. She was a member of Home Faith Baptist Church. Preceded in death by parents, Reverend Fate and Etta (Russell) Oaks; husband of 43 ½ years, Reverend Clarence Bull; father and mother-in-law, Silas and Murlie Bull; infant granddaughter, Christa Lachae Braden; infant great-grandson, Brayden William Frye, step-son, Wayne Bull; brother, L. G. Oaks.

Timothy D. Hensley

Timothy DeWayne “Tim” Hensley-age 49 of Corryton passed away Wednesday, September 22, 2021 at his home. Tim was born November 6, 1971. He was a member of Luttrell Missionary Baptist Church. He was the owner/operator of Ameri Tree Care. Preceded in death by father, A. J. Hensley; brother, Tony Hensley.

Gary Wade Beeler

Gary Wade Beeler-age 62 of Corryton passed away Sunday, Sept 19, 2021. He was a born-again Christian who is now resting in peace, pain and worry free. He had a kind smile and a loving heart. Ready to drop whatever he was doing to help anyone in need. There was nothing that he could not do from pulling wrenches, drawing, working on computers, to building things like houses and sheds. He had a thirst for knowledge and was always learning new things. He was an amazing person with a humble spirit who will be dearly missed. He was a U. S. Army Veteran.

Curtis Scott Braden

Curtis Scott Braden-age 53 of Luttrell passed away Monday, September 20, 2021 at his home. Preceded in death by parents, father, Donald Braden; mother, Naomi Grimes.
Survivors: daughters, Tabitha Braden, Crystal Hillard, Carrie Bailey; sons, Ronnie French and Johnny Rogers. Sisters and brothers, Robin (Gary) Flynn of Clinton; Daris Braden of Luttrell, Misty Little of Knoxville, Monty (Missy) Walker of Maynardville, Franklin D. Grimes, II of Strawberry Plains. Several grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

James Herbert Nicolai

James Herbert Nicolai-age 78 of oak Ridge passed away Friday, September 17, 2021 at Wyndridge Healthcare Center, Crossville. He was a U. S. Army Veteran serving 1967 -1969.
Interment 2 p.m. Sunday, September 19, 2021, Narrow Ridge Natural Burial Preserve, Washburn. Arrangements by Cooke-Campbell Mortuary, Maynardville.