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VOL. 52 NO. 11 1 |

Teacher offers support for Bob Thomas By Lauren Hopson

NEWS Sandra Clark – 865-661-8777 Sarah Frazier – 865-342-6622 ADVERTISING SALES 865-342-6084 Amy Lutheran | Patty Fecco Beverly Holland | Mary Williamson CIRCULATION 844-900-7097

Scott Gilbert and Paul James study litho monoprints by artist Kate Katomski inspired by the “keyhole” at Ross Marble Quarry. Several Katomski prints will be on display each Sunday from Easter through Mother’s Day at Candoro Marble. Photo submitted

By Betsy Pickle The Candoro Arts & Heritage Center is getting serious about establishing itself as South Knoxville’s prime destination for public art. Candoro is partnering with Dogwood Arts for an art show

open 2-5 p.m. on Sundays, April 16-May 14, at the Candoro Marble building, 4450 Candora Ave. An artist reception/fundraiser will be held 5-8 p.m. Friday, May 12. The art show is the lead-up to the 17th annual Vestival celebration, May 13 at Candoro. Vestival

traditionally takes place on the Saturday before Mother’s Day. As for launching the show on another holiday, CAHC board president Sharon Davis says she knows that’s a little risky. “The kickoff is Easter Sunday,” she notes. “I don’t know if I was

crazy to do that or not; we’ll see. After people eat lunch, we’d like for them to bring the family by and view the art show and take a free tour of the building.” The theme of the juried art To page A-3

Melony Dodson loves music and the outdoors and music therapy, “feels By Carol Z. Shane like home to me.” She came You know her voice, but you probably to Knoxville to earn her wouldn’t recognize her if you ran into her in master’s degree in collaboraKroger or Rami’s Cafe. Melony Dodson, who tive piano at the University has been the announcer for WUOT’s Mornof Tennessee, and is welling Concert for the last seven years, loves livknown around town as a piaing here, and she’s celebrating one year of ocnist for the UT Concert Choir cupancy in her historic house, built in 1935, and Men’s Chorale, First this spring. United Methodist Church in Originally a Tarheel, Dodson grew up in Dodson Oak Ridge, and pianist/muGreensboro, N.C., but says that Boone, where she attended Appalachian State University sic director for the Clarence Brown Theatre for bachelor’s degrees in piano performance and Theatre Knoxville.

Mainly, though, she’s the friendly voice you hear on WUOT on weekday mornings. “There are so many things I love about that job,” she says. “Discovering new music. Hearing from listeners how the music has positively impacted their lives. My awesome colleagues. Interviewing really interesting people.” She’s pressed to find anything she doesn’t like, but finally mentions, “Having to work on snow days! It would be nice to hibernate then, which we don’t get to do.” To page A-3

MPC rolls out draft of walkability ordinance By Nancy Anderson Gerald Green says sidewalks offer a lot of benefits. The Knoxville-Knox County Metropolitan Planning Commission, which Green heads, has finalized its draft walkability ordinance. Green spoke last week at the Karns Community Club. “Transportation, you can walk to your local grocery store. Recreational, you can run or walk your dog, which also adds health benefits. A great sense of community, sidewalks connect you with your neighbors. You can get out and visit with your neighbors and get to know them. That adds to the safety factor. When you’re outside you can see what’s going on in your own neighborhood.” Green shared a draft of the “Proposed Walkability Ordinance for city of Knoxville and Knox

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foot for new development. Since sidewalks are required on only one side of the street, the cost is ultimately divided by two homes. “In the end, the sidewalks will add about $1,500 per home, which is nominal considering the added value. We don’t know what the fee in lieu of would be, but hopefully it will not be seen as more attractive by developers. That would just pass on cost to the homeowner without any added value.” The fee would be used to build sidewalks elsewhere to improve connectivity. Sidewalks will have to adhere to the Americans with Disabilities Act with regard to cross slopes. While a sidewalk, which must be 5 feet wide, can contour to rolling hills, it can’t have a cross slope causing someone in a wheelchair to slide off.

Green said the walkability ordinance is now being presented to the public, and it is imperative to let the county commissioners know your thoughts. “The walkability ordinance in now available online, it’s being rolled out to the public. Now is the time to let your county commissioners know your thoughts whatever they may be – the good, the bad and the ugly. That’s going to directly relate to the success and funding of this project. “They need to know what you want. They’re here to enact your vision and they need to know what this vision is. “Visit the MPC webpage often to stay current, you can sign up for emails, and you can contact your county commissioner through the webpage.” Info:


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County” with a small but enthusiastic crowd of about 20. The ordinance proposes that all new development and redevelopment will provide sidewalks with the exception of some types of development outside the Gerald Green urbanized area. Developers can pay a fee in the event terrain does not permit sidewalks. Many expressed concern that the fee would be more attractive than paying to put in sidewalks. Green said that sidewalks would improve home value and thus attract buyers and that the goal is to impose a fee that is not more attractive than installing sidewalks, which will cost about $40 a linear

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Candoro Dogwood art show ‘favors’ SoKno artists


At the public forum for the final two candidates for Knox County superintendent of schools, I witnessed two ends of the spectrum. One struck Hopson me as a used car salesman who talked a lot but avoided answering the questions. What he said did not match up with the stories I have heard from people who have worked with him. The other was sincere and clearly connected with the crowd. On many occasions, he has asked for my input on how best to move our school system forward and restore a culture of respect and professionalism to our system while keeping the focus on our kids. When my term as president of the Knox County Education Association ends, I will most likely be returning to the classroom. Leaving KCS would cost me my tenure and likely my ability to advocate for public education. It could jeopardise my career and ability to provide for my family. However, I will not work for another superintendent who puts on one face for the public and another out of the spotlight. I will not work for another superintendent who refuses to genuinely collaborate with the people who do the heavy lifting every day. I will not work for another superintendent who makes teachers feel afraid to be an active part of their professional association and advocate for our students. I will not work for another superintendent who won’t support my right to challenge the Department of Education when it enacts policies that are harmful to our profession and our children. I will not work for another superintendent who rewards those who publicly agree with him, no matter how they feel in private, and punishes those willing to speak the truth. However, I will proudly work for a man who exemplifies integrity and decency while building relationships with teachers and students based on a desire to help both groups succeed. I will proudly work for Bob Thomas. The Board of Education will choose the next superintendent in less than two weeks. I encourage everyone to contact all school board members and voice your opinion, even if it is not the same as mine. My opinion is only one. They need to hear all of them.

A-2 • MArch -NewS arch 15, 15,2017 2017 •• PSowell outh SKhoPPer nox Shopper news

health & lifestyles

Estella Whitehead, RN, is certified in inpatient obstetrics. She works with Jennifer Thomasson, RN, who is a certified lactation Wound-certified nurse Anne Rodgers, RN, works with Lynne consultant, to provide the best possible care in labor and de- Penny Elder, RN, is certified in gerontological nursing. She has a heart for providing excellent care to older adult patients. Bevins to examine and treat a patient’s wound. livery.

Fort Sanders Regional celebrates Certified Nurses Day Certified Nurses Day™ honors nurses worldwide who contribute to better patient outcomes through national board certification in their specialties. A registered nurse (RN) license allows nurses to practice. Certification affirms advanced knowledge, skill and practice to meet the challenges of modern nursing. Fort Sanders Regional is proud to employ a total of over 120 certified nurses in the following categories:

Accredited Case Management Adult Nurse Practitioner Ambulatory Perianesthesia Nursing Bariatric Nursing Breast Cancer Cardiac Surgery Certified Case Management Critical Care Nursing Emergency Nursing Family Nurse Practitioner

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Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center receives highest NICHE designation Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center announces it has again achieved “Exemplar” status by the Nurses Improving Care for Health system Elders (NICHE) program. This is the third time Fort Sanders has received “Exemplar” status in recent years, signaling the organization’s dedication to providing patient-centered care for older adults. “The staff at Fort Sanders continues to evaluate the unique needs of patients 65 years and older and continually develops best practices to provide specialized care. Our long-standing commitment to improving elder care is reflected in the NICHE designation,” says Keith Altshuler, chief administrative officer at Fort Sanders Regional. NICHE is an international program designed to help health

care organizations improve the care of older adults. NICHE, based at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing, includes more than 680 health care organizations in the United States, Canada, Bermuda, Singapore and Australia. The “Exemplar” status is the highest of four levels of recognition of NICHE facilities. Rankings are issued following a rigorous self-evaluation of the current state and future goals of the hospital. Fort Sanders was the first NICHE-certified facility in our region and has served as a model to other hospitals across the nation for more than a decade. Currently, three other Covenant Health facilities also carry the NICHE designation: Fort Loudoun, LeConte and Parkwest Medical Centers.

Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon races set for April 1-2 Mark your calendars for the 2017 Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon events – and lace up your running shoes! The races are set for Saturday, April 1 (5K race and the popular Covenant Kids Run) and Sunday, April 2 (half-marathon, two- and four-person relays and full marathon). The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon has grown to become the largest competitive road race in East Tennessee. As in previous years, all races will have an exciting finish on the 50-yard line inside Neyland Stadium. For many, it is the thrill of seeing themselves on

the JumboTron as they cross the finish line that inspires them to participate in the events. But the best reward may be what runners gain by the entire experience. Proceeds from the marathon benefit the Knoxville Track Club’s youth athletic program and Covenant Health’s Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center Innovative Recreation Cooperative (IRC), which encourages people with disabilities to pursue leisure and sports activities. To learn more or to register, go to www.

NursiNg ExcEllENcE Fort Sanders Regional salutes the nearly 1,500 nursing professionals who provide excellent care for our patients around the clock, every day of the year.


Thank you.

South Knox Shopper news • March 15, 2017 • A-3

SoKno artists

Rescuer builds highway to animal adoption By Joanna Henning Some people dedicate themselves so completely to a cause that they give selflessness an entirely new meaning. Carmen Trammell, a longtime resident of South Knoxville, happens to be one of these people. For the past 17 years, she has helped change the landscape for animal rescue in East Tennessee through Peaceful Kingdom, a nonprofit organization she founded in 2000 to “introduce innovative approaches to ending animal overpopulation in Knox and surrounding counties.” Some of Carmen’s innovative approaches include Critter magazine, a monthly publication that profiles rescue groups and adoptable animals from guinea pigs to horses and everything in between. Over the years, Peaceful Kingdom has sponsored other animal welfare efforts, including a subsidized spay/neuter program, feral cat trap and release, a pet ID tag service, and an adoption center. In 2012, GoNorth Animal Transport Collaborative became Carmen’s latest venture, moving dogs and puppies from the overcrowded shelters of several East Tennessee counties to northern shelters located mostly in Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin. These northern states actually have a market for adoptable dogs, and shelters are frequently un-

Carmen Trammell and one of her rescue dogs, Fred

der capacity. Carmen runs a tight ship with GoNorth. The group has a van and a dedicated driver, and everyone from volunteers to shelters follow a carefully orchestrated plan. The receiving shelters know exactly which dogs are coming, their health status, and other vital information, and the sending shelters choose dogs based on an ASPCA behavioral test to ensure that each dog has a sound temperament. Finally, all dogs are given a health certificate by a licensed veterinarian, vaccinated, dewormed and given flea and tick treatment before transport, and if spay/ neuter surgery hasn’t already been performed, each animal will be altered at the receiving shelter before being adopted. Carmen explains that “transporting southern shelter animals to northern shelters is a lifesaving bridge to the day that pet

supply and adoption demand are in balance.” So far, 8,962 dogs have escaped euthanasia by traveling north to adoptive homes, and the number continues to grow. GoNorth transports around 25 dogs each trip, and they make an average of eight trips per month. And while education, spay/neuter programs and continued outreach by area animal welfare or-

Mary Pearl Cruze Thompson and husband Clarence Thompson pose by the new Baker Creek Preserve kiosk, which shares the Cruze family history. Photos by Betsy Pickle

Headed north, the dogs are ready for the long trip ahead.

ganizations have helped reduce the number of animals euthanized each year, GoNorth and other transport groups have had a massive impact as well. The average rate of euthanasia for 13 area shelters has dropped from 68% in 2005 to 25% in 2016, and thanks to people like Carmen, the outlook for coming years looks even more promising.

From page A-1

show – and of Vestival – this year is “South of the River: Live Work Play,” and Davis says SoKno-based artists will be “favored” (receive preference) in the art selection. Artists may submit up to three pieces of work through April 3. Registration is under the Vestival tab on A special feature of the art show will be litho monoprints by artist Kate Katomski, made in collaboration with master printer Beauvais Lyons. Katomski visited Knoxville last fall for a presentation in conjunction with the “Rock of Ages” exhibit on Tennessee pink marble on display at the East Tennessee History Center. A piece purchased by Paul James, former executive director of Ijams Nature Center, will be on loan, and other Katomski prints will

be offered for sale. Katomski’s works were inspired by the “keyhole” at the Ross Marble Quarry at Ijams. New art submitted for the show does not have to incorporate marble, but “we thought since we were having this art show, we’d feature her prints,” says Davis, who is on the show committee with chair Kara Strouse and Janine Al-Aseer. Davis expects to have 30 to 35 works in the show. People who visit Candoro on the Sundays leading up to Vestival can register for a door prize that will be given away at the May 12 reception. This is the longest any Vestival art show has been on display, and Davis says Candoro is happy to provide more exposure for the artists. “We are enhancing the arts and heritage part of our name,” she says.

Melony Dodson

From page A-1

It says a lot about Dodson that she actually considers going up on the roof to clean snow off the radio station’s satellite dish as a “snow day perk.” But then, she lists hiking, backpacking and camping as her favorite hobbies. “Fishing, kayaking and rock climbing are new hobbies that I stink at, but they are all fun,” she says. She also loves gardening, cooking and trying out new craft beers, and she makes an occasional foray into yoga. Come spring, she’ll be out walking the boulevard, and working on those new outdoor skills. She’s looking forward to all of it and says, “there’s so much to love about living here!”

Kevin Hill studies the map of the Urban Wilderness and its trails on the front of the kiosk after the unveiling.

Cruze descendant pleased with Baker Creek tribute

COMMUNITY NOTES ■■ South Knox Republican Club. Info: Kevin Teeters, ■■ Colonial Village Neighborhood Association. Info: Terry Caruthers, 865-5795702, ■■ Knoxville Chapter of the Tennessee Firearms Association. Info: Liston Matthews, 865-316-6486. ■■ Knoxville Tri-County Lions Club. Info:

Edward Foster Cruze was unable to travel from his home in Lexington due to illness. Thompson’s father, Elbert Cruze, was the youngest son of Lucius Alexander Cruze and Pearlie Melinda Watson Cruze. Her great-grandfather, James Madison Cruze, built a two-story house on the property “just before the Civil War. They had lived before that in a log cabin.” Thompson says the original James Madison Cruze (then Crews) was born in 1758 in Buckingham, Va. He and brother Gideon fought in the Revolutionary War and for that were kicked out of their Quaker church. They moved their families to Tennessee in 1792. Her ancestors ended up taking the name Cruze to differentiate themselves from Gideon’s line, who owned slaves. “Our family objected very strongly to slavery,” Thompson says. She grew up in a church of which her grandparents were staunch members – Island Home Baptist – until her teenage years, when she joined nearby Sevier Heights Baptist. Thompson says she and her brother and a neighbor boy roamed throughout the hills and

played. “We built dams. Mother would give us a sandwich, and we’d be gone for hours.” She and Ed also had chores, such as bringing in wood for the stove. They sometimes helped with “candling” eggs. “Back then, you didn’t have babysitters,” she said. “No matter where (our parents) went, we went. “When they went out to milk, we went with them. When we went to the springhouse, of course they had to strain the milk and put it in jars, somebody would invariably get wet, and that would start a water fight. The four of us!” After Thompson started her own family,

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her father built a house on the property for her. She and her husband left Knoxville in 1964 when he took a job in Florida, where they lived for 40 years. They moved to Salisbury two years ago. She broke her hip about 15 years ago, so she wasn’t able to tackle the trails at Baker Creek Preserve. But she says she loved riding a bike in her day. “You know where Galbraith School is? I would start at the top of that hill and ride all the way down and make that curve on Taylor without holding on to the handlebars! I was a pretty good rider. It was a lot of fun.”

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By Betsy Pickle When Legacy Parks Foundation developed Baker Creek Preserve into a sprawling forested park with seven miles of multi-use and downhill biking trails, signs of the previous occupants were plentiful. The land had been a working farm owned by several generations of the Cruze family. Mary Pearl Cruze Thompson and members of her extended family came to Knoxville March 4 for the unveiling of a kiosk that shares the Cruze story. In a word, they were “thrilled.” Thompson, who turns 95 April 10, says she had been afraid that the old farm – almost 140 acres at one time – would be developed into houses. “Houses go down, neighborhoods go down, and I really hated to see that,” she said. “When I heard what was happening, I was thrilled to death because it’s preserved, and it’ll be enjoyed. Ed (her younger brother) and I are both thrilled to death. In fact, everybody is – our children, grandchildren.” She and her husband of 60 years, Clarence Thompson, live in Salisbury, N.C., and family members came from North Carolina and Kentucky for the event. Brother

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A-4 • March 15, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

Young First Kids By Kip Oswald Quentin Roosevelt and the White House Gang may have brought their pony inside the W h i t e House, but they were not the only First Kids to have a Kip pet pony. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy moved into the White House with his wife and his 4-year-old daughter, Caroline, and baby son, John. They were the youngest children to live in the White House since Quentin Roosevelt. Caroline had a pony named Macaroni, who roamed freely around the White House gardens and was seen looking in the windows at the president. Caroline even went to first grade inside the White House, where her mother made a special classroom on the third floor. Ten of Caroline’s friends joined her White House school. Can you imagine the carpool of parents dropping their kids at the White House in the morning for school? The Kennedys hated television and had all the televisions taken out of the White House when they moved in, until Caroline cried when she couldn’t see the show “Lassie.” Then they had one television brought back just for Caroline. President Kennedy’s children would often come to visit their father in the Oval Office. Guests could

expect a meeting with the president to be interrupted by Caroline coming through on her tricycle, or John Jr. pretending to be a soldier and practicing his salute. John Jr. played under his father’s desk. There was even a secret door in the desk where he hid often. President Jimmy Carter’s daughter, Amy, was 9 years old when she moved into the White House with her mother, two older brothers and their wives. Unlike Tad Lincoln, who had a fort built on top of the White House, Amy had a treehouse built for her. There are many trees in the backyard of the White House, so Amy could go to her treehouse when she wanted to be alone. Chelsea Clinton, daughter of President Bill Clinton, moved into the White House when she was 12 years old and remained very private the whole time. President Barak Obama’s daughters, Sasha and Malia, were just 7 and 10 when they moved into the White House. Sasha was the youngest child to live in the White House since John Kennedy Jr. moved in as a baby. Both girls have really grown up in the White House and are now really famous, but neither of them has Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media accounts, so we really can’t keep up with them on social media like other famous people. Next week we will find out what it really is like inside the White House! Send comments to

Carter High Singers hit high notes together By Esther Roberts “I don’t like to waste their time.” This respect for her students is the hallmark of Carter High School choral director Jessica Strutz. Strutz quickly gets the advanced choir, The Carter Singers, focused and ready to work. In a moment, two dozen chatty teenagers meld into one voice. They are attentive. Enthusiastic. And oh, so very talented. “We go to competitions and other schools see ‘Carter’ and think, ‘oh, that’s just a rural school.’” The expectation of larger schools, Strutz explains, is that the choral groups at Carter won’t be very good. At a recent competition, however, the other schools were taken by surprise when some judges gave Carter a “Superior” rating. Strutz smiles. “Carter’s school motto is ‘Excellence for EVERY Child,’ and my students strive to embody that motto.”

Observing Strutz work with her students is like watching a beloved athletic coach work with top-tier talent. Strutz is inspiring, supportive and demanding. Her students are dedicated to their art and devoted to their “coach.” The banter between students and teacher reflects a mutual affection founded on mutual respect. The Singers are a diverse group, including the 2017 Carter Valedictorian, members of the football team, the wrestling team and the moot court team. Singers are all different shapes and sizes, colors and ethnic backgrounds, some live in suburbs and some on sprawling farms. The unifying thread that binds them together is music. When asked to talk about what it’s like to be a Singer and learn under “Strutz,” the students are quick to answer, but with one caveat – no individual source cred-

Second-grader Laney Brown rehearses “Dance of the Sugar- First-grader Kaitlyn Devaney shows off two of her creations: a plum Fairy” before the show. watercolor and a vase.

Kid perspective blooms at

Dogwood art show Second grader Owen Crossley flawlessly performs “Frere Jacques.”

By Betsy Pickle International elements worked their way into Dogwood Elementary School’s annual Night of the Arts. Though definitely a local affair, the art show included Japanese-influenced pieces created during the afterschool collaboration with the Knoxville Museum of Art. And the music portion with student and staff performances boasted several songs from other countries, including the timeless favorite “Frere Jacques.” Walls and tables were filled with examples of students’ artwork. There were stations for make-and-take activities. Parents proudly took photos of their kids’ masterpieces. Hope Brashear, Dogwood’s art teacher, roamed the halls, making sure the

Teacher Laura Wright helps third grader Allison Bryan and brother Zachary, a South-Doyle Middle School sixth grader, make magnets as mom Karen Bryan looks on. Photos by Betsy Pickle event went smoothly. “I am really impressed when I look around the halls at all of the ideas the kids have come up with,”

she said. “They have some unique and wonderful ways of saying things.” She cited group projects by fourth- and fifth-graders

it for their comments. “We sing as one voice; we speak as one voice.” So – what’s it like to be a Singer? “I’ve gained so much self-confidence!” “Being a Singer makes me feel cool!” “I feel authentic when I’m singing.” “Nobody judges you, and I love that.” “Being a Singer has opened my mind to other types of music, other cultures, other languages.” “Singing is way more challenging than I ever thought it would be, but I love how much I am learning.” “I love how we’ve developed such a kinship – we’re all so very different, but not in here. Here, we are Singers.” “The discipline of singing has helped me gain Choir director Jessica Strutz has been teaching at Carter High School for seven years.

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skills I will need throughout my life – to be on time, to strive to always do better, to be my best self, every single day.” All this from – singing? Yes, indeed. “In addition to singing, the students learn about other aspects of putting on our various musical productions,” Strutz says. They act and dance. They also learn stage management, set design, costuming and props, and various aspects of the business side of the music industry such as publicity and fundraising.” How can the community support the Carter Choral program? The Singers answer: “We need new risers. We need a (choral) shell. But what we really need is community support – come to our performances! We want to share our music with everyone, so please come!” This is an invitation not to be missed – the invitation of our youth.

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South Knox Shopper news • March 15, 2017 • A-5

What is an ‘Ides,’ anyhow? Beware of them, for they will hand you over to councils and flog you in their synagogues; and you will be dragged before governors and kings because of me, as a testimony to them and the Gentiles. (Matthew 10: 17-18 NRSV)

Ellen Kellogg, Matthew Kellogg, Diane Reynolds, Carla Mae Basile, Mary Beth Tugwell and Brian Hann were among many members of the Appalachian Mountain Bike Club visiting SoKno Taco on Friday night, March 3.

SoKno Taco makes friends quickly

The “formal” dining room at SoKno Taco Cantina was packed on the restaurant’s first Friday night. Photos by Betsy Pickle Jason Stephens and Jay Basile enjoy beers while waiting for their party to be seated.

By Betsy Pickle The busiest corner in South Knoxville was in South Haven on a recent Friday night. On its third official day, SoKno Taco Cantina, 3701 Sevierville Pike, brimmed over with diners and high expectations. Folks from the neighborhood and beyond seemed excited to be at the new eatery and didn’t mind the inevitable wait for a table. Co-owner Bryan “Howie” Howington pitched in with general manager Ryan Stef-

fy, manager Stephanie Hall and the serving staff, hustling to feed the clientele in the two dining rooms and a spacious bar area. The restaurant opened to the public on Feb. 27, even though it didn’t officially launch until March 1. Hall said they’d been busy all week, selling out of at least one menu item every day. SoKno Taco Cantina opens daily at 11 a.m. It closes at 1 a.m. SundayWednesday and 2 a.m. Thursday-Saturday. It does not take reservations.

Lynn Pitts

for most months, but on the 15th for March, May, July and October. Ides were supposed to be determined by the full moon, because of the lunar origin of the Roman calendar. Therefore, the variance of the date. All of that is long ago history, of course, but it is also a reminder of the dangers of overarching ambition and self-importance. Even today, it behooves leaders of any area of endeavor – whether political, religious, professional, military, social or educational – to keep in mind their humanity, their responsibility, and their obligation to the people they lead and serve. And, importantly, it behooves all of us to remember our history, lest we repeat it.


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Webb club gives $1,000 to India eye clinic By Tom King

Cross Currents

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The Rotary guy

In January, the members of the Webb School Interact Club had a special dinner fundraising event – “A Taste of India.” The students Tom King raised almost $4,000 in one evening for the projects the club supports. Webb junior Kalina Scarbrough, president of Webb Interact, presented a check for $1,000 to her grandfather Kanti Patel. He will use the money to help an eye clinic that he helped establish in his hometown in Gujarat, India. The clinic provides free eye operations for anyone in the surrounding area. He also is supporting a pediatrics program and now an assisted living center for the elderly. “Mr. Patel is matching the $1,000 and on his next trip to India will take photos of the clinic to show the Interact students how their money has made a difference 8,000 miles away!” says Liz Gregor, Webb’s multicultural coordinator and the Interact Club adviser. The Interact Club is the high school arm of Rotary International. The 50-member Webb club is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Knoxville. The students also selected these projects to support with the balance of the funds they raised:

Today is the Ides of March, a date made famous by the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 B.C. In ancient days, the Ides (they can be singular or plural, according to the dictionary) were marked by many religious observances, but today the Ides of March is best known for Caesar’s murder. You may remember from school days the famous quote from Shakespeare’s play “Julius Caesar,” when Caesar is warned by a soothsayer to “beware the Ides of March.” According to Plutarch, a seer had warned that harm would come to Caesar no later than the Ides of March. Caesar passed it off as nothing, even joking that “the Ides are come,” apparently thinking that the prophecy was false. The seer replied “Aye, Caesar; but not gone.” Perhaps Caesar should have heeded the warning. Every month in the Roman calendar had an Ides near the midpoint of the month – on the 13th

$500 to support Remote Area Medical in Knoxville $1,000 to support the slum school some of the students have visited in Chandigarh, India $1,000 to support education/students in South Africa $500 to support clean water/wells in Thailand ■■ Bearden Rotarian

Bob Ely dies

Longtime Rotarian and past District 6780 governor Bob Ely passed away last Wednesday morning. His services were this past Saturday, and members of the Rotary Club of Bearden were honorary pallbearers. Ely was a founding member of the Rotary Club of Bearden in 1960, a Rotarian for 55plus years and in 1981-82 was elected district governor. He also was a past president of the Bearden club, which was known as the Rotary Club of West Knoxville then.


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last words The unshakable Frank Bowden Frank Bowden’s funeral was over before I knew he was gone. I learned of his death when I saw his obituary in a stack of papers I’d set aside to read when I got the time, and although I knew him Frank Bowden pretty well, there was a lot I didn’t know about Frank Bowden, because he really didn’t talk about himself much. He would have turned 90 this year, which means he was one of the youngest of the Greatest Generation, having served in the U.S. Army in Germany and France. This would have placed him in some of the fiercest fighting of the war at age 18. When I knew him, some 50 years later, he was one of those “Stand me up at the gates of hell and I won’t back down” guys that Tom Petty sang about. Another thing I didn’t know about him was that as a science teacher and a principal, he worked to integrate Southern Appalachian Regional Science Fair and was an active but behind-the-scenes participant in the civil rights struggles of the ‘60s, providing transportation and bail money for the Knoxville College students who were sittingin at downtown lunch counters and picketing the Tennessee Theatre. Bob Booker was among those KC students Frank assisted. “I’m not sure he felt comfortable marching and carrying signs, but there were a number of people who would get students out of jail and provide transportation when they needed to get downtown. He was in the forefront of trying to move us forward and was always interested in progress. He tried to bring that to every school he was assigned to, whether

Betty Bean as a teacher or a principal. He was a strong voice. No question about that.” Years later, when Bowden was a county commissioner, Booker enjoyed his sparring with County Executive Dwight Kessel, who opposed Bowden’s efforts to force the county to recognize the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Mark Cawood, who served on commission with Bowden, remembers those battles, too. “He told Kessel to take that sheet out of his closet and wear it,” Cawood said. I can’t remember the precise issue, but I do remember the time Bowden – who could flat turn a phrase – elegantly accused his colleagues of being spineless by saying they had “exoskeletons,” and the time he told a pandering colleague to “Put that race card back in your pocketbook.” But my favorite Bowden memory happened the day buses full of Christian Coalition members packed the hall and cheered while their preachers demanded that the commissioners sign onto a resolution denouncing “special rights” for gay people. Popularly known as the “Gay Bashing Resolution,” it had no force of law, but was being carried to local elected bodies all over the country, and would become a cudgel come the next election. There were 19 commissioners in those days, and 15 of them voted – with varying degrees of enthusiasm – for the measure. Two passed. Another, Bee DeSelm, voted no. And one voted “Not only no, but hell no.” That was Frank William Bowden. I’m glad I knew him.

A-6 • March 15, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

Difference of opinion In comparison to recent athletics directors, John Currie may be cause for celebration. He brings an actual track record. He is relatively modern. He uses the word “cool.” John Currie He has personality and doesn’t do sun lamps or hair dye. Now that the music has stopped and noise has subsided, let us seek what passes for the truth. What we have here is a guarded difference of opinion about the new man at Tennessee. There is high praise, mostly from far-away places. There are biting local undertones but they do not sound lethal. Those who guided Dr. Beverly Davenport in her discovery and knee-jerk choice of Currie identified the precise qualities she sought: An established leader at a so-so Power 5 school who would see UT as a full step up. A man of integrity, yea, with respect for NCAA rules. A smart salesman (comfortable with other millionaires, keen at remembering names, polished at smiling and shaking hands). John demonstrated several skills

Marvin West

in negotiating a very favorable bonus contract for himself. A builder and maybe even a visionary with proper appreciation for great athletes who turn all the wheels. Favoring athletes and academics is very popular. It discourages lawsuits about misuse and abuse. All that information and more was available in the official Currie biography or in glowing reports of his success at Kansas State. Some who actually know John, who worked with him in his previous years in Knoxville, have reservations. Some in Manhattan claim the community is pleased that he is gone. One UT employee, before and after Currie, is “flabbergasted” by the selection. John was supposedly No. 2 in being least liked. Ask later who was No. 1. After that, ask if being liked is important to being the boss. Another former associate said Currie tried to change the entire culture to reflect the Atlantic Coast Confer-

ence image, specifically Wake Forest, from whence he came. As for him morphing into a Tennessee guy, no way. “Not sure he could find Ayres Hall with a campus map.” A third said, being charitable, that John was a bully. There were other caustic words. John has been called Mike Hamilton 2.0, much better at raising and spending money than identifying, hiring and keeping winning coaches. He was Hamilton’s right-hand man in the knockout of Phillip Fulmer the week of the Wyoming game in 2008. Currie is also linked to Lane Kiffin. Ouch. One sincere critic wonders if Donna Thomas, prominent on the search committee, provided that information to Dr. Davenport. John is perceived as a micromanager. That is code for butting into subordinates’ business. There was a zinger from a support person: “John decided how many dill pickle slices should be in box lunches.” Go light on some of this stuff, all anonymous talk radio and coffee-break chatter, presented as certified facts, but don’t quote me. OK to attribute good stuff – intelligent, energetic, tenacious, passionate.

Jake Mabe

My favorite story is the time Mr. Hoffmeister, Knox County Schools superintendent from 1976-92, persuaded Eugene Hall to sell 10 acres on Andersonville Pike to the county to build

(Marvin West invites reader reaction. His address is

UT administrators paid well in retreat The current controversy on high pay for UT administrators who return to teach as faculty could not come at a worse time for the university, as it suggests waste through inflated salaries that are not genuinely earned or deserved. To retire as chancellor, president or provost and then earn 75 percent of your salary with no limit as to how long it lasts and no connection to duties, workload or ability seems fundamentally misplaced. It is not fiscally conservative. It is wasteful. UT is often asking for more money and telling the Legislature not to micromanage. This weakens

ing when he offered to limit his own benefit to four years instead of a lifetime. He is Victor taking a bullet for the other Ashe six people who are enjoying this benefit. Will the others step forward and announce an end to this windfall? Good question to be asked. The excuse that this is their argument as the board of trustees allowed this to what other comparable universities are paying does happen. This was actually re- not apply for retreat salaries ported in this column some once the administrator rethree months ago after Jim- turns to his prior job. How my Cheek announced his re- did the trustees allow this tirement as chancellor, but to happen? If they had read now the daily media have their materials they would have known it, as they apdiscovered it. UT President Joe DiPi- proved the contracts allowetro obviously saw the pub- ing this. The trustees were lic relations disaster loom- not doing their job of exam-

Earl Hoffmeister was superintendent for all Earl Hoffmeister was a South Knox legend when he played football and basketball at the old Young High School. But he’s probably best remembered, at least by oldtimers, as the man who toppled another South Knox legend, the iconic 30year superintendent Mildred Doyle. Mr. Hoffmeister died last week. He was 90 and had been living at Morning Pointe Assisted Living in Powell.

Keep in mind that Tennessee recollections are eight or more years old. We don’t know how maturity and additional experience may have changed Currie. K-State inside talk sounds suspiciously similar but it could be prejudiced. Certain Vol lettermen, some outspoken, were wounded by the selection process. They think Fulmer was used as window dressing. They fear David Blackburn may never be the same. Fans and media had him believing he was a logical choice. Most who really wanted a genuine Vol for Life have elected to take a deep breath and go on living. We can still marvel at Dr. Davenport’s “non-negotiable” criteria since she came to UT without ever being chancellor at a Power 5 school. Of all the things John Currie is or isn’t, has or hasn’t done, something he said at the welcome party got my attention: “The University of Tennessee can and should be the very best athletic program in the country.” Terrific idea. Let’s go for it. No more basketball collapses, no more football losses to Vanderbilt, never again last in SEC track and field, contenders in everything, national champs in several sports. If I were coaching, that would make me nervous.

the present-day Halls Elementary School. “Mr. Hall,” Earl said, “if you’ll sell us this land, I promise I’ll name the school after you.” And he did – Halls Elementary School. Born in Maryville, Mr. Hoffmeister grew up in South Knoxville. He was also a World War II veteran. After the war, he attended UT and played football briefly before transferring to Wofford College, where

he met his wife of 67 years, JoAnne. The Hoffmeisters moved to Powell and he taught at Powell High and at Central High, where he later became vice principal. Popular with students, he was nicknamed “Hoff.” He built houses during the summers for a time, and JoAnne was his partner in business, too. They attended Powell United Methodist for 63 years. As superintendent, he surrounded himself with

good staff and was popular with people in an era when voters elected the superintendent. He oversaw the merging of Knoxville City Schools into the county school system in 1986-87 and won re-election each time he ran for superintendent. He took particular interest in special education. His favorite movie, by the way, was “Lonesome Dove,” and he was fond of saying, “Never love anything that can’t love you back.”

ining expenses in this case. Unless this is changed soon, the Legislature may intervene, and certainly some candidates for governor may make it an issue. It is a legitimate issue for gubernatorial candidates as the governor is a voting member of the UT board who often chairs it. A candidate could pledge to not let it happen on his/her watch. UT would not benefit if this became a statewide issue and should act to modify it ASAP. ■■ State Rep. Bill Dunn, who often has been one of the most conservative lawmakers, is not only backing the Haslam gas tax bill but is a sponsor. He says it helps build roads in North Knox County such as Emory Road. He points out he has opposed other tax hikes consistently in the past. ■■ Circuit Court Judge Deborah Stevens turns 63 on March 17. ■■ Former Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey was in Knoxville two days last week promoting parental control over student placement. Ramsey retired two months ago from the second-highest office in the state at the height of his popularity. He will continue to push issues that are conservative and close to his beliefs.



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South Knox Shopper-News 031517  

A great community newspaper serving South Knoxville and the surrounding area

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