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VOL. 12 NO. 9 |

March 1, 2017

Gina and Charlie are Volunteer Stars!

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FIRST WORDS Craft Center fundraiser

The Appalachian Arts Craft Center, a nonprofit arts center in Norris, is holding an SOS (Save Our Shop) fundraiser. The hope is to raise $14,000 for a new roof for the center, at 2716 Andersonville Highway. “The Craft Center has been a part of this community for more than 45 years and in this particular building for 30,” said board president Mary Lee Keeler. “This is the original roof and it has been patched many times. It’s critical that we replace it before we experience any interior damage. We’re living on borrowed time.” Anyone interested in making a tax-deductible donation may do so by mail to AACC, P.O. Box 608, Norris, TN 37828, with “Roof” in the memo line; online at; or by stopping by the center and donating with cash, check, debit or charge.

Mobile clinic to visit two towns

St. Mary’s Legacy mobile clinic sees patients at the Northside Community Center in Washburn each first Wednesday and the Blessed John Paul II Catholic Mission, 7735 Rutledge Pike in Rutledge, each second Thursday. Appointment: 865-212-5570. Info:

Lions collect for scholarships

The Union County Lions Club is accepting donations for the second annual Mark Martin Memorial Scholarship. In 2016, the Union County Lions Club awarded six $500 scholarships to outstanding Union County High School students. Anyone interested in donating to the scholarship fund should contact Union County Lions Club treasurer Ronnie Mincey at 865-278-6430.

Pick up extra copies at Union County Senior Citizens Center 298 Main St. Maynardville NEWS (865) 342-6622 Sandra Clark | Shannon Carey ADVERTISING SALES (865) 922-4136 Amy Lutheran | Patty Fecco Beverly Holland | Mary Williamson

Union County Trustee Gina Buckner is the adult nominee from Union Union County High School junior Charlie Hamilton received the youth Union County for Gov. Bill Haslam’s Volunteer Stars Award due to her work with County nomination for Gov. Bill Haslam’s Volunteer Stars Award for his work Union County Children’s Charities’ Under the Tree campaign and a lifetime with many organizations like Union County Children’s Charities and 4-H. Photos by S. Carey of volunteerism.

By Shannon Carey Union County is full of the volunteer spirit, and once a year two of our great volunteers are chosen to represent the county in Tennes-

see Gov. Bill Haslam’s Volunteer Stars Awards. One adult and one youth are nominated from each county and invited to a banquet in Nashville. There, two are chosen

as the statewide Volunteer Stars. This year’s Union County Volunteer Stars are both lifelong Union Countians, and they both volunteer their time with one of the county’s

Boyd says work hard, dream big By Sandra Clark ahead than accomplishThe annual banquet of ments. If this was Boyd’s the Union County Chamtakeaway from meeting ber of Commerce is a celthe world’s most senior ebration of accomplishstatesman, how can he ments and a look toward not run for governor? the future. It’s also a fun(Note: Haslam told draiser for the group that Boyd that Peres had promotes tourism as it “started at 30,000 feet recruits and supports loand helicoptered up.”) cal businesses. Boyd also discussed Randy Boyd brought Union County’s status star power as the guest as one of 17 “distressed” speaker. He recently re- Randy Boyd talks with Union County Chamber president Leslie Corum following the recent ban- counties. “Two years ago signed as commissioner quet. we had 21, and last year of the state’s Economic cut that to 17. Unfortuand Community Development Department. nessee Achieves and led to the state’s program nately, Union County joined the list.” He promof free college tuition at community colleges ised “lots of state attention to turning things around.” for Tennessee graduates. Haslam has targeted these mostly rural He told of a trade mission to Israel. He and Haslam got a private visit with Shimon Peres, counties for grants and technical assistance. The state’s biggest challenge, he said, is who died in September 2016. “We were mes- His proposal to extend broadband is huge. “We training workers for the jobs of the future. “It’s merized, and came away wishing we had taken really believe we are on the cusp of a world rethe best time in our state’s history, but not for notes,” he said. naissance,” Boyd said. everyone.” Boyd was raised in South Knoxville. At age Peres told them he’s often asked what he Boyd probably will run for governor when considers his greatest accomplishment. “It will 19, he was the first in his family to graduate Bill Haslam’s term ends in 2018. He and be what I do tomorrow.” And his biggest fail- from college. He’s been married for 30 years Haslam share a boyish enthusiasm for govern- ure? “That I did not dream big enough.” with two adult sons. He founded Radio Systems ing; both are wealthy enough to work without Peres said we are old when we have more Corporation, which produces PetSafe products. pay; both are visionary. Boyd is credited with accomplishments to list than dreams ahead; starting Knox Achieves, which became Ten- we are young when we have more dreams To page A-3



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A-2 • March 1, 2017 • Union County Shopper news

Notes on a peculiar winter The month of February has certainly added on to what has been a peculiar winter. Our big weather has been a 2-inch snow on Jan. 6 and 7; since then we’ve had mostly spring weather. Warm temperatures, occasional showery days. The temp reached 77 degrees on Feb. 12, an all-time record for the day. The trees haven’t come out yet (at time of writing), but the allergists hereabouts report that they are already making pollen. Allergy season has begun. We had jonquils blooming for Valentine’s Day, and blue, and blue-and-white, violets are in bloom in my yard. I noticed a small fruit tree of some sort down on Woodland Avenue on Feb. 15, covered with pink blossoms. Up along Grove Drive in Fountain City is a very large Chinese, or saucer, magnolia, usually the earliest tree to bloom out in the spring (and usually the first to get frozen back). We noticed it had big pink buds ready to go on the Sunday of Feb. 12. The birds? People have been reporting all sorts of unexpected early ones the past month – an ovenbird in one yard, an orangecrowned warbler in another. And robins? Robins, like the bluebirds, are around here all winter. They are generally in reduced numbers as compared to springtime. But this year, we’re having hordes of them – flocks of 50, even 100. The ground under my big hackberry

Dr. Bob Collier

trees is covered with berry seeds dropped by the multitude of robins. An article in the winter edition of Living Bird magazine, put out by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, reports that this is part of a trend, due in part to more urban landscaping, which robins favor, but also due to the warming climate. It seems that instead of wintering in the sunny Deep South, many more robins are choosing to winter closer to home, still able to find sufficient food supplies in their now less harsh local winters. In the last 25 years their data reveal more than double the number of wintering robins in the Northeast, and an 11 percent increase even in Canada and Alaska. Apparently, those robins that do choose to migrate southward are going shorter distances, many of them deciding to hang out in balmy East Tennessee. This is not to say that anyone has been complaining about the springtime weather here in February. With no leaves, bugs and gnats out and about, and T-shirt temps, it has made for some very pleasant birdwatching. I had a particularly good day on Feb. 20, the

last official day of the Cornell Lab’s annual worldwide Great Backyard Bird Count. I set out, and dutifully and methodically counted all the birds I could find in my favorite spot of fields, woods and briery patches up in Union County. It turned out to be one of those betterthan-average birding days – it was a Seven Woodpecker Day. I had hoped it would be, what with no leaves out, the birds very active, and no spring migrants as yet to divert one’s attention. There are 20 or so species of woodpeckers that occur in North America, between our borders with Canada and Mexico. Seven of them are to be found in our region. The downy and red-bellied ones frequent our feeders all winter and are familiar to most of us. The flickers are common here too, but spend a lot of time on the ground, eating their favorite food, ants. They are strikingly beautiful birds when seen close up or through the binoculars. And then there are our huge, vociferous, OMG birds, the pileated woodpeckers, not a rare bird around here. A yellow-bellied sapsucker has been eating suet at my feeder all winter. I’ve noticed that when the suet runs out, the sapsucker, instead of just flying away, sits and stares at the empty suet cage, as if he thinks it will somehow refill before his eyes. Sapsuckers are here only in the winter. In the spring they will be back

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up north, nesting anywhere from Canada down to the Great Lakes, and even into the high elevations of the Smokies. Hairy woodpeckers are larger versions of the downies, with a longer bill, subtle differences in some of their tail feathers, and a different call, or vocalization, as birders are prone to say. They are around, but are outnumbered by the downies by 10 to one, and are much less social with us people than the downies. And, they are probably often mistaken for downies when seen. Least common around here are the fancy red, black and white red-headed woodpeckers. They are hard to find, but a beautiful sight when you see one. They live all over the eastern half of the country, but for reasons not understood have become very scarce in the East Tennessee region. A couple of years ago, we were out in Montgomery Bell State Park near Nashville and were seeing them five at a time one afternoon, but a person here in Knoxville can hardly

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buy one for a spring or winter bird count. Happily, though, over the past couple or three years more folks are reporting red-headed woodpeckers. A couple in Union County had one coming into their yard regularly, to eat bites of food from their dogs’ dish. Most peculiar, but I have photographs to prove it. And this year, a person out in Sharps Chapel has been reporting seeing one in the woods near the lake on a frequent basis. With this cast of characters, we go back to the Seven-Woodpecker Day. With downy and several red-bellied guys promptly checked off, I was prowling along quietly in some big trees when I came upon not one, but two red-headed woodpeckers! One was the super-spiffy adult red, black and white version. The other was an immature bird, hatched of last year. They have brown heads till the spring following their birth, and his head was changing. From adolescent brown, it had red patches

on the throat, and on the back of the head – sort of like a teenager with a nice splash of green or purple in an otherwise decent head of hair. I figured that now, I had a good chance for all seven. But it was afternoon already. A yellow-bellied sapsucker and a flicker came along nicely, and then I found a female hairy woodpecker working away at a dead limb, searching for a juicy grub or two. I had seen a male hairy excavating a nest hole in the vicinity a week before, so had been hopeful. And then, the final woodpecker, and also the last bird of the day, around 5:30 and dusk approaching. There was the King of the Woodpecker Hill – a big pileated bird, squawking loudly from a big, distant ash tree! Hooray for all seven, plus a good bunch of other winter birds, all greatly enhanced by sunshine, temps in the 60s and yet none of those pesky leaves to prevent excellent looks at them all. Not a bad way to spend a February day in East Tennessee.

Union County Shopper news • March 1, 2017 • A-3

Heiskell Corner I had not thought of there being a Heiskell Corner until Leslie Corum asked me to talk about it at the recent Chamber banquet. I always thought of all of us being born inside what was John “Raccoon” Miller’s Fort. This includes my dad, who was born in the former station house of the fort, which was my grandma and grandpa Heiskell’s home at the time and where Icus and Fontella Miller lived. This location needs a historic marker. Anyway, Heiskell brothers Frederick, George, William and Daniel made their way from Hagerstown, Md., and Virginia to Knox County in the early 1800s. Frederick bought a mile square piece of property that became known as Heiskell Station because there was a little train station and Heiskell owned the land around it. Frederick eventually relocated to west Knoxville. William

Bonnie Peters

and Daniel went to Monroe County and great-grandfather George relocated to Beard Valley, which then was still Knox County. Great-grandma Elizabeth Frye and GG George later moved to Kentucky to be near family who owned Frye Candy Company, still in business today near Louisville. In 1921, when Hwy. 33 was built but still not paved, my dad, Dempsey Heiskell, moved his monument shop from Old Jacksboro Road to the new highway where it now stands. My oldest brother, Roscoe, was a good friend of my Uncle Cos Seymour, who read law under attorney Fate Ledgerwood, who

lived where Marian Graves Walker now lives. Since there was no high school in Union County at the time, Roscoe and Cos rode horseback and attended classes at LMU. Cos’ father-in-law, Albert Archer, had a store at the intersection of what is now John Deere Drive and Hickory Star Road. Albert was aging and ready to give up that business, so Roscoe bought that store in 1926 and began building a new building at the intersection of what is now Heiskell Road (old Jacksboro Road) and John Deere Drive. It took four months to build and move the store into the James Heiskell and his aunt, Bonnie Peters new building. Roscoe and Naomi bought approximately 80 where Mike and Connie way into a new block twoacres in 1931 and moved to Heiskell live now. Roscoe story building, which still a two-story frame house said he sold 5,000 pounds stands. This store contin(the Jeff Woods house, a of flour every two weeks ued to operate until the brother to Andrew Jackson and only bought flour by the early 1960s, when he built Woods, who owned the dis- barrel. the service station in antillery). That house was later In 1937, the store was ticipation that his son, replaced by the brick house moved across the high- James, just might need

Volunteer Stars ■■ Gina Buckner Union County Trustee Gina Buckner is this year’s adult Volunteer Stars nominee, but she is hesitant to take credit for the nomination, laying the honor at the feet of all the volunteers who help make Under the Tree a success. “It really ought to be Union County Children’s Charities receiving the award, not me,” she said. “It takes all of the community, and I’m one little piece of the puzzle.” Each year, Under the Tree provides Christmas presents to upwards of 450 Union County children. And what’s more, they coordinate a distribution day that brings churches and community agencies together to give recipient families more than toys. They give hygiene items, coats, gloves, books and many other needed items. “It’s just so overwhelming once you see the work that’s been done and you see these people going through the line and just the smiles on their faces,” said Buckner. “It’s very rewarding, and you never know when you might be on that side of things and need help.” Buckner graduated from Horace Maynard High School in 1984, where she was a cheerleader and a member of the Optimist Club. She went on to work in banking, then opened Connie’s Boutique beside the Pizza Parlor in Maynardville. That’s where she got involved in the Union County Business and Professional Association, serving on the board and volunteering with the UCBPA’s scholarship golf tournament and Keep Union County Beautiful, even picking up trash along the side of Maynardville Highway. “It was a big joke, people would see me on the side of the road with the orange on,” said Buckner. She was in the Leadership Union County class that formed the Union County Chamber of Commerce, but her heart stayed with the UCBPA, where she found opportunities to help children. Toys for Tots had been going strong for many years before Buckner started volunteering with the effort, but now she’s a 20-year volunteer and has

a way to make a living. James began working full time at his station in 1968. On Feb. 17, James Heiskell was recognized as the businessperson of the year at the Chamber banquet. From page A-1

chaired the event for five years. She began her first term as Union County Trustee in 2002, and she sees that as service as well. With her office so near the courthouse doors, Buckner and her staff are a major resource for everyone who walks in. “I feel like us being right here, we get asked for everything. I love that,” Buckner said. “I’ve always said that I’m not a politician. I’m a public servant.” Buckner’s husband is Andy Buckner, and they have three children, Chase, Bryce and Briley. She is a member of Cedar Ford Baptist Church, and she says her mother, the late Carole Booker, was her inspiration to volunteer. “I always remember her helping kids,” she said. “She was always doing good things.” ■■ Charlie Hamilton Charlie Hamilton is 17 years old and a junior at Union County High School. When the letter came informing him that he was the Union County youth nominee for Volunteer Stars, it was a complete surprise. “I was tickled to death,” he said. “I got home and I looked at this letter and I was just in shock. I didn’t know what to think.” Hamilton said he didn’t realize how much he was doing in the community until he received the award. “I guess I don’t notice what all I’m doing. I just don’t think of it that way. I just think about helping out,” he said. Hamilton volunteers with Under the Tree, contributing toys and helping sort and transport the bags of gifts. He also helps with the distribution day. “It gives me a good feeling,” he said. “Everybody needs a little help sometimes. It’s fun for me and it cheers me up, puts happiness in my day.” Hamilton has been active with Union County 4-H since he was in the fourth grade and is now a 4-H Honor Club member, and volunteer hours are a requirement for the club. He helps with the photography contest, Clover Bowl, Chick Chain and speech contest, often helping younger students with their entries. With 4-H, he par-

Boyd says renaissance ahead

From page A-1

■■ Marie Rhyne talked about the founding of Leadership Union County in 2000. The Chamber was formed by the Leadership class of 2003. Rhyne was the Chamber’s first president, “for $1 per year.” ■■ Leslie Corum had one word: “Wow!” She’s finishing her seventh month as Chamber president, now a “part-time” job. “We need to rise up Tim Burchett Darrell Dyer Mike Williams and work in the same direction for Union County,” she added. ing that it’s important to get the “replace” ■■ Gina Buckner and Charlie Ham- part right when repealing and replacing ilton received the Volunteer Star award. Obamacare. He said tax reform is ahead. ■■ Mike Williams, Union County may- “America is winning again.” or, called it “a great day in Union County,” ■■ James Heiskell was named busiand talked about the county’s “unlimited nessperson of the year. potential.” ■■ Darrell Dyer handled the auction, ■■ Mayme Taylor, Chamber board which included original artwork and phochair, welcomed the crowd. tography. Other contributors were Curtis ■■ U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann Petree and Lil’ Jo’s Barbecue, food; Josh said the winds of change are blowing in Cottrell, music; Callie Corum, Miss Food Washington. “We are reversing regulations City 2017, pledge of allegiance; and Pastor that are hurting businesses,” he said, add- Kathy Chesney, invocation.

TennCare Kids provides services TennCare Kids is Tennessee’s commitment to see that children and teens have the best start to a healthy life. TennCare Kids is a free program of check-ups and health care services for children from birth to age 21 who are TennCare eligible, including health history, complete physical exam, lab tests as appropriate, immunizations, vision and hearing screening, developmental and behavior screenings as appropriate, and advice on healthy living. Union Countians interested in the program should contact the Union County Health Department’s community outreach representative, Pam Williams. Info: 865-992-3867, ext. 131.

ticipates in roadside cleanups and picks up trash at Wilson Park. Other activities include Future Farmers of America at UCHS, in which he helps make food bags for elementary school students who don’t have access to food when school is out. He is also a Beta Club member, volunteering at Boo at the Zoo and Fantasy of Trees. Hamilton was a Shopper News intern, and delivering Mobile Meals with that program inspired him and his mother to deliver Mobile Meals when the internship was done. Hamilton hopes to attend UT and major in mechanical engineering, and he’s looking to start an internship with TVA at the end of this year. He is also interested in local politics and may run for local office later in life, he said. Hamilton is a familiar face at County Commission meetings, and he’s trying to get fellow youths to attend as well. “In the community, you need to have future leaders,” he said. “Someday, my gen-

eration is going to be leading the way.” He’s also an advocate for youth activities in Union County, speaking at County Commission in favor of the recent splash pad proposal. “I think the county needs to have something for the youth,” he said. “A lot of people don’t get out. They just sit at home.” Hamilton points to Union County Mayor Mike Williams as his inspiration to serve. He said he’s known Williams since he was a state senator, and Hamilton recently got the opportunity to job-shadow Williams in his role as mayor. “It was an eye-opening experience, just everything he does,” he said. In his spare time, Hamilton likes drag racing at Knoxville Dragway and working on cars with his father. Hamilton has restored a 1953 Ford F-1 truck, which he takes to local car shows and cruise-ins. Hamilton’s parents are Sam and Julia Hamilton, and his sister is Samantha Hamilton.

A-4 • March 1, 2017 • Union County Shopper news

Ashes to ashes … Tamar put ashes on her head, and tore the long robe that she was wearing; she put her hand on her head, and went away, crying aloud as she went. (2 Samuel 13: 19 NRSV) Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. It is a solemn day of prayer, of self-examination, of repentance. In many denominations, the observance includes worshipers having ashes imposed on their foreheads as a symbol of repentance. The ashes are customarily created by burning the palms from the previous Palm Sunday. I have participated in Ash Wednesday services in various places and denominations, depending on what church was handy in the middle of a workday. I have also received the ashes at different times of day, but usually at early morning. I’ll tell you this: wearing a cross-shaped black smudge on your forehead exposes you to some odd glances. That doesn’t bother me, but I tell you, if you have the ashes imposed early in the morning, they begin to be itchy by the afternoon! There is also the subtext of death involved

FAITH NOTES Special services ■■ The Chapel of the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Sharps Chapel, will hold an Ash Wednesday service 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 1, the Community Center, Sharps Chapel Community Building, 1550 Sharps Chapel Road. Everyone welcome. Info: 865279-1279. ■■ St. Teresa of Kolkata Catho-


Cross Currents

Lynn Pitts

in receiving the ashes. “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust” is repeated at burial services. So, when one goes about one’s usual business on Ash Wednesday, it is with a visual reminder that our days are numbered. Even wearing the ashes, we carry in our hearts and minds the end of the story. We know that there will be celebration at Palm Sunday, solemnity at Maundy Thursday communion, pain and sadness on Good Friday. But we can walk through “the valley of the shadow” because we know that Easter is coming. So, wear your ashes as a reminder for your heart and soul, as a witness to everyone who sees you, and as an emblem of your Savior.

lic Church, 4365 Maynardville Highway, will celebrate Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent (the distribution of ashes) 9 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 1. ■■ UPLIFT, a nondenominational study/prayer group for Universal Peace, Love, Inspiration, Faith & Truth, meets 11 a.m.-noon Sundays in the conference room at Hardee’s, 2825 Maynardville Highway, Maynardville. Info: Eva, 865-992-0185 or eva.

ICare explores ‘Drug Court’ program By Shannon Carey ICare Union County, a cross-agency anti-drug program, is exploring something new to help in the fight against drug-related crime: a “Drug Court.” The court would be similar to Knox County’s Drug Court, which is being renamed “Recovery Court,” according to District 8 Criminal Court Judge Shayne Sexton, who attended ICare’s meeting Feb. 23to explain the program. “There’s got to be a treatment component built into incarceration,” he said. “We can’t jail (addiction) out of people.” Drug Court has been going strong in Knox County for 11 years now, with carefully selected offenders going through the diversion program. Sexton said selecting participants is key, as the program is “geared towards people who are breaking the law because of addiction.” The participants go through at least 18 months of meetings, counseling, drug tests and check-ins, and if they complete it successfully they can leave the program with no felony charges on their records. Sexton said the drug crime scene has changed since he took office in 1998.

Classes/meetings ■■ Alder Springs Missionary Baptist Church, 556 Hickory Star Road, Maynardville, will host its annual Men’s Retreat at 7 p.m. Friday, March 3; and 9 a.m. Saturday, March 4. Visiting ministers will be the Rev. Mike Viles and the Rev. Jerry Vittatoe. Everyone welcome.

Fundraiser ■■ Youth Fellowship Church, 120 Pine St., will hold a huge sale to benefit the building

Back then, he saw mostly drug dealers, “but addiction was not the major problem.” Now, through the rise in non-medical use of opiates and opioids, “I feel like a social worker most of the time.” He called opiate addiction and the incidence of overdose and babies born addicted “a scourge.” He urged ICare to reach out to Union County Judge Darryl Edmondson about starting the program. “Right now is the time to do it,” he said. “We have to stop wringing our hands over it. We have to treat it. You are it. You’re the ones that are going to step up and lead the charge on this, not in a fearful way but in an aggressive way.” Sexton said that state grants may be available to help get the program off the ground, and he pledged the support of his staff and their knowledge base. He also spoke highly of the drug Vivitrol, a non-narcotic injection that blocks opiate and alcohol receptors for 30 days. The drug is expensive at $1,300 per injection, but grant funds are available for that as well. But first, the community must find a medical professional willing to administer the injections, and the community must build in a fund 9 a.m.-3 p.m. ThursdaySaturday, March 2-4. Furniture, mirror and more.

Community services ■■ Hansard Chapel Methodist Church, located on Highway 33 across from Tolliver’s Market, hosts a food pantry 6-7 p.m. each third Saturday. Gently used clothing is also available. Info: the Rev. Jay Richardson, 865-776-2668. ■■ The Union County Food

District 8 Criminal Court Judge Shayne Sexton tells ICare Union County about Knox County’s Recovery Court, formerly known as Drug Court, a diversion program aimed at treating addiction as the root of drug crime. Photo by S. Carey

treatment and counseling component to address the reasons behind addiction and illegal drug use. “We can’t be afraid of addiction anymore,” said Sexton. “We’re going to have to

go after it.” ICare Union County meets at 11:30 a.m. every fourth Thursday, at Revival Vision Church of God, 154 Durham Drive, Maynardville.

Pantry, 553 Fall Creek Road, is open 2-5 p.m. every second and fourth Monday. In case of inclement weather, the food pantry follows Union County Public Schools closures. Info: Kitty Lewis, 865-992-4335, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

■■ Sharps Chapel Seniors meet 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. each first and third Wednesday, Sharps Chapel Community Building, 1550 Sharps Chapel Road.

SENIOR NOTES ■■ Plainview Seniors meet 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. each first Monday, Plainview City Hall, 1037 Tazewell Pike.

■■ Luttrell Seniors meet 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. each third Monday, Luttrell Community Center, 115 Park Road. ■■ Union County Senior Citizens Center, 298 Main St. Info for all senior groups: Melanie Dykes, 865-992-3292 or 865992-0361.

Union County Shopper news • March 1, 2017 • A-5

3 Patriot wrestlers make state, first time since 2003 By Seth Norris “Blood, sweat and tears” is more than just a cliché for Union County High School wrestling. It’s something that head coach Tommy Laughter sees every single practice from his kids. Those grueling practices paid off this season for the Patriots as they continued their rise to prominence by sending three wrestlers to the state tournament the weekend of Feb. 18. It was the first time since 2003 that the high school was represented by more than two wrestlers, according to Laughter. Senior Robert Charrette and sophomores Dalton Truan and Tyler Spencer took to the mats for the Patriots. Charrette and Spencer

were eliminated after two matches, losing to state champion and medaling wrestlers in their weight classes. Truan won three matches but came up just shy of placing for a medal in his weight class, losing his second match in sudden death. From Laughter’s perspective, he has nothing but respect for what the kids achieved. “It’s hard for me not to be proud of what those kids have done,” said Laughter. “It’s nosebleeds, it’s sweat, it’s hard work. They’re not At the state wrestling tournament are Union Counkids anymore, they’re young ty High School Patriots Dalton Truan, Robert Charmen.” rette, coach Tommy Laughter and Tyler Spencer. With the individual acPhoto submitted complishments of these young men in the forefront, the team as a whole had a With a total of eight wres- three were brand new to productive season as well. tlers (six boys, two girls), wrestling, and one was only

HAPPENINGS ■■ Beginner Smocked Baby Bonnet class, 1-4 p.m. Friday, March 3, and 1-3 p.m. Friday, March 10, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Beth Cannon. Info/registration: 865-494-9854 or ■■ Student Led Technology and Innovation Conference, Friday, March 10, Luttrell Elementary School, 241 Tazewell Pike. Students create and produce their own presentations on technology. Info: principal Sonja Saylor, 865992-3441 or ■■ “My School Color Run” for Union County High School Track and Field, 8:30 a.m. Saturday, March 11, Union County High School, 150

Main St., Maynardville. An untimed 3.1-mile fun run for all ages and fitness abilities. Registration: Business sponsorship opportunities available. Info: Aileen Beeler, 865-992-5232. ■■ Dichroic Pendant workshop, 1-4 p.m. Saturday, March 11, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Donna Gryder. Registration deadline: March 5. Info/registration: 865-494-9854 or ■■ Appalachian Arts Craft Center Spring Porch Sale begins Thursday, March 16, at the center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Clinton. Features outdated stock, seconds, student crafts and unjuried work by members of the center. Sale runs for two weeks. Info: 865-494-9854 or

in his second year. The Patriots finished in fourth place as a team in Region 1A-AA. With a total of eight wrestlers on the team this season, they went up against teams like Pigeon Forge who doubled or tripled their numbers. Laughter credits this pleasant surprise to determination from the Patriot wrestlers. “I can’t say enough about the hard work that these guys and ladies do. It can be disheartening to show up and teams have 10 to 25 kids,” said Laughter. “They dug deep for it and they earned it.” Now that the season is over, Laughter is already itching to get back and work for next season. The Patriots are losing only one wrestler in Charrette. However, ■■ Bluegrass Breakdown and Silent Auction, 2-10 p.m. Saturday, March 18, Ball Farm Event Center, 2107 General Carl W. Stiner Highway, LaFollette. Presented by CASA of Campbell County. Live music, silent auction, free petting zoo with Little Ponderosa Zoo. Concessions available for purchase. Tickets: $10 adults; $8 for children; ages 6 and under free. Info: or 423-562-2700. ■■ Rooting Pot Planter workshop, 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Barbara Holt. Registration deadline: March 18. Info/registration: 865-4949854 or ■■ Josephine Wine Basket workshop, 9 a.m.-

he’s not quite done making his impact on Union County wrestling. He is coming back as an assistant coach. “Robert is going to step right back in there and fill that role, and that’s a wrestler that’s been through our program for four years now,” said Laughter. “He knows what it’s about. I believe it’s just going to keep it on a roll.” With practically everyone returning, and wrestlers coming up from the youth program, the recipe is there for Union County wrestling to continue to make noise at the high school level for years to come. “I don’t see Union County wrestling slowing down,” said Laughter. “I see it continuing to go on to bigger and better things.”

1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Barbara Holt. Registration deadline: March 18. Info/registration: 865-4949854 or ■■ Large Market Basket workshop, 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25 or Sunday, March 26, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Barbara Holt. Registration deadline: March 18. Info/registration: 865-494-9854 or ■■ Josephine Storage Basket workshop, 9 a.m.3:30 p.m. Sunday, March 26, Appalachian Arts Craft Center, 2716 Andersonville Highway 61, Norris. Instructor: Barbara Holt. Registration deadline: March 18. Info/registration: 865-4949854 or

A son’s discovery brings father’s heroism to life World War II veteran Roddie Edmonds was always a hero in his son’s eyes, even though he never volunteered details about what had happened after the Germans captured him during the Battle of the Bulge. Chris Edmonds, who grew up to become a Baptist minister, says his father’s beliefs were uncomplicated: “There is a God and God is good. We must be good to one another. Loving others is what Dad did well. I think he was gifted to do that,” Edmonds told the Volunteer Rotary Club. “And here’s another truth. Evil is real. Dad believed that God was good and evil was real, and it was wrong. He knew this from his faith and his Tennessee roots – right was always right and evil was wrong.” Roddie Edmonds died in 1985, and 20 years passed before Chris’s mother gave him a journal Roddie had kept during his time as a master sergeant in the 106th Infantry, including 100 days in two different German POW camps. “The story begins with an old diary, weathered and fragile. It belonged to a young man from Tennessee who was fighting for his country on a continent on the edge of collapse,” Chris Edmonds said. “It touched

Betty Bean my heart.” Wanting more information, Chris ran a Google search on Roddie’s name. He found a story about Richard Nixon buying a Manhattan townhouse from a lawyer named Lester Tanner, who mentioned that he and many other Jewish GIs owed their lives to the bravery of a master sergeant named Roddie Edmonds. Chris contacted Tanner, who introduced him to another former POW, and the old soldiers, who have become like family, told him a remarkable story. The war was going badly for Germany by January 1945, but the Nazi determination to exterminate Jews never flagged, and Jewish soldiers were instructed to destroy their dog tags if they were taken prisoner lest they be assigned to camps that they couldn’t survive. On Jan. 26, Roddie Edmonds got word that Jewish prisoners were going to be taken away the next morning after roll call. As the highest-ranking soldier there (officers were sent to separate camps), he told his

men that they could not allow this to happen. The next morning, the camp commander ordered Master Sgt. Edmonds to send the Jews forward. Every prisoner there obeyed the order. “The commander could not believe his eyes – all 1,300 men standing together in sharp formation.” And that’s when Roddie said, “We are all Jews here.” The Nazi drew his pistol and pressed it hard into Roddie’s forehead. He repeated the order: “You will order the Jewish men to step forward.” Nobody moved. “Dad had been shot, beaten with a rifle butt, punched, attacked by dogs, stripped of his dignity… Yet there he stood with a gun to his head, disobeying Nazi orders. Lester Tanner said, ‘Your dad never wavered.’”

“Dad said, ‘Major, if you shoot me, you’ll have to kill all of us because we know who you are. And you’ll stand trial for war crimes when we win this war.’” The Nazi’s arm began to tremble. He holstered his gun and returned to his office. Seventy years later, Chris was visiting Israel at the request of officials who wanted to honor his father, and Yad Vashem, the Israeli Holocaust Memorial to Holocaust victims, named Roddie “Righteous Among the Nations,” an award given to gentiles who risked their lives to save Jews. He is one of five American soldiers to be so honored. Last year, Chris was invited to speak about his father at an award ceremony at the Israeli Embassy in Washington. President Obama was there, along with filmmaker Steven Spielberg.

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Chris Edmonds talks to President Barack Obama while Sen. Bob Corker (center) looks on.

Afterward, Obama sought Chris out. “He was visibly moved,” Chris said. “The last thing he said was, ‘Chris, after you finished talking, I leaned over to Steven and said, ‘I think there’s a movie here.’” Now, Sens. Lamar Al-

exander and Bob Corker and Rep. Jimmy Duncan are working to get Roddie Edmonds a Congressional Gold Medal. Chris says: “I hope the next remarkable event will be at the White House to present Dad with the Medal of Honor.”





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A-6 • March 1, 2017 • Union County Shopper news

Super Tuesday student Brooklyn Ballinger presents Em Turner Chitty with a valentine as her grandfather, the Rev. Victor King, looks on.

JaKylan L. King reads with volunteer tutor Alexus Gibson. Photos by Hei Park

Building community one ‘Super Tuesday’ at a time By Betty Bean Valentine’s Day fell on a Tuesday this year, and over at Edgewood Chapel AME Zion Church the room was buzzing. A high school girl was getting help with a chemistry problem, blocking out the sounds of a couple of younger kids who were sounding out words across the room. Others were working on colorful Valentine cards and toward the back of the room, an elementary school boy was figuring out a video game. It was Super Tuesday Tutoring Night at Edgewood Chapel, presided over by Em Turner Chitty, who teaches English language at UT, and Victor Emmanuel King Sr., Edgewood Chapel’s pastor. UT senior Hannah Marley and Inas Alsarmad, an Iraqi national whose doctoral candidate husband had been one of Chitty’s stu-

Super Tuesdays grew out of a chance encounter at last year’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade. Pastor King had marched with a group of former gangbangers called Heal the Land, Chitty with Mothers Against Violence. They struck up a conversation while watching rival Chitty King Sr. gang members take off their dents, are volunteer tutors. colors and tie them into a King took a few minutes multi-colored banner. Chitty has lived in West to talk before he went out to Knoxville for 30 years and has pick up pizza. “That’s just tonight,” been increasingly bothered by said the do-it-all leader the city’s racial divide. “When I went to the whose skills aren’t limited to speaking from the pulpit march, I saw how wonderful (he painted the church exte- it was to have so many disrior and laid the hardwood parate communities come floors). “Generally I cook together, and how sad it for them. I’m going to take was that we only come toevery excuse away from the gether on that one day,” she parents. We want to make said. “I told him I wanted it so (that) all their parents to help, but the only thing I have got to do when they get know how to do is teach. He home is give them a bath said, ‘I’ve got some kids who could use tutoring.’” and put them to bed.”

Larry & Laura Bailey

King remembers it the same way: “Just as we were walking by the church I told her I’d been trying to get a tutoring program started. Two weeks later, she came in on a Sunday morning and stuck her head in the door. I introduced her to the church, ‘This is Miss Em Chitty.’ You won’t forget that name.” King is proud of the tutoring program’s success, which has helped every in 1979, I walked across the stage, shook the principal’s hand, took my diploma and couldn’t read it.” He’d faked his way through school, and didn’t discover that he was dyslexic until he was an adult holding down a full-time job and working on his reading on his own. And then he got some help.


“I got saved, and the Holy Ghost taught me how to read. The Bible was the first book I read, one word at a time. When I was born again, God gifted me with several different things – I can play any instrument I touch. I’m a writer. And I always wanted to be an advocate for schools.” Two years ago, he earned a degree from Johnson University, and is proud that all of his children are college graduates. He wants to make sure that other kids get the chance to excel, too. “I thought it was a sad thing, most of the time the teacher let me sit there and look out the window. I didn’t want any of the kids to feel the way I felt.” Alsarmad said she has missed only one Tuesday since she started tutoring.

She and her husband don’t have any children, so she was unsure of how she’d do when she started. “I’ve made a lot of great friends, American friends who make me know what is the meaning of friendship. I’m living the American dream and trying to surround myself with American people. I’ve found out I really like the children. They are amazing and they are beautiful children who have so many dreams. I’m helping them keep up with these dreams that they have.” Last year Chitty raised around $600 to fund Super Tuesday. It’s almost gone now, and she plans to mount a new funding campaign to keep the program going. Anyone interested in helping can email Chitty at

Justin Bailey

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POWELL - 20.53 acre Cattle Farm convenient to I-75. This property has it all. The property has two residences: Custom built brick 4Br 3Ba 2900 sqft & 2Br 2Ba 2000 sqft rental home. Plenty or work space with 52x48 metal barn with underground utilities, 40x70 metal barn with 14ft roll up doors & Pond. $1,000,000 (981058) NORRIS LAKE - Private and gated 2.08 acre lakefront peninsula on Norris Lake. 4Br 3Ba features: year round deep water on all sides, elevator, open floor plan, custom kitchen,w/breathtaking views of Norris Lake views, boat dock, launch ramp, concrete/steel catwalk and handicapped accessible. $899,000 (981728)

Union County Shopper news • March 1, 2017 • A-7

Each year has two parts ...

A higher calling

Ronnie Mincey Teacher Time We made the acquaintance of one such member of our cohort, an older lady from a southern state. “BB” regaled us with a story of how she had once eaten both grits and ice cream, describing the ill effects this had by saying she had “punished” herself. Jason could hardly eat his own meal for laughing at her. We determined that “BB” would need lots of help to make it through the program. We agreed to help her all we could. “BB” seemed to take a fancy to me, and this did not go unnoticed. There was another lady who immigrated to this country several years ago with her single daughter. “TT” was so self-sufficient that she taught herself English. “TT” was also highly intelligent, the first in our cohort to complete and successfully defend her dissertation. She once asked me, “So, Ronnie, are you going to have two doctorates?” I replied one was quite enough. She rolled her eyes and said, “I meant yours and “BB’s”. Why do you waste your time on her? She is not going to make it.” I explained that perhaps if I helped “BB” now that perhaps someone would help me when I was in need. “TT” replied, “You nice boy, Ronnie. I call you Jesus.” So for the rest of the program “TT” called me Jesus. Jason, Lauren and I speculated on this. When it was my week to drive, sometimes I drove a van which had a “Jesus” license plate on front, so perhaps that had something to do with it. And there were other secret nicknames for other students. One I termed in my mind “Jesse James” because of the wild look in his eyes that reminded me of an

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Old West outlaw. One day in class “TT” hollered at me from the back row during a test, “Jesus! Hey, Jesus!” The professor asked, “What did she say?” I replied, “She’s praying.” Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, “BB” did not make it through the program. Any student dismissed from the program was allowed an appeal before a committee, but “BB’s” appeal, as all other appeals from all other dismissed students, was not upheld. To add to the misfortune, a student dismissed from the doctoral program was still required to pay back all student loans. Additionally, the chances of being admitted to any other doctoral program would be practically nil, in effect ending one’s academic career. After many “dangers, toils and snares,” Jason, Lauren and I through “amazing grace” persevered to become Drs. Bailey, Effler and Mincey. As the lyrics to a gospel song said: No amount of money could buy from me, the memories that I have of then: No amount of money could pay me, to go back, and live through it again. Next week’s article will be dreamy. I’ll catch you then.

Overholt named Employee of the Year Mike Overholt, of Corryton, has been named G e r d a u 2016 Employee of the Year at its Knoxville mill. Overholt was nomiMike Overholt nated by coworkers and selected by administration in recognition of his strong work ethic and willingness to help others. During the nomination process, co-workers praised Overholt as someone whose attitude will “help take the Knoxville mill to the next level.” He has been with Gerdau since 2010.

One of the wise men, a Tennessee fan, said that each year has only two parts: Football season and waiting for football season. This is one of the waiting periods. It is a beautiful time of year. Everybody is undefeated. All things are possible. Big dreams are permitted. The UT ticket department advocates farout optimism. Wouldn’t it be something if Shy Tuttle could get well. Charlton Warren, new coach of the secondary, might teach defensive backs to look back for the football. Everybody has a chance to guess right on who will win the quarterback competition and how long it might take to win the Heisman. Now is a relatively safe time to make grandiose predictions and even a few boisterous bets. Most will forget what you said before we hear again from the Music City bowl. Fans are eager for spring practice. Players are heavily engaged in preparations for a bold, new experience.

Marvin West

They don’t have a fancy theme but they’ve been told to be ready. There are coaches who think teams win games in off-season workouts. I thought the Vols may have lost a couple in March 2016. Butch wanted players to lead his team. He listened closely to veteran views. Could be he reduced the workload. Maybe he sheltered some. They probably didn’t need to be knocking each other around. The coach knew they would hit when the time came. But, they needed to be stronger and quicker, physically and mentally. Alas, when it was finally real football time in Tennessee, I didn’t think the Vols were completely, totally, 100 percent really ready.

A visit to Easter Island The first week of February, I visited Easter Island in the South Pacific Ocean, 2,300 miles east of Chile, which owns the island. It had been on my bucket list for years.

Victor Ashe

Getting there is part of the adventure, as one flies to Santiago, the capital of Chile, overnight and then flies five hours west over the Pacific to the island, which is partway to Australia from Chile. There are daily flights to the island from Santiago. Otherwise, one goes by ship, and they are infrequent. About 8,000 people live on 44 square miles in the middle of incredible statues carved on the island centuries ago. In addition to be-

No one knows the origin of the statues of oversized heads on Easter Island. ing an open air museum, the island offers outstanding diving, snorkeling and surfing. Hanga Roa is the main and only town. The airport is next to the town. Much of the island is part of the national park established by Chile. Tourism is now its main industry. No one knows for sure how the island was first inhabited or when or how the statues (moai) were made and then moved to different sites on the island.

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Perhaps you recall that the Vols had a hard time with Ohio U. It was 21-19 after three quarters. The orange team was favored by 27. Butch said he thought the Vols were sloppy. Then came the Florida game: Down 21-0 late in the first half, the Vols scored 38 unanswered points. Glory be! I won’t go into how Tennessee defeated Georgia but I will say there was a lastgasp comeback. It is very exciting to realize that a new season is developing behind the scenes – new coaches all around, new offensive coordinator, several new ideas, more seniors than in past years but more competition for positions. It will be months before we know for sure, but strength coach Rock Gullickson might be the winning edge. He might be the match that lights the fire. His program could reduce injuries. We can dream big dreams.

The theories are just theories. It is believed the first settlers arrived from the Marquesas islands between the 4th and 8th centuries. Today about 90,000 tourists visit the island. At times the population has dwindled to a few hundred. I was able to visit the quarry of a long extinct volcano where some 400 statues with oversized heads have been counted in various shapes, sizes and conditions. The photo here is typical of what exists. The climate is tropical but seldom exceeds 82 degrees. Accommodations and food are much better than adequate but not deluxe. It can be expensive as most supplies are imported from the mainland of Chile. ■■ New UTK Chancellor Beverly Davenport says she will spend time getting to know state lawmakers as part of her introduction to Tennessee. In the same news conference, she announced her opposition to

legislation by state Rep. Martin Daniel to guarantee free speech on college campuses, saying it is not needed. However, she was not precise as to what provisions in it she dislikes. Her comments made it appear she had not read the legislation, which she will need to do prior to meeting with Daniel. Davenport was able to avoid explaining why she failed to appoint a single African-American to the athletics director search committee and named only one woman to the six-member task force. At some point she will have to address these issues while she promotes diversity. ■■ Middle Tennessee U.S. Rep. Diane Black was in Knoxville, talking to people about her campaign for governor next year and attending a UT basketball game. Attorney Jeff Hagood is helping her campaign.

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All I have to go on is how many comebacks were needed to win the first five games. There is powerful improvement tonic in memories of last year. A professional journalist wrote this: “Stumbling, bumbling Tennessee, misidentified as the No. 9 team in the country, emerged with an embarrassing 20-13 victory over 20-point underdog Appalachian State. The visitors won everything except the final score. They dominated both lines of scrimmage.” A few days later the summation was: “Virginia Tech won the first quarter in a romp. After that, it made many mistakes. “The orange team rallied from a 14-0 deficit and won the rest of the game. The losers gained more yards. Joshua Dobbs passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more. “We woke up a little bit and played Tennessee football,” coach Butch Jones said.


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Lincoln Memorial University’s Ed.D. program gave Lauren Effler, Jason Bailey and me the opportunity to interact with class members of different ethnicities and cultures.

Office: 992-5888

1330 Main Street • Maynardville, TN. Across from Food City

Marvin West invites reader reaction. His address is

Victor Ashe is a former Knoxville mayor and U.S. ambassador to Poland. He wrote this column for the Feb. 22 edition of Shopper News.

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Chiropractic and your hips Chiropractic Outlook By Dr. Darrell Johnson, DC

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Like the body’s other joints, the hip joint is a point at which tendons, muscles and bones come together to allow particular movement. And as with the other joints, the hip joints are susceptible to pain and discomfort. The hip joints bear a significant portion of your weight. Injury or disease can cause pain in your hips. Your hips also can suffer from stress brought on by improper alignment of other parts of the body. A biomechanical problem with the feet like over- or under-pronation – meaning, respectively, a foot rolls too much to the inside or outside when walking – can affect the hips. Hip problems can also be brought on by misalignments in the ankles

or knees. And some hip pain may not actually originate in the hip. For instance, if a nerve is pinched between the fourth and fifth lumbar vertebrae, pain may erupt in the hip. This is called “referred pain.” A chiropractor can employ a variety of techniques to pinpoint the cause or causes of hip pain, and treat it. X-rays or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology are among the tools that can be used to aid in the diagnosis and help develop a treatment plan. Presented as a community service by Union County Chiropractic, 110 Skyline Drive, Maynardville, Tenn. 992-7000

A-8 • March 1, 2017 • Union County Shopper news

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