Page 1

tra X

MAY 9 - MAY 15, 2018

➤ calendar


of events inside ➤ page 4A


Public safety shares food and fellowship ➤ page 6B

your weekly connection to local news & entertainment

Locals bring peace to Greenville Street Park


Angela Bennett, a community member and singer, provides musical entertainment for Peace in the Park.

BY TAYLOR ROBINS A group of Cowetans g a t h e r e d i n t h e p a rk that was the site of last mont h’s NSM ra lly on Sunday. “We have to do some-

t h i n g d i f ferent ,” s a id Susan Kraut, organizer for t he event , about what Newnan needs to cha nge goi ng for wa rd in being a stronger com mu n it y. “ St ick i ng w it h t hese nucleuses ,

stayi ng i n t hat sa me comfort zone is not the remedy. Look a rou nd. Talk to somebody that you wouldn’t find yourself talking to for whatever reason because of whatever bias.”

Kraut suggested that ever yone go aga i n st their day-to-day activit ies a nd at tend meeti n g s a nd e vent s t he y normally wouldn’t attend to form diverse and organic bonds

with others. “ T h at ’s when t he g r ow t h t a k e s pl a c e ,” continued Kraut. “And t h at ’s wh en we t r u ly do start to form those bonds t h at m a ke us a real community.”

K raut had originally scheduled the event for the week prior, but had to c a n c e l b e c a u s e of rain.

PEACE, page 2A

Hands Free law begins July 1


Four-month-old Wesley Melville smiles while cuddling with his mom, Elizabeth, at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Elizabeth just completed a round of tests and will learn next week whether she can donate part of her liver to Wesley.

A Mother’s love BY MELANIE RUBERTI At just four months old, Wesley Melville has already earned the title “Sir Wesley,” and rightfully so. The baby boy is the king of his castle – on good days. But sadly, those days are becoming more rare

as the little boy fights for his life. Wesley was born with a rare disease called biliary atresia. The disorder causes bile ducts become inf lamed and blocked, meaning the liver cannot properly filter out toxins, according to

Wesley was diagnosed with the disease when he was only three weeks old, said his mom, Elizabeth Melville. “He wasn’t responding to light and he was very jaundiced,” she said. “The doctors ra n tests a nd

WESLEY, page 2B

BY SARAH FAY CAMPBELL Georgia Gov. Nathan D e a l h a s si g ned t he Hands Free Georgia Act into law. The act, which strongly limits how wireless phones and other electronic devices can be used by Georgia drivers, will go into effect July 1. The law prohibits holding a phone, or supporting it with one’s body, while driving. It also prohibits web browsing, texting, and most other phone use while driving. Drivers can use hand’s free devices or speaker phone to make phone calls, and can use voiceto-text technology, under the act. The law applies whether a vehicle is moving or stopped at traffic light, stop sign, or in traffic. Phone use is allowed while a vehicle is “legally parked." The only exception is to make an emergency phone call. Drivers can continue to use their phones for navigation, but still cannot hold or support them with their bodies while doing so. Making videos or photos, or using other elect ron ic dev ices wh i le driving is also prohibited. Dash cam videos are still allowed. L aw en forcement, public safety workers and utility contractors

are exempt if the use of devices is related to official duties or in response to an emergency.

according to published reports. He admitted to texting and sending messages before the crash,’s aim is to prevent the types of tragic and avoidable deaths that occured on that stretch of I-16 on that horrible day...

For mer Coweta n Suzanne Minarcine got involved in the push for the hands free legislation. Her young grandson was killed several years when he was struck by a driver who Minarcine said was on a phone call. She participated in hearings and visited the state capitol. “It was an interesting process,” Minarcine said. “I learned a lot about Georgia politics." Deal signed the bill, House Bill 673, in a ceremony Wednesday in Statesboro. The location was chosen to commemorate the 2015 deaths of five Georgia Southern University nursing students who were killed in a car crash on Interstate 16. The commercial truck driver who hit them pleaded guilty to five counts of first degree ve h i c u l a r h o m i c i d e ,

though he denied using the phone at the time of the crash. The death of the students "reminds us what can happen in an instant,” Deal said during the bill signing ceremony, accord i ng to a press release. "A life, a life full of potential and the joy it brought to their families is suddenly taken away. I am honored to sign this Hands Free legislation here in this community, the home of Georgia Southern. Its aim is to decrease distracted driving by prohibiting the use of wireless telecommunication devices while on any public roads on our state. Even more so, it's aim is to prevent the types of tragic and avoidable deaths that occured on that stretch of I-16 on that horrible day in April of 2015."

2A Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Times-Herald Xtra

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One activity at the Greenville Street Park event included decorating rocks at the “Newnan Rocks” table. After decoration, the rocks were hidden around Newnan for others to find.

Varieties SmokedSelect Ham


PEACE Sugar continued from page 1


Jamón cocido cortado en espiral

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Shoulder Picnic including

Angela Bennett, a community member, provided the musica l entertainment for the event singing songs like, “I Am Light” by India Arie a n d “ W h a t a Wo n d e r f u l World” by Louis Armstrong. T h e r e w e r e a 128 n uoz. mber of sp e a ker s at t he event ,

1$ 120 1 559¢ Season•All

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Pan Ready ea. ea. Whiting kind,” “Haters back off” and

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Chuck to de tcerdoa ke Filetes de tilapia Camaron cocido Merluza U.S.D.A. inspeccionado paleta l i n , w h o i s r u n n i n g f o r early voting that started on h o m e a s m a l l , f l a m e l e s s “ Com mu n it y.” T he ro c k s Congress. Monday to make important candle as a souvenir. will be hidden around town E n d e r l i n u r g e d e v e r y- change in how the country T h e “ N e w n a n R o c k12s ”oz. Bag for others to find over time. Any Size Packagetable was also available for one to m a ke a “con scious is run. At the conclusion of 12 oz. Shells & Cheese or Fresh Express 24 oz. Fresh 3” decision to T he e vent ende d wh i le at tendees to v i sit . By t he the event, those attending 32Bag oz. He a lso Garden FujiN e w n a n a s a t he su nTraditional, Ground Beefend14of oz.the Macaroni & Cheese d e s16coz. r iPkg. bed wa s st iGarlic l l shHerb, i n i With ng, event, rocks were joi ne d h a nd s i n t he pa rk Lemon Lime, Fruit Punch, 2 oz. Pkg. Carne de res fresca molida Bun Length Salad Mixformed a12circle Apples place that taught him how cancelling the planned cand e c o r a t e d w i t h p h r a s e s and ea . lb. ea . paquete de cualquier tamaño oz. Pkg. to symMeat or With Mushrooms Buddig 12 oz. Pkg. or Jumbo 7 oz. Pkg. Orange or eGlacier FreezedlelightCarlvigil. to love . He u r ge d ver yThose attendlike: “Y’all means all,” “Be bolize inclusion and unity. Jennie-O Wafer Thin Hormel Bar-S 2.44 oz. Pkg. John Morrell 16 oz. Pkg. Gatorade All Meat Armour Smoked Turkey Ham or Sugardale Little Any Size Package Hot Dogs LunchMakers Sausage Turkey AnyFranks Size Package Hot Dogs Sizzlers Salchicha Fresh Ground Almuerzos preparados Carnes frías Salchicha Salchicha ahumada Salchicha de pavo Salchicha Fresh Lean U.S.D.A. inspeccionado paleta de cerdo




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FD 050718-Page 2

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or pictorial errors.

FD 050718-Page 3


FD 050718-Page 1


Bistec de rees machacado fresco

Wednesday, May 9, 2018 | Times-Herald Xtra 3A


TUCKED AWAY MUSIC FESTIVAL • SATURDAY, MAY 12 • 2 – 6 PM Newnan’s own Patio Pub & Grill set in a recycled 1965 service station!

Receive a

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OPEN TUESDAY – SUNDAY for lunch & dinner

14 North Court Square • Newnan, GA 30263

(770) 253-2720


Mother's Day Tea

Local Artist Gallery & Gift Shop

Celebrate Mom and join us for tea this Mother’s Day! Our tea parties offer an experience you can not find anywhere else! Price includes a traditional tea menu with vintage tea ware, live piano music, and a beautiful, relaxing atmosphere! Did we mention a complimentary mimosa?! Groups of 6 or more, call for a group discount!


• Teaching Classes, Ages 3 to Adult • Painting Parties Available Onsite and Offsite

Reservations times available between 11am & 1pm $30 per person (includes tax and gratuity) Reservations required and space is limited!

30 South Court Square, Newnan, Ga

Get your tickets at Eventbrite or call 770-251-1206. • 678-633-5705 Mon. & Sat. 10:00 - 4:00 Tues., Thurs., Fri. 10:00 - 6:00 • Sun. & Wed. Closed follow us on facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Something Special at

Photo by: Timothy Fernandez Photography

If you prefer to sit in your favorite room in our antebellum home or charming courtyard, request the location on the registration form!

Lillian Gardens

a full-service event venue

83 Greenville St., Newnan |

83 Greenville Street, Newnan, Georgia 30263

Lillian Gardens is a full-service event venue dedicated to providing professional planning services for special occasions, while ensuring unique client experiences in a beautiful, fully-restored, southern antebellum mansion. Lillian Gardens is committed to positively impacting the lives of our clients, their families and the Newnan Community. Services include: (but not limited to) Weddings | Receptions | Showers | Tea Parties | Luncheons | Holiday Parties | Family Reunions Charity and Networking Functions | Birthday, Anniversary and Graduation Celebrations NEW OWNERSHIP: Ashley Keeley-Bercich

Ashley is married with two children and has a beloved family Golden Retriever named Buddy. She enjoys traveling to new places and exploring different cultures. Ashley intends to meld her professional experience with her passion for adventure, providing her clients with fresh and creative ideas.

GRAND OPENING FALL 2016 Currently accepting bookings for Fall / Winter 2016 and 2017


Make Friends, Make Moments, Make Memories Camps offered at BOTH Studio Locations

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The MOST EXCELLENT way to experience all types of dance!







Junior Ages 7-12 Teen/Senior Ages 13-19



For Dates, Times, Fees & MORE VISIT US ONLINE or

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Ages 3-6 | 678-764-3909 www.

4A Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018


Times-Herald Xtra

March 2812 - 31 May 10-

calendar your guide for local upcoming events


Sounds that Heal Thursday

May10, 2:30 p.m., Free Singing bowls produce sounds which invoke a deep state of relaxation, stress reduction and holistic healing. Many people find that the rich blend of harmonic overtones which the

bowls produce have a direct affect on the energy centers of the body. The discussion will include the history, technique and benefits of the singing bowl. If you have your own bowl or any musical instrument, bring it to this class for a “healing jam session.” For questions or to register, call the Carnegie Library at 770-683-1347.


‘Noises Off’ Thursday

May 10 – 13, 8 p.m., $10 - $17 Called the funniest farce ever written, “Noises Off” by Michael Frayn presents a manic menagerie as a cast of itinerant actors rehearsing a flop called “Nothing’s On.” Doors slamming, on and offstage intrigue,

Athletes compete in Special Olympics Spring Games

and an errant herring all figure in the plot of this hilarious and classically comic play. If it can go wrong, it will go wrong, and Murphy’s Law gets tested to its maximum in this hysterical show. Unless otherwise noted, shows run Thursday Saturday at 8:00 p.m., with a Sunday matinee at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are $17 for adults; $13 for senior citizens (65+)/ student/ military; and $10 for children (12 and under). For more information, call 770683-6282 or visit


Soles for Cole Friday

May 11, 10 a.m., $125- $500 The sixth annual Cole’s Commanders Golf Tournament is

a 4-Person Best Shot (Scramble) golf tournament benefiting the Breathing Easy Foundation, dedicated to raising awareness and money for cystic fibrosis and the families affected by the disease. The tournament will take place at White Oak Golf Club, 141 Clubview Drive, in Newnan. Price: $125 per person; $500 per foursome. For more information, call 678673-9371 or .


Tucked Away Music Festival Saturday

May 12, 2 p.m. - 6 p.m., Free Event attendees will have the unique opportunity to visit stages placed in pub-

lic parking lots and alleyways throughout the district. There will be a small artisan area, and many downtown retailers and restaurants will offer specials and promotions during the event. Musical talent will be very diverse, where each stage will represent a different genre. Featured Bands of the Music Festival include Crossroads Rebellion, Kris Youmans Band, The Wyatt Band, James Tyler Wallace, as well as Stella Weaver, Pickin’ on the Square, and Musicology students. There will also be a stage featuring local Christian bands and choirs hosted by Four Corners Church. Free parking is available along downtown streets, and in the City of Newnan’s public parking lots. For more information, call Main Street Newnan at 770-253-8283.


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Coweta County School System Seeking

School Bus Drivers

For the 2018-19 School Year PHOTOS BY MEGAN BELLEW

Shae Kivett, 6, is all smiles during the Coweta County Special Olympics Spring Games.

The Coweta County School System is seeking full-time School Bus Drivers for morning and afternoon school transportation routes during the 180-day school year. The Coweta County School System recently increased bus driver salaries for the upcoming school year. Starting pay for school bus drivers will move to $15.29/hour (up from $12.99) and top pay will move to $25.99/hour (up from $22.11). This 15 percent increase in bus driver pay makes Coweta County Schools competitive with metro markets. Full-time driver positions provide a minimum 25-hour work week during the school year and health benefits. Large vehicle experience is not required. Training for commercial driver’s license evaluation and certification is provided by the school system. Training for qualified applicants can begin immediately. Driver trainees are paid while they train. Interested applicants can call the school system’s Transportation Office for additional information:

770-254-2820 To apply, visit

(Employment Opportunities), or contact the school system’s Human Resources Office at:



Josiah George, 9, enjoys competing in one of the track and field events during the Coweta County Special Olympics Spring Games.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018   |  Times-Herald Xtra 5A

Times-Herald Xtra

Grants available for Dog and Cat Sterilization NTH STAFF REPORTS Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black recently announced the issua nce of $ 425,000 in grants to assist with spaying and neutering Georgia’s companion animals. “ O f ten lo c a l communities have citizens that are burdened by the high costs of having their pets spayed or neutered,” Black said. “This grant will target and aid these communities across Georgia by keeping strays off the street and controlling the animal popu lat ion i n a hu m a ne manner.” Si nce t he Dog a nd Cat Sterilization Program’s inception, it has been utilized to sexually alter thousands of companion animals. The funds for these procedures are obtained from the sales of the dog and cat spec i a l t y ve h i c l e t a g s , i ncome ta x exempt deductions a nd from direct contributions to the program. In 2013, the Dog and Cat Sterilization Grant P rog ra m wa s e st ab lished to allow for state licensed animal shelters, licensed animal rescue orga nizations with 501(c)3 status and veterinary associations with 501(c)3 status to apply.

In t he f i rst t h ree rounds of grants, $950,000 was awarded to a total of over 100 organizations. Grants will be awarded based on the highest priority after c o n s i d e r i n g f a c to r s such as but not limited to, targeting important a n i m a l p opu l at ion s , ability to increase surg ica l nu mbers , costbenefit ratio and record of grant applicant and sustainability. Applicants must reside in Georgia and all procedures must be performed by licensed and accredited Georgia veterinarians. Applications must be submitted by the close of business on Thursday, May 3. Applications may be obtained from http:// , and submitted to: Georgia Department of Agriculture Dog and Cat Sterilization Program 19 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SW Room 112 Atlanta, GA 30334 For more i n for m ation, to obtain an application or to make a tax e xe m p t d on a t i on to the Dog and Cat Sterilization Program visit dog-cat-sterilizationprogram.aspx or call 404-656-4914.

Little Free Pantries coming to Newnan BY TAYLOR ROBINS In a n effort to ease h a rd s h ip s , f re e fo o d pantries will be coming to Newnan in the next few weeks. “It’s basically like the c om mu n it y j u s t t a king on a project,” said Brian Shelton, local cofo u n d e r a n d p r oj e c t manager for Newnan’s Little Free Pantry. “ We want to help people.” Shelton and his wife and , Pat Shelton, are planning to build and pl ace outdoor publ ic pa ntries for the community to use a nd stock. The project was approved by t he cit y council on March 29. T he projec t , wh ich includes two pantries, is on a one-yea r tria l to evaluate the success and benefits of the program. The pantries are currently being built and may be placed at their locations in the next two weeks. T h e p ol i c e s t a t i on on Bu l lsboro Drive will serve as one location, and the f ire station on Temple Avenue will serve as the second location. Shelton requested these locations because they are well lit and safe. “We just want to continue to grow, as it needs, as much as we can,” said Shelton about the project’s growth. “We want to put out as many as we can. It’s been slow start, but I think it’ll pick up some momentum. We’re looking forward to getting it kicked off.” Accord i n g to Shelton, this project is not i ntende d to comp ete with existing food pantries. It is only a quick a nd e a s y solut ion to hardships that anyone may have to overcome, since the pantries will

be available 24/7. The pa ntries a re not on ly limited to the homeless. “It may be for a person, who for some reason, this week maybe they had to spend their money to fix the car to get to work and they’re a little short,” Shelton explained. “There’s not a relief for that. So they can run up to the pantry and get something to fix dinner for the family or take to work.” M a r y-A n n D o s s e t t Shelton of Keller Will ia m s Rea lt y a nd t he rea lt y compa ny h ave ag reed to a 1 2-mont h sponsorship. Sponsors are to restock the pantries twice a week with non-perishable items, check on them and report on the wellbeing of the pantries. Community residents m ay a l s o le ave fo o d items in the pantries for others. “Some people see wh at ’s goi n g on a nd how effective it is,” Shelton said about how the project works in other areas. “When they go to the grocery store, they throw a couple of extra cans of non-perishable items in the ca rt a nd stick it in the (Little Free Pantry).” T here a re four free and existing pantries in Georgia, they are located i n : Ca r tersv i l le, Ca rrollton, Duluth and Athens. In the United States there are 235 recorded pa ntries according to the Little Free Pantry website. “They are popping up everywhere as a result of people seei ng t hat there’s a need for it,” said Shelton. The pilot pantry was installed and stocked in May 2016, according to the website.

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Counter-protesters gather on Greenville Street during Saturday afternoon’s National Socialist Movement rally. By 6 p.m., all crowds had dissipated and downtown Newnan was a proverbial ghost town with only a few restaurants still open for business. There was no property damage reported and only 10 arrests, according to Assistant City Manager Hasco Craver. For full story, see Page 7A.

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6A Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Wednesday, May 9, 2018   |  Times-Herald Xtra 1B

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

R U O F O M O T T O B E H T FROM ! U O Y K N A H T E W , S T R A HE You Made It Possible! Your generous support gave the men and women of public safety a delicious lunch, a special time of fellowship, laughter and a chance to come together under happy circumstances. You will never know how grateful they are to know that you support them and care about them. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your financial support and also for delivering some of the most delicious desserts they ever ate!

Newnan-Coweta Public Safety Appreciation Day 2018

God bless you always.


Red, White & Blue A. Leon & Mary H. Jeffries Foundation Myron Kee Dr. J. J. Thomasson, Jr. Mrs. Jean S. Thomas Marie & Steve Swope City of Newnan Catherine D. Latimore The Newnan Times-Herald A Caring Supporter

Royal Blue Randa the Realtor W. Homer Drake, Jr. Toyota of Newnan Leslie & Jeff Jeter Larry & Barbara Taylor Bob & Millie Coggin McKoon Funeral Home Newnan Utilities White Oak Golden K of Newnan

Loyal Blue Newnan Mayor & City Council Cleatus Phillips Coweta County Commissioners Michael Fouts Warden Bill McKenzie (Capt. Cook, Lt. Coker and Crew) Coweta Fairgrounds Crew (Tray, Karen, Clyde and Crew)

Gold Five Points Tax Service - Tommy Hardy Mrs. Carol P. Harless Anita & Bill Headley Cecil & Jan Walker Michael & Sherry Johnson Mrs. Virginia Elliott SouthTowne Mrs. Joanne Lazenby Gene & Pat Craven J. B. Harris Transport, LLC A Grateful Citizen Mrs. Earlene Scott Millard & Jo Farmer Murphey Florist Buffalo Rock

Silver Jack Peeks Sales Raymond & Barbara Walls Mrs. Evelyn R. Jones Barry & Linda Hunter George & Myrna Barron Mr. & Mrs. Emory Palmer United Bank Joe & Pat Distel Ms. Minerva Winslow Pat & Donna McKee Sanders, Haugen & Sears Crain Oil Co. Jack & Jackie Binion Kim Distel Lee-King Pharmacy Mrs. Pat Burns Mrs. Marleene Andersen Sumner/Meeker, LLC Charter Bank Knox Company Coweta-Fayette EMC Mrs. Joan Crawford Marion J. Laster William & Dianne Robertson Sprayberry’s Barbecue Barbara Seaman Bobby & Geraldine Welch Mrs. Joyce W. Amis Janet Boyce Otis & Ann Jones Joe Brooks Robert & Jackie Fuller Laurie & Dorothy Pope Rep. Lynn Smith Hunt & Glenn Fulwiler Pilot Club of Newnan Shirley T. Church Angela & Jimmy Yarbrough Mrs. Jane Keith Mike Fitzpatrick Ford

Mr. & Mrs. Preston Fulmer Coach Max & Nancy Bass Mrs. Mary W. Denney Ms. Mary S. Sprayberry Ken & Marcia Moore Richard & Maxine Morris Richard & Audrey Cortez Richard & Kay Shaffer Mrs. Jeane A. Yancey Rod & Robin Osborn Judith A. Cooper Coweta Animal Hospital Chelcie & Helen Sherman Gerald & Linda Masdon Stephen & Lara Oles Frank & Peggie Wilson

Mrs. Marion W. Murphy Mrs. Ruth Ann Embrey Beverly Necessary Arthur & Ruth Mallehan Marie Miller Ginny & Dale Lyles Susan & Bill Boyd Mrs. Beverly Daniel Shirley L. Siebold Arnall Grocery Company Vernon & Lynn Kidd Judge John Herbert Cranford Bill & Mary Ann Roe Eddie & Teresa Lovett Mr. & Mrs. Elwood Thompson

Our Sweet Friends Connie Flanagan Redneck Corner Cafe Jackie Stallings Amelia Adams Glenn Fulwiler Maggie Heatherman Kathy Holcomb JoAnn Roper Vesta Brown Mark & Joy Puckett Sheila Davis Willa Stewart Ann Fletcher Susan Conlan Frances Williams Tray Baggerly Cheryl Smith Kiwanis of Coweta County Sherrill Lee Sue Livingston Margaret Tyre Susan Brantley Elva Whitlock Cathy Miller Rosa Connally Kathy Brown June Duenekel Debbie Stuckey Myrna Barron Pat Distel Kim Distel Elizabeth Byrose Mary Fowler Lynne Crump Nancy Jackson Sue Morris Elain Barnes Evelyn Martin Pat Craven Maxine Morris Peggy Wilson Christie’s Cafe JoAnne Lazenby Caswell Wrecker

Eleanor Hoffman Juanita Biggers Janet Alford Peter Ludlow, Anita Carter Cornelia Landreau Michael Ziegler Stephanie Fagerstrom Jeri Burnette Lee Clark Ann Headstream Aldy Sands Ruth Ann Embrey Nancy Williamson Nelda Boren Gerry McCoomb Linda Scogin Joan Acree Sandra Kennedy Garlon Cobb Marcie Bayne Shirley Whitley Linda Dickerson Julie Watson Joan Exner Penny Williams Debbie Harrington Darlene Higgins Judy Wilson Sherry Warren Lisa Lassetter Beth Barnett Michelle Alexander Angele McRae Contemporary Catering Deanne Ferrell Georgia Pain and Spine Care Mary Ann Cauthen Teresa Lovett Aline Archibald Amanda & Beth Owenby Lynn Kidd Brenda Word Candy Wright Barbara Harness

The Newnan-Coweta Public Safety Appreciation Lunch Committee: A special thanks to Retired Deputy Chief Rodney Riggs, Nancy McGuffey, Angela W. McRae, Sherry Warren, and Gene Craven for all the help they gave us.

Norma Haynes, Judy Bell, Gail Carnes, Tammy Cash, Pat Craven, Sheila Davis, Ruth Ann Embrey, Lisa Hines, Jim McGuffey, Earlene Scott, Marianne Thomasson

2B Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Times-Herald Xtra


Nora Melville, 5, cuddles with her baby brother Wesley during a rare moment at home. Four-month-old Wesley was diagnosed with biliary atresia and has spent most of his young life at the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta waiting for a liver transplant.


continued from page 1

noticed his liver enzymes were extremely high. The normal range is 13. Wesley’s number was in the hundreds.” If left untreated, biliary atresia can cause cirrhosis and ultimately liver failure. Wesley was less than a month old when he had his first surgery, called t he K asa i procedure, which creates new bile ducts using the baby’s own intestine. The operation would allow proper drainage from the liver, according to www.liverfoundation. org . The surgery has an 80 percent success rate. Shortly after the opera t i o n , “ S i r We s l e y ” returned to his castle in Newnan with his parents and 5-year-old sister Nora. But he didn’t stay long. “We were home for two months. Life felt so normal,” said Elizabeth. “I went back to work and Wesley went into daycare. But then his appetite decreased and he started spitting up more.” At Wesley ’s t h ree month checkup, the family received devastating news. “The doctor felt his liver and said she could feel it hardening,” Elizabeth said. “She told us he would need a liver transplant before he turned 2 years old. “My husba nd Jonathan and I were both reeling,” she added. “We didn’t know what all a transplant entailed, but we k new it was seriou s a nd it wou ld be life-changing.” Suddenly, Sir Wesley’s “castle” went from his Newnan home to a room at Children’s Hospital of Atlanta. Elizabeth said the disease continues to progress rapidly. “His liver is enlarged and hardened. He is very yellow (jaundiced). He has all the signs of liver failure,” she explained. On Monday, doctors

drained fluid from Wesley. The fluid was pressing on his tiny lungs and making it hard for him to breathe. His belly was swollen from the f luid buildup, said Elizabeth. Wesley’s life depends on a liver tra nspla nt from either a deceased or living donor. E l i z a b et h s a id s he hopes she can give her you n g s on a s e c ond chance at life. T he t wo sh a re t he same blood type. Elizabeth completed a round of te st s , wh ich h ave confirmed that she is a match and can donate a portion of her liver to Wesley. “I don’t want to see him suffer one more minute than he has to,” she said. “I’m watching this disease progress, seeing it rob the joy from our family, and seeing Wesley smile less and less. I ache just to give him my liver now. “My birthday is May 12 and I would love to give him my liver,” she added. “When Wesley was born, he stole a piece of my heart. So, why not give him a piece of my liver too?” Children born with biliary atresia have a more than a 90 percent chance of living a normal life following a liver transplant, according to . E l i z a b et h s a id s he is lea n i ng on fa m i ly, friends and faith to get her and Wesley through this tough time. She sa id she hopes We s l e y ’s s t o r y w i l l inspire more people to give the gift of life. “I hope people will look at pictures of Wesley, see what we’re going through and decide to become an organ donor. It only takes a minute,” she said. “There are people who perish on the waiting list.” Tra nspla nts ca n be costly. Families usually need to raise money for the operation, hospital visits

and anti-rejection medications, which will help sustain the patient and donated organ for the rest of their life. Currently, the Melvilles are trying to raise $ 5 0,0 0 0 t h roug h t he Children's Organ Transpla nt Association, or COTA. T he money is on ly used for medical costs or family expenses at time of transplants. As of last Thursday, “Team Wesley M” had only raised $12,757, said Elizabeth. But the family is grateful for every single penny, if it means giving Wesley a long and prosperous life. E l i z a b et h s a id s he already considers “Sir Wesley” her hero. “If I go under surgery, I’ll think of Wesley and be brave,” she said. “He is my little dragon slayer. I truly draw strength from him most days.” A nyone w ish i ng to donate to Wesley’s medical funds, can visit www. cotaforteamwesleym. People can also follow Wesley’s story on Instagram @Wesley B A Slayer.

“ I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness. And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not : for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. he that rejected me, and receiveth not my words, has one that judges him : the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. “ John 12: 46-48 American Must Stand With Israel! God is Good All The Time The W. Reece Payton Co., Inc.


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Four-month-old Wesley Melville remains at the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta awaiting a liver transplant. The baby, also known as “Sir Wesley,” was born with biliary atresia, a rare disease that restricts the liver’s bile ducts, allowing toxins and fluids to build up inside the body.








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Wednesday, May 9, 2018   |  Times-Herald Xtra 3B

Times-Herald Xtra

Coweta Relay for Grand Life raises more than $100,000 Opening Saturday May 12

9a.m.-5 p.m.

Come Celebrate with us!!


Kayla Maresca, a student at Master J. Kim’s Taekwondo Education, shows Jermaine and Davontez Scott how to break a board at Coweta Relay for Life.

BY SARAH FAY CAMPBELL Cowetans raised more t ha n $100,000 for the American Cancer Society at the 2018 Coweta Relay for Life. Relay for Life, held each yea r at t he Coweta Cou nt y Fa i rgrounds, is prima rily a fundraiser for ACS. B u t i t ’s m u c h m o r e than that. A s t h e t a g l i n e fo r the event makes clear, Relay for Life is a time to celebrate , remember, and fight back. Te a m s – w h i c h i nclude fa m i l ie s a nd f r iends of t hose who h a ve h a d c a n c e r, a s well as va rious organizations a nd businesses – form to fundraise and participate in the relay. Each team sets up a tent a round t he t rack at t he fa i rgrounds, a nd ma ny tea ms sell food or cra f t s or host ga mes to make extra money. T here i s l ive mu sic , t he “ Hol ly wood St a r Looka li ke” contest, and plenty of silliness. During the Sur vivor Lap, all those who a re ca ncer su r v ivors – including those who are currently f ighting cancer – walk together around the track. L ate r, tow a rd s t h e e n d o f t h e e ve n i n g , there is the luminaria ceremony and the Walk of Remembrance. Luminaria – paper bags with electric candles – and torches line the track, all in honor or memor y of some one battling cancer. A

large Japanese lantern is lit and sent into the air. Lights and music are turned off and only the luminarias and torches around the track rema in as loved ones of those who have died of cancer walk silently around the track. I n a d d i t i o n to t h e lu m i n a r i a , t here i s a memory garden, where photos of t hose who h ave f i n ished t hei r f ight with ca ncer a re broadcast, and even a pet luminaria section. While most participa nts in Relay for L i fe a re mem b er s of teams, there are other Cowet a n s who come out to walk, to remember, a nd to enjoy t he festivities and food. Vick ie a nd Cha rles Pa rk s broug ht t hei r grandchildren, M a k a yl a , C h l o e a n d K halil, to walk in the relay. Vickie Parks lost her mot her to ca ncer in 2008 and comes each yea r to suppor t the cause. “I t r y to keep up w it h it a nd suppor t it,” Vickie Parks said. “It ’s wonderful. It ’s a g re at c au s e to com e out and support,” she sa id. “ We spent most of ou r money i n t he children’s area." Margaret Price-Yelland and her daughters and other family members h ave been coming to Relay for several ye a r s . Sh e i s a t wo time cancer survivor – battling cancer in 2001 and 2016.

Back when Relay wa s a 2 4 -hou r event, t hey wou ld stay a l l night, and only missed o n e y e a r, w h e n s h e was sick. “ We used to have a great time,” he said. T h i s ye a r ’s t h e m e wa s L i g ht s , Ca mer a , Relay, and many of the b o o t h s h a d a Hol lywood f lair. Some even had a red carpet. Abby Allen, who was diag nosed wit h osteosa rcom a , a ra re b one c a ncer, at 14 , was t his yea r ’s Relay speaker. She spoke just before t he lu m i n a r i a ceremony. After her treatment, “ I w a s s u re I wo u ld never go back i nto a hospital.” Instead, she decided to become a nurse and now works on the oncology f loor at Ch i ldren’s Hea lt hcare of Atlanta. “ To d a y I ’m a n R N at the very same place where my li fe wa s saved eight years ago,” she told the crowd. “I st i l l m i ss spor ts a nd t he ac t ive l i fe st yle I loved so much , but I know that God’s vision for my life is so much more than I could have ever i magi ned on my own. “Life is not easy or p er fe c t for a nyon e ,” she added. “T his was a nd st i l l to t h i s d ay continues to be a challenging journey. But I came out of the journey w it h fa m i ly a nd f r iend s – a nd not to mention a really cute dog – by my side."

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4B Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Times-Herald Xtra

Special shopping day benefits local athletes


Laura Gfelner paints the New England Patriots mascot on the face of a little boy at the Coweta Special Olympics Benefit Ride and Shopping Expo on Saturday at Unity Baptist Church off Smokey Road.

BY MELANIE RUBERTI Dozens of folks spent Saturday shopping and suppor ti ng Coweta County Special Olympics at Unity Baptist Church in Newnan. The local organizat ion , a long w it h t he UBC F.A.I.T.H Riders, sponsored the Coweta Special Olympics Benefit Ride and Shopping Expo. Motorcycle enthusiasts took off early Saturday morning for a scenic

ride through the county, while local businesses and independent consultants set up booths at the church. Those attending had the opportunity to wander through the parking lot and shop for clothes, jewelry, perfume, candles, artwork and home goods. T here was a lso a face-painting tent for ch i ldren, a bounce house, bake sale, food and drinks, and entertainment.

Check out the

Megan Davis, 15, left, helps her grandmother, Yvonne Henderson, sell fragrance products and candles from Pink Zebra at the Coweta Special Olympics Benefit Ride and Shopping Expo.



The Newnan Times-Herald and Newnan-Coweta Magazine are pleased to announce the 2018-2019 issue of Coweta Living, an upscale guide that offers a fresh look at Coweta County to all residents, old and new.

latest news from around Coweta at

Coweta County shines as

one of the best places to live in Georgia. Coweta Living, publishes in August and is distributed year-round, showing why living and doing business in Coweta is such a great idea.

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Coweta Living is a full-color glossy magazine and features a thick cover stock, giving it a long shelf life. Writing, photography and design are of the highest quality. DISTRIBUTION Coweta Living is distributed prominently at locations throughout the county. It will be delivered to The Newnan Times-Herald subscribers in August and available year-round at The Newnan Times-Herald, Coweta County Welcome Center, Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce and at various locations across the county, plus online for one year.


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6B Times-Herald Xtra   |  Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Times-Herald Xtra

Public safety shares food and fellowship Record turnout for annual Public Safety Appreciation Luncheon

BY CLAY NEELY For the second time, hu nd reds of members from Coweta Cou nty’s numerous city and c o u n t y p u bl i c s a fe t y depa r t ments gat hered together. But this time, it was under much happier circumstances. It was a record turnout for the 20th annual Public Safety Appreciation Luncheon, held at the Coweta County Fairgrounds on T hursday, according to organizer Norma Haynes. The annual event carried a slightly more significant tone this year, coming off a highly tense weekend that drew the eyes of the world upon the city of Newnan and Coweta County. Nearly every member of public safety participated during last weekend’s politically charged rally that saw hundreds of protesters gathered in downtown Newnan. The city escaped the highly emotional event with a little less tha n a dozen arrests and no property damage. Officials cited the success of 42 different agencies working together for a common goal – keeping the public safe. Haynes, who heads the New n a n- Coweta P ub lic Sa fet y Com m ittee, said she always enjoys the annual luncheon, but felt this year’s event was timed perfectly. “It was overwhelming,” she said. “It was a day of celebration because we’re so blessed to have the dedicated people we have serving in all areas

of public sa fet y. Having the ability for them to come toget her a nd enjoy each other's company today was one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.” T he a n nua l event wa s orga n i zed by t he Newnan-Coweta Public Safety Committee members, and the luncheon was free and open to all divisions of public safety – including law enforcement, fire departments, emergency medical services and the court system. The meal was provided by Warden Bill McKenzie with the Coweta County Prison, and a long table covered in every kind of dessert imaginable was a l so ava i l able t h a n k s to m a ny g iv i n g lo c a l Coweta residents. “This year, we needed three extra tables to fit all the deserts,” Haynes said. Coweta 91 1 Director Jay Jones said the event is always a morale boost for those in public safety. Having served in a number of public safety roles during the course of his career, he said it’s a great way to honor those who don’t seek the spotlight. “ We’re i n t h is business because it’s a calling to serve your community,” Jones said “But it’s great to live in a community where the public supports us. It was very apparent last week.” Jones sa id as t he county keeps growing, t he nu mber of publ ic safety personnel mirrors that trend, so the ability to sit down and enjoy fellowship with fellow firstresponders is a blessing. “ We c u r rent ly h ave


Sgt. Justin Hogan shares a handshake with Deputy David Hill during the 20th annual Public Safety Appreciation Luncheon on Thursday.

around 850 members on our radio system, and that doesn’t include everyone,” he said. “But you could tell from the event today how much we’re growing. There wasn’t an empty seat there and that doesn’t include the ones who couldn’t make it.” Major Ma rk Fenninger with the Coweta County Sheriff ’s Office said such an outpouring of local support for law enforcement isn’t a common commodity in many communities. “For years law enforce-


ment has been bashed, but if they had the same support that we see in our community, it really makes your speechless,” Fenninger said. “It makes your heart feel special and we’re very gracious for what we get.” Haynes was honored for her unoff icial role as the “mother of publ ic sa fet y ” i n Coweta County, but she said it’s the hard work of the Public Safety Committee that makes the event such a success. “I couldn’t do any of

this without their help and support,” she said. The Newnan-Coweta Public Safety Foundation was formed in an effort to bring awareness to the com mu n it y rega rd i ng the hard work that first responders do in Coweta County. As public safety agencies are trying to work more with less, the foundation also helps raise money to purchase necessa r y item s for bot h police and f ire departments that isn’t in their budgets.

Last year, the group raised more than $30,000, which helped fund a multitude of projects a nd support for those serving in public safety across the county, including CPR monitors, tourniquets for patrol, headsets for communication officers and training mannequins. Along with purchasing equipment for first responders, the group has also raised money for scholarships and helping financially strapped public safety personnel.


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