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 WMUF/WLZK News                                                               

From News Director Tim Alsobrooks, Assistant News Director Cassie Walsh



Enjoying Jim Stafford live in concert at KPAC


Jim Stafford performs a concert at KPAC on Saturday night. (Cassie Walsh photos)

Paris, Tenn.- Lee Academy for the Arts brought Jim Stafford of “Spiders and Snakes” fame direct from Branson to perform in concert at the Krider Performing Arts Center on Saturday night as a large, lively crowd of people came out to enjoy the concert. Along with “Spiders and Snakes," some of the songs that Stafford sung included "Swamp Witch," " Wildwood Weed" and more.


Jim Stafford performs his songs "Swamp Witch" and "Spiders and Snakes." (Cassie Walsh photos)

The concert was a fundraiser for Lee Academy for the Arts. Gioia Fazzini, president of the board of Lee Academy for the Arts and strings teacher at Inman Middle School, said that the two main missions of Lee Academy was to serve as preservation of Lee School and to provide visual arts and performing arts education for people of all ages.


Jim Stafford meets with the crowd that came to see him in concert on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

Jim Stafford’s appearance was provided in part by Platinum Sponsors Coleman & Townsend Optometrists and Forever Communications. Commercial Bank was a Gold Sponsor supporter.

Woman arrested for meth, burglary charges on Friday

Paris, Tenn.- A Paris woman was arrested on numerous charges including burglary and possession of methamphetamine on Friday.

Paris Police Ptl. Ashley Neumair arrested Brittani N. Easley, 33, of 345 Harrison St. of Paris for possession of methamphetamine, aggravated burglary, violation of probation, failure to do a jail sentence and theft of property.

Easley’s bond was set at $17,095. She is scheduled to appear Aug. 27 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

In an unrelated incident, Paris Police Ptl. David Beauvais arrested James Bush, 61, of 125 Bucy Lane of Paris on Friday for driving under the influence. Bush’s bond was set at $1,500. He is scheduled to appear Aug. 27 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Vendor space still available for the Paris Lakeway Kiwanis Club's Paris Landing Arts and Crafts Festival

Buchanan, Tenn.- Vendor space is still available for the 2019 Paris Landing Arts & Crafts Festival that will be held on Sept. 7-8th beginning at 10 a.m. each morning at Paris Landing State Park.

The event will feature handcrafted items and is sponsored by the Paris Lakeway Kiwanis Club.

For information on vendor space, please contact Crissy McCutcheon at 363-3464.

Get your taste buds ready for the Refuge's Wild Edible Plant Foray

Springville, Tenn.- The Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge, located at 1371 Wildlife Drive in Springville, will hold a brand new Refuge Discovery Series program called “Wild Edible Plant Foray” at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 31st.

People are always using their senses to experience nature and in this brand new Refuge Discovery Series Program, the Refuge is inviting everyone to come taste what nature has to offer in this “Wild Edible Plant Foray”.

The Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge is excited to welcome back local foraging expert Jonathan Lodge.  Beginning at 1 p.m. at the Refuge Visitor Center participants will learn about a few wild plants that are found locally that are okay to eat.  From seeds to leaves, stems to fruits, you can learn what is edible…and what is not at this program.

A good rule of thumb is never eat anything in the wild unless you are 100% certain if it is edible. The best way to make sure is to consult an expert, and here is your chance. This program will include some instruction on some of the easy ones. As always, Jonathan will bring an array of examples for show and tell. You might even get to sample a few of them!  However, this is a discovery class only as foraging is not allowed on the refuge.

The Refuge Discovery Series was created by the Friends of Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge to help the public enjoy and interact with the refuge and its wildlife.  Each considered a good family activity, the series presents different wildlife related topics and guest speakers to help the public connect with nature. Hosting the program at the Refuge Visitor Center can be fun trip for families as our participants typically come early or stay to enjoy our new exhibits. The Refuge Visitor Center is open Monday – Saturday from 8:00-4:00 pm and is located at 1371 Wildlife Drive in Springville, TN.

For more information about the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge, how to become a member of the Friends of Tennessee NWR or about the refuge in general, please call the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters at 731-642-2091, like us on Facebook or see our website at www.fws.gov/refuge/Tennessee.            

Community supports weekend backpack program as Paris Rotary Club reports donations have almost tripled this year


Dennis Upduike (left) hands Paris Rotarian Linley White several donation items for the Weekend Backpack program on Saturday at Kroger. Kroger was just one of the many area grocery stores that the Rotary Club collected donations at.
(Cassie Walsh photos)

By Cassie Walsh
Henry County, Tenn.- The community once again came out in full force to donate various items for the Paris Rotary Club’s project of raising money and food for the Paris Special School District’s weekend backpack program. The idea is to gain enough donations and support to include 3rd graders in the program this year.


Kathy Lindsey (left), the assistant manager for the Dollar General store on North Market Street, hands some donations for the backpack program to Diane Mahan (right), as Diane and Joe Mahan (not pictured) from the Paris Rotary Club collected items for the backpack program at the North Market Street Dollar General Store. (Cassie Walsh photos)

Rotary Club members went out to a total of around nine area grocery stores including Wal-Mart, Lakeway IGA, Kroger, Cash-Savers, and Paris Dollar General Stores until 3 p.m. on Saturday as they collected various items from mac and cheese, pop tarts, cheese and crackers and so many more items. People were also able to make a monetary donation for the program. Members from the Rotary Club stated that by the end of the morning shift that the number of donations from this year’s drive raised more than double what they received last year. It appeared that donations from this year's drive will be more than tripled what was collected last year.


(Cassie Walsh photos)

Bees and more at Paris Landing State Park



By Shannon McFarlin
Buchanan, Tenn.–In the above photo, Paris Landing State Park Interpretive Ranger Amy O’Brien releases a Sharp Shinned Hawk this morning before a large crowd at the National Honey Bee Day event. O’Brien said the hawk was hit by a car about two weeks ago and had suffered a concussion, but after spending time at the Paris Landing raptor rehab program, he was ready to be released back to the wild.

In second photo, James Hinton shares some of his knowledge of honey bees for visitors to the event. Hinton is the vice president of the Kentucky Lake Beekeepers Association. Other members of the Beekeepers were on hand for the event, which also included a wildflower hike and arts and crafts. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

Whitlock Fire Hall dedciated in memory of the late Freddy Wade

By David Jackson
Whitlock, Tenn.- Cottage Grove Volunteer Fire Department Chief John Weiher (left) and Assistant Chief Shannon Bomar (right) present a plaque on Saturday that dedicated the Whitlock Community Center and Fire Station in memory of the late Freddy Wade.

The plaque was presented recognizing the dedication of the Whitlock Fire Station of the Cottage Grove Volunteer Fire Department in honor Wade, who served as a  33-year volunteer firefighter for the department. Wade passed away back in 2017.

Three arrested on multiple offenses, including driving offenses

Henry County, Tenn.- Several people have been arrested for driving offenses over the past few days.

Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy William Whitaker arrested Michael Shackleford, 24, of Hollow Rock on Thursday for DUI and violation of the open container law. Shackleford’s bond was set at $3,000. He is scheduled to appear Aug. 27 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

In unrelated incidents, Sheriff’s Cpl. Stacey Bostwick arrested David Leonard, 38, of 6124 Guthrie Road of Paris on Thursday for driving on a suspended license, simple possession of a schedule VI substance (marijuana) and possession of drug paraphernalia. Leonard’s bond was set at $1,000. He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Paris Police Investigator Derrek Colley with the Metro Crime Unit arrested Christian Workman, 22, of 210 S. McDonald St. of Puryear on Thursday for driving on a suspended license and simple possession of a schedule VI substance. Workman’s bond was set at $1,000. He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Paris Swim Team tryouts set for Tuesday, Aug. 27th

Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Swim Team will be holding tryouts for the 2019-20 winter season for swimmers ages 5-18 on Tuesday, Aug. 27 between 3-5 p.m. at the Paris Civic Center pool.

Swimmers ages 8 and under must be able to swim 25 yards freestyle and backstroke unassisted. Swimmers ages 9 and up must be able to swim 50 yards freestyle and backstroke unassisted.

Three arrested for driving on a suspended license

Henry County, Tenn.- Three people were arrested on driving for a suspended license over the past few days.

Paris Police Lt. Michael Ramos arrested Casey Curtis, 23, of 2075 Stewart Road of Paris on Friday for driving on a suspended license. Curtis’ bond was set at $500. She is scheduled to appear Aug. 29 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

In unrelated incidents, Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy William Whitaker arrested Crystal Alley, 40, of 36 Mason Lane of Paris on Friday for driving on a suspended license. Alley’s bond was set at $500. She is scheduled to appear Aug. 27 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Sheriff’s Sgt. Blake Jenkins arrested Roy Pierce, 54, of McKenzie on Thursday for driving on a suspended license. Pierce’s bond was set at $500. He is scheduled to appear Aug. 27 in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Henry County Golf Competes with Area Teams at Paris Landing

Buchanan, Tenn.- Henry County competed with other area teams in High School Golf action on Thursday at Paris Landing State Park. Competiting as individuals in boys competition, Henry County Dalton Dodd shot a 47 and Jackson Ridgeway and Jack Foster both shot a 48. Team scores for the boys teams were Stewart County 167, Houston County 180, and Camden 198.

In girls action, Stewart County shot a 97, Houston County a 113, and Henry County a 105. Invididually for the Henry County ladies Bentley Irby shot a 52 and Raven Page a 53.

Fire Extinguished at First Baptist Church

Paris, Tenn.- Quick response by firefighters and contractors helped extinguish a roof fire that caused damage to First Baptist Church shortly after noon on Thursday. No injuries were reported in the incident.

Paris Fire Department firefighters responded to a report of flames coming from the roof of First Baptist Church on Brewer Street. When firefighters arrived at the scene they found a roofing contractor on the scene, who advised that they were attempting to extinguish the fire. Firefighters got on the roof and extinguished the remaining fire and hot spots. Other fire units went to the interior of the second floor of the building to check for the extension of the fire. Firefighters did not find any, but smoke and water damage was noted on the second floor.

Firefighters spoke to the roofing contractor supervisor and the supervisor said that they had been replacing a rubber roof on the church and had been using a rubber welder to seal the materials, which caused the materials to smolder. The report stated that the work crew had returned from lunch when they found the fire openly burning on the roof.

The property was estimated at $20,000 and $15,000 for the contents. Damages from the fire were estimated at $1,500 to the property and $1,500 to the contents.

UTM Welcoming Students Back August 26th

Martin, Tenn.- The University of Tennessee at Martin will begin the fall 2019 semester Aug. 26, and incoming freshman students begin moving into campus residence halls Aug. 22. Many groups, including student-athletes, have already returned to the area.

First-Year Initiative, a special program for incoming freshmen, begins with Move-In Mania at 6 a.m., Aug. 22, when student organizations and community groups gather at the residence halls to assist students as they move into their rooms. This annual event is the first major welcome new students receive from the community as they adjust to their new homes.

Informational sessions throughout the day will end with convocation at 5 p.m. in the Kathleen and Tom Elam Center prior to the Skyhawk Family Picnic and Celebration at 6 p.m. in Graham Stadium. Convocation is a special ceremony to begin a new student’s collegiate career and remind them that the end goal is ultimately graduation in the same arena.

Upperclassmen and transfer students will begin moving into campus residences over the weekend, and classes begin at 8 a.m. Monday morning.

Any accepted students who have not yet registered for fall classes should contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at 731-881-7020 as soon as possible.

Milling and Paving of Streets to Begin 26th, not 19th

Paris, Tenn.- The City of Paris will not begin milling and paving of streets August 19th as previously stated, but instead will begin the following Monday, August 26th. Streets to be milled and paved include Harrison St., Pennsylvania Avenue, Harding Road, Volunteer Drive, and Jim Adams Drive. Roads to be paved will be South Bell Ave, Robinson Drive, Jones Bend Road Ext., and South Poplar St.

Atkins Porter Hosting Old School Wrasslin' Saturday Night

Paris, Tenn- Atkins Porter Recreation Center in Paris will host an Old School Wrasslin’ event at their building at 301 S. Highland St. Doors open at 6:30pm, belltime is at 7pm on Saturday. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Advanced tickets can be purchased at Take Me Back Café, located at 302 W. Wood St. in Paris.

Highlights of the Old School Wrasslin’ show Saturday will include Wildfire Tommy Rich, Jarrett Parsons Wrestling TV Star Adam Parsons, and introducing the debut of Alexander the Russian Monster. Ten huge matches are on the slate and TV tapings will be held as well.

LBL Weekend Activities

Golden Pond, Ky.- Land Between the Lakes will welcome local historian Susan “Ski” Witzofsky to discuss about a little known skirmish which happened on hot August day in 1864. During this theater program, learn about this tragic between the rivers incident that happened near Great Western Furnace and discover what happened to an 83rd Illinois Company that was attacked by a greatly outnumbered guerilla force 150 years ago.

Also on the 17th, LBL will hold a Hummingbird Photography Workshop at the Nature Station from 9:30am until Noon. From 11:30am to 12pm will be Pewee Predators and from 2:30pm-3pm its America’s Got Talons.

KSP Investigating Death at Calloway County Jail; No Foul Play Suspected

Murray, Ky.- Kentucky State Police Post 1 is investigating the death of an inmate from the Calloway County Jail.   KSP was notified of an inmate death on Thursday August 15, 2019 at approximately 7:26 P.M.  An inmate in the Calloway County Jail was discovered unresponsive after laying down in his bunk.  KSP and the Calloway County Corner responded to the jail.  Joe P. Barnett  78, of Murray KY was pronounced deceased at the scene. An autopsy has been scheduled. No foul play is suspected.  

American Job Center Hiring Event in McKenzie Mon. Aug. 19th

McKenzie, Tenn.- The American Job Center and Jobs4TN.gov will partner with the McKenzie Economic Development Corporation for a hiring event and job fair Monday August 19th from 1-5pm. The hiring event will be at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology in McKenzie at 16940 Highland Drive.

If you are currently seeking a job or career change, the job fair will offer a variety of opportunities for employment and education. Professional attire and resumes are highly recommended. The TN Mobile Career Coach will be on hand at the event providing resume and job application assistance.

Some participating employers include: Addus Homecare, AHC McKenzie, Baptist Memorial Hospital of Carroll County, Bethel University, Ceco Door, Dilla’s Sewing, Pepsi MidAmerica, Senior Solutions Home Care, TN Reconnect, White and Associates Home Assistance, and others.

For more information contact Maleia Evans at evans@nwtnworks.org or call 731-325-5836. Follow the American Job Centers of Northwest Tennessee on Facebook to learn about additional opportunities and events.

Reminder: KPAC Welcomes Jim Stafford Saturday August 17th

Paris, Tenn.- The Lee Academy for the Arts will present Jim Stafford in Concert at the Krider Performing Arts Center this Saturday night August 17th at 7:30pm. Doors open at 6:30pm. Tickets are $25 in advance for general admission and $30 at the door, or $40 in advance for special VIP meet and greet tickets and $45 at the door.

Purchase tickets in advance at Merison’s, Lura  Lee’s, and Commercial Bank and Trust. You can also purchase tickets online at brownpapertickets.com. The event is sponsored by Commercial Bank, Forever Communications, and Drs. Coleman and Townsend, optometrists.

Several Events Planned Saturday at Paris Landing State Park

Buchanan, Tenn.- Paris Landing State Park will host a variety of events this Saturday August 17th including some to help you celebrate National Honey Bee Day.

Come out between 9am and Noon and meet local beekeepers and the bees they care for. Discover the pollinators that live right around us, and find out what you can do to help them thrive. Make crafts and take some irises home to plant. And, you can sample local honey and take a wildflower hike.

Activities will be located at the Trailhead, which is at the Conference Center parking lot.

At 10 a.m., a raptor will be released so come watch as a Sharp Shinned Hawk returns to the wild. At 10:30 AM, take a guided half-mile hike through the Wetland Walk and wildflower fields. This event is free and sponsored by the Park.

Master Gardeners play in the dirt, while sprucing up the Rescue Squad


Cee Koenig (left) and Valerie Stephens (right) from the Henry County Master Gardeners help plant clean out a flower bed in front of the Paris-Henry County Rescue Squad on Thursday as they prepare to plant some yucca plants. (Cassie Walsh photos)

By Cassie Walsh
Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Master Gardeners Club came out on Thursday to spruce up the front flowerbeds at the Paris-Henry County Rescue Squad. Cee Koenig and Valerie Stephens from the Master Gardeners helped plant yucca plants around the front.


Cee Koenig (front) and Valerie Stephens (back) from the Henry County Master Gardeners helped plant yucca plants in a flower bed in front of the Paris-Henry County Rescue Squad. (Cassie Walsh photos)

All of the plants, potting soil and rocks were donated by the Henry County Master Gardeners Club and Lowe’s in Paris. Rescue Squad members thanked the Master Gardeners and Lowe’s for donating the plants and materials to help spruce up the front of the building.

The Paris-Henry County Rescue Squad and the Master Gardeners Club said that they are always looking for new members to join both organizations.

Thefts Investigated In County

Paris, Tenn.- Two people were arrested on theft charges in unrelated incidents this week.

Henry County Sheriff’s Cpl. Dalton Watson arrested Ronald Hart, 58, of 1603 Edgar Cemetery Road of Paris on Tuesday for burglary and theft of property more than $2,500. Hart’s bond was set at $10,000. He is scheduled to appear Thursday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Sheriff’s Deputy William Whitaker arrested Jessica Vallery, 40, of 416 Lampley Circle of Springville on Thursday for theft of property under $500. Vallery’s bond was set at $500. She is scheduled to appear Thursday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

In unrelated incidents, Paris Police Ptl. Amber Roaten arrested Brian McNairl, 37, of 923 Dobbins St. of Paris on Tuesday for theft. McNairl’s bond was set at $2,500. He is scheduled to appear Thursday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Paris Police Sgt. Tony Hutcherson arrested Dennis Hunt, 66, of 907 Riggins St. of Paris on Wednesday for driving on a revoked license. Hunt’s bond was set at $500. He is scheduled to appear Thursday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

W.G. Rhea Public Library Has Several Events Planned Thru Aug.

Paris, Tenn.- The W.G. Rhea Public Library has several events coming up to finish out the month of August including a movie Friday August 16th from 6-8pm as “The Public” shows. On Monday August 19th from 3:30pm to 4:30pm there will be an Ice Cream making event. Tuesday August 20th and 27th from 3-5pm the S.T.E.A.M. Makerspace will be open with several events and options for students to partake in. Thursday August 22nd there will be an Excel Workshop from 3:30pm-4:30pm. Call the Library at 642-1702 for more information on all their events.

Rotary Club Radiothon, Donation collection Set Friday and Saturday

Paris, Tenn.- Remember the Paris Rotary Club will hold a Radio-thon Friday on WMUF 104.7FM from 7am to 11am on “Tim in the AM” as different members come on air live to discuss their project of raising money and food for the Paris Special School District’s weekend backpack program. The idea is to gain enough donations and support to include 3rd graders in the program.

After being on air Friday morning, Rotary Club Members will then be at area grocery stores including Wal-mart, Lakeway IGA, Kroger, Cash-Savers, and Paris Dollar General Stores with lists of items needed Saturday 8am to 3pm. They are calling on the community to come out Saturday to purchase and donate items or donate money for the great cause. A list of items needed can be found on our website, wmufadio.com.

UTM To Offer Online Courses for Cyber Security This Fall

Martin, Tenn.- The University of Tennessee at Martin will offer two online courses in cybersecurity during the fall 2019 semester. These classes are open to all current students and community members as well as computer science and cybersecurity professionals seeking additional certifications. Enrollment in the university as a special-admit student is necessary, and course tuition and fees will apply.

The classes – designated CSCI 290 Cybersecurity Literacy and CSCI 290 Cybersecurity Analyst Training – have been designed by UT Martin faculty to prepare participants for the CompTIA Security+ certification exam. Passing this exam results in a Security+ certification, which is a globally recognized credential in the information technology and cybersecurity professions. The courses can be taken in sequence or simultaneously.

According to the computer science industry, a shortfall in cybersecurity graduates has resulted in open positions in companies around the world seeking this type of specialized industry training.

For more information about the program, or to find an application to become a non-degree-seeking student at UT Martin, visit utm.edu/cybersecurity. Interested students can also contact Dr. Joshua Guerin, chair of the Department of Computer Science, at 731-881-7391 or jguerin@utm.edu.

KPACYA to Hold Afterschool Enrichment Program

Paris, Tenn.- The Krider Performing Arts Center’s Young Artists Program will be offering a new Afterschool Enrichment Program for Grades K-3 called THIS IS MUSIC. The best time to learn and read music is when we are young readers.

The first installment of THIS IS MUSIC focuses on feeling beats and learning to read rhythms. Lots of musical interaction and fun activities are included to learn about rhythm. The 6-week class will be on Monday afternoons from 3:45 to 4:45pm and will be led by Rhonda Stanton and Zoe Pouliot. Cost for the class is $20 and class size is limited. Class dates are August 19 and 26 and September 9, 16, 23, and 30th

Email kriderpac@gmail.com or call Rhonda Stanton at 731-707-3374 to register.

Breakfast with Firefighters at Whitlock Fire Station Saturday

Cottage Grove, Tenn.- The Cottage Grove Fire Department will hold Breakfast with a Firefighter this Saturday August 17th from 7am to 10am at the newly remodeled Whitlock Station. Everyone is invited to come and see the remodeled station and all the equipment. Donations will be accepted at the breakfast.

Goodwill to Close Paris Donation Site Aug. 31st

Paris, Tenn.- Goodwill will close its Donation Express Center trailer site at 219 Tyson Ave. in Paris on Saturday, Aug. 31.

For several years, costs to keep the Paris donation site open have exceeded the revenue it produced for the nonprofit organization. The location of the donation center was moved from 1055 Mineral Wells Ave. to the present site in October of 2018 in an attempt to improve its efficiency, but that effort was not successful.

“Goodwill is grateful for the support residents of Paris and Henry County have shown for our mission of changing lives through education, training and employment, and we regret any inconvenience this may cause,” said Danny Rhodes, Goodwill’s director of donation acquisitions. “We hope to be able to re-establish a presence in the area in the future.”

The three employees who work at the Paris donation site will have the opportunity to transfer to another Goodwill location. If they choose not to stay with Goodwill, a Goodwill employment coach will provide them with one-on-one assistance in finding a position with another employer.

Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee’s nearest Donation Express Center is at its retail store at 1430 S. First St. in Union City. Other west Tennessee locations include a store in Lexington and two stores in Jackson.

HCHS BOE Facilities and Grounds Committee Makes Signage Decisions

Paris, Tenn.- At a meeting Wednesday afternoon, the Henry County Schools Facilities and Grounds committee made decisions on placement of signage dedicating the Fieldhouse to the late Coach James M. Counce, the Football Field to the late Coach Bill Hudson and renaming the High School Little Theater as Linda Wilson Miller Theater.

The sign dedicating the Fieldhouse to Coach Counce will be placed along the top of the Fieldhouse on the southeast side of the building. It will be placed above the signs that are already there which proclaim the Patriots’ records.

The sign dedicating the football field to Coach Hudson will be placed directly under the scoreboard.

The plaque for the Linda Wilson Miller Theater will be placed between the two main doors of the Little Theater. That will occur during the Henry County High School 50thanniversary activities, with an open house from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, September 29.

Director of Schools Dr. Leah Watkins said the dedications of the Fieldhouse and football field are tentatively set for the home game October 4.

In other business, it was reported that a family member of a former board member has said they are willing to donate funds to have a construction plaque placed on the high school. Dr. Watkins said there was no construction plaque placed on the high school when it was built 50 years ago and the plaque would commemorate the team of board members and others who oversaw that project.

Cpl. Bostwick, K9 Rowdy Help Track Decatur County Wanted Man

By Shannon McFarlin

Decatur County, Tenn.- With the help of Cpl. Stacey Bostwick and his K9 bloodhound Rowdy, a man wanted by both Decatur and Benton County law enforcement was caught late last night.

Billie Joe Cruse was wanted in connection with a crime spree in both counties over the past week and Decatur County Sheriff Keith Byrd told WENK/WTPR that Cruse had told Benton County deputies he ‘was not going to be taken alive’.

Byrd said Cruse had been breaking into homes and stealing items in both counties “and I was really worried he was going to break into someone house and end up hurting someone.”

After deputies had chased him through both counties last night, Byrd said, they caught up to him in the Woodland Shores area where residents found him sitting on their porch. Cruse left his car abandoned behind houses and entered a heavily wooded area.

“That’s when I called (Henry County Sheriff) Monte Belew and asked him if he could send one of his Bloodhounds and he sent Stacey and Rowdy. And in less than 10 minutes, Rowdy had found him,” Byrd said.

Sheriff Belew said this morning that Bostwick used material with Cruse’s scent on it “and led the deputies straight to him. He was about 200 yards into the woods.”

Belew said that Rowdy was given a 20-piece chicken nuggets meal after the part he played in capturing accused murderer and escaped inmate Curtis Watson in Henning last weekend. “I don’t know what we’ll get him this time. I’m afraid to give him more chicken nuggets because we don’t want him putting on too much weight!”

Byrd said Cruse is in the Decatur County Jail this morning charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, a charge stemming from yesterday’s chase, three counts of reckless endangerment and multiple burglaries.

Rowdy was also on the scene along with Sheriff Belew and Cpl. Bostwick when Murderer Kirby Wallace was caught in Stewart Co. after a lengthy manhunt in October of 2018.

Fall Softball Signups Planned Sat. at Hulme's Sporting Goods

Paris, Tenn.- Fall softball signups will be held Saturday August 17th from 10am to 2pm each day. The signups are at Hulme's Sporting Goods, on Hwy. 641 South.

Cottage Grove Legislative Council Holds Quick August Session

Cottage Grove, Tenn.- The Cottage Grove Legislative Council met in regular session for August on Tuesday night and discussions on the school and retail building were held. Mayor David Jackson will be talking with Mark Atkins for City Hall to use the School building for possible future use.

The retail building has had no inquries as far as renting it goes. Board member Machelle Operia made a motion to bid out the rental of the retail building for another month, but it died due to lack of a second of her motion.

The board received a report from Carl Wood on bids for inventory at the retail building coming with a price of $20K. Another quote was given for the outdoor storage building. Board member Matt McClure made a counter offer for $15K without the outside storage building and the board agreed to buy the inventory for $15K.

HCSO, PPD Participating in "Booze it and Lose It" Aug. 16-Sept. 2nd

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Paris Police Department are partnering with the TN Highway Safety Office (THSO) for its Booze It and Lose It Campaign from August 16th to September 2nd, surrounding the upcoming Labor Day Holiday. The initiative coincides with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” mobilization to increase impaired driving enforcement nationwide.

Both the HCSO and PPD will be conducting increased enforcement efforts to insure the safety of motorists. Increased state and national messaging about the dangers of drunk driving, coupled with increased sobriety checkpoints and high visibility enforcement, aim to drastically reduce the number of drunk-driving crashes, injuries, and fatalities this year.

The consequences of a single DUI conviction for a first time offender in the state of Tennessee may include costly fines, court costs, legal fees, jail time, mandatory drug and alcohol treatment, and/or installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle.

The THSO provides grant funding to support the HCSO and PPD increased enforcement efforts during the “Booze It and Lose it” campaign. For more information about the THSO visit www.tntrafficsafety.org.

McDonald's Football Challenge Is Friday night at Patriot Stadium

Paris, Tenn.- The McDonald’s Football Challenge will be Friday August 16th at Henry County High School with teams playing two quarters of scrimmages against each other. The cost to enter is $7 Friday night. The schedule will be West Carroll vs. Stewart County at 6pm, Dresden vs. Murray High at 7pm, Jackson Northside vs. Paducah Tilghman at 8pm, and Paducah Tilghman vs. Henry County at 9pm. Henry County opens the regular season next Friday night August 23rd at Haywood County.  

UTM Softball Camp Being Offered Next Week

Martin, Tenn.- The University of Tennessee at Martin softball team will host a fast pitch foundations camp for third through fifth-grade students from 4-5 p.m., Aug. 19-21, at Bettye Giles Softball Field. The registration fee is $90 per athlete, and all students interested in fast-pitch softball are welcome to participate. Previous experience is not required.

This camp is designed to provide participants with the fundamental skills needed to progress in the sport. Covered skills include fielding, hitting, base running and basic game knowledge in addition to a discussion of how to mentally approach the sport of softball. Campers will have hands-on experience both on the field and in the Skyhawk batting cages.

All campers should bring their own softball bat and glove each day. Registration is available online at utm.edu/departments/nondegree/camps/softball.php.

For additional information or registration assistance, contact Chelsea Farmer, UT Martin assistant softball coach, at coach19jones@gmail.com.

Young Woman and 6 Year Old Injured in Tues. Morning Wreck

Paris, Tenn.- A 24 year old female and a 6 year old boy were injured in a one vehicle accident on Hwy. 140 and Cowpath Road on Tuesday morning between 7am and 730am. The report from Lt. Brad Wilbanks of the Tennessee Highway Patrol stated Destiny Plunkett, age 24, of Buchanan, was injured along with a 6 year old male from Buchanan as well.

The report stated the vehicle, a 2012 Dodge Journey, was traveling Westbound on Hwy. 140 negotiating a curve then ran off the right side of the highway striking a a ditch and eventually a tree. The 6 year old was wearing his seat belt according to the report, the woman was not. There is no word on the extent of injuries at this time.

Woman Leads Officers on Foot Chase Before Being Apprehended

Paris, Tenn.- A woman wanted out of Montgomery County was taken into custody on Sunday night after leading police on a foot chase near India Road. 

Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy Kyle Waldron arrested Tara Oaks, 36, of 15055 Hwy. 79 North of Buchanan for evading arrest.

Waldron responded to a call about a female in a bathing suit without any shoes on who had been walking down the India Road heading towards Hwy. 79 on Sunday night. The description that was given to police of the female subject, matched that of Oaks who had evaded Paris Police on foot following a traffic stop earlier on Sunday.

Officers noted that Oaks was wanted on felony charges out of Montgomery County. After a lengthy search for Oaks, officers were unable to locate her after she ran into the woods behind a shoe store on Hwy. 79 North. Sheriff’s Sgt. Blake Jenkins and Waldron were checking India Road, when Waldron observed Oaks walking in a ditch just north of Jackson Estates Road.

When Oaks saw Waldron’s patrol car she began running down India Road and back behind Jackson Estates Road. Jenkins and Waldron were able to take Oaks into custody after a short foot pursuit.

In unrelated incidents: A Paris man was arrested on multiple counts of burglary on Monday.

Paris Police Lt. Michael Ramos arrested Rodney Avant, 41, of 1024 Depot St. of Paris for two counts of aggravated burglary. Ramos also arrested Tammy Windsor, 39, of 806 Caledonia St. of Paris for violation of probation. Avant’s bond was set at $20,000 and Windsor’s bond was set at $6,550. They are each scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Paris Police Sgt. Eric Long arrested Mark Wilkie, 30, of Clarksville on Monday for theft of property after being found in possession of stolen property. Wilkie’s bond was set at $5,000. He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

DPA Needs Volunteers for Noon on the Square Fridays in Sept.

Paris, Tenn.- The Downtown Paris Association is seeking volunteers to help with Noon on the Square in September. The DPA serves drinks for a $1 donation each Friday during September on the court square to help pay the electric bill for the Christmas light funds. Contact Kathy Ray if you can help any Friday in September. Times will be 11:30am to 1pm.

Excessive Heat Cancels After School Events Tuesday

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Middle School Soccer and Softball games scheduled at home Tuesday evening and the football game scheduled on the road have been postponed due to our area being under an excessive heat warning with heat index values near 114 degrees.

Paris Rotary Club Radio-thon Friday; Donation Pickup Saturday

Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Rotary Club will once again raise awareness and money for the weekend backpack program with a radio-thon and item pickup and donation Friday and Saturday of this week. The weekend backpack program is where Pre-K thru 2nd graders at the Paris Special School District are sent home with snacks each weekend in their backpack. The bags are placed in backpacks in a very discreet manner each Friday.

Rotary Club members will be live on air this Friday morning August 16th on WMUF 104.7FM on “Tim in the AM” from 7am to 11am to discuss the weekend backpack program and tell about their plans for Saturday.

On Saturday, August 17th, Rotary Club members will be out in full force at area grocery stores helping and asking shoppers to purchase some food to donate to the program. Members will be at Sav-A-Lot, Wal-mart, Cash-Savers, Lakeway IGA, Kroger, and Dollar General Stores in Paris. Shoppers will be given lists of items as they go in the store and anything purchased can be brought back out and given to the Rotary Club members. Donations will be accepted at the stores Saturday from 8am to 3pm.

Items needed for the backpack program Peanut Butter, 6 pks of apple sauce, individual mac and cheese packs, poptarts, ravioli, fruit cups, granola bars, cheez-itz, goldfish cracker packs; peanut butter or cheese and crackers, and Teddy Grahams. Monetary Donations are also accepted.

Please take part and listen to Friday’s radio-thon and then give on Saturday during the collection times at area grocery stores.

Library to Offer S.T.E.A.M. Makerspace Tuesdays from 3-5pm

Paris, Tenn.-The W.G. Rhea Public Library will be hold a S.T.E.A.M. Makerspace every Tuesday afternoon from 3-5pm at the W.G. Rhea Public Library. No signups or library cards are required, this is being offered as an after school program and snacks will be provided.

It will be an open freeplay with robotics, coding, engineering, and other related Science Technology Engineering Arts and Math crafts and activities. For more information call the W.G. Rhea Public Library at 642-1702.

City of Paris to Begin Milling and Paving Streets Aug. 19th

Paris, Tenn.- The City of Paris will begin milling and paving streets on Monday August 19th and will continue until all streets listed have been completed. The City will mill and pave Pennsylvania Avenue, Harding Road, Volunteer Drive, and Jim Adams Drive. Streets to be paved include South Bell Avenue and Robinson Drive.

Excessive Heat Pushes Back Soccer Start Times

Paris, Tenn.- Because of the Excessive Heat in the area Monday night's Inman Soccer game start time at McNeil Park has been pushed back to 6:30pm and Tuesday night's start time at Barton Field is pushed back to 7pm. Heat index readings at one time late Monday afternoon were at 112 or more in Paris.

TBI, PPD Seeking New Info in 2001 Cold Case

Paris, Tenn.- Special Agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation along with investigators with the Paris Police Department are seeking information in a Paris cold case homicide.  

On June 8, 2001, the Paris Police Department responded to a home at 322 Rison Street in Paris, where investigators found Etta Etheridge (DOB: 4/6/29) inside unresponsive.  Her death was ruled a homicide.  

Over the years that followed, TBI Agents and investigators from the Paris Police Department conducted an extensive joint investigation.  Those efforts continue and have led to new evidence and leads in this active and ongoing investigation into the death of the 72-year-old.  The TBI is now offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to an arrest, prosecution, and conviction of the person or persons responsible for this crime.  

Anyone with information about the murder of Etta Etheridge is Paris is asked to call 1-800-TBI-FIND.

Drug Paraphernalia Charges Brought Against Two People

Paris, Tenn.- Two people were arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia charges at a Dunlap Street home in Paris on Saturday.

Henry County Sheriff’s Cpl. David Andrews arrested Jessie Evans, 38, of Paris for possession of drug paraphernalia and violation of probation. Sheriff’s Deputy Gary Carroll also arrested Miranda Shankle, 38, of 901 Dunlap St. of Paris for possession of drug paraphernalia.

Carroll was responded to a Dunlap Street residence to assist Andrews, who was on a follow up call where a subject advised that he had seen some of his stolen property at the Dunlap Street home. When Carroll arrived at the scene, Evans was already in custody for violation of probation and another subject, identified as Shankle, had been detained. Shankle and Evans both told police that they had been staying inside of the car that was parked in the backyard of a Dunlap Street residence.

Andrews spoke to the property owner, who gave officers permission to search the property. When officers asked the subjects if there was anything illegal in the car, Shankle admitted that there was a pipe in the car. After searching the car, officers found a bag that contained marijuana residue, several needles and a broken glass pipe.

Evans bond was set at $2,000 on the drug paraphernalia charge. Shankle’s bond was set at $1,000. They are both scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.  

In unrelated incidents, Sheriff’s Cpl. David Andrews charged Adam Kennedy, 40, of 300 Morris Road of Puryear on Saturday as a fugitive from justice out of Calloway County, Ky. Kennedy’s bond was set at $10,000. He is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Tennessee Highway Patrol Trooper Daryl Veliz arrested Nelah Jackson, 43, of 75 Scott Lane of Paris on Saturday for DUI and driving on a revoked license. Jackson’s bond was set at $2,500. She is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

MSU Announces Center for Computer Information Technology

Murray, Ky.- The Murray State University Center for Telecommunications Systems Management is transforming into the Center for Computer and Information Technology — its award-winning Program of Distinction — to reflect its modern approach to computer education.

“As technology has evolved and the boundaries between specific CIT industries have started to blur, now is the right time to transform computer education at Murray State University,” said Dr. Michael Ramage, the Center’s director. “We’re doing this by improving alignment among existing computer and information technology related degrees, combining recruitment and retention efforts, increasing overall CIT efforts, considering new CIT academic pathways and increasing academic–business partnerships.”

Murray State’s new initiative will bolster recruiting support through campus events, field trips, conferences and guest speaking, developing a common message for potential students and parents.

“The new Center represents the unwavering commitment to student success that the Murray State faculty possess,” said Murray State Provost Dr. Mark Arant. “As the digital world continues to grow and evolve at a rapid pace, strategies for recruiting, retaining and graduating these majors must change with it. The Center will combine the best of academic and student life efforts toward producing highly educated and skilled leaders of tomorrow.”

Over the next few months, computer science, computer information systems and telecommunications systems management faculty will coordinate a common first-year curriculum. All incoming freshman with plans to study CIT will come to Murray State as CIT meta-majors. 

During their first year, the Center will work with students to determine which CIT career path they are most interested in, such as programming, networking, wireless, cybersecurity, data science, game development or other options. Once they determine their path, students will move into that specific academic major.

Another Center mission will be job placement and internships through relationships with industry partners.

“While Murray State has Career Services to assist with internships and job placement, the Center has always assisted, since we have relationships with many of the companies that hire our students,” Ramage said. “Not only will that continue, but the new Center will continue that for all areas of CIT. This should make it easier for companies looking for interns or workers. No more will someone have to reach out to multiple departments looking for workers.”

“As a former information technology instructor, principal and now GEAR UP grant director, I have seen the immediate and lasting impacts that Murray State University’s programs have had on students,” said Terry Sullivan, Gear Up project director for the West Kentucky Education Cooperative. “Working in a rural area, it was sometimes hard to convince students that there was a future career for them in IT. However, Murray State has always done an exceptional job helping prepare students and showing them the career possibilities here in western Kentucky and beyond.

“As we look at the kinds of jobs that will be created over the next decade and the demand for IT professionals in our state, the creation of the Center for Computer and Information Technology will put Murray State University at the forefront in training the next generation for those jobs.”

For more information on the Murray State University Center for Computer and Information Technology, please visit murraystate.edu/ccit.

APSU's Center for Rural Education Serving Humphreys and Houston County Teachers

Clarksville- To stage a good, minor explosion – for scientific purposes only – you need about $5. That’s what Dr. Lisa Sullivan, chair of the Austin Peay State University chemistry department, said when she used a cheap plastic bottle, a little methanol and the free oxygen we all breath for a quick scientific experiment.

“I think you should be able to do science on a shoestring budget,” Sullivan said. “I can show you thousands of dollars of phenomenal experiments, but that doesn’t help you in Houston and Humphreys counties.”

Last month, Sullivan presented low-budget demonstrations (“$5 or less”) to a group of 30 science teachers from those two rural counties during a special, two-day STEM workshop, hosted by Austin Peay’s new Center for Rural Education. In the spring of 2018, the University’s Eriksson College of Education opened the center to serve rural Tennessee school districts that experience, according to the center, “higher per-pupil costs, higher poverty rates, population decline, hard-to-staff positions with high teacher turnover, geographic isolation and resistance to innovation.”

Last month’s workshop marked the center’s first initiative aimed at helping rural teachers get the training and tools they need to succeed in their classrooms.

“We worked with the county (school) supervisors to identify the need in their county, and the new science standards were a big need,” Dr. Cheryl Lambert, assistant professor of education and the center’s coordinator, said. “We wanted to start with the professional development component, so these teachers are getting professional development hours, they’re getting credit from their schools.”

The Houston and Humphreys teachers attended seminars hosted by APSU’s Eriksson College of Education and APSU’s College of STEM, and they were able to practice their own science demonstrations within the University’s state-of-the-art Jack Hunt STEM Center. Those experiments, even when they followed the instructions, didn’t always end successfully.

“This is all about probing your students with deeper questions, and science lends itself to that,” Dr. Phil Short, assistant professor of education and director of the STEM Center, said. “Especially when you allow for failure to occur.”

Sullivan immediately echoed this sentiment to the rural teachers.

“You need to be OK with letting your kids fail, and letting them be OK with failure,” she said. “Science is not always going to work how the manual or the textbook or the handout says it’s going to work.”

In addition to the professional development hours, the group of rural educators also received science equipment and tools to take back to their classrooms.

“I pushed out a survey at the beginning, and they said they needed resources,” Lambert said. “We have some funds for this effort, so they were able to look for something around $50 from these approved vendors. They’re getting resources, professional development credit for the hours they’re spending here and we’re developing strong relationships with the rural counties we want to serve.”For information on the new Center for Rural Education, visit http://www.apsu.edu/education/ruraled.

Police searching for Henry man wanted on felony drug charges stemming from the "gang saturation"

Paris, Tenn.- Police arrested one woman and are still looking for a Henry man wanted on multiple charges related to the gang saturation that was conducted back on August 1.

Henry County Sheriff’s Sgt. Jamie Myrick and Paris Police Investigator Derrek Colley and PPD Investigator Jeramye Whitaker with the Metro Crime Unit arrested Megan Thompson, 29, of 450 Kirks Trading Post Road of Buchanan on Friday for theft of property over $1,000, but less than $10,000.

The Metro Crime Unit is also searching for Jermel Kinley of Henry who is wanted on felony drug charges stemming from the “gang saturation” that was conducted in Henry County back on Aug. 1. Kinley is wanted for sale and delivery of a schedule II substance (methamphetamine), felony theft, felony evading and reckless endangerment.

According to a press release from the Metro Crime Unit, officers are looking for Kinley who is wanted on multiple charges. On Friday, officers with the MCU attempted to stop a stolen 2007 Chevy Monte Carlo that was being driven by Kinley. Kinley along with his passenger, identified as Thompson, did evade police before crashing the stolen vehicle on Popular Street.

Kinley then evaded on foot. Officers did take Thompson into custody who was then charged with theft. The Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Paris Police Department assisted in the search for Kinley, but they were unable to locate him.

Kinley along with several other suspects in Henry County currently have active warrants and pending charges resulting from the “gang saturation” in which numerous agencies from West Tennessee, including the 24th Judicial “Gang Task Force” conducted in Henry County.

Thompson’s bond was set at $3,500. She is scheduled to appear Tuesday in Henry County General Sessions Court.

Escaped inmate Curtis Ray Watson captured, HCSO assists in search


Curtis Ray Watson is captured by police on Sunday. (Sheriff Monte Belew photos)

By Cassie Walsh
Henning, Tenn.- Escaped inmate and murder suspect Curtis Ray Watson, 44, was captured on Sunday morning, five days after he escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary on Wednesday.

Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew said that the HCSO had been pursuing a lot of avenues in Henry County.

"We were concerned that he might be trying to come back to Henry County," said Belew. "Last night they had a positive sighting down there. We decided to bring both our bloodhounds down there."

The Henry County Sheriff’s Office team went down to Henning to assist in the search for Watson. Belew said that after another credible sighting on Sunday morning the HCSO team was on the "perimeter helping push... the subject popped out about 500 yards in front of us into a bean field and a Tennessee Department of Corrections employee took him into custody.”


(Sheriff Monte Belew photos)

A team of six from Henry County Sheriff’s Office traveled to Henning early on Sunday morning after police confirmed a credible sighting of Watson. Belew said that the HCSO sent down two bloodhounds, Rowdy and Adora, who are both experienced trackers. Rowdy's handler is Cpl. Stacey Bostwick and Adora's handler is Sgt. Wayne Fuqua.

“We’re thankful and glad that he is in custody, where he needs to be," said Belew. "For all of the Lauderdale County residents, as well as Henry County residents, we know he's where he belongs."

A massive manhunt was ongoing since Wednesday for Watson, who is accused of killing TDOC Administrator Debra Johnson before his escape.

HCSO joins in search for escaped inmate Ray Curtis Watson

By Shannon McFarlin
Henning, Tenn.–A team of six from the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, including Sheriff Monte Belew and the department’s two bloodhounds, have joined the search for Escapee Curtis Ray Watson in Henning.

Watson escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary on Wednesday and is accused of the murder of prison administrator prison administrator Debra Johnson.

Belew told WENK/WTPR early this morning the team was on the way to Henning and will be staying there the next few days until he is in custody. “We hope today is the day he is caught,” Belew said.

The two bloodhounds that are with the team are Rowdy, whose handler is Cpl. Stacey Bostwick; and Adora, whose handler is Sgt. Wayne Fuqua. Both Adora and Rowdy are experienced trackers.

Curtis Ray Watson, age 44, has ties to both Henry and Carroll Counties. Watson was sentenced to 15 years in prison after being convicted of especially aggravated kidnapping in Henry County in 2012. He was also arrested by Paris Police on charges of aggravated assault and aggravated rape. He also was sentenced to 10 years in state prison after an aggravated child abuse in Carroll County.

The Tennessee Department of Correction posted photos this morning showing a confirmed sighting of Watson overnight on a carport in Henning.

Smash and crash at the demolition derby


One of the competitors gets stuck after being knocked over one of the barriers around the arena by number 35, who would go on to win that heat. (Cassie Walsh photos)

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Fair ended with good old fashion smashing and crashing at the demolition derby on Saturday night as the grandstands were filled with people in attendance.


(Cassie Walsh photos)

HCHS Fishing team comes in 2nd place at Bassmaster High School National Championship


Photo from Kandi Ellis. Shows Mercedes Ellis and Gage Sherrod from Henry County Fishing team during the Bassmaster High School National Championship.

Buchanan, Tenn. - The team of Mercedes Ellis and Gage Sherrod from Henry County High School’s Fishing team were edged out of winning the Mossy Oak Bassmaster High School National Championship presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors on Saturday as the HCHS team came home with second place.

Grayson Morris and Tucker Smith completed a wire-to-wire win on Saturday to secure their second consecutive victory in the Mossy Oak Bassmaster High School National Championship presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors.


Grayson Morris and Tucker Smith of Briarwood Christian School out of Alabama go wire-to-wire to win back-to-back Mossy Oak Fishing Bassmaster High School Championships at Kentucky Lake out of Paris, Tenn., with a total of 50 pounds, 1 ounce. Photo by Brenden Kanies/B.A.S.S.

The duo, representing Briarwood Christian School of Birmingham, Ala., caught a three-day total of 15 bass that weighed 50 pounds, 1 ounce to earn a landmark win on Kentucky Lake here in the northwest corner of the Volunteer State.

The victory marks the first time a high school duo repeated as national champion.

The winners earned a $4,500 a scholarship, which will go toward their college education. Morris, 18, recently graduated from Briarwood and will compete for the University of Montevallo (Ala.) bass fishing team. Smith, 17, is a rising senior at Briarwood.

Morris and Smith staked an early lead in this year’s championship. Their limit of five bass on Thursday that weighed 19-11 was the heaviest of the tournament, and it gave them a lead of almost 2 pounds on the 300-boat field. They followed with an equally sound 17-11 limit on Friday which increased their margin to more than 4 pounds.

Morris and Smith came back to the pack on Saturday with a limit that weighed 12-11. Things could have been much worse for them, however, as they didn’t complete their limit until there was only 15 minutes of fishing time remaining. That followed the same anxiety-building pattern the duo faced all week, though late bites each day carried them to the championship.

“We had three fish at 10 o’clock today, which was better than the first three days,” Morris said. “So we thought we were making some progress. Tucker caught our fourth fish about an hour later, but then it just shut down completely.”

To catch their fifth keeper, Morris and Smith moved to an area with moving current. The change of scenery was key, and with only minutes to go, Morris caught the team’s fifth bass — a 3-pounder he boated with a 3/8-ounce jig (green pumpkin with a black/blue trailer). A moment later, Smith caught another bass that gave the team its only upgrade of the day.

“It wasn’t much of a cull, but it eased our nerves a little bit,” Smith said.

The Briarwood team certainly needed those final strikes, because Mercedes Ellis and Gage Sherrod of Tennessee’s Henry County High were ready to apply pressure at the scales. The locals caught the big bag on Saturday, a 15-4 limit, that left them a mere 1-12 out of first place in the final standings.

Morris and Smith spent most of the week fishing in the back of the same creek they mastered en route to the 2018 title. They threw dark-colored jigs and chatterbaits and caught their best bass in water as shallow as 2 feet. They worked the creek banks incessantly, trying to excite bites. There weren’t many of them this week, but Morris and Smith eventually found the right ones.

“We weren’t going to leave anything out there,” Smith said. “If we were going to finish second, we weren’t going down without a fight.”

Kentucky Lake was difficult on anglers this week. Only four of the final 12 teams caught limits Saturday, and three of the 12 didn’t catch a weighable fish. On Friday, 129 duos failed to weigh a fish, and on Thursday, 97 teams zeroed.

While many teams struggled, Ellis and Sherrod used their knowledge of the lake to amass 48-5 over three days. They weighed the heaviest bags on both Friday and Saturday.

Rounding out the top five teams are Tyler Finley and Hunter Jones, Mount Pleasant (Tenn.), third, 41-10; Christopher Capdeboscq and Sam Acosta, Northlake Christian School (La.), fourth, 37-14; and Daelyn Whaley and Lilly Smith, Abbeville High(S.C.), fifth, 32-8.

B.A.S.S. awarded nearly $24,000 in college scholarships to the Top 12 teams in the championship. In addition, Bethel University offered more than $500,000 in total scholarship money to the top 24 anglers should they decide to fish at the school located in nearby McKenzie, Tenn.

Taj White and Ethan Ryan of the Arizona High School B.A.S.S. Nation won $875 in scholarship money for catching the Big Bass of the Tournament – a 6-14 largemouth they weighed Thursday.

Morris and Smith were awarded an additional $875 in scholarship funds for having the Big Bag of the Tournament. The money was originally awarded to Hunter Owens, a Natchitoches Central High School student (La.) who was part of the tandem that finished fourth in last year’s high school championship.

Owens was killed in a car accident earlier this year and B.A.S.S. wanted to award the unused scholarship to a deserving team. It was decided before the 2019 championship to present the money to the duo with the heaviest bag this week on Kentucky Lake.

The Carroll County (Tenn.) Tourism Authority, Henry County (Tenn.) and Bethel University hosted the championship.

Bidding high at country ham sale helps bring in over $32,000


Clay Durham on the center of the stage shows off his ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

By Cassie Walsh
Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Fair was busy again on Saturday as more than $32,000 was raised at the country ham sale.

Sixty-seven kids sold their hams at the sale on Saturday as a total of $32,350 was raised. The results of the sale are as follows:


Grand champion Remi Gardner shows her ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • The overall grand champion was Remi Gardner, the daughter of Tas and Beverly Gardner, who sold her ham to Tosh Pork for $600. The overall total for the grand champion was raised by $400 from the Young Farmers and Ranchers Association for a grand total of $1,000.
  • The reserve grand champion was Jaden Kibbler, parents are David and Denay Kibbler, who sold his ham for $550 to Bearing and Supply.
  • The senior high reserve champion was Lexi Daniels, parents are Steve and Pam Daniels, who sold her ham for $525 to Carol and Scott Berryman.
  • The junior high reserve champion was Jack Kibbler, parents are David and Denay Kibbler, who sold his ham for $400 to Tosh Pork.
  • The junior champion was Killian Snow, parents are Bert and Lori Snow, who sold his ham for $475 to Paint Plus Flooring.
  • The junior reserve champion was Allie Paschall, parents are Alan and Amanda Paschall, who sold her ham for $400 to Ronnie Bates Farms plus an additional $200 bringing her total to $600.


Reserve grand champion Jaden Kibbler shows off his ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • Emily Lemonds, parents are Jeremy and Andrea Lemonds, ham sold for $375 to Scott and Carol Berryman.
  • Griffin Parrish Gordon, parents are Danny and SuzAnne Gordon, ham sold for $400 to Martha Parrish.
  • Silas Winders, parents are Lance and Stephanie Winders, ham sold for $400 to Brian and Kim Foster.
  • Clay Durham, parents are Steve and Leigh Anne Durham, ham sold for $400 to Henry County Farm Bureau.
  • Elijah Bruce, parents are Brandon and Jenny Bruce, ham sold for $425 to Tim Boyd.
  • Chloe McElroy, parents are John and Gracian McElroy, ham sold for $525 to Rex Carter.
  • Dinah Winders, parents are Lance and Stephanie Winders, ham sold for $400 to Landmark Realty.
  • Landon Thrower, parent is Heather Thrower, ham sold for $600 to Don Jones.
  • Brady Cox, parents are Stacey and Ginger Cox, ham sold for $375 to Greer and Wade.
  • Bennett Cain, parents are Corey and Melody Cain, ham sold for $475 to Russ Orr.
  • Marley Latta, parents are Todd and Tiffany Latta, ham sold for $550 to the World’s Biggest Fish Fry.
  • McKinley Snow, parents are Bert and Lori Snow, ham sold for $425 to Lakeway IGA.


Lexi Daniels, the senior high reserve champion, shows off her ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • Dallas Craig, parents are Tuffy and Donna Craig, ham sold for $650 to Leon Rogers.
  • Bailey Barker, parents are Jeffrey and Rena Barker, ham sold for $600 to Darrell Barker.
  • Katie Bullion, parents are David and Rebecca Bullion, ham sold for $400 to Carol and Scott Berryman.
  • Emma Collins, parents are Genawae and Michael Collins, ham sold for $400 to Greer and Wade.
  • Ben Murphey, parents are Michael and Susannah Murphey, ham sold for $575 to Beth Murphey.
  • Eden Bruce, parents are Brandon and Jenny Bruce, ham sold for $375 to the WBFF.
  • Paige Craig, parents are Tuffy and Donna Craig, ham sold for $675 to Leon Rogers.
  • Samuel Bruce, parents are Brandon and Jenny Bruce, ham sold for $375 to Southern Concrete.
  • Cylie Parrish, parent is Martha Parrish, ham sold for $400 to Steve and Landra Sanders.
  • Davy Harrod, parent is Beth Harrod, ham sold for $400 to Jane Murphey.
  • Anna Daigle, parents are Andy and Shannon Daigle, ham sold for $450 to Milam Farms.
  • Annie Grace Snow, parents are Bert and Lori Snow, ham sold for $500 to Tim Boyd.
  • Emma Jane Murphey, parents are Michael and Susannah Murphey, ham sold for $475 to Bearing and Supply.
  • Silas Smith, parents are Johnathan and Krisitina Smith, ham sold for $375 to Jerry and Janet Bomar.
  • Anne Claire Collins, parents are Andy and Susanne Collins, ham sold for $500 to Jamie Orr.


Jack Kibbler, the junior high reserve champion, shows off his ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • Alyssa Mellon, parent is Carrie Mellon, ham sold for $650 to Commercial Bank.
  • Craig Anderson, parents are Chip and Karen Anderson, ham sold for $575 to Security Bank.
  • Kelli Chipman, parents are Don and Nicole Chipman, ham sold for $550 to C&G Underground.
  • Curtis Sykes, parent is Tom Sykes, ham sold for $500 to Paint Plus Flooring.
  • Eva Lemonds, parents are Jeremy and Andrea Lemonds, ham sold for $375 Landmark Realty.
  • Marshall McClure, parents are Matthew and Kasey McClure, ham sold for $400 to Board of Public Utilities.
  • Cameron Collins, parents are Andy and Susanne Collins, ham sold for $550 to Jerry and Janet Bomar.
  • Hunter Webb, parents are Darren and Cheryl Webb, ham sold for $375 to Rosh Pork.
  • Gail Ellis, parents are Willia and Shawna Ellis, ham sold for $375 to Security Bank and Trust.
  • Carson Greene, parents are Jeremy and Amanda Greene, ham sold for $400 to Andy and Suzanne Collins.
  • Piper Miles, parents are Kevin and Jaie Miles, ham sold for $725 to Triple C Consturction.


The Jr. champion Killian Snow shows off his ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • Lee Hayes, parents are Matt and Stacy Hayes, ham sold for $750 to his grandparents Jerry Hayes.
  • Rafe Howard, parents are Lisa and William Howard, ham sold for $425 to Tim Miles.
  • John Thomas Atkins, parents are Craig and Michele Atkins, ham sold for $425 to Carol and Scott Berryman.
  • Jackson Ridgeway, parents are John Penn and Melissa Ridgeway, ham sold for $550 to Larry Sprouts.
  • Ruby McClure, parents are Matthew and Kasey McClure, ham sold for $500 to Dale and Connie Bell.
  • Christine Martin, parents are Pam and Chris Martin, ham sold for $975 to Indoor Comfort.
  • Hunter Miller, parents are George and Miranda Miller, ham sold for $400 to his parents, George and Miranda Miller.
  • Jesse Harrod, parent is Beth Harrod, ham sold for $425 to Michael and Suzanna Murphey.
  • Jacob Paschall, parents are Clint and Kelly Paschall, ham sold for $425 to his grandparents Roy and Ann Paschall.
  • Stella Hart, parents are Jessica Sutton and Tony Hart, ham sold for $400 to Scott and Carol Berryman.
  • Kyleigh Miller, parents are George and Miranda Miller, ham sold for $400 to BPU.
  • Gavin Paschall, parents are Clint and Kelly Paschall, ham sold for $425 to Security Bank and Trust.
  • Courtney Rhodes, parents are Samantha Camper and Dustin Hillard, ham sold for $400 to the WBFF.


Allie Paschall, the Junior reserve champion, shows her ham at the country ham sale at the Henry County Fair on Saturday. (Cassie Walsh photos)

  • Brooke Blankenship, parents are Becky and Dennis Wilson, ham sold for $450 to Bearing and Supply.
  • Easton Blankenship, parents are Becky and Dennis Wilson, ham sold for $500 to Tosh Pork.
  • Emma Kate Atkins, parents are Craig and Michele Atkins, ham sold for $475 to Lakeway IGA.
  • Aiden Harrod, parent is Beth Harrod, ham sold for $425 to Jane Murphey.
  • Christian Patton, parents are Michael and Rose Patton, ham sold for $400 to Tosh Pork.
  • Noah Harber, parents are Paul and Danyel Harber, ham sold for $550 to Commercial Bank.
  • Janna Harrod, parent is Beth Harrod, ham sold for $425 to Jane Murphey.
  • Jackson Webb, parents are Darren and Cheryl Webb, ham sold for $400 to Tosh Pork.
  • Bennett Cain, parents are Corey and Melody Cain, ham sold for $450 to Scott and Carol Berryman.
  • Abby Smith, parents are James and Tas Smith, ham sold for $450 to Tim Boyd.

News from past weeks here.

 
     
     
 



Tennessee Valley Community Churcy

Paris Country Club

ReMax Realty

Tennessee Valleyn Communityn Church

Peppers

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