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Relay for Life Set for May 6

April 24, 2016
Dwayne Page
Relay for Life Set for May 6

From its remarkable yet humble beginnings, the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life has grown into a national, even international, phenomenon. Starting in 1985 with only one event, today more than 4 million people in over 20 countries raise much needed funds and awareness to save lives from cancer through the Relay For Life movement.

At Relay for Life, you can find healing, comfort, and support from others who have faced cancer or who have lost a loved one to the disease. You have a chance to meet people in the community who are equally as passionate about finding an end to cancer in our lifetime.

This year's theme is ““Paint Your World Purple”

Come share the Relay experience at Green Brook Park on Friday, May 6 and take pride in knowing that you are working to create a world where this disease will no longer threaten the lives of our loved ones or claim another year of anyone's life.

The 19th annual Relay for Life begins with musical entertainment at 5:00 p.m. followed by the opening ceremony at 6:00 p.m. featuring personal testimonies from cancer survivors and then a Survivors' Lap, during which those who have survived the struggle circle the track together to help everyone celebrate what has been achieved against cancer.

As the sun sets, Luminaria bags lining the track illuminate the night and then a hush falls over the event as Relay participants, survivors and caregivers gather together for a Luminaria Ceremony at 9:00 p.m. to remember loved ones lost to cancer and to honor those who have battled the disease.

As participants walk the track lined with Luminaria bags in reflection, a caregiver who has lost a loved one may find comfort from a fellow caregiver who has faced a similar loss.

Meanwhile, a survivor gains hope and strength from others who have followed the same journey and survived. All resolve to keep fighting to save more lives so no more Luminaria bear the names of those lost to the disease.
Teams take turns doing laps, but there must be one member from each team on the track at any given time during the relay event. There is a lot of fundraising as well, through concessions, games, and other activities.

As volunteers and donors, your efforts support research, education, advocacy, and services that allow the American Cancer Society to offer help and hope to people across the country when they need it most. By joining together at Relay, we celebrate life, friendship, and an opportunity to work to defeat cancer for future generations.

For more information, please contact Marlene at 931-235-6286 or visit

DeKalb Prevention Coalition Invites You to Hear Rodney Williams

April 23, 2016
Dwayne Page
Rodney Williams

Sober Living Services in collaboration with the DeKalb Prevention Coalition will host speaker Rodney Williams Monday, April 25 at 6:00 p.m. in the History Room of the DeKalb Community Center. This a free event and open
to the public.

Williams is an ordained pastor, author of the book, Club Meth to Christ, and founder of Club Meth to Christ Ministries. His goal is to help those who struggle with the devastating bondage of addiction experience lasting freedom. Rodney lived as a drug addict and alcoholic for over twenty years of his life but that all changed the night he was set on fire in a crystal meth lab explosion. That night he surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and from that point on Rodney began following Jesus. Rodney entered the Home of Grace drug rehabilitation program after months of skin grafts and burn treatments then wrote the book Club Meth to Christ. He then obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies from the University of Mobile. Rodney was pastor to a small congregation in South Mississippi for eight years before entering full time evangelism. Rodney’s story has been featured on the 700 Club, Pacific Garden Mission’s radio drama, Unshackled, and American Family Radio. He has spoken at countless evangelical and secular events using his story to warn audiences about the danger of drugs and give hope to those trapped in the bonds of addiction. Rodney and his wife, Jennifer, live in South Mississippi with their four children.

Visit for more information.

1986 DCHS Tigerettes Reunite

April 22, 2016
Dwayne Page
1986 DCHS Tigerettes Reunite
DCHS Tigerettes Past and Present
Coach Danny Bond and 1986 Tigerette Dionndra Foster with cake

Nine members of the 1986 DCHS Tigerette fast pitch softball team reunited Friday afternoon at the Danny Bond Field to commemorate the 30 year existence of the program.

Following the game between this year’s DCHS Tigerettes and Warren County, each member of the 1986 inaugural team was recognized including Patty Redmon Hale, Tammy Billings Eaton, Dionndra Foster, Tammy Hayes Reynolds, Tracie Webb Baker, Christie Poss Hart, Michelle Gard Roller, Vickie Hayes Gwynn, and Gena Hayes Cripps. They were joined on the field by their Coach Danny Bond, who is the only coach in the history of the program. Other members of the 1986 team unable to attend were Tina Waggoner Woodall, Tonia Foster Pack, Beth Hale Gill, Christie Frazier Young, and Lori Pugh Hall.

Other DCHS Tigerette Alumni also joined the 1986 team on the field for photographs along with the 2016 team.

1986 Tigerettes: (Kneeling) Patty Redmon Hale and Tammy Billings Eaton; (Middle Row) Dionndra Foster, Tammy Hayes Reynolds, Tracie Webb Baker, and Christie Poss Hart; (Back Row) Coach Danny Bond, Michelle Gard Roller, Vickie Hayes Gwynn, Gena Hayes Cripps

Bly Accused of Committing Domestic Assault with a Belt

April 22, 2016
Dwayne Page

Smithville Police have charged a man with committing a domestic assault with a belt.

32 year old Steven Bly was arrested on Monday, April 18. Police were dispatched to a residence for a domestic assault. Upon investigation it was determined that Bly had struck the victim with a belt in the area of her left side near the ribs and stomach. Injuries were visible and consistent with the use of a belt. Bond for Bly is $2,500 and his court date is May 12.

25 year old Stephanie Bequette was cited for simple possession of a schedule VI drug on Friday, April 8. While investigating a possible DUI, police found 4 partially smoked marijuana cigarettes in Bequette's vehicle after receiving consent to search.

41 year old Autumn Danielle White was arrested on Sunday, April 10 for driving while revoked and she was cited for speeding, failing to stop at a stop sign, and violation of the open container law. Police initiated a traffic stop of White’s vehicle and while speaking with her, officers observed an open container of Smirnoff in the front seat. A computer check revealed that White's driver license were revoked. Her bond is $1,500.

41 year old Wendy Strahan was arrested for public intoxication on Monday, April 11. After being called to East Side Inn for a possible domestic, police were informed that the incident amounted only to a verbal argument. But upon further investigation it was discovered that Strahan had been drinking and that she had been causing an annoyance to the surrounding tenants. She was taken into custody. Her bond is $1,500 and her court date is May 21

33 year old Ashley Jerome Ferrell and 22 year old Katelyn Luann Goodwin were cited for shoplifting at Wal-Mart on Wednesday, April 20. Police were contacted after Goodwin was observed taking a Zippo lighter from the store. As officers confronted Ferrell and Goodwin, Dispatch informed them that Ferrell had an active warrant for his arrest. During a search of Ferrell a Dremel tool belonging to Wal-Mart was found on his person. Ferrell and Goodwin will make a court appearance on May 26.

March DeKalb Unemployment Rate Drops to 5%

April 22, 2016
Dwayne Page

The DeKalb County unemployment rate for March was 5% and down from the February rate of 5.3% and below the rate for March, 2015 of 7.2%.

The local labor force for March was 7,420. A total of 7,040 were employed and 370 were without work.

Jobless rates for March among the fourteen counties in the Upper Cumberland region were as follows from highest to lowest:

Pickett: 6.6%
Clay: 6.6%
Jackson: 6.2%
Fentress: 5.7%
Van Buren: 5.6%
Cumberland: 5.5%
DeKalb: 5%
Overton: 4.9%
White: 4.5%
Smith: 4.3%
Putnam: 4.2%
Cannon: 4%
Warren: 4%

County unemployment rates for March 2016 show the rates decreased in 92 counties, increased in one, and remained the same in two counties.

For the month of March, Davidson County had the state’s lowest major metropolitan rate at 3.1 percent, down from February’s rate of 3.3 percent. Knox County was 3.4 percent in March, down from 3.6 the previous month. The Hamilton County rate was 4.0 percent, down from 4.2 in February. Shelby County was 4.7 percent, down from 4.9 percent the previous month.

Tennessee’s preliminary unemployment rate for March was 4.5 percent, down four tenths of a percentage point from the previous month’s revised rate. The U.S. preliminary rate for March was 5.0 percent, up one tenth of a percentage point from the previous month.

The state and national unemployment rates are seasonally adjusted while the county unemployment rates are not. Seasonal adjustment is a statistical technique that eliminates the influences of weather, holidays, the opening and closing of schools, and other recurring seasonal events from economic time series.

Groundbreaking Held for New DeKalb West School Baseball Facility

April 21, 2016
Dwayne Page
Groundbreaking Held for New DeKalb West School Baseball Facility
Donors May Purchase a Personalized Brick for the Bulldog Way
Coach Tad Webb and Principal Sabrina Farler thank donors including Attorneys Sarah Cripps and Brandon Cox, Chad Colwell of Wilson Bank & Trust, and Roy Nelson Pugh of Liberty State Bank
DeKalb West Bulldogs Join in Celebration of Groundbreaking for New Baseball Facility

Boosters, players, donors, and local public officials joined the administration of DeKalb West School in a groundbreaking Thursday afternoon for the new baseball indoor hitting and pitching practice facility.

The DeKalb West School Bulldog Baseball Boosters Club plans to build a 40 x 100 foot structure on campus which is to include hitting cages, restrooms, concession stand, storage, office, and locker room.

“Our baseball program at DeKalb West School started seven years ago and as of today we’re breaking ground on our new hitting facility. The school board gave us approval for the project last week and we’ll get started this summer,” said DeKalb West School Principal Sabrina Farler.

"It is to be multipurpose. We want to have a concession stand rather than the portable building we now have there. It will also have two public restrooms in addition to the locker room, hitting cages, batting cages, and things like that," said Tony Cross, Booster Club President.

"I think we can do this for less than $40,000. What we would like to do this summer after school is out is to do the shell of the building and a concrete slab with all the plumbing. I think we can do that for just under $20,000. Eighty percent of the building is batting cages and lanes. That could be used next baseball season. Just to be able to get in and out of the rain. We initially want to get some things done this summer and we'll continue on with fundraisers to raise the remainder of the money. We'd like to have it (project) done next year," said Cross.

According to Principal Farler, several donors have already made contributions and others have expressed an interest. “Several donors have already approached us wanting to be involved. We want to say thank you for all the community involvement we’ve had. Those who have made generous donations are Wilson Bank & Trust, Liberty State Bank and attorneys Sarah Cripps and Brandon Cox,” she said.

Meanwhile, other individuals and groups wanting to support the project may do so by visiting or

Plans are to build a walkway to the new hitting facility. You can help pave the Bulldog Way by purchasing a personalized engraved brick that will forever be a part of the facility’s walkway. The Bulldog Way is about discipline, dedication, and determination and all proceeds through the sale of the bricks for the walkway will go to support the completion of the baseball facility.

Sizes and prices of the bricks are as follows:

Brick size-4” x 8”
Price text only-$75.00
Price with artwork- $100.00

Brick size- 8” x 8”
Price text only-$125.00
Price with artwork- $150.00

Brick size- 12” x12”
Price text only-$200.00
Price with artwork- $225.00

Add a replica tile (4” x 4” marble tile) of the selected brick for your own personal use for an additional $15.00

Top Photo:
Principal Sabrina Farler, Attorneys Sarah Cripps and Brandon Cox, Assistant Principal Joey Agee, Booster President Tony Cross, Kevin Bandy of Wilson Bank & Trust, Coach Tad Web, School Board member Jerry Wayne Johnson, Trustee Sean Driver, Roy Nelson Pugh of Liberty State Bank, Road Superviser Butch Agee, Director of Schools Patrick Cripps, School Board member Danny Parkerson, County Mayor Tim Stribling, and Chad Colwell of Wilson Bank & Trust.

Goodlettsville Man Airlifted After Semi-Motorcycle Accident

April 21, 2016
Dwayne Page
Goodlettsville Man Airlifted After Semi-Motorcycle Accident

A Goodlettsville man was injured in a semi-motorcycle accident Thursday morning at the intersection of Broad Street and South Congress Boulevard.

Trooper Bobby Johnson of the Tennessee Highway Patrol told WJLE that 59 year old Charles Walker was setting on his 2014 BMW motorcycle in an eastbound lane at the traffic light on Broad Street when he was bumped in the rear by an unloaded 2015 Freightliner semi, driven by 51 year old Dean Kinney of Alberta Canada who failed to stop.

Walker was injured after being knocked off the motorcycle. He was treated at the scene by DeKalb EMS and later flown to Vanderbilt Hospital by a helicopter ambulance.

Kinney was not hurt. He unloaded his cargo in Lebanon and was enroute to McMinnville.

Kinney was cited for failure to exercise due care.

Members of the Smithville Police and Fire Departments were also on the scene.

4-H Members Excel at Livestock Judging Contest

April 21, 2016
Leigh Fuson, 4-H Agent
Livestock Judging Team
Junior Judging Team

Cows, pigs, sheep, and goats…oh my! Ten DeKalb County 4-H members traveled to the Tennessee Livestock Center in Murfreesboro to compete in the Central Region 4-H Livestock Judging contest. Competing in the Junior division (4th & 5th grades) were Colby Barnes, Ansley Cantrell, Macey Cox, and Caleb Parham. They placed 4th out of 23 teams. Colby placed 2nd high individual out of 89 contestants. In the Jr. High division (6th-8th grades), Jenna Cantrell, Lily Martin, and Elizabeth Seber placed 14th out of 29 teams. Jenna was 5th high individual out of 122 contestants. In the Senior divison (9th-12th grades), Kayla Belk, Caitlyn Lawrence, and PJ Ray placed 17th out of 21 teams and 84 contestants.

Livestock judging allows young people to develop decision-making skills while evaluating and selecting meat animals. They also learn more about the livestock industry as a whole. So, how do you “judge” livestock animals exactly? 4-H members learn how to assess the conformation, or body structure, and muscle of different breeds of beef cattle, sheep, goats, and swine in order to know which animals would be best in a breeding program or would make the most profit in a market situation. They also learn how to read and use performance data and genetic information to assist in the selection of breeding livestock. Eight total classes of animals are judged at the contest. 9th-12th grade 4-H members must also be able to explain verbally why they placed the class the way they did as an added challenge. This requires good public speaking skills as well.

DeKalb County was well represented at this very competitive event. If you are interested in learning more about livestock judging, or any other 4-H event, please call 615-597-4945 or email 4-H is the Youth Development program for University of Tennessee and Tennessee State University Extension. 4-H teaches leadership, citizenship, and life skills to more than 302,000 youth in grades 4-12. UT/TSU Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment through the cooperation of county, state, and federal governments.

Photo Captions

Livestock Team
DeKalb County 4-H members competed at the Central Region Livestock Judging Contest. Back row: Jenna Cantrell, Caitlyn Lawrence, PJ Ray, Kayla Belk, and Colby Barnes. Front row: Elizabeth Seber, Ansley Cantrell, Macey Cox, Caleb Parham, and Lily Martin

Jr. Team: Macey Cox, Colby Barnes, Ansley Cantrell, & Caleb Parham (not pictured) placed 4th out of 23 teams at the Regional livestock judging contest. Colby was 2nd place high individual.

Hargrave Charged with Disorderly Conduct

April 21, 2016
Dwayne Page
James Allen Hargrave

An intoxicated man whose home was destroyed by fire Monday has been charged with disorderly conduct after making threats toward first responders on the scene that evening.

54 year old James Allen Hargrave of Four Seasons Road, Smithville is scheduled to make a General Sessions Court appearance on the charge Thursday, April 21. His bond is $1,500.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that on Monday, April 18 a deputy responded to 3323 Four Seasons Road on a fire call. Upon arrival the officer found Hargrave highly intoxicated. Hargrave refused to obey the deputy’s commands while he was in close proximity to a fire scene. Hargrave then engaged in threatening activities toward first responders on the scene by trying to hit them and get into their faces.

Hargrave was placed under arrest.

Northside Students Take Virtual Tours of the World through the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program

April 19, 2016
Dwayne Page
Northside Elementary Students look through their goggles to take a virtual tour of Mt. Everest
Students in Northside Teacher Amy Raymond's Class by the Google Car

Imagine visiting Mount Everest, the Great Wall of China, or the surface of the moon. Thanks to the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program, teachers at Northside Elementary School were able to take their students this month on virtual journeys from their classrooms to bring lessons to life.

Expeditions is a virtual reality platform built for the classroom that leads students on guided tours of places school buses can't go. They are comprised of virtual reality panoramas and are led by a guide or teacher. Using a tablet, teachers can guide students wearing virtual reality viewers. Teachers can guide their class and point out highlights while referring to notes.

(Click link below to see promotional video of the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program)

Google worked with teachers and content partners from around the world to create 160 engaging journeys - ranging from museums to outer space --making it easy to immerse students in entirely new experiences.

“It’s basically virtual reality, “ Danii Roundtree, Google Expedition Team Member told WJLE. The teachers are leading the expedition in taking them to different parts of the world”.

“It’s a pair of Google goggles the students look through and then you have a phone because it’s an app that goes inside of the Google goggles and that’s how they are able to see the 3D technology,” said Roundtree.

“The teacher directs from a tablet what the students see through the goggles. Through the virtual expedition students have been able to see the world including places like Egypt, the Great Wall of China, under the seas, etc. Some of the teachers like to correlate what the students are seeing with a lesson plan or what they are presently learning in the classroom so it’s really cool,” Roundtree said.

“Last week Google came to Northside and they visited 20 classrooms. The kids loved it. They (Google) wanted to come back so that no one at Northside would miss out on it so today (Tuesday) they have finished up with the rest of the classes,” said Tammy Sims, computer lab teacher at Northside.

Sims said she learned about the Google Expedition Program last summer during tech training and later signed up Northside for a visit when Google came to Tennessee.

(Visit the Northside Elementary School Website by clicking the link below)

More information on the program is available at


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