AVFD open house on Saturday

The public is invited to an open house event this Saturday, September 20, from 2 to 6 p.m. at all three Andersonville Volunteer Fire Department stations.

The AVFD recently scrapped its controversial subscription program in favor of its former donation-based service, and there is a new chief on duty. Rodney Reeder invites everyone to stop in and visit with firefighters at any or all of the stations, which are located at 1957 Mountain Road in Andersonville, 203 Mountain View Lane in Heiskell, and 197 Sequoyah Road in Andersonville.

Stop in and check out the new look AVFD this Saturday.

‘Fight like Mikey’ inspires schools, community

Information from WYSH Radio

It has been an emotional week in Oliver Springs as Norwood Middle School, Grand Oaks Elementary School, and the community have been honoring a 13-year-old boy who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Mikey Carter was a member of the Norwood Middle School football team, and when his teammates hosted Grace Christian Academy on Tuesday night, his younger brother Isiah was named honorary captain, allowed to wear his brother’s jersey and even scored a touchdown on a special play designed just for him. Mikey, who was a lineman for the Jaguars, is now too sick to play football and is at home in hospice care.

Tuesday night’s game also included the presentation of a check to the Carter family from Grace Christian to help with the family’s medical expenses, and both teams signed a football for the family and gave them posters of encouragement for Mikey.

The tributes did not end there, as on Wednesday, the football field at Grand Oaks Elementary School was named in his honor. If you would like to help the family offset the costs of Mikey’s care, you can donate by visiting their GoFundMe page at http://www.gofundme.com/dktqrc.

Accident at Deal’s Small Engine critically injures owner

Information from WYSH Radio

WYSH has learned that an accident Thursday afternoon at Deal’s Small Engine in Clinton has critically injured owner Lamar Deal.

Preliminary information indicates that while unloading lawn mowers from a tractor trailer at the business, a cable securing the mowers snapped, and Deal was struck in the chest. The Clinton police and fire departments responded to the scene and transported Deal to the football field, where he was airlifted to the University of Tennessee Medical Center.

More information will be added as it becomes available.

Former Oak Ridge rowing director could lead ORCVB

Marc DeRose

Marc DeRose

Note: This story was updated at 5:55 p.m.

A former Oak Ridge rowing director could become the next executive director of the Oak Ridge Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The ORCVB board of directors on Thursday voted 4-3 to offer the job to Marc A. DeRose, subject to reference checks. If hired, DeRose will replace former longtime director Katy Brown, who became ORCVB president in 2006 and left in July to take a new marketing and promotions job covering Knoxville and Chattanooga.

DeRose was hired by the Oak Ridge Rowing Association in August 2013, and he resigned from his head coach and rowing director position in May of this year, saying the job was “not the right fit for me and my family,” the ORRA said in a press release this spring.

Other candidates for the ORCVB job, which offers a starting salary of $45,000 per year, were Lila Wilson, director of special events for the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center in Townsend, and Naomi Asher, executive director of CASA of the Tennessee Heartland. ORCVB board members said Asher withdrew her application, saying she wanted to continue working for CASA.

Wilson received three votes on Thursday, picking up one less than DeRose’s four. [Read more...]

School board candidates field questions on technology, tax increases

Oak Ridge Board of Education Forum

A. Paige Marshall, left, one of eight candidates for the Oak Ridge School Board, answers a question during the League of Women Voters’ Candidate Forum Wednesday night. To her right are candidates Mike Mahathy, Andrew Howe, Jean Hiser, and incumbent Bob Eby, with WUOT radio host Matt Shafer Powell, who posed the questions. (Photo by Rebecca D. Williams)


Fielding public school questions about technology, tax increases, and the teaching of science versus religion, eight candidates for the Oak Ridge School Board tried to distinguish themselves from one another Wednesday night at the League of Women Voters’ Candidate Forum held at the Oak Ridge High School Amphitheater, to a crowd of about 150.

Board candidates offered largely similar answers, with the greatest difference of opinion posed by Aaron Wells. He spoke against school tax increases and one-to-one technology in schools.

“The biggest impact on me growing up was when my teachers gave me one-to-one education,” Wells said. “How many hours a day are kids staring at a screen? It’s too many. We need to do more with less, because money’s tight. We’ve got to get back to the basics.”

Also participating in the forum were two candidates who are opposing incumbent Chuck Fleischmann, a Republican, for the District 3 seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Mary M. Headrick, a Democrat, and Cassandra J. Mitchell, an Independent, answered questions. Fleischmann was not present.

Also, Tennessee House Representative for District 32, Kent Calfee, the Republican incumbent, and Joe Kneiser, his Democratic opponent, fielded questions about four referendum questions on the ballot Nov. 4.

Three seats on the five-member Oak Ridge Board of Education are open. Bob Eby is the only incumbent running for re-election. Other candidates include Jean Hiser, Andrew Howe, Mike Mahathy, A. Paige Marshall, Laura McLean, Laurie Paine, and Wells. [Read more...]

High school seniors can sign up for Tennessee Promise at RSCC on Saturday

Tennessee Promise Logo

High school seniors can sign up for the Tennessee Promise and fill out their college application as part of Scholarship Saturday on September 20 at Roane State Community College’s Oak Ridge campus.

Computer labs in the new Goff Health Sciences and Technology Building will be open from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., and enrollment counselors will be available to help seniors complete their Tennessee Promise applications and college applications.

Pizza will be provided. The campus is located at 701 Briarcliff Avenue.

The event is designed to encourage students to enroll in Tennessee Promise, the state’s new program that provides two years of community college or technical school tuition-free for any student graduating from a Tennessee high school.

The deadline to apply for the Tennessee Promise is Nov. 1. [Read more...]

Mutt Strutt on Saturday benefits Animal Shelter

Mutt Strutt 2014

The 4th Annual Mutt Strutt on Saturday will benefit the Oak Ridge Animal Shelter.

The charity dog walk is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday at the PetSafe Dog Park at Big Turtle Park on Oak Ridge Turnpike in west Oak Ridge. It’s been organized by the Young Professionals of Oak Ridge.

The Mutt Strutt will feature a group dog walk, raffle prizes, and dogs available for adoption.

Visit www.ypor.org for more information.

Street painting festival needs artists, sponsors

2013 Oak Ridge Street Painting Festival

Winning chalk painting from the 2013 Oak Ridge Street Painting Festival. (Submitted photo)


Artists of all ages will “paint” sidewalk squares with chalk after community supporters “buy” squares by writing checks. In these ways, the 15th annual Oak Ridge Street Painting Festival can be a big fundraising success, organizers say.

In addition, participants in this event can help improve East Tennessee’s economy by giving students the chance to learn valuable technical skills that companies require.

Artists and sponsors are needed for the 15th annual Oak Ridge Street Painting Festival. It will be held Saturday, October 4 (the rain day is on Sunday, Oct. 5), at the Oak Ridge Branch Campus of Roane State Community College, 701 Briarcliff Avenue.

The purpose of the festival, organized and sponsored by the Rotary Club of Oak Ridge, is to raise funds for scholarships for Roane State students. The festival is also a competition for the artists; first-prize winners in a variety of categories and the People’s Choice award winner will get $50 cash awards. [Read more...]

ABA re-approves Roane State’s paralegal studies program

The American Bar Association House of Delegates has re-approved the Roane State Community College Paralegal Studies program.

The re-approval successfully concludes a two-year self-evaluation of the program by the college.

“I am pleased that the ABA has re-approved our program,” said Ken Yager, director of the program. “Re-approval is a designation signifying the college’s adherence to the highest academic standards and ABA requirements. Graduates of our program are fully prepared to enter the workforce.”

The paralegal studies program, which consistently has a 100 percent job placement rate, was first approved by the ABA in 2005. The ABA reapproval lasts through August 2019. [Read more...]

DFET: Meet the candidates on Oct. 9

A local organization is sponsoring a Meet the Candidates event from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, October 9, in the Oak Ridge Civic Center Gymnasium. It’s been organized by Democracy for East Tennessee, and residents of Anderson and surrounding counties are invited, a press release said.

Candidates for the following offices have been invited: Oak Ridge City Council, Oak Ridge Board of Education, Tennessee House of Representatives 33rd District, State Senate 5th District, 3rd U.S. Congressional District, and U.S. Senate.

The election is November 4. The October 9 event will offer residents a chance to become better informed and acquainted with candidates by meeting with them on an individual basis at a single event, a press release said. [Read more...]

FBI involved in missing woman case

Nichole Burgess

Nichole Burgess

Information from WYSH Radio

The FBI is now helping investigate the disappearance of a Tennessee mother with Anderson County ties. Metro Nashville police said they have sent some evidence in the case of Nikki Burgess to the agency for review.

Burgess, who authorities believe has been murdered, was last seen alive on May 23 when she dropped her son off at school. Later that same day, she sent a text message to a friend indicating that she was having an altercation with her 10-year-old son’s father, Caleb Cannon of Andersonville. Cannon picked the boy up from school later that day.

In June, Nashville investigators searched his home for evidence. Detectives have named him a person of interest in Burgess’ disappearance, but so far no arrests have been made.

Suspected Corwin killer has hearing postponed

Christopher Lee

Christopher Lee

Information from WYSH Radio

A scheduled court appearance for the suspected killer of Oak Ridge native Erin Corwin was postponed on Tuesday so that his attorney could review hundreds of pages of evidence in the case.

Ex-Marine Christopher Lee is suspected of killing the 19-year-old Corwin, who was married to an Oak Ridge Marine and stationed in California. Her body was found weeks after her disappearance at the bottom of an abandoned mine shaft in the Southern California desert.

Authorities say that the two were having an affair and allege that Lee killed her to keep his own wife from finding out.

Lee was supposed to appear in court on Tuesday, but his attorneys requested a delay after receiving nearly 1,500 pages of documents from the prosecutor. His next scheduled court appearance will be October 29.