Sheriff’s Office awards several commendations

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MARYVILLE, TENNESSEE – Blount County Sheriff James Lee Berrong is proud to announce the Sheriff’s Office awarded three commendations to two deserving law enforcement officers and one heroic former law enforcement officer. The three commendations were awarded during a short ceremony at the Blount County Justice Center this morning.
Deputy Chief Jeff French awarded a Lifesaving Commendation to Blount County Sheriff’s Deputy Devan Teaster. On July 5, Deputy Teaster saved the life of Eric Spears following a car accident. Deputy Teaster saw that Spears’ arm was seriously injured. A few days prior, Deputy Teaster received TECC (Tactical Emergency Casualty Care) training and learned how to properly administer a tourniquet. Deputy Teaster saw that Mr. Spears’ arm was bleeding profusely and knew the bleeding had to be stopped. Deputy Teaster acted on his training and applied a tourniquet to Mr. Spears’ arms, stopping the bleeding. Though Mr. Spears’ ultimately lost his arm due to the severity of the injury, surgeons stated that Deputy Teasters’ quick and proper emergency care saved Mr. Spears’ life. Deputy Teaster has been employed with the Sheriff’s Office since 2015 is a School Resource Officer.

The family of Eric Spears, who was seriously injured in a car accident on July 5, were present this morning to thank Deputy Devan Teaster for saving the life of Eric Spears.

Sheriff Berrong also awarded a Law Enforcement Commendation and a Citizen Service Award to University of Tennessee Police Department Asst. Chief Sean Patterson and his wife Anaida Patterson, respectively. On June 28, the Patterson’s were visiting Blount County and traveling U.S. Highway 321 West near the Big Springs Road exit when they came upon a vehicle pulled to the side of the road and saw frantic activity within the vehicle. Asst. Chief Patterson and Anaida Patterson, who are both retired law enforcement officers from New York Police Department, knew something was wrong based on their training and experience. The Pattersons turned around and saw the baby’s mother outside the car holding an unconscious infant boy. The baby, Joseph, was choking on a piece of food.
The Pattersons immediately took control of the situation, and using their training and rendered first aid by delivering back blows which dislodged the food. Baby Joseph began breathing again, regained consciousness, and suffered no lasting effects from the incident.
Several co-workers, friends, and family members of the law enforcement officers and the grateful victims were in attendance at the ceremony.
The Sheriff’s Lifesaving Award is conferred upon a sworn or civilian employee who is directly responsible for saving a life.

Asst. Chief Patterson and his wife Anaida Patterson (pictured center) saved the life of Baby Joseph on June 28.

The Citizen Service Award may be conferred on any citizen who is not an employee of the Sheriff’s Office, and the act or achievement must be directly related to the overall law enforcement objectives of the Sheriff’s Office that may include extraordinary heroism or unselfish devotion to a fellow human being, or meritorious achievement in the performance of civic responsibility.
The Law Enforcement Commendation is awarded to a law enforcement officer from another agency who brings credit to themselves, their agency, and the Blount County Sheriff’s Office for an exceptional act clearly resulting in the saving of a life, or performing an act of valor that aids someone who is clearly in need, and who goes above and beyond for an individual, while the law enforcement officer is on or off duty and within the jurisdiction of Blount County.
The sheriff’s office recently awarded several other officers for their life-saving efforts, read about it here.
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Gilmer Fire puts students to the heat

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On August 1, 2020, Gilmer Fire had 7 in-training Firefighters participate in a Live Fire Exercise and Evaluation to allow trainees a hands-on experience.

According to Public Information Officer, Al Cash, “The purpose of this training is for the student to observe fire behavior – meaning its growth, spread-patterns, and heat radiation. The students also become more familiar with their turnout gear – protective clothing, backpacks, air regulators, and masks.

Cash went on to note that the more subjective part of the exercise was for the student to understand their approach to safe firefighting. “A fire can attack an individual’s mental and physical weaknesses. One must be constantly alert of their own condition, their surroundings, and that of their fellow firefighters.”

This type of training gave these fine trainees a small taste of a fire scenario and put them closer in touch with their skills, their fears, and their successes.

Cash said the event went off very well with a great job by the students, the instructors, and the safety team.

He said, “Gilmer Fire and Rescue salutes you all.”

 

 

 

 

 

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GCSO Employee Spotlight Communications Officer Chris Prince

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Our Sheriff’s Office employs just over 100 people including sworn deputies, 911 dispatchers, detention officers, and civilian employees serving Gilmer County. While a lot of you know someone that works here, we are recognizing employees on our page to give more people the opportunity to meet “us.”

This week, we would like to introduce you to Communications Officer Chris Prince. Prince has been employed with GCSO for 3.5 years as a Dispatcher in the 911 Center since day one.

ChrisChris is a 2013 graduate of Copper Basin High School in Copperhill, Tennessee. His very first job was working at O’Reilly Auto Parts as a Parts Salesman.

Chris says his hobbies are spending time with his wife and children, hunting, fishing, and watching Nascar. He listed “anything BBQ” as his favorite food, “Remember the Titans” and/or “Days of Thunder” as his favorite movies, and said that Gatlinburg, Tennessee is his favorite place to vacation.

When asked what is one thing most people don’t know about him, he said he actually “writes amatuer sports articles for fun for a website called ‘Belly Up Sports.'”

Chris lists “the people I work with and helping the community” as his favorite part of his job here at GCSO.

Thanks for the difficult job you do for GCSO and Gilmer County citizens, Chris!

 

 

(article and photos provided by the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Department)

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GCSO Employee Spotlight Sgt. Gene Hefner

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Our Sheriff’s Office employs just over 100 people including sworn deputies, 911 dispatchers, detention officers, and civilian employees serving Gilmer County. While a lot of you know someone that works here, we are recognizing employees on our page to give more people the opportunity to meet “us.”

This week, we would like to introduce you to Sgt. Gene Hefner. Gene has been employed with the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Office since 2010. Gene’s tenure here was briefly interrupted by a year-long stint in Kosovo in 2011 while serving with the National Guard.

Gene is a 2004 graduate of Cherokee High School in Canton, Georgia.

He honorably served with the National Guard for six years. His first job was as a Cashier at Kroger.

During his time with GCSO, he has served in the jail as a Detention Officer, Corporal, and Sergeant. He has been with the Uniform Patrol Division as a Deputy Sheriff, Corporal, and currently serves as a Sergeant since being promoted in August of 2018. In 2018, Gene was awarded a “Combat Award Certificate” at our annual awards banquet.

Gene listed his hobbies as fishing, hunting, and golf. He says pizza is his favorite food, “Cool Hand Luke” is his favorite movie, and the beach is his favorite place to vacation.

What many people may not know about Gene is he and his wife became foster parents about one year ago.

When asked about his favorite part of his job here at GCSO, he states “my coworkers.”

Gene, we sincerely hope working here with all of us has not caused you to go bald in your 30’s!! THANK YOU for the job you do for GCSO and Gilmer citizens!

 

 

(article and photos provided by the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Department)

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Discover Dahlonega: Visit Dahlonega Virtually

Arts & Entertainment, Just For Fun
Dahlonega

(Article by Courtney Randolph in conjunction with the Dahlonega-Lumpkin Chamber and Visitors Bureau and a post from April)

It’s no secret that… WMISS Dahlonega! We miss our friends and family… We miss our study buddies… We miss our coworkers… Our favorite shop keepers… We miss our North Georgia waterfalls, and eating at our favorite restaurants downtown.

But we think we know how to make this easier! Whether you’re meeting with coworkers or having a happy hour with friends,  Zoom video conferencing  is a way for all of us to stay connected to each other during this time. Instead of having your house as the background of your video, pretend you are at one of these amazing places in Dahlonega with these free virtual Zoom backgrounds.

 


 

Keep scrolling to download each background.  

Instructions on how to use these backgrounds are at the bottom of this post.

Share a screenshot of your call on social media! Tag us with @visitdahlonega and use #VisitDahlonegaVirtually.

 

1. Canopy & The Roots – Download

iced tea

Download Canopy & The Roots – Yoga Room.
Download Canopy & The Roots – Listening Room.

2. Christmas In Dahlonega – Download

iced tea

3. Corner Kitchen in Dahlonega – Download

iced tea

4.  Consolidated Gold Mine – Download

Spanakopita

 

5. Crisson Gold Mine – Download

pizza

 

6.  Dahlonega Resort & Vineyard – Download

turkey sandwich

7. Dahlonega Square Hotel & Tasting Room – Download

connies

Dahlonega Square Hotel – Tasting Room & Chairs ^
Dahlonega Square Hotel – Tasting Room (Up Close)
P
hoto Credits: Dahlonega Square Hotel 

8. Dahlonega Waterfall – Download

connies

9. Downtown Dahlonega – Download

connies

Click here for more downtown Dahlonega.

10. Frogtown Cellars – Download

connies

 

11. Gustavo’s Pizzera in Dahlonega – Download

Gustavos Pizzeria

12. Montaluce Winery & Restaurant – Download

Gustavos Pizzeria

13. No. 3 Vintage – Download
connies

Photo Credits: No. 3 Vintage

14. Red Oak Lavender Farm – Download

Gustavos Pizzeria

Photo Credits: Tina Duffey

15. The North Georgia Zoo – Download

Gustavos Pizzeria

North Georgia Zoo – Wolf
North Georgia Zoo – “Boo at the Zoo”
Photo Credits: North Georgia Zoo & Farm 

16. Three Sisters Vineyards – Download

Three Sisters Vineyards

 

17. Outdoor Adventures – Download

Gustavos Pizzeria

For another outdoor adventure, click here to download.

How to Use Your Zoom Background on Desktop 

  • Download your preferred background above by clicking “Download” and “save as” an image into a preferred folder.
  • Drag the image from your browser onto your desktop.
  • Download the  Zoom app for Mac or Windows.
  • Open the app and sign in.
  • In the upper right corner, click your profile picture and then click on “Settings.”
  • In the left menu, click “Virtual Background.” (If you don’t see it, log in to the Zoom website, go to “Settings” and toggle on “Virtual Background.”)
  • In the “Virtual Background” menu, click the (+) icon.
  • Select and upload your new Visit Dahlonega background. 

How to Use Your Zoom Background on Mobile 

  • Click the download link above for your preferred background.
  • Hold down the image and select “Add to Photos.”
  • Download the  Zoom app for iOS to iPhone or iPad.
  • Open the app, sign in, and join a meeting.
  • Tap the three dots in the bottom right to open the “More” menu.
  • Tap “Virtual Background.”
  • Select and upload your new Visit Dahlonega background.

 

 

 

If you’re enjoying the Sunday Edition, then consider becoming a contributor with your own articles. If you have an article that needs highlighting send it to lonnie@fetchyournews.com to become a part of our growing community of feature news.

Perennial Pals: Is it Ripe?

Just For Fun, Tastebuds
Ripe

(Article and photo by Jacob Williams in conjunction with Towns-Union Master Gardener Association and the UGA Extension Office)

One question that people will call me with is how to tell if a fruit or vegetable is ripe or not. Different plants ripen differently. Some will continue to ripen after they’ve been picked, others need to ripen attached to the plant. Let’s talk about what causes plants to ripen and how to tell if some common fruits and vegetables are ripe or not.

Fruits and vegetables are divided into climacteric and non-climacteric. The difference between these groups is their response to the hormone ethylene. Ethylene is a hormone that plants produce to induce ripening. Climacteric fruits and veggies will continue to ripen after they have been picked. Non-climacteric fruits and veggies won’t continue to ripen. Instead, they will soften and rot as they age. Some crops are sensitive to ethylene and so shouldn’t be stored with climacteric crops that produce ethylene.

Apples, pears, peaches, plums, potatoes, and tomatoes are some examples of climacteric plants. Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, cucumbers, eggplant, grapes, strawberries, peppers, squash, and watermelon are all examples of non-climacteric crops. Some examples of plants that are sensitive to ethylene and so shouldn’t be stored with climacteric crops are asparagus, broccoli, cucumbers, green beans, kale, onions, peas, peppers, squash, and watermelon.

Now that we know a little more about the ripening process let’s talk about how to tell when the best time to pick some of the most commonly grown crops around here are.

RipeTomatoes are an easy one to tell when they are ripe because they start to turn red. You can pick tomatoes before they are fully ripe on the vine. Because they are climacteric, they will continue to ripen. I’ve put tomatoes up in the kitchen windowsill so that they’ll ripen. Sometimes it is advantageous to pick something before it’s fully ripe so that you make sure critters don’t get it before you.

Apples and pears can be a little more challenging to tell when they are ripe. Different varieties will ripen at different times. In addition, the entire tree may not ripen at the same time. If the apple or pear stem breaks away easily from the tree then it’s ripe. Turn the fruit sideways to see if it pops off. Depending on the variety, you can use color to tell if the fruit is ripe. If you cut an apple open and the seeds are dark brown, it’s ripe.

Blueberries will be plump with a deep blue color. They also have a white powder on the skin that keeps them fresh longer.

Squash and zucchini should be harvested when they’re 4-8 inches long. They’ll both grow longer if left on the vine, and you can still eat them if they’re big, but they get tougher as they age. You should be able to push your fingernail into the skin.
Sweet corn is ripe when you can puncture a kernel with your fingernail and milky fluid comes out. As soon as corn is picked, it starts to lose flavor. Refrigerate it to retain flavor.

Pick peas when the pods have plumped out. If they start to wrinkle, they’re getting overripe. You can always open a pod to see if the seeds are swollen, but still tender. Beans are ready when you can see the seeds bulging through the sides of the pod.

Pick peppers when they are shiny green. If you let them sit on the bush longer and they start to change to orange or red and they’re getting hotter. If that’s what you’re looking for, let them sit.

If you have questions about when plants are ripe contact your County Extension Office or email me at Jacob.Williams@uga.edu.

 

 

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Deputies recognized for their lifesaving efforts

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MARYVILLE, TENNESSEE – Several sheriff’s deputies were recognized for their lifesaving efforts and other deputies as employees of the month recently.
Deputy Rex Ogle received the honor of March Employee of the Month for intervening in a plot in March involving an unreported armed robbery that led to a group of individuals planning to do harm to the would-be robber. While on patrol on March 19, Deputy Ogle saw a vehicle with several people acting suspiciously and driving erratically. During the traffic stop, Deputy Ogle discovered a loaded weapon and a significant amount of cash, methamphetamine, and marijuana. He learned that one of the passengers had tossed another weapon from the vehicle and that the driver was being forced to drive to a secluded area and that the occupants were planning to harm the driver. Because of his proactive and reactive enforcement efforts, Deputy Ogle likely saved the driver from serious harm, and possibly saved his life. Deputy Ogle began his career at the Sheriff’s Office in January 2017 and serves as a patrolman.
Deputy Khalil Whitehead was awarded our April Employee of the Month for intercepting two burglary bandits during the overnight hours on March 31. While on patrol on Carpenters Grade road, Deputy Whitehead saw a vehicle pulling a utility trailer with two lawnmowers that were not tied down. Due to his training and experience, Deputy Whitehead believed the lawnmowers could be stolen. He attempted a traffic stop on the vehicle, but the driver accelerated into a neighborhood and drove through several yards before stopping at a retention pond. Both individuals in the vehicle fled on foot. Deputy Whitehead immediately caught one of the suspects. During his investigation, Deputy Whitehead found that the suspects had stolen the trailer, a riding lawn mower, and a push mower from three locations. He was able to return the stolen items to the owners, and the suspect was arrested on multiple charges. Deputy Whitehead began his career with BCSO in January 2018 and attended Class 017 of the Sheriff’s Regional Law Enforcement Training Academy. He is assigned to patrol.
Cpl. Chris Carter received the honor as our June Employee of the Month for talking an armed man out of committing suicide. The incident occurred on June 17. He and other deputies responded to the call of a man who was threatening suicide. Cpl. Carter was the first to arrive on scene and he encountered a man armed with a pistol on the front porch of the residence. The man stood up and refused to put down the pistol or comply as he walked into the backyard. Cpl. Carter remained calm and continued to try to get the man to relinquish the gun while talking o him empathetically and encouraging him that the situation was going to be alright. Cpl. Carter placed himself in harm’s way in proximity to the man so that he could hear him and continue to talk to him directly in an effort to peacefully resolve the situation. The circumstances, the man’s actions, including having both hands on the pistol, and action versus reaction principles could have easily ended badly. Fortunately, the man finally complied after 30 minutes and released the gun. The man was taken for an emergency mental health evaluation. Cpl. Carter has been employed with the Sheriff’s Office since 2014, and was promoted to corporal in 2016. Cpl. Carter serves with the patrol unit.
The Sheriff’s Office also awarded two Lifesaving Awards and a Citizen Service Award. Deputy Patrolman Kendyhl Rodgers was awarded a Lifesaving Award for helping to save the life of a man who was trapped inside a vehicle that had become submerged upside down in the water on the night of April 21. Deputy Rodgers, along with a citizen, Mr. Scott Snipp, entered the water and freed the victim. Their actions likely saved the victim’s life. Mr. Scott Snipp also received the Sheriff’s Citizen Service Award for his actions. Deputy Rodgers began his employment with the Sheriff’s Office in 2017, and is assigned to patrol.
lifesaving efforts
Our other recipient of the Sheriff’s Lifesaving Award is Deputy Patrolman Tim Pace. On April 22, Deputy Pace assisted Maryville Police Department on a motor vehicle accident at the intersection of Tuckaleechee Pike and East Lamar Alexander Parkway. Deputy Pace and Maryville Police Department Cpl. Elizabeth Riffle performed CPR on the victim until Maryville Fire Department and AMR Ambulance Service arrived. A paramedic with Maryville Fire Department said “The early actions taken by Deputy Pace and Cpl. Riffle likely facilitated a successful medical response providing critical, life-sustaining oxygenated blood throughout his cardiac system.” Had Deputy Pace and
Cpl. Riffle not intervened, it is likely the man’s prognosis would have been drastically different. Deputy Pace has been employed with the Sheriff’s Office since 2016 and is assigned to patrol.
livesaving efforts
Sheriff James Lee Berrong is proud of each of these deputies and of Mr. Scott Snipp for going above and beyond!
Images courtesy of BCSO.
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Sheriff says goodbye to three retiring deputies

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MARYVILLE, TENNESSEE – Blount County Sheriff James Lee Berrong and the deputies of the Blount County Sheriff’s Office are saying goodbye to three long-time deputies who are retiring or scheduled for retirement in the next few weeks.
The Sheriff’s Office honored and thanked Deputies John Douglas, P.K. Gregory, and Kim “Boo Boo” Roach at a lunchtime event today. Sheriff Berrong presented each deputy with an inscribed memory box and a State of Tennessee flag flown over the state capitol.

L to R: Sheriff Berrong and John Douglas

Deputy P.K. Gregory retired in April after serving the Sheriff’s Office and Blount County for 21 years. During her career at the Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Gregory served as a corrections officer, school resource officer, and most recently in court services.
Deputy John Douglas retired in June. Deputy Douglas served with the Sheriff’s Office for 22 years. He began his career with the Sheriff’s Office in adult corrections and retired after a long tenure in court services.
Deputy Kim “Boo Boo” Roach started her career with the Sheriff’s Office 16 years ago. She spent her career serving as a clerk in jail records and most recently as a clerk in court services.
Sheriff Berrong is grateful for the loyalty and dedication each of these deputies has given.
“We have been blessed with the service and dedication of these three deputies,” Sheriff Berrong said. “Each one of them has dedicated a good portion of their lives serving this agency and this community. I wish them only the best as they begin their well-deserved retirement.” Images of retiring deputies are courtesy of BCSO. PK Gregory pictured in featured image.

L to R: Sheriff Berrong and Kim Roach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Community Paramedicine meets students in schools offering

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Paramedicine

EAST ELLIJAY, Ga. – As many are beginning to talk about the possibility of returning to school, some are still attempting to wrap up the previous year.

Paramedicine

Members of Gilmer’s Community Paramedicine offer masks and informational flyers for students and parents in schools.

In Gilmer, part of that process occurred this week as students returned to the buildings to collect left-behind belongings. Planned in April, the Board of Education and Superintendent had the day set in order to offer a better sense of closure to the school year as the virus ended normal classes mid-semester. But as they returned, they were met by some unexpected people.

Gilmer County’s Public Safety offered a statement today saying. “It’s nearly school-time with many preparations underway. Part of those preparations is helping our kids understand the importance of good health practices. Gilmer County Community Paramedicine, with the generosity of Parkside Ellijay Nursing Home, paired together for a fun project this week at our elementary and middle schools.”

Paramedicine

Students returned to school this week to collect belongings, but were met with Gilmer’s Community Paramedics offering a community support service during this time of viral outbreak.

The project was to meet students in the schools and hand out face masks and flyers. According to Public Safety, the Community Paramedicine team visited three of our schools across the county supplied with the generous donation of 1,000 face-covering masks donated by Parkside Ellijay, and 1,000 informational flyers in English and Spanish.

The team handed out all the masks and 700 of the flyers to students and parents who arrived over the three-day period to collect their end-of 2019 school year belongings.

Public Safety was grateful for its partners in the endeavor, saying, “Many thanks to Michael Feist, Director & Part-Owner of Parkside Ellijay for the wonderful donation of the face covering masks, and to Dr. Shanna Downs, School Superintendent, for allowing our Community Paramedicine team to conduct this very successful service to our school children.”

 

 

 

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GCSO Employee Spotlight Detention Officer Wilson Giorgione

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Our Sheriff’s Office employs just over 100 people including sworn deputies, 911 dispatchers, detention officers, and civilian employees serving Gilmer County. While a lot of you know someone that works here, we are recognizing employees on our page to give more people the opportunity to meet “us.”

This week, we would like to introduce you to Detention Officer Wilson Giorgione. Wilson has been employed with GCSO for just under one year and works in our Detention Center.

Wilson is a 2019 graduate of Sonoraville High School in Calhoun, Georgia. Landscaping was his very first job.

The only hobby Wilson has listed is “working out.” He says his favorite movie is “John Wick,” his favorite food is “grilled chicken and white rice,” and says his favorite place to vacation is Florida. He said his favorite thing about his job here at GCSO is his coworkers.

He didn’t have an answer when asked what is one thing most people don’t know about him, but one of his coworkers answered for him and simply says he is an “absolute 100% sweetheart.” We also learned that Wilson is named after his maternal grandfather, Darrell Wilson, who is a retired Asst. District Attorney from our Appalachian Judicial Circuit.

It is truly encouraging to see people like Wilson beginning their law enforcement careers at such an early age!

 

(article and photos provided by the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Department)

If you’re enjoying the Sunday Edition, then consider becoming a contributor with your own articles. If you have an article that needs highlighting send it to lonnie@fetchyournews.com to become a part of our growing community of feature news.

Loudon Patrol Sergeant promoted to rank of Criminal Investigations Detective

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Detective, Sergeant

LENOIR CITY, Tn. – Sheriff Tim Guider and Chief Deputy Jimmy Davis announced the promotion of a LCSO Patrol Sergeant to the rank of Detective Sergeant earlier today.

Sergeant Jerramie Bowen, who started as a part-time Deputy Sheriff in 1999, is a 21 year veteran of the Loudon County Sheriff’s Office. Bowen was hired as a full-time Corrections Deputy in 2003 and went on to graduate the Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy in 2005 when he was moved to the Patrol Division. In 2011, Bowen was promoted to the rank of Patrol Sergeant where he has since overseen the day-to-day operations of the agencies Midnight Shift Squad.

After a formal interview process, which included an external interview panel made up of Investigators from the Knoxville Police Department, the Knox County Sheriff’s Office and the Blount County Sheriff’s Office, Bowen was selected to fill a vacancy left in LCSO’s Criminal Investigations Division after the retirement of Detective Sergeant Patrick Upton.

Sergeant Bowen resides in Lenoir City, and along with his wife of 25 years, Julie, they have two children, Zane and Caleb.

Union County Canning Plant to open July 7

Tastebuds
Canning

BLAIRSVILLE, Ga – The Union County Canning Plant will open on July 7 by appointment only. Also, the cannery will be limited to 11 groups per time slot.

The cannery will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and no walkups will be accepted.

Those interested in canning must call (706) 439-6043 in advance.  Appointments will be scheduled in two different time slots: 6 a.m.-8:45 a.m. and 9 a.m.-11:45 a.m. The cannery asks that no one brings extra product to be canned at one time. The timed appointments will have set limits and can’t be extended to accommodate overages.

Upon first visiting the cannery, visitors must sign a 2020 Registration Form/Waiver to receive their canning number for the year. If forgotten, the numbers will be posted. Each individual will be assigned a table and asked to remain at their for most of the canning process. After washing the food, they should notify a cannery worker if the food needs to be cooked or steamed. Staff will also sterilize jars, but canners should write their registration number on can lids with Sharpie and immerse them in hot water. Also, canners must fill their jars with the hot product and put lids on jars. A staff member will take it from there and give canners a designated time to return and pick up the finished cans.

See the cannery guidelines below:

COVID-19 Guidelines:

  1. Use of the Canning Plant will be by appointment only.  No walkups will be accepted.  Appointments will be limited to 11 groups per time slot.  No children under 13 will be permitted in the Canning Plant under any circumstances.

  2. All persons entering the Canning Plant shall be screened for cough, fever, and recent exposure to COVID-19. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or greater will not be permitted to enter the Union County Canning Plant.

  3. Face masks or face covering are required to enter the Union County Canning Plant. An appropriate face mask or face covering is one that covers the wearer’s nose and mouth with fabric or filter material.  Gloves are also required inside the Canning Plant.

  4. Maintain proper social distancing while inside the Canning Plant.

What to bring: Jars, lids (Ball or Kerr), bands, product to be canned, your recipe, and all ingredients.

Cost:  25₵ per pint  •  35₵ per quart

Brief History of Canning

The practice of preserving food by hermetically sealing it inside containers began in 1809 in France. Nicolas Appert started the process as a response to the call from government to preserve food for army and navy use. 50 years later, Louis Paster discovered that the heat killed microorganisms in food, and sealing it prevented other microorganisms from entering. In 1810, Peter Durand patented the use of tin-coated iron cans instead of bottles. Soon after the canning process crossed the pond and the United States quickly became the largest producer of canned goods in the world. 

GCSO Employee Spotlight Civil Clerk Eva Estes

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Our Sheriff’s Office employs just over 100 people including sworn deputies, 911 dispatchers, detention officers, and civilian employees serving Gilmer County. While a lot of you know someone that works here, we are recognizing employees on our page to give more people the opportunity to meet “us.”

This week, we would like to introduce you to Civil Clerk Eva Estes. Eva has been employed with GCSO for 6.5 years. Eva started as a Communications Officer in our 911 Center and worked there over three years. For over three years since, she has worked as a Civil Clerk. Her smiling face will be the first one you see if you ever apply for a Concealed Carry Permit and need to be fingerprinted. She is also a certified TAC (Terminal Agency Coordinator), enters warrants and civil papers to be served, and she handles anything to do with GCIC (Georgia Crime Information Center) and NCIC (National Crime Information Center).

Eva is a 1987 graduate of Cherokee High School in Canton, Georgia. Her very first job was in food service where she worked at the Burger Chief.

Eva says her hobbies are “being a grandmother, spending time with my family, and doing small projects around the house.” She told us her favorite movie is “The Notebook,” her favorite food is Italian, and her favorite place to vacation is Hilton Head, South Carolina.

When asked what her favorite part of her job is here at GCSO, she said, “I enjoy being a part of the puzzle that ensures criminal history information is correct for the safety of officers and community.”

When asked what is something people don’t know about her, Eva says, “I used to play drums.”

Eva, your dedication to the important job you do doesn’t go unnoticed. GCSO and your community thanks you for the service you provide!

 

(article and photos provided by the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Department)

FCHS thanks the Drive in for honoring the senior class of 2020 in a special way

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Fannin County Schools would like to say Thank you to the Swan Drive-In for hosting the FCHS seniors last night for the premiere of the Senior Video.  The event was a huge success, and we estimate there were 120 seniors plus friends and family at the Swan last night.

A very special thank you goes out to Steven Setser and Hunter Alexander for their hard work and dedication to the Fannin County High School video program.  Without them, this video would not have been possible.  Thank you to Ethan Taylor Photography and Jerry Daves Photography for contributing some of the photos in this video.

The Senior Video is set to “Premier” on YouTube on the Fannin Rebel TV channel at 6 pm tonight.  We will also begin our Graduation live stream at 7:20 with this video.  Tonight’s ceremonies will be live on YouTube and ETC channel 14.

The link to the Premier of the video on YouTube is:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq50tw25518

Crime Victims’ Rights Week Proclamation signed in three counties

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Proclamation

This week marks a shared proclamation from three neighboring counties, Fannin, Pickens, and Gilmer, as they recognize, in partnership with the Appalchian Judicial Circuit’s District Attorney’s (DA) Office, it as Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee, left, and Commission Chairman of Fannin County Stan Helton, right, sign the proclamation for Crime Victims' Rights Week in April 2020.

District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee, left, and Commission Chairman of Fannin County Stan Helton, right, sign the proclamation for Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April 2020.

An awareness program and a reinvigoration for efforts put forth to protect and provide for victims and witnesses of crimes, these proclamations show each county’s support for such efforts and their dedication to continuing them throughout the year. The Proclamation signings are being done in conjunction with the National Crime Victims’ Rights week and in coordination with the Appalachian Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Victim Witness Assistance Program.

This year’s national and local theme is “Seek Justice | Ensure Victims’ Rights | Inspire Hope” which celebrates the progress made by those before who have worked so hard as they look to a future of crime victim services that is even more inclusive, accessible, and trauma-informed.

District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee, right, and Commission Chairman of Pickens County Rob Jones, left, sign the proclamation for Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April 2020.

The Proclamations signed by the Chairmen of the Boards of Commissioners, Rob Jones in Pickens, Charlie Paris in Gilmer, and Stan Helton in Fannin, recognizes all of those ideals as well as acknowledging that due to the continued transmission of COVID-19, now, and over the past several weeks, our area, our state and our nation, have been facing unprecedented times.

The DA’s Office has many community partners that provide invaluable services in our area, like our local food banks and Family Connection and the Appalachian Children’s Center. Due to the financial hardship that COVID-19 has caused, many families are in need of these resources. Unfortunately, due to the constraints of the shelter-in-place orders, even though these organizations have an increase in demand, their ability to fund-raise has been extremely limited.

Commission Chairman of Gilmer County Charlie Paris signs the proclamation for Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April 2020.

The DA’s Office said, “In conjunction with Crime Victims’ Rights Week, signs bearing the message of “In God We Trust” are being placed throughout Gilmer county in hopes that some will take encouragement from our nation’s motto of “In God We Trust.”

The Victim Advocacy Program of the District Attorney’s office continues to assist victims in obtaining restitution, refer victims to appropriate public and non-profit partners for services, and help victims who qualify for crime victim compensation.

 

Murray receives support and aid from neighbor after storms rip through homes

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neighbor

What does being a good neighbor mean? Is it offering a smile and a wave? Is it politeness and concern for each other? Is it offering a helping hand when the need is there? What about moving past two people on a street, and considering neighboring counties?

Gilmer County was hit somewhat hard early in the week by storms. Citizens without power, sheltering in safe zones due to concerns from tornadoes. Yet, just west of us, there wasn’t just concern, there was fear. They had more than just a scare where they sheltered and came out a bit later with some wind damage and power gone. Murray County was hit much harder with two tornadoes confirmed to have touched down.

But as these people spent part of their week after Easter picking up and trying to piece life back together, their “neighbor” saw an opportunity. Easter is about new life, in any way you celebrate it. Restoration, redemption, these became more than just themes for people of Gilmer County this week.

neighborOn April 15, 2020, a post went up on the Gilmer Sheriff’s Social Media page, a post asking for a little help to provide for our neighbor next door.

The Sheriff’s Office asked, “As our community is well aware, our neighbors in Murray County were hit hard by the tornado at the beginning of the week. We are taking donations to deliver to a few Murray County churches.”

The post listed items like cases of water, non-perishable food items, hygiene items, and diapers. Despite the virus outbreak, despite health concerns, people showed up and not only offered to take donations, but told citizens with donations to drive by and call, and they would come unload the donations from cars. Maintaining little-to-no contact for those wanting to help. This effort provided for a need, but provided safety for those helping as well.

Volunteers spent two days collecting items from cars on Thursday, April 16, and Friday, April 17.

It wasn’t just from Gilmer though. Citizens and volunteers from Murray, more than 250 volunteers, showed up at Bagley Middle School on Tuesday to help the community recover from two tornadoes that ripped through Murray County on Easter Sunday.

In fact, response from citizens has been so involved and overwhelming, that Gilmer is turning a small helping donations collection over two days, into over a week long effort to support those whose homes were impacted.

The Sheriff’s Office posted saying,

THANK YOU to everybody who has generously donated for the victims of the Murray Co. tornado!!

We are having such a good response, we have decided to continue accepting donations at the Gilmer County Detention Center THROUGH NEXT FRIDAY, April 24th ONLY from 7:30AM to 4:00PM, M-F. We ask that you stay in your car, call 706-635-4625 and ask for Carla or Heather. One of them will come unload your car for you. We are asking for donations of:

~Cases of water
~Non-perishable food items
~Hygiene items
~Diapers
(Due to COVID-19 concerns, clothing can not be accepted)

More and more, setbacks and issues in the recent months, from viruses, to shortages, to storms and tornadoes, people are rising up. Neighbors are coming together. Care and Concern are winning out. A new normal has dawned and people are discouraged from touching each other. No comforting hugs or sorrowful embraces can be seen. Yet, people are finding ways to step up, serve, and offer a hand to help each other stand, to reinforce each other against the trials of the day. A new normal, indeed. But a normal that is shining more and more light on humanity’s resilience.

 

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