Cranberry Festival says 'thanks' for the support

Dear Editor:

The Twenty First Annual Cranberry Festival here at the “Rock School” in Shady Valley, Tennessee was another successful experience for locals and many out of the area visitors. Another full house, truly the largest gathering ever, took part in the bean supper and the school’s auction on Friday night. With perfect weather there were many vendors and lots of offerings in the food court along with music all day Saturday for event participants. The festival was attended very well and everyone received another outstanding example of what a community festival is all about.
On behalf of the school, its students and staff I want to thank the local and area businesses, financial institutions, artists and crafters, individuals, and civic organizations for their continued support and donations. The Cranberry Committee is to be commended for its effort and energy in making the festival happen. This committee operates in obscurity while meeting each month planning and preparing for this event and working long hard hours throughout the weekend to insure a successful conclusion. A big Thank You to the committee members from me personally and from the school’s community.
No event can happen, let alone be successful, without dozens of other helpers and volunteers. As always the community stepped forward with their time and skills. For the school and the students of the valley I what them to know they are also recognized and commended for their dedication and effort.
This event has gone on successfully for twenty one years with the same objective, to provide a focused fund raising opportunity for the school and to generate monies for a college scholarship which the Cranberry Committee awards annually. This festival has been and continues to be for the school and the students of this valley. Much has been provided to and for the students and with the single fund raiser concept students do not have to take part in other fund raising activities like students in other schools and for this I am personally thankful. The school looks forward to next year when the friends and family of the “Rock School” come together again in celebration.

E. Richard Price

Volleyball mother says Koenig should not judge

Dear Editor:

This is to address the letter in the Tomahawk that Jim Koenig wrote on October 10, 2012, concerning the Johnson County High School girl’s volleyball team. As a parent of a daughter who plays volleyball, I am not only disgusted but appalled by his letter. Mr. Koenig….you compared our children to “Las Vegas Prostitutes”, stating they wore the same kind of clothing as harlots. When is the last time you saw a harlot or prostitute play volleyball? That comparison is absurd! Our girls are out there to play the sport and represent their school – nothing else. You ask “What have we become?” The question should be “What have you become?” Why would any grown adult man say such hurtful things to young ladies who are just trying to do well in school, play a sport and represent themselves in a respectful manor….something you obviously know nothing about! I find it highly disturbing that a grown man such as yourself would even be looking at these young ladies in such a way as you describe in the paper. These are children. How Christ like is it that you were not only mean and hurtful but very judgmental to these ladies and their parents? I dare say you do not know one girl who plays on that team. You have no idea of their character, their heart and their willingness to represent their school. They maintain excellent grades and work hard to do so while representing JCHS. I agree times have changed Mr. Koenig and our girls no longer wear culottes but the simple fact is that these are young ladies who do not deserve to be compared to prostitutes, harlots, heathens or anything else disrespectful. I will take a stand for God, my daughter and every other young lady who plays volleyball.
I’ll leave you with one bible verse……………Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged. (KJV)

Cindy Rupard-Cretsinger
Proud Mother of JCHS Volleyball Player

Allow professional company to collect fees since elected official is stonewalling

Dear Editor:

Here it is Sept 1, 2012.  I have made several phone calls to my Commissioner Bill Adams.  Can’t leave a message since he has no voice mail at home.  Can’t talk to him when I deliver my garbage to the County dumps on Saturdays because he is too busy with weighing in customers.  I guess I have to wait til the next meeting, however, it has been canceled in Sept. because of ” lack of business.”  That means, another month for Court Clerk Hawkins not to collect back fees which she has not been done over the last two years. It just bugs me that there is monies to be had like $3,000,000 that could help Johnson County budgets now and in the future.  Even if getting only a percentage of this money is better than NO money collected at all.  Allow a professional company to help us since a elected official seems to be stone-walling the folks in Johnson County.
The article in the Tomahawk (8-22-2012) states that a contract was agreed upon with Solutia but was waiting for Hawkins’ signature.  Confirmation never came and communication  with the county diminished.  How about the Commissioners invite the Representative from Solutia & Court Clerk Hawkins to attend our October Commissioners next meeting.  This will give Court Clerk Hawkins all the time to clear her BUSY schedule and maybe there will be some communications between the Commissioners, Hawkins & Mayor Potter!  OR a simple phone call from Court Clerk Hawkins to Solutia to get the wheels rolling again. I use to be in the collection business when working for a Propane Company and the longer the delinquent amount “aged”, it was more difficult to collect. Sounds like the collection company wants to help Johnson County like they have been helping 30 other counties in TN.

Betty Herod
Johnson County – District 1

Koenig responds to criticism

My letter in the October 10th. edition sure did ruffle some female feathers among the volleyball Moms in Johnson County, but equally interesting, my phone rang off the hook, emails poured in and we were approached in public by men and women who thought the assessment of the lewd, sexually provocative uniforms was accurate, and, two of them were parents of this year’s volleyball team.  Instead of confronting the actual issue of the uniform itself, the rebuttal writers saw a need to browbeat the messenger, change the subject, confuse the issue, and trivialize the warning about the shameful, immodest uniforms.  
These were my points in the letter, we would ask Tomahawk readers to answer “True or False” after each of them:  1. Harlots in Las Vegas wear the same exact type of immodest shorts.  2. The uniform draws lustful eyes to the girls’ bodies. 3. The Tomahawk photos would have been considered pornography years ago. 4. I said we did not have an issue with the girls, but rather with their parents, school board members and sports leaders who think it okay to wear shorts that come up to the female butt and crotch.  5. We stated that Johnson County girls in the past wore baggy shorts to the knees and did fine in volleyball. Well, true or false?  Moms, it’s all about the shorts, not character, just the shorts. Your teenage boys and girls will not tell you this, but they all think those volleyball shorts, up to the private areas, are sexy.  Does that surprise you, Mom? Well, it didn’t surprise Dad and Grandpa, because they used to be teenage boys!
If a girl walked down South Shady wearing these skimpy volleyball shorts, she would be stared at, whispered about, and called slang names. Shorts up to the female crotch are not allowed in our school hallways, but yet, it’s condoned in the gym?  School board members, parents and pastors, why are you silent on this?  There is no valid reason for sexual explicit immodesty in our schools.  Again, the old baggy shorts to the knees worked great in prior generations and were modest.  Times have changed, but God’s Word has not …. “Be ye holy.”
Any mother or father who would allow their daughter to dress immodestly, whatever the occasion, should be ashamed, and will answer to God for their decision.  “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”  Proverbs 1:7

Jim Koenig
Mountain City

Crossroads Medical Mission says thanks to community for support

Dear Editor,
Mountain City is a community that cares for its neighbors.   
This year, Crossroads Medical Mission celebrates its tenth year serving Mountain City and the Mountain Empire by bringing free medical care to individuals in need with an emphasis on the uninsured and underinsured.  We partner with other service and faith organizations throughout the region to provide this much needed care and have provided over $6.5 million dollars in health care services free of charge.
Regardless, this letter is not to share Crossroads Medical Mission’s accomplishments.  Rather, we would like to celebrate the caring people of Mountain City.  Crossroads could not deliver this level of care without the support of the communities we serve.  And so, I would like to take the opportunity to thank the fine folks of Bristol. Your businesses, churches, and charitable foundations have supported Crossroads Medical Mission. 
Your local dentists and healthcare specialists have supported Crossroads.  Many of you, your friends and families have contributed generously of your time (3000 hours a year) and resources to make Crossroads Medical Mission possible. What a blessing you have been to us and the patients we serve. 
Last month, as we pulled into one of our partnership sites, someone exclaimed, “Here comes the medical bus!” But a patient standing nearby corrected him by saying, “We don’t call it the
medical bus, we call it the Miracle Bus!”
I’d like to suggest that the miracle is the compassion, caring and generosity of our local communities! Thank you for caring for your neighbors through Crossroads Medical Mission.
Crossroads Medical Mission would like to invite you to tour our new mobile medical clinic on Sunday, September 9, from noon until 2:00 PM.  We will be located in the parking lot of State Street United Methodist Church at 300 W. Valley Drive in Bristol Virginia (across the street from Virginia High School).  Allow us to say, “Thank you!” to you in person for being part of our ten years as “The Doctors’ Office on Wheels” and as we give thanks to God always for you!

Cindy Rockett, Executive Director
Bristol, VA

Wheeler suggests an evening parade

Greetings.  As hard as it is to believe, the holidays are just around the corner.  I was wondering, has Mountain City ever considered an “after dark” Christmas parade where Christmas lights could be utilized on the floats, cars etc?  The absolute best Christmas parades that I have been to were ones that started around 6 PM or so, and Christmas lights were a big part of them.  While I do realize that could make for an even colder parade, in my opinion, the payout of an even more beautiful parade would be well worth it.  Has this ever been considered?

G. Wheeler
Mountain City

Do abortion laws in the USA compare to Communist China?

Partial-Birth Abortions in the USA
Dear Editor:
Are the abortion laws/policies of the USA regarding late-term abortions also known as partial-birth abortions, comparative to Communist China?
The 2008 Democratic Party platform on abortion reads this way:
The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade, and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay and oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.
In 2003, President Obama, then an Illinois State Senator, defended late-term abortions and opposed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.
The practice of partial-birth abortions is known as “infanticide” or murder of an infant. Many of these abortions are performed from 20 to 24 weeks into the pregnancy because the parents want to choose the sex of the child.
The President of Planned Parenthood is schedules to speak at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC. Planned Parenthood assists women on how to plan their families and other preventative health care as well as abortions on demand. This organization receives millions of dollars in tax-payer money every year. Last year Planned Parenthood performed 325,000 abortions which make up 51 percent of their clinic income. (Dallas Morning News- Cecil Richards, 8-23-12)
The partial-birth abortion procedure is horrifying and over two-thirds of Americans believe it should be illegal.
I ask you again, are the abortion laws/policies of the USA comparative to Communist China?

Daisy Everett
Mountain City

Trade FD is thankful to United Way

The Trade Fire Department would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the United Way Fund Raising Campaign. This benefits so many worthwhile organizations in our county. One of the good things is that you know where your donations go. They stay right here in our county. We would like to thank all of the United Way Volunteers who give of their valuable time to make this possible. With your help, we have been able to buy a First Response Vehicle and replace fire nozzles and buy personal protective Items like gloves and hoods. We also purchased other equipment that will aid in faster set up at the fire scene. The United Way Volunteers are doing their share to help other organizations achieve their much needed goals. We encourage everyone to continue his or her faithful support. Did you know that you donate to the United Way and Carmark, you can determine where you want your donations to go? Without the United Way, Johnson County would not be able to enjoy all of our services that they help to provide.

Thank you very much for your donations,

Harvey L. Reece, Treasurer

VFW Post #6908 says 'thank you' for fundraiser support

Dear Editor:

I trust you will share this with your readers as I want to thank each citizen who supported our annual VFW Post #6908 Poppy Sale. The folks of Johnson County gave so generously and we raised $2,024.95 to help our local veterans. We old veterans were really thankful to see so many youngsters buying a poppy as many told us that their mom or dad or a family member were veterans and they wanted to give them a poppy in appreciation of their military service. Johnson County has many wonderful young people.
The poppy sale funds are used to support local veterans. You do not need to be a member of our VFW Post to receive assistance; contact a member of Post Commander to request help. Per request, previous funds from poppy sales have purchased Christmas fruit baskets, provided assistance due to tornado damages, expense funds to several veterans who were having surgery or nursing home/rehab stay, Operation Sunscreen for Afghan troops; VAVS Program; Voice of Democracy – Patriots Pen and Teacher of the Year, VFW Youth School Programs.
We want to thank The Tomahawk, WMCT, both Dollar Stores in Mountain City, Food Country USA and Hardee’s of Mountain City for their wonderful assistance in making our poppy drive a huge success.
We also want to thank each citizen who supported our pancake breakfast fundraiser by purchasing a ticket or eating with us. These funds help support the operations of our post that includes building insurance, utility bills, etc. Thanks to each member of our post who donated the materials to hold our breakfast along with Hardee’s of Mountain City.
We thank The Tomahawk, WMCT, Hardee’s and each business or person who gave to our fundraiser. We especially want to thank Modern Woodmen of America for sponsoring our pancake breakfast. These folks are a huge asset to our community – thanks, Roger!


Terry G. Reece
Commander, VFW Post #6908
Members and Ladies Auxiliary

Second District FD is thankful to United Way

We the members of Second District Volunteer Fire Department would like to thank the United Way Members for helping us with grant monies in the past that went toward paying on the yearly payment of our newest engine. The yearly payment is $8,800.00 and everything we can receive from fundraisers and grants is greatly appreciated.

If it were not for these types of donations, we would not be able to continue with training and updating our equipment. There are great expenses that go along with operating a volunteer fire department and with continued help from organizations like the United Way we can continue to help our community and others.

Thanks once again to you United Way for giving us your support over the past years,

Thank you,

Members of Second Dist Vol. Fire Dept.

Butler Ruritans expresses their appreciation to The Tomahawk

Dear Editor:

On behalf of Butler Ruritan, please accept our thanks for the ongoing support from the Tomahawk. As always, the Tomahawk accepted our promotion ads before Old Butler Days and provided excellent coverage with pictures the week following the annual celebration. The Tomahawk’s support also allows us to let the communities in Johnson and Carter county know when we have benefits throughout the year.    

Geri Pierce, Ruritan Member

Schools shouldteach about the U.S. Constitution in September

Dear Editor:

All schools should obey the law this month and teach about the U.S. Constitution. Constitution Day was established as a federal holiday in 2004, to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787. Federal law requires public schools to observe that day and teach on the Constitution, but a survey showed about 90 percent of schools ignore the law. Newsweek gave the U.S. Citizenship test to 1000 U.S. citizens and nearly 40 percent failed. This shows the need for better education on our Constitution and government. This year as we celebrate the 225th anniversary of the Constitution, read it, study it with your children and discuss its great principles. Read it at your library or at
Americans should be thankful to God for our Constitution that’s given us more freedom than any country in the world. James Madison, the father of our Constitution, said, “We wouldn’t have a Constitution were it not for the intervention of God.” Our founders had just fought the Revolutionary War where a popular slogan was, “No King but King Jesus.” Our founders, knowing the Bible and that people are evil and can’t be trusted with total power, established separations of powers, checks and balances and three branches of government from the Bible Jeremiah 17:9, Isaiah 33:22, etc. Our Constitution is an original and unique document. It’s the oldest constitution still in force in the world today, the source of our remarkable political stability and freedom. Our Constitution has been so successful, in fact, that America is the longest on-going constitutional republic in the history of the world!
Our Constitution deserves respect second only to the Bible. Our Constitution is less respected than ever before. American teachers refuse to teach it, American judges consider international and Sharia law in their decisions, and our American citizens don’t know it and won’t read it, and our American president ignores, misinterprets and overreaches the Constitution to advance his liberal agenda. Millions of Americans think they know better than our Constitution and even more than God. One million Atheists in New York alone say they are happy without God. Our president and millions of Americans say God is wrong about marriage being only between a man and woman. Our president and millions of Americans want to increase the amount of abortions by giving taxpayer funding for it. Without a revival our country may soon come to the place President John Adams warned about. Adams said, “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion… Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It’s wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” Please show respect for our U.S. Constitution the supreme law of the land for 225 years and the difference between being governed and being ruled!

D.D. Nave
Elizabethton, TN

ATV riders would support Doe Mtn., too, if given the chance

Dear Editor:

If the picture in the top right hand corner of the page looks familiar then you probably have the same issue that I do.  The land we all called the fire tower has been reopened. Oh, I’m sorry, it has only been opened for those that drive an OHV. This is the land that we have all spent countless hours driving on just for a good time in a safe environment before being kicked out. Why were we kicked out? Our trucks and/or jeeps are too big and apparently cause too much damage to the land.
The Trail Riders Association has opened it back up for the OHV people while banning those who have contributed as much if not more both financially as well as sweat equity. After the closing of Callallantee we were pressed to find other places to legally enjoy the outdoors in the fashion in which we have in the past. The closing of our local ATV park and the banishment from fire tower has left us tearing through old Farmer John’s corn field just to sling a little mud. This very large group of persons has been alienated from every possible legal, local and most of all safe place to ride.
They claim to be attempting to acquire their piece of a 4.3 billion dollar a year industry. Well, the OHV people have only been contributing to this for a very short period of time in the grand scheme. Trucks and Jeepers alike have been on the hunt for the deeper mud hole or the steeper hill to climb, or just simple trail riding. Contrary to popular belief, we do enjoy the outdoors, too, but yes, if I see a killer mud hole on the way, I’m gonna go have some fun.
We have not only kept local dollars local but we have also brought a lot of new money in. This is how families would spend a day or even a weekend together. OHV accidents are more dangerous than one inside of a vehicle. These trucks are not built for speed but to be strong, safe and fun. 
For years local 4×4 clubs such as Hardcore 4×4 and Four Play 4×4 have held rallies that only benefit the local economy. What this boils down to is a simple question. If the fire tower consists of 8,600 acres, why can we not all enjoy this source of entertainment? Off-roaders have contributed to the cause for years with the development of new trails, mud holes, beautiful views, and this is all being overlooked. This organization raised only $1,600 and change from 265 riders. Just imagine the funds raised if you would have allowed the true trail riders to attend. Your turnout would have grown immensely and in turn your donations to the cause. Imagine if your grant from Yamaha was accompanied by a grant from Ford, Jeep, or Chevy. For being after such a huge piece of the pie, you people couldn’t have chosen a worse way to get it.

Thank you for your time,
Brian Sweet and every other person in pursuit of happiness

Medical ministry is thankful for donations

Dear Editor:

Thanks to the advertising in The Tomahawk, an anonymous donor from Johnson City is providing us with storage for this ministry. We have been blessed with your donations in the past and as a result have been privileged to assist many of our neighbors. The entire basis for this ministry is neighbor helping neighbor.

Currently, we need shower chairs and benches, hospital bed pads and other personal hygiene pads, wheelchairs, canes, etc. We have a couple of wheelchairs, walkers, and potty chairs, etc. available now to those in need. Your donation goes on and on in helping others. As a piece of equipment is returned, it is processed for the next need.

If you have medical equipment available, please consider donating it to this ministry in need. Call Junior Maze, 727-4925 or Harry Cunningham, 727-5441 for more information.

The Medical Equipment Ministry
Of Roan Creek Baptist Church

Inappropriate unifroms?

Dear Editor:

I’ve never encountered a Las Vegas prostitute in person, but have seen them on the television show “Cops.”  It’s sad, but has anyone else noticed that the harlots out there wear the same, exactly the same, type of wicked short-shorts that the Johnson County girl’s volleyball team wears? It’s shameful, immodest and very unchristian to dress like that, especially in public, drawing men’s and boys’ lustful eyes to their bodies.  
The Tomahawk’s photos in the October 3rd newspaper and online would have been considered pornography 25 years ago, but are accepted in today’s morally corrupted culture.  What a shame!

The girls, particularly, the church-going ones, should know better and protest, but I’m not taking issue with them.  I’m wondering why their daddy’s allow it?  What in the world are the school board members thinking?  Why do the school sports leaders believe it’s okay to dress in shorts that come up to the female butt and crotch?  What have we become?
Our two daughters played volleyball in the 1980’s in culottes past the knees and excelled, and Johnson County girls used to wear baggy shorts to the knees and did fine in volleyball.  
Should the King James Bible be re-written to say, “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel except when playing sports?”  Dads, Moms, why have you allowed your daughter to take on the ways of the heathen? If the school refuses to change, take your daughter out of that mess, take a stand for God!  The Bible still says…. Be ye holy.  


Jim Koenig
Mountain City

Sandusky sgtory in no way connected to Vaiden book

Dear Editor:
 Please be advised that the book “Touched: The Jerry Sandusky Story” is in absolutely no way connected to “Touched” … A Bi-Polar Synopsis of the Human Condition … The Road to Maturity” by Frank “Buddy” Vaiden and published by Eloquent Book Publishing. “The Road to Maturity” is a scripturally based book for self-help addressing individuals and relationships. Also sharing with communities and families how they may better cope with the challenges of caretaking the mentally ill.

Book one is presently out of stock. The second book of the “Touched” series, completely re-edited, expanded, and revised to reflect updates and new insights, of the events of the last three years, will augment the basic precepts of the first book release. As many requests have been communicated to Perception Illumination Company as to the release of this second book, the publisher, and myself are doing everything needed to keep to this timetable.

The second book of the “Touched” series, “How You can Survive in a World without Law …the Ultimate Guide to Personal Success and Self-fulfillment,” is now being sent to the publisher for a projected published date of September 30, 2012.


Frank “Buddy” Vaiden
Mountain City, TN 37683

Class social enjoyable at local pizza restaurant

Dear Editor:

On July 29, 2012 the JCHS Class of 1958 had a pizza social at Teammates Pizza. We all enjoyed the social and would do it again! It is so great to have a restaurant in Mountain City with owners and staff that have their goal as excellent service and customer satisfaction. Thanks Teammates Pizza for a great experience, delicious pizza, and salad bar.

Class Coordinator Daisy Everett

Would like to see a good cleaning at mausoleum

Dear Editor:

I just want to say that I am totally in shock at how the place (Sunset Mausoleum) has gone down. Every time I go over there, I always give somebody the benefit of the doubt when it comes to cleaning, i.e., hasn’t been done yet, or it got messed up again. Needless to say, every time I go back it seems to be worse.
It smells bad. Maybe the carpet has been wet, but at any rate the carpet should be replaced. It is dirty and wore out. The windows are dirty. The front of the vaults are dirty. The memorial tables are dusty and covered with spider webs.
I was over there last week and upon entering, I noticed something that looked like fur. Upon looking closer, it was mold. I have heard people joke about leaving something in the refrigerator until it grew hair, but I’ve never seen it before then. The mold was at least one and a half inches tall and a very large spot on the floor.
I have several family members there and I wish it were taken a little better care of. I wish other people that have family members there felt the same as I do. Also, the bank in front of the building needs to have the weeds cut down. That looks bad, too

Linda Eastridge
Mountain City, TN 37683

Linda Eastridge
Mountain City, TN 37683

It's time for reps to protect our land from clear-cutting

Dear Editor:

I moved here about six years ago from central Illinois because I love the mountains and the climate here in northeastern Tennessee. Recently you have seen the strip mining of the mountains along Highway 167. They call it logging but the reality is whomever owns the 5000 plus acres along 167 has destroyed this pristine area and ultimately lowered your property values by clear cutting the trees for monetary value. I believe it's time for our state representatives to step up to the plate and have our properties reassessed and our real estate taxes lowered. I want to thank Larry Potter for saving Doe Mountain from this disgusting practice. Johnson County residents deserve better and we need to take action now to preserve this area for future generations before the mountains we so love are totally destroyed.

Dave Hanks
Mountain City, TN

In response to wheel tax article from last week

Dear Editor:

In response to the comments made by our county commissioners and others, as reported by Lacy Hilliard in the August 15, 2012 Tomahawk, I offer the following.

First, the Johnson County Real Estate taxes have been increased for the 2012 tax year. This had to be approved by the Tennessee State Legislature. Where was our representation to make our lives easier when we have to pay an increase in real estate taxes? People are struggling to make ends meet. Taxes keep going up whether it’s real estate taxes or the wheel tax. Statements that the wheel tax is more equitable (since I think the commissioners felt that another real estate tax would further erode the real estate market from coming out of its long slump in Johnson County.) Perhaps the county commissioners could vote for lower real estate taxes.

Second, to be equitable in taxing every county resident the same and not a select portion, the commissioners could raise the county sales tax ½ cent or ½ percent with a limit for the tax to expire after, hypothetically two years. Any additional sales tax after the two-year time frame would have to be approved by the county voters.

Thirdly, the Greene County, Tennessee commissioners allowed their constituents to vote and decide how they felt about the wheel tax increase.

This is not about whether we need to increase taxes for services, but rather what tax increase will be more equitable to all Johnson County citizens.

I voted for my country commissioners in the last election and I trust that my vote will be remembered in the next election. I only ask our commissioners to look at legislation and/or ideas a little closer for their Johnson County citizens. I suggest that the commissioners attempt to garner more input from the citizens of Johnson County and not necessarily at the commissioner’s meetings. I would hope that the commissioners reach out to their constituents more than they have in the past.

George A. Spreyne