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80 Years Ago

Archives 2001 11-14-2001




Forest Fire In Crawford Area Leads To Death Of Fireman
School Board Meeting Held November 6
Veterans Day Celebration Held On Livingston Square


Forest Fire In Crawford Area Leads To Death Of Fireman

Firefighters took a few minutes from fighting the forest fire in the Crawford Community Sunday afternoon to discuss their next steps to battle the flames. Volunteers from all over the county and state arrived to put out the fire.

Smoke could be seen from miles away as more than 700 acres were scorched in the forest fire that spread through the Crawford and Sunk Cane communities this weekend.


By Becky Meredith, OCN staff

A 46 year-old Celina man was killed in a forest fire authorities suspect could be arson Saturday night, Nov. 10 in the Crawford Community of Overton County.

According to reports, Hairold Junior Strode, with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture Forestry Division, lost his life battling the fire, and a few others were severely injured.

On the scene, along with 40 firefighters from the State Department of Forestry, were volunteers from Muddy Pond, Alpine, Monroe, Mountain, and Hilham fire departments. Fire jumpers from Ft. Apache, AZ, were also reportedly brought in to assist, and a tanker was provided by a Putnam County fire department.

Members of Overton County Ambulance Service and Overton County Sheriff's Department responded to the scene and offered help.

The fire, which was started Friday night, Oct. 9, was reportedly thought to be contained that night, but sparked back up Saturday evening and spread through the Crawford and Sunk Cane areas.

Officials reportedly remained on site all the night and continued to fight and keep watch of the fire.

On Sunday afternoon, fire-fighters were once again called to the scene to try and control the flames that had broken out, and by evening, the fire was reportedly contained.

By Monday morning, more than 700 acres were said to be burnt.

Throughout the firefighters' efforts to put out the fire, members of the community and volunteers from Mountain First Responders, Calvary Church, Crawford Head Start, and Monterey Save-A-Lot provided food and water for the firefighters and carried water to the scene for the workers.

Chief Bobby Bowman, of Mountain Volunteer Fire Department, noted his appreciation to everyone who helped in any way.

"As the fire chief, I would like to say a special thank-you to all the firefighters for all the hard work and dedication to the community and our department," he said. "I'm glad to know that in times of need that we, as a community, can pull together and make things happen."

On behalf of the Mountain Volunteer Fire Department, Bowman extended condolences to the family of Strode.

The person or persons responsible for the fire have not yet been located. An officer with Overton County Sheriff's Department suggested the fire might be related to several that were set Halloween night near the Muddy Pond Community and in the Cub Mountain area.

Those with information regarding arsonist acts should contact Overton County Sher-iff's Department or the Tennessee State Fire Marshal at 1-800-762-3017. Anyone with information leading to the conviction of an arsonist can qualify for up to $1,500 through the state fire marshal's office.

Before conducting any open, outdoor burning between October 15 and May 15 each year, Tennessee citizens are required by law to obtain a burning permit from the Department of Agriculture's Division of Forestry.

Additional burning restrictions might apply by local governments and residents of the state should contact the local forestry office or fire department before burning.




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School Board Meeting Held November 6

By Dewain E. Peek, OCN staff

Overton County Board of Education held the regular monthly meeting Tuesday, Nov. 6, with Board Member Larry Looper absent.

In executive action, the low bid for a diesel engine was approved at $8,345 from Dixie Diesel Service Inc. The engine is needed for a bus that has a blown engine, according to Director of Schools Bill Needham.

Board Member David Langford asked, "Have we ever tried to overhaul any of our engines?"

Director Needham answered, "I don't know if they've done a complete overhaul on one or not."

Langford said he wondered what the cost difference might be.

Some of the Board members expressed the belief that purchasing rebuilt engines might be better than in-house rebuilding.

Board Member Donald Brown said, "They have a pretty good warranty on them."

The low bid was approved on computers from Dell Computer Corporation at $875 each.

The low bid on lockers was approved at $38,871 from Scott Equipment Company.

The low bid was approved for garbage roll-off boxes at $2,870 each from Wastequip Holt.

The low bids were approved on floor scrubber machines as follows: Kel San for 20-inch at one for $3,560 each, four or more at $3,400 each, and 24-inch at one for $5,950 or four or more at $5,800 each; and Mercury Chemical for 26-inch at one for $4,743 each or four or more at $4,743 each.

Director Needham said, "We asked each school, the ones that are going to be using them, what they wanted to meet their needs, and the 24-inch was the ones that all of them chose."

Low bids were accepted on each size so the schools would have a choice, according to Director Needham.

The Board approved the Safe and Drug Free carryover 2001-21.

IDEA 2002-01 Amendment #1 was approved.

The Report of School System/School Compliance was approved.

Quarterly reports were approved for the period ending September 30, 2001 for General Purpose, Federal Projects, Central Cafeteria, Education Debt Service, and Education Capital Projects Funds.

Director Needham said, "Pretty much, we're on target. Our revenues are holding up much better in some areas than we anticipated they might, especially with the way the economy's been lately. All in all, we're looking pretty good right now."

Bids were approved for roofing projects at A.H. Roberts Elementary and Rickman Elementary Schools. Turner Roofing was awarded the project at A.H. Roberts, and Dixie Roofing was awarded the project at Rickman.

Board Member Edith Key brought to the Board's attention the requirement to appoint a committee to work with the supervisor of transportation and maintenance. The school board chairman has authority to appoint the committee. Chairman Milton Raines said he would speak to those he wished to appoint before officially naming them to the committee.

Director Needham issued the Director's Report to the School Board. Actions taken by the school director are as follows:

Liz Sells was granted leave from Livingston Middle School from October 9 to November 20.

Kirby Boles was hired as a full-time custodian at LMS to replace Liz Sells until she is able to return to work.

Lisa Gore was hired as a temporary kindergarten aide at A.H. Roberts through November 20, at 20 hours per week.

Melissa Robbins was granted medical leave from A.H. Roberts from November 2 to November 20.

Rhonda Delk was granted medical leave from Wilson Elementary from November 2 to November 20.

Jason Murphy was hired as a bus attendant on Mark Carmack's bus.

Non-certified substitute teachers hired are Joann Phillips, Ciara Cross, Holli Halfacre, Amy Honeycutt, Amanda Bowman, Kristy Poindexter, Jennie Jones, Carol Pennington, Lance Stevens, Marie Bush, Kerri Story, Lessia Smith, Shawn Brown, Janie Jolley, Marilyn Gore, and Kathy Allred.

The meeting adjourned.



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Veterans Day Celebration Held On Livingston Square


Pam Wood/OCN staff


Buddy Poppy Princess Heather Thomas led the pledge of allegiance during Veterans Day ceremonies held Monday. Saying the pledge along with her are Coco Snowden, Pete Peterman, and guest speaker Lt. Matthew Smith.

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