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Saturday, October 22, 2016

5000 Attend Spooktacular

A ghoulish Rick Conger and Susan Jones at today's event. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A record-setting 5,000 people crowded the Henry County Court Square Saturday afternoon for the 11th annual Spooktacular and organizers were ecstatic.

Downtown Paris Association Executive Director Kathy Ray said, “Our 11th year and it’s been bigger than ever. We had beautiful weather and creative costumes by everyone and we’re just thrilled.”

Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo kept watch over the event and made the official estimate of the crowd. Ray said 275 people entered the costume contests “and that was also a record.”

Winning People’s Choice in the Scarecrows on the Square contest was Patrolman Crow from the Paris Police Department, while other winners of that contest were: Best Construction, Tosh Farms; Best In Show, Henry School Peace Pirate; Most Original, Doreen Bates.

There were all manner of ghosts, goblins, dinosaurs, princesses and pirates on hand throughout the afternoon. Even “Jake from State Farm” was there—actually, his name is Jake Smith, son of James and Jolene Smith—and won First Place in the costume contest for ages 8-11.

Complete list of winners of the costume contests:

Ages 0-3: first, Calvin and Xavier Conner; second Paxton McClain; third, Zikeria Darcus.

Ages 4-7: first, Eva Coleman; second Ford Carter; third, Adalynn Wade.

Ages 8-11: first, Jake Smith; second Slayden Hosford; third, Serenity Day.

Ages 12-14: first, Alexis Gough; second, Madeleine Griffey; third, Emma Millard.

Family/Theme: first, Pillow family (dinosaurs); second, Shannon Jones family (Peanuts characters); and third, Katherine York family (Mario Brothers).

"Jake Of State Farm" winning first place (actually Jake Smith).

Tammy Walker accepting People's Choice for "Officer Crow" scarecrow.


Jackson State To Offer Classes In Paris

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell announced Saturday that Paris/Henry County and adjacent counties will have a full community college presence in Paris, beginning next year.

Gerrell said Jackson State has committed to invest in the local community “so that everyone can have an opportunity to better themselves with an associate degree or continuing education.”

Classes begin in January 2017 and will be held at the Central Service Center on Jones Bend Road Extended. Gerrell said they are in the process of hiring faculty.

Call 1-800-355-JSCC for more information or to enroll.


Early Voting Totals High 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris and Union City, Tenn.-Early voting totals posted in Henry and Obion Counties continue to break local records.

The total of early voters in Henry County now at 2,907, according to Elections Administrator DeLaina Green, with 304 voting Saturday.

In Obion County, the total is 2,829 with 863 voting Wednesday, 783 on Thursday and 825 on Friday and 258 on Saturday.

Early voting in Tennessee began Wednesday and goes through November 3. Both elections offices are open weekdays and Saturdays during the early voting period.

Security, Reelfoot Banks To Merge

Paris and Union City, Tenn.-Security Bank and Trust Company of Paris and Reelfoot Bank announced Friday they will merge. Reelfoot has offices in Union City, Martin, Fulton and Hornbeak.

The combined Bank will have approximately $350 M in assets and eleven branches in all.

The corporate offices will be located in Paris.

Reelfoot Bank Branches will continue to operate under the Reelfoot name. There are no closures of branch banks.

Serving as CEO, President and Board Chairman will be Barry P. McIntosh. Steven Trask will continue as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Laurie Ragsdale, Interim President of Reelfoot Bank, will become Chief Accounting Officer. Lee Fry of Union City and David Hogan of Lakeland will join Security Bank’s board of directors.


Union City Blasts Lake County

Union City, Tenn.-The Union City Tornadoes came storming onto the field Friday night in their “Pink Out” gear in a game which saw Union City blank Lake County by a score of 35-0. Union City players were decked out in pink, as was the field, in honor of Breast Cancer awareness. (Robin Francis photo).

Other Friday Night Football Scores

Henry County 13, Brentwood 38

Obion Central 19, Crockett County 49

South Fulton 54, Gleason 0

Camden 14, Fairview 28

West Carroll 14, Greenfield 25

Dresden 50, Humboldt 14

Gibson County 13, Jackson Christian 41

McKenzie 48, Riverside 17

Friday, October 21, 2016

Carter Sentenced To 24 Years In Prison

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A Springville man was sentenced in Henry County Circuit Court to serve 24 years in a state prison after he pleaded guilty to the murder of a Clarksville man in 2014.

Toby Carter, age 40, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder following an agreement reached today by Carter and the District Attorney’s office.

Carter had been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Bobby Dozier and the case was set to go to trial beginning Monday. Five-seven days had been set aside in the local courtroom for the trial.

Carter pleaded guilty to the charge of second-degree murder late Friday and Judge Donald Parish imposed the agreed-upon sentence of 24 years, of which 100 percent will be served in the Tennessee Department of Corrections.

According to Court Clerk Mike Wilson, members of the Dozier family as well as relatives of Carter were present when Carter entered the guilty plea.

Early Voting High In Obion, Henry Counties

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris and Union City, Tenn.-Early voting totals posted in Henry and Obion Counties continue to be high as interest in the November 8 presidential election is at a fever pitch.

The total of early voters in Henry County is 2,603, according to Elections Administrator DeLaina Green, with 764 voting Friday (754 in person and 10 by mail).

In Obion County, the total is 2,471, with 863 voting Wednesday, 783 on Thursday and 825 on Friday.

Early voting in Tennessee began Wednesday and goes through November 3. Both elections offices are open weekdays and Saturdays during the early voting period.


Attorney General Speaks To Rotary

Paris, Tenn.-Tennessee Attorney General Hubert Slatery III spoke to the Paris Rotary Club today about the services his office provides for the state. The Rotary Club meets regularly at The Lunchroom at the Lee Academy for the Arts. (David Hamilton photo).


Paris Man Arrested On Drug Charges

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A Paris man was arrested today on drug charges at the same home where several other people were arrested recently for the same offenses.

Metro Crime Unit Director Lt. Ricky Watson said officers have been conducting surveillance at the home at 622 Powell Street in Paris after hearing several complaints from citizens.

Officers executed a search warrant at the residence today and located a significant amount of crystal meth, a large amount of Percocet and several items of drug paraphernalia.

Arrested during the search was Christopher Crosser, age 23, and charged with possession of Schedule II drugs with intent, possession of Schedule VI with intent, and possession of unlawful drug paraphernalia. 

Crosser is being held at the Henry County Jail on $20,000 bond.

Preparing For Tonight’s “Pink Out”

Union City, Tenn.-Union City Turf Management has been busy this week preparing the football field for tonight’s game to support the Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer”. The field is being painted pink and the Union City Golden Tornadoes will be wearing pink when they meet the Lake County Falcons Also wearing pink will be the Obion Central Rebels when they meet the Crockett County Cavaliers. (Union City Turf Management photo). 

Henry County Man Charged With Rape, Incest

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A Henry County man has been arrested on charges of rape and incest and is being lodged at the Henry County Jail on $250,000 bond.

Billy Michael Somerville, age 40, was arrested by Henry County Sheriff’s deputies after a polygraph was administered by Investigator David Doyle on Thursday afternoon at the sheriff’s office and following questioning by investigators.

Somerville is charged with rape, incest, aggravated sexual battery and rape of a child.

Captain Damon Lowe said the sheriff’s office received a report of a minor child being touched sexually and began the investigation with the assistance of the Tennessee Department of Childrens’ Services and the Carl Perkins Center in Paris.

Investigation revealed unlawful sexual contact with the minor between 2010 and the summer of 2016 at different locations in Henry County, Lowe said.



Murray Man Reported Missing

Murray, Ky.-Murray Police are seeking the public’s help in locating a missing person.

Wesley Gibson, age 29, of Murray, was last seen around 1:20 p.m. Wednesday, October 19. Gibson requires medication for seizures and has been suffering from severe paranoia of late.

Gibson’s sister told police that her brother has not been diagnosed with mental health issues, but recently has been expressing paranoia that this area is doomed and people need to get out.

Gibson is described as a white male with short dark hair, approximately 5’7” and weighing 154 pounds.

He was last seen on the 300 block of South 15th Street and was wearing blue jeans, a dark blue shirt, brown work boots and aviator sunglasses. His sister believes he may be heading to see his ex-wife who he believes is in Benton, Ky.


Dollar General Beer Permit Suspended

Paris, Tenn.-One of the four businesses which were recently cited for underage beer sales was given a stiffer than usual punishment Thursday night by the Paris Alcoholic Beverage Commission.

Hearings were held by the beer board on citations issued against: Dollar General, 2609 E. Wood St., Twice Daily, 2504 East Wood St., IGA gas station, 2603 E. Wood St. and Patriot Express Mart, 1330 E. Wood Street.

The punishment for the Dollar General violation was stiff—suspension of its beer permit for six months—because it was the second violation for that establishment within this year.
With the other three violators representing first time offenses, all the permit holders were given the same choice: a $500 fine or 30-day suspension. All three permit holders chose to pay the fine.

All four were cited as part of an operation conducted by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, which used two undercover personnel, both of whom were underage, to attempt to purchase beer at local establishments in September.


Three Arrested On Drug Charges

Martin, Tenn.-Weakley County Sheriff’s Deputies executed two search warrants at separate locations that resulted in the arrest of three people on drug charges on Thursday.

The first search warrant was executed at the Eagle Inn in Martin. Two Martin residents were arrested: Beth Nicole Nevil, age 32, who also goes by the name Beth Totty; and Robert Adam Macy, age 23.

Both were charged with possession of meth with intent to resell and possession of drug paraphernalia. 7 ½ grams of meth was recovered from the room packaged in 12 individual baggies for resale along with digital scales and pipes used to smoke meth.

The second search was at 515 Old Fulton Rd., also in Martin. Arrested was Billy J. Smith, age 61, of that address. He was charged with possession of crack cocaine with intent and possession of marijuana with intent. Both crack and marijuana was recovered from the house along with a shotgun and loaded .40 caliber pistol and a small amount of power cocaine.

Smith is a convicted felon and will also be charged with being in possession of firearms illegally. A total $5,743 also was seized.


Active Shooter Class Moved

Paris, Tenn.-The upcoming Active Shooter Class sponsored by the Paris-Henry County Chamber of Commerce has been moved to the Tennessee College of Applied Technology meeting room due to space concerns. The class is set for 10 a.m. Friday, October 28, and is free to the public. TCAT is located at 312 S. Wilson St., Paris.

For more information, contact Monica Smith 642-3431 or

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Carter Murder Trial To Commence Monday

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-Unless it is rescheduled again, the first-degree murder trial for Toby Carter of Springville will commence Monday morning, October 24, in Henry County Circuit Court. This is the third time the trial has been set; the other two times it was rescheduled to allow more time for evidence to be presented and because of unavailability of witnesses.

Carter, age 40, was arrested in September of 2014 for the shooting death and kidnapping of 80-year-old Bobby Dozier. Dozier of Clarksville, was staying at his cabin in New Concord, Ky., when the incident happened.

Dozier was reported missing and his body was found the next day in a wooded area along the Olde Tennessee Trail in Springville. He had been shot multiple times.

Carter has been held in the Henry County Jail on $1 M bond. In addition to first-degree murder, Carter is charged with aggravated kidnapping.


A-P Group Hears About Neighborhood Watch


With A-P President Ed Roberts at left, Paris Lt. Ricky Watson and Lt. Ean Reed address the group (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-The Atkins-Porter Neighborhood Association heard about how to set up a Neighborhood Watch program from Paris Police Lt. Ricky Watson and Lt. Ean Reed at its Wednesday night monthly meeting.

Residents of the Atkins-Porter neighborhood been concerned for some time about increasing crime and Lt. Watson said, “Your neighborhood is a high crime area.” Watson said forming a Neighborhood Watch program does help, citing the experience of the Peden Hill program. “Peden Hill used to be a high crime area, too, but it isn’t now because of their Neighborhood Watch.”

Reed emphasized that the program could be utilized for more than crime, however. “It’s also a good way to watch out for your neighbors.  If you know of an elderly resident or someone with handicaps, it’s a good way to keep everyone safe.”

Vickey Roberts has volunteered to head up the program and both Reed and Watson said volunteers would be needed as Block Captains to divide up the Atkins-Porter area for easier communication.

“As I’ve heard Sheriff Monte Belew say a lot, ‘If you see something, say something.’ If you see a house where there is a lot of traffic or you suspect drug activity, call your block captains and the police department,” Watson said.

President Ed Roberts announced that the Atkins-Porter Association’s request for a small grant from the Board of Public Utilities Round Up program was approved and that the group will be applying for other grants to finance activities and programs.


Two Charged With Helping Juvenile Run Away

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-Two Paris area women have been charged with helping a juvenile run away from home last week.

Dawn Bujak, age 50, and Sharon Bujak, age 65, of Old Blake School Rd. have been charged with harboring a runaway juvenile by the Paris Police Department. Bond was set at $1,000 apiece and both are to appear in court today.

After an alert was issued by the Paris Police, the juvenile, who is 13 and lives in Paris, ran away from home last week and was found in Atwood by Carroll County deputies. Carroll County authorities released the juvenile to Henry County deputies and he was returned home.


MSU To Honor W. Earl Brown

Murray, Ky.-Murray State University will honor Alumnus W. Earl Brown, an actor who has appeared on such television programs as “Deadwood”, “Justified”, and “True Detective”.

Born in Murray, Brown is a 1989 graduate of the Murray State Theatre program. He will be announced as this year’s recipient of the College of Arts and Humanities Outstanding Alumni Award at this year’s Taste of the Arts Dinner Thursday, October 27.

The dinner will be held at the CFSB Center.

For more information or to purchase tickets, contact the Murray State University office of development at 270-809-3001 or by email  


“Coats For Kids” Starts Next Week

Union City, Tenn.-The Junior Auxiliary of Obion County will hold its annual “Coats For Kids” coat drive again this year. The group will be accepting donations of new or slightly used coats and jackets to be given to kids in need throughout all of Obion County.

So, folks, please clean out your and your kids’ closets and donate those coats to help children stay warm this winter. Drop off locations will be Kizer Pharmacy, Center Stage Dance Studio, and Baptist Rehabilitation (next to E.W. James in Union City).

Donations will be accepted from October 24 through December 2.


Active Shooter Class Offered

Paris, Tenn.-The Paris-Henry County Chamber of Commerce will host the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security’s “Sudden Violence—Surviving an Active Shooter” training at 10 a.m. Friday, October 28, at the Chamber office at 2508 E. Wood St., Paris.

The seminar is not a tactical training course, but is designed for businesses, organizations and individuals and is free. Reservations can be made by calling Monica Smith, 642-3431 or email

It is a 90-minute presentation.


Boat Safety Class Set

Paris, Tenn.-The Paris-Henry County Rescue Squad is hosting a boat safety class at 6 p.m. Tuesday, October 25, at the squad headquarters on Hwy. 218. The class will be conducted by Joe Campbell of the TWRA and is open to the public for free.


THP Simulator At Westview Today

Martin, Tenn.-The No-Zone truck and THP simulator will be at Westview High School from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. today. The truck is part of the Tennessee Highway Patrol “Drive to Zero Fatalities” traffic campaign focusing on several traffic safety enforcement goals, specifically: seat belt usage, impaired driving, and speeding. It will also include enforcement actions against unsafe driving behaviors of large trucks and bus operators. School Resource Office Jason Arant and Martin Police Officer Lt. Eric Reed will be present to coordinate with the THP.


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Hundreds Turn Out For Early Voting Today

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris and Union City, Tenn.-Both the Obion and Henry County Elections Commissions were especially busy places today, with hundreds of voters lining up for the first day of the early voting period.

In Obion County, Elections Administrator Leigh Schlager said people voting there today totaled 723, making an overall total of early voters at 863, counting any paper mail-in ballots received up to this point.

In Henry County, Elections Administrator DeLaina Green reported today’s total of voters was 731, making an overall early voting total of 916 so far.

The early voting period for the November 8 presidential election will be over November 3.

Busy First Day For Early Voting

Paris, Tenn.-The first day of the early voting period in Tennessee has been a busy one for local elections official as a steady stream of voters turned out all day. In photo, Henry County Elections Administrator DeLaina Green, right, and Deputy Administrator Kim Jenkins wait on a people while even more were already at the voting machines. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Superload Could Impact Traffic Thursday 

Nashville, Tenn. – The Tennessee Highway Patrol will be escorting a superload through Tennessee on I-24 eastbound on Thursday night. The load will consume more than two lanes of traffic, which could create significant congestion. Drivers should expect delays and consider alternate routes.

The superload is expected to cross into Tennessee from Kentucky on Thursday evening and travel through the night. North of Nashville, the superload will detour around downtown Nashville via Briley Parkway eastbound before re-entering I-24 via I-40 westbound. The superload will then take I-24 to I-75 to Georgia.

The superload’s maximum travel speed is 60 miles per hour.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol will be escorting the load as it travels through the state. The Tennessee Department of Transportation will be monitoring the superload at its regional Transportation Management Centers in Nashville and Chattanooga. Overhead Dynamic Message Signs and portable message boards will be used to alert drivers of congestion along the route.

Paris Man Arrested After Foot Chase 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-Having a Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy stationed at the county courthouse full-time surely came in handy Tuesday.

A Paris man was arrested on several charges after a foot chase from the courthouse. After observing the suspect hiding a container of drugs outside the courthouse for retrieval later, Sgt. Ricky Wade chased the man all the way from the courthouse to the Lee School area several blocks away. 

Steven Boyd Trent, age 30, of 1118 Belmont Street, was charged with evading arrest, possession of drug paraphernalia and tampering with evidence after he was caught by Wade.

Sheriff Monte Belew said Wade chased Trent, and other deputies and Paris Police officers established a perimeter around the area. Belew said Trent had run down into a ravine near the Lee Academy for the Arts when he was apprehended.

Bond for Trent is set at $50,000.

Spooks Galore In Downtown Paris Saturday

Susan Jones tells fortunes at last year's event. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.-There will be Spooks Galore in downtown Paris Saturday for the 11th annual Spooktacular and there will be plenty of activities, from trick or treating at downtown stores, Halloween costume contests, a “Thriller” flash mob, free crafts, live music, concessions and games. The event is set for noon until 4 p.m. on the court square.

Seventeen booths will be on site, including the Paris Landing State Park Birds of Prey & Halloween Owls; Children’s Theater with two spooky booths, Pre-K Head Start treats games; First Christian Church’s Halloween Putt Putt and free coffee; REAL Hope Youth Center’s bean bag toss; Paris Police Department/DARE and Carl Perkins Center with bags and goodies and face painting; Inman Band live music; 911’s Red E Fox; Kroger’s scary tattoos and games with a ring toss game; K & B Supplies for Success will have Sewer Splash and crafts; Air Evac will have a Life Team Launch game; and Security Bank will have tic tac toe and coloring activities.

The Downtown Paris Association’s famous Pumpkin Patch Pete will be on hand so you can guess Pete’s weight and win DPA bucks. On Halloween day, the winner will be announced and will receive $100 in DPA bucks, just in time for Christmas Open House weekend, November 4-6. The Lions Club will have contests from 1-3 p.m.

Perry’s BBQ and Inman Band Boosters will be serving food. In case of rain, the event will be cancelled. Call 731-642-7425 for more info.

Noon                           Game booths open. Registration for costume contests begins.

12:15-12:45 pm        Inman Band performs.

12:45 – 1:00 pm       “Thriller” flash mob

1:00-1:30 pm                        Spooky games by the Lions Club   

1:30 pm                     Ages birth to 3 years old Costume Contest

2:00 pm                     Ages 4 to 7 years old Costume Contest

2:30 pm                     Ages 8 to 11 years old Costume Contest

3:00 pm                     Ages 12 to 14 years old Costume Contest

3:30 pm                     Family/Group Theme Contest

3:50 pm                     Winners of Scarecrows on the Square announced


Grand Reopening Of Heritage Center Set


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-The public is invited to the grand reopening of the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center from noon-4 p.m. Saturday, October 22. The Heritage Center has been closed for a few months while repairs and restoration was made to the facility.

Original furniture belonging to the family of O.C. Barton has been acquired and placed in the Heritage Center. The Bartons owned Cavitt Place, which was the original name of the building where the Heritage Center is now located.

Permanent displays at the Heritage Center include an exhibit on Camp Tyson, Henry County’s former WWII barrage balloon facility and a room dedicated to items from the county Health Department, which used to be located in the facility.

A private reception for Heritage Center members will be held Friday evening with light refreshments.

The Heritage Center is located at 614 N. Poplar St. in Paris.


Tickets On Sale For Bobby Jones’ Concert

Steering committee members at last night's meeting. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-There are now even more ways to purchase tickets for the upcoming concert by Gospel Legend Dr. Bobby Jones.

Jones will be returning to his hometown for “A Farewell To Paris” concert and benefit for the Mt. Zion Baptist Church building fund the evening of Saturday, November 5, at the Krider Performing Arts Center (KPAC).

Advance tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at KPAC, all Commercial Bank & Trust locations in Paris or online through You can also purchase tickets by phone by calling Rhonda Stanton at KPAC at 731-644-2517.

By purchasing at, customers also can call a toll-free number for customer service and order the tickets that way. The phone number is 800-838-3006.

Advance tickets prices are: reserved, $20; preferred, $30; and preferred + VIP package, $50. If purchased at the door, tickets are $5 extra.

At a regular steering committee meeting Tuesday night, it was reported that donations for advertising in the souvenir booklets are coming in from several local businesses.

During the evening, awards will be presented to organizations which have positively impacted youth in Henry County, including the Ladies of SWAG (Sisters With A Goal), Pop Warner and Capps youth leagues, and the Paris Boxing Club.

A Facebook page at also provides updated information on the concert.


ABC To Conduct Violations Hearings

Paris, Tenn.-When it meets Thursday night, the Paris Alcoholic Beverage Commission (ABC) will conduct four alcohol regulations violation hearings for local establishments. Hearings will be conducted regarding violations reported at: the Dollar General Store, 2609 E. Wood St.; IGA Gas Station, 2603 E. Wood St.; Patriot Express, 1330 E. Wood St.; and Twice Daily, 2504 E. Wood St.

Also at the meeting, Twice Daily will be requesting a new beer permit.

The meeting is set for 6 p.m. Thursday at Paris City Hall and is open to the public.


Drug Take Back Event Set For UC

Union City, Tenn. – On Saturday, October 22, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Union City Police Department in conjunction with the Obion County Prevention Coalition and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its 12th opportunity in six years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

Bring your pills for disposal to Baptist Memorial Hospital located at 1201 Bishop Street in Union City, Tennessee. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.) The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. Last April, Americans turned in 447 tons (over 893,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,400 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners.

Overall, in its 11 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 6.4 million pounds—about 3,200 tons—of pills. This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards. For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the October 22 Take Back Day event, go to the DEA Diversion website.


A-P Neighborhood Meeting Set

Paris, Tenn.—The Atkins-Porter Neighborhood Association will once again begin its monthly meeting with a snack time at 6:30 p.m., followed by the regular meeting at 7 p.m. The meeting will be held tonight at the Atkins-Porter Recreation Center at the corner of Highland and Walnut Streets.

Discussion of forming a Neighborhood Watch program will continue and members also will discuss establishing the organization’s non-profit status.


Men Robbed At Gunpoint

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.-Three men were robbed at gunpoint Saturday night on W. Griggs Street in Union City. The description of the suspects is the same as those involved in an attempted armed robbery Saturday night on E. College St.

According to the police report, three men were sitting in their yard when three black males, dressed all in black and wearing masks approached them, demanding money. At least one of the men poked a gun in the side of one of the victims.

The victims gave them their wallets, which contained cash, credit cards and driver’s licenses. The suspects then ran toward First Street, then to the Old Brown Shoe plant and were last seen by the railroad tracks.

Officers took the path the suspects ran, but did not find them or any stolen items.


Three Arrested On Drug Charges

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Martin, Tenn.-Weakley County Sheriff’s deputies were busy Monday with incidents that resulted in the arrest of three people on a variety of drug charges.

A search warrant was executed Monday morning at 170 Kester Rd., south of Dresden and two women—Amanda Dawn Jennings, age 34; and Megan Noelle West, age 24—were arrested on charges of possession of meth with intent to sell and drug paraphernalia possession.

Found during the search was 5 ½ grams of meth that was packaged for resale, digital scales, plastic baggies and phone text messages about selling drugs.

Later Monday, deputies went to 505 Hillsboro Street in Martin with an arrest warrant and while at his door, they noticed a strong odor of marijuana coming from the house. After consent to search, deputies found a large bag of marijuana and three smaller bags of marijuana with a total weight of one pound and digital scales were found.

Keith Norris Jr. was arrested for possession with intent and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was out of jail on bond from previous drug charges.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Small Business Super Heroes

Paris, Tenn.-Kevin Buie of K&B Supplies for Success gives a gift to little Charlotte Broman at today’s Small Business Expo at the Henry County Fairgrounds. Little Charlotte is the granddaughter of Sharon Kummerow, also pictured, as is Sam Bates of K&B. A large crowd was on hand for the Expo, sponsored each year by the Paris-Henry County Chamber of Commerce. Theme for this year was “Small Business Super Heroes”. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

A-P Neighborhood Meeting Set

Paris, Tenn.—The Atkins-Porter Neighborhood Association will once again begin its monthly meeting with a snack time at 6:30 p.m., followed by the regular meeting at 7 p.m. The meeting will be held Wednesday night at the Atkins-Porter Recreation Center at the corner of Highland and Walnut Streets.

Discussion of forming a Neighborhood Watch program will continue and members also will discuss establishing the organization’s non-profit status.

Summitt Bequeaths Gift To UTM

Martin, Tenn.- Legendary Lady Vols’ Basketball Coach Pat Summitt included the University of Tennessee at Martin in her estate plans with a $200,000 bequest to the women’s basketball program. The gift will establish the Pat Summitt Women’s Basketball Endowment at UT Martin. Summitt played basketball under coach Nadine Gearin from 1970-74 before receiving her degree and accepting a coaching position with the Lady Volunteers at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She passed away June 16 at the age of 64. Pictured after the announcement are Bettye Giles, former UT Martin women’s athletics director, and Dr. Bob Smith, UT Martin interim chancellor.


Registered Voters Spike In Henry, Obion Counties

Early Voting Begins Wednesday

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris and Union City, Tenn.-On the eve of the early voting period commencing across Tennessee, both Obion and Henry County Elections Officials are reporting a dramatic spike in the number of registered voters.

Early voting begins Wednesday, October 19, and ends Thursday, November 3, for the presidential election November 8.

In Henry County, Administrator of Elections DeLaina Green said, a record number of countians have registered to vote, at 20,361. Green has conducted a voter registration drive over recent months and anticipates a higher turnout among young voters. Among other appearances, Green also conducted a registration drive at Henry County High School.

In Obion County, Elections Administrator Leigh Schlager said her office experienced “a definite spike” in registered voters, with 19,124 currently registered to vote. “It’s gone up in just the last six weeks,” she said, noting the total in August was 18,636.

“So that’s 488 that registered just since August,” she said.

Schlager said she has noticed an increased interest by younger voters for this election. “We’ve seen a lot of college age kids registering and we’ve seen a lot of parents bringing their 18-year-olds in to register,” Schlager said.

Early voting is conducted at the Elections Commissions offices and both will be mostly open Monday through Fridays from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

In Henry County, the office will be open the two Saturdays during the voting period from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In Obion County, the office will be open from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, October 22 and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, October 29. Her office will also be open until 7 p.m. on both Thursday, October 27, and Friday, October 28.


Spinning Wheel, Spinning True

Union City, Tenn.-Stephanie Tucker of Union City demonstrates the art of spinning during Saturday’s Music and Arts Festival at the Obion County Public Library. Ten vendors performed on-site demonstrations and live music was played all day in the library’s amphitheater. Library Director Carolina Conner said there were between 250-300 visitors throughout the day. The Friends of the Library also held its biannual book sale. (Amy Keathley photo).


Football Teams To Wear Pink

Union City, Tenn.-Tennessee High School football teams will be wearing pink to support the Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” on Friday night. Wearing pink will be the Union City Golden Tornadoes when they meet the Lake County Falcons and Obion Central Rebels when they meet the Crockett County Cavaliers. “Pink Out” Night for the Henry County Patriots will be at the last home game later this month.


Elvis Tribute Artist To Perform

Union City, Tenn.-The Community Concert Association will present “The World’s Most Successful Touring Elvis Show” featuring Elvis Tribute Artist Shawn Klush at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, October 22, at the Union City Civic Auditorium.

Tickets are on sale for $20 at the door or at Lanzer’s Printing and Office Supplies.

Klush has released five CDs, has performed with Elvis’ closest friends and musicians, such as The Jordanaires and DJ Fontana. He portrayed Elvis in the hit TV miniseries, “Shake, Rattle and Roll”.


Golden Pond Overlook Dedication Set

Land Between The Lakes—The public is invited to the dedication of the Golden Pond Interpretive Overlook at Land Between The Lakes, set for 2 p.m. Saturday, October 22. Light refreshments will be served.

Visitors are encouraged to come early to walk or bike the trail. The Overlook sits just off the main path for the Central Hardwoods Scenic Trail and about a third of a mile west from the Sunset Inn Trailhead parking lot. The trailhead is located at the intersection of US68/KY80 and Forest Service Road 160.

An etched, glass panel is placed so visitors can look through to ‘see’ where buildings once stood.


Evening With Patsy Cline Set

Jackson, Tenn.—An Evening With Kellye Cash Sheppard featuring the music of Patsy Cline will be presented next week in Jackson. It is sponsored by the Union University Booster Club and West Tennessee Bone and Joint Clinic.

The performance will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, October 27, at the Savage Memorial Chapel at Union University in Jackson. Tickets are $25 for general admission and $50 for VIP dinner at 5:30 p.m., with the opportunity to meet Sheppard and choice seating.

Originally from Memphis, Sheppard was crowned Miss Tennessee in 1986 and Miss America in 1987. She was chosen for the lead part of country music legend Patsy Cline in “Always…Patsy Cline”.

For ticket info call 731-661-5130 or go to


Rites Set For Former District Attorney

Martin, Tenn.-Former District Attorney Charles Henry McWherter, age 84, of Martin, died Sunday. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. today at Bowlin Funeral Home in Dresden, with private burial in Palmersville Cemetery. Judge Tommy Moore will officiate.

McWherter was born in Palmersville and is survived by his son Joseph McWherter, Austin; and a daughter Carol McWherter of Anderson, S.C.

A graduate of Palmersville High School, he attended the University of Tennessee at Martin on a basketball scholarship; the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and Vanderbilt School of Law. He received a master’s degree in economics, served in the U.S. Navy and was a former District Attorney for Henry, Benton, Carroll, Decatur and Hardin Counties.


Monday, October 17, 2016

Board Requests County Help With Building Project

Citizen Asks For More Black Employees

County Schools Director Dr. Brian Norton addresses the commission.

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-At Monday night’s meeting of the Henry County Commission, County Schools Director Dr. Brian Norton requested the county consider a refinancing plan to allow the school board to move forward with its high school building project.

The county “has an opportunity to save $134,000” with refinancing existing debt, Norton said.

County Mayor Brent Greer said the county’s financial advisor will be at November’s meeting to present the refinancing plan. “It would not change the lengthy of the county’s indebtedness,” Greer said, “and it would allow us to save over $130,000 over the next five to six years.”

The high school building project has been discussed at several work sessions and meetings with the county commissioners, school staff, school board and the public. Under the project, the high school would be remodeled with improved security features, as well as all the school’s student services in the front of the building, the library would be modernized, bathrooms updated, gym floor replaced and air conditioning would be installed in the gym.

The project also would include construction of a multi-purpose building for athletics and extracurricular activities, replacement of the practice field, resurfacing of the tract and replacement of the visitor’s bleachers.

Norton said, “I’m grateful to Mayor Greer for uncovering this opportunity for us.”

Greer noted, “We need to work together on this project. We want the project to be transparent for the public.”

At the meeting’s outset, Local Resident Walter McWherter asked the county to make more of an effort to hire black employees. “This courthouse is still lily white, if you excuse the expression, except for a black deputy who works in the courtroom. The public needs to see more black employees.”
In other business:

Commissioner Paul Mathenia noted that Greer had received the State Elected Officials’ Achievement Award during the just-ended state county commissioners’ conference.

The commission reappointed James Travis to a five-year term on the Henry County Medical Center board of trustees.

Perfect Weather—For Anything

Buchanan, Tenn.-It was a perfect weather for fishing—or anything else outdoors—over the just-ended weekend. These fishermen were relaxing near the Ned McWherter bridge at Paris Landing State Park on Saturday. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Paris Man Attacks Officers

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—An attack on two Paris Police officers landed a Paris man in jail on $20,000 bond.

Chad Christopher Evans, 36, of 716 Memorial Drive, was charged with two counts of aggravated assault on a public official, aggravated criminal trespass, resisting arrest as well as on previous warrants for evading arrest, driving on a revoked license and failure to appear.

The incident occurred Thursday, but the police report was just released.

The incident began when Capt. John Brewer and Patrolman Amber Roaten were called to Maple Hills mobile home park on a report that Evans had come into a neighbor’s trailer without permission. The officers determined Evans was already wanted on the previous warrants and Evans then shoved Roaten and began to run.

When Roaten grabbed him, Evans shoved her and then tried to flip her over a railing. He also shoved Brewer and tried to bite him. Roaten then used a stun gun on Evans, who continued to struggle until he was taken into custody.

Evans was treated and released from Henry County Medical Center.


2017 Henry County Fair To Change Date

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-The Henry County fair will be moved to August 28-September 2 for 2017.

The Henry County Fair Board met recently and after weighing the pros and cons of dates for the fair, it decided on the new date at the end of August for the 2017 Fair. The new fair week will be held right before the Labor Day holiday.

After many years being held in mid-August, the 2016 fair was held in mid-September and fair board members conducted ‘much deliberation’ over whether to continue with that schedule, according to Fair President Joan Williams.

In a press release issued by Williams, she noted the board began planning for 2017 by deciding what might need to change and one of the first items was the date for the next fair.


Fort Campbell Soldiers Involved In Mosul Fight

Fort Campbell—The 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell is once again at the forefront of an important military operation.

Fort Campbell soldiers is helping to lead the ongoing all-out effort to wrest the largest city in Iraq from ISIS control.

The operation got underway this morning in the area around Mosul, five hours from Baghdad. Mosul has been under control of ISIS since the summer of 2014 and the U.S. military has joined Iraqi forces in the bid to reclaim Mosul from ISIS.


Witches Ride Planned Saturday


Paris, Tenn.-The 1st Annual Henry County Relay Witches’ Ride will be held this Saturday in conjunction with the Spooktacular set for downtown Paris.

Registration begins at 2:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church at 101 E. Blythe St. A chili supper and silent auction will be held in the church gym at the end of the ride.

Everyone is encouraged to dress in their best witch costume and bring a bike, golf cart—or even brooms—to ride or walk around the courtsquare during the Spooktacular. Cost is $25 per ‘witch’ or $10 for teams of 10 or more witches.

For additional information, contact Dana Allen at 336-3719 or Tracey Beasley at 731-225-1729.


Attempted Armed Robbery Reported

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.-Union City Police are investigating an attempted armed robbery that occurred Saturday evening at 1020 E. College St.

According to the police report, three black men attempted to rob residents of the home at gunpoint. A woman at the residence went outside and the three men approached her from behind a car. Two of the men were wearing masks and one pointed a gun at her and demanded money.

The victim was pushed onto the ground and she screamed, prompting her 13-year-old daughter to come running outside. At that point, the three men ran off.

The men were wearing all black, with long-sleeves and gloves, the witnesses said.


Fundraiser Set For Tim Boyd

Huntingdon, Tenn.-The Huntingdon Fire & Rescue, along with Dilday-Carter Funeral Home, will hold a grilled hamburger or hotdog lunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday October 22, as a fundraiser for a local man injured in a recent car crash.

The event will be held at the Cash Savers Supermarket on East Main Street in Huntingdon.

Proceeds will go to help Tim Boyd who was critically injured in a car crash on October 10th and remains in ICU at the MED at Memphis. Boyd, an employee at Dilday-Carter, has injuries that have left him paralyzed from the chest down.

Grilled hamburgers or jumbo hot dogs will be available for $4 each or a meal with chips, drink and dessert for $6.


Sunday, October 16, 2016

Nobles Road Barn Destroyed In Fire

Firefighers and onlookers at the scene. (Reggie Coles photo).

Springville, Tenn.-A barn was destroyed by fire Sunday afternoon on Nobles Road outside of Paris and damage is estimated at $30,000.

Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Department Chief Reggie Coles said firefighters were called to 1240 Nobles Rd. on a report of a barn and field on fire around 3:45 p.m. When they arrived, they found an equipment shed fully engulfed in flames and that it had already fallen in, Coles said.

Approximately one acre of the surrounding field was also on fire.

Owner Tommy Shankle told firefighters he had been mowing earlier and had put his tractor and mower back in the bard. “He went inside to take a shower and a passerby saw the barn on fire and reported it,” Coles said.

The exact cause is undetermined but is believed to be accidental, Coles said. Three trucks and seven firefighters were on the scene about an hour.

Missing Paris Teen Found

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-The Paris Police Department has reported that the missing 13-year-old boy has been found in Carroll County.

Dakota Perry of Dunlap Street was reported missing by his father Friday.

Vicki Keith of the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office handles public information and she was unavailable for comment on Sunday.

More information will be published when it is available.


Body Found In Carroll County Field

Huntingdon, Tenn.-The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) has confirmed that a body was found in a field in Carroll County on October 6 and that District Attorney Matt Stowe has asked for an investigation.

The TBI has not released any details at this time, including the exact location of the body or the cause of death.

The body has been taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Nashville.

TBI Public Information Officer Susan Niland said due to the condition of the body, identification is still pending.


Small Business Expo Is Tuesday

Paris, Tenn.-The annual Small Business Expo sponsored by the Paris-Henry County Chamber of Commerce will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday at the Henry County Fairgrounds. Theme this year is "Small Business Super Heroes".


Saturday, October 15, 2016

Paris Youngster Reported Missing

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A youngster from Paris has been reported missing and is a possible runaway.

Paris Police Sgt. Jeramye Whitaker said the teenager was reported missing last night by his father.

Dakota Perry, age 13, is 5’7”, with brown hair and green eyes and lives on Dunlap Street.

Sgt. Whitaker said Perry is believed to be still in the Paris and Henry County area. Anyone with information is asked to call the Paris Police at 642-2424.


Stepping Back In Time

Buchanan, Tenn.-You can take a step back in time at the Battle of Paris Landing Civil War encampment ongoing this weekend at Paris Landing State Park. Reenactors representing several companies on both side of the Civil War are on site, along with numerous vendors campsites and activities, such as a tea for the ladies, demonstrations, and battle reenactments. The event goes through 4 p.m. Sunday. A chili cook-off also took place today. Top photo, George Sibert, Cedar Grove; Elvis Clement, Gleason, and DJ Cloninger, Dyersburg, set up a cannon this morning; bottom photo is Blacksmith Steve Shafer of Charlotte. (Shannon McFarlin photos).


Carver Appointed UTM Chancellor

Knoxville, Tenn. –Keith Carver was appointed the next chancellor of UT Martin by the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees Friday. Carver will take office January 3 and replace Tom Rakes, who earlier announced he is returning to the classroom.

Carver has been executive assistant to the UT Martin President since 2011 and has served in various roles at UT campuses in Knoxville, Martin and Memphis.


Friday Night High School Scores

Dresden 55, Union City 7

Huntingdon 49, Clarksville Academy 0

Camden 27, Sycamore 0

Obion County 35, Dyer County 47

Jackson Christian 44, McKenzie 27

Peabody 41, South Fulton 24

Humboldt 43, West Carroll 8


Friday, October 14, 2016

UTM Building To Be Named For Latimer Family


Martin, Tenn. –   The future UT Martin Engineering and Science Building will be named for the Latimer family of Union City.

The building donor is William H. Latimer III and if funded by the state, the Latimer Engineering and Science Building will be the first capital outlay funded project for UT Martin since 2006.

The Latimer gift, the largest single gift since university records have been kept, provides the entire match required by the Tennessee General Assembly. The gift also equals 150 percent of the total funds raised by the university from all sources last year.

State building projects at public colleges and universities require a 25 percent match by the institutions to begin construction. The UT Martin building came closer to reality during the 2016 legislative session, thanks to a change in the university’s required match to fund the project. The match reduction from 25 percent to 10 percent was led by State Sen. John Stevens (R-Huntingdon) and was the first of its kind in Tennessee government. The university was given a one-year opportunity to match 10 percent or approximately $6.5 million of the cost to construct the 120,000-square-foot building.

 The gift agreement notes the Latimer family’s deep ties and long history in our region. It traces back to 1852, when three great-grandsons of Revolutionary War Colonel Jonathan Latimer settled in Obion County. In 1930, just three years after the opening of the University of Tennessee Junior College at Martin, Bill’s uncle, Will H., played on its football team, earning the nickname “War Horse” from his teammates. He was the first of three generations of Colonel Latimer’s descendants to attend this institution.

Latimer has a long association with the University of Tennessee and currently serves on the UT President’s Council. He is a former member of the UT Development Council and also individual fundraising advisory boards for UT Knoxville, UT Martin and the UT Institute of Agriculture. He is also former president of the UT Martin Development Committee and has supported scholarships at both UT Martin and UT Chattanooga. He was the principal contributor to the UT Health Science Center College of Dentistry clinic in Union City and is a 1996 graduate of UT Martin’s WestStar Leadership Program.


Martin PD Investigating Death

Martin, Tenn.-The Martin Police Department is investigating a suspicious death that occurred Thursday evening.

Officers were called to The Station Apartments, located on West Peach Street, around 7:30 p.m. on a report of an unresponsive male. When officers arrived, they found Martin Stovall, age 22, being attended by EMS first responders.

Stovall was pronounced dead at the scene. The victim’s body was transported to the Shelby County Medical Examiner’s office for autopsy.


Henry County Tax Notices Sent Out


    Trustee Randi French

Paris, Tenn.-Tax notices have been mailed out in Henry County.

County Trustee Randi French said property owners should start seeing their real property, personal property and tax relief notices hitting their mailboxes within the next few days.

The taxes are now due and payable, with a deadline of February 28, 2017.

French said, “We encourage you to bring all notices with you or put them with your payment when you drop them in the mail or night deposit box. This allows us to get your payment in quickly so that you don’t have to wait and there is no confusion on which parcel you are paying.”

As always, the office accepts partial payments and are signing up those who are interested in taking advantage of the ACH bank draft. Information about tax relief is on the back of the notices.

Payments can be made at the trustee’s office during regular hours of 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. There is a drop box for after-hours payments on the front of the building. Payment options and tax information is at .

Payments can be mailed to PO Box 776, Paris. Call the office with any questions 731-642-6633.

Paris Landing Decked Out For Fall

Buchanan, Tenn.-Paris Landing State Park is all decked out for the fall. Colorful decorations, with hay bales, scarecrows, pumpkins and more are located throughout the park and can be used for family photo opportunities. (Charlie Allen photo).



Murder Mystery Dinner Theater Set

Union City, Tenn.—Discovery Park of America will be hosting its first Murder Mystery Dinner Theater the evening of Thursday, October 27, and tickets are on sale now.

The interactive play, “Honeymoon From Hades” is a classic ‘Who Done It?’ type of experience. The meal will be catered by Hub’s Restaurant in Hickman and will feature Hub’s pork chops with their special sauce, complimented with baked potato and butter, garden salad and warm dinner roll. Dessert is pecan pie of cheesecake.

The performance will feature the cast of the Badgett Playhouse from Grand Rivers, Ky., which is located across the road from Patti’s 1880s Settlement. The Badgett Playhouse is in its 11th season and features over 30 different productions each year. The cast has performed professionally in Branson, Pigeon Forge and with national touring shows.

Tickets are on sale now, with just 150 tickets available, so it is expected to sell out. Tickets are $35 each and include dinner and the show. You can purchase tickets at or by calling the park at 731-885-5455.



Harry Potter Events Set For MSU Campus

Murray, Ky.--The Wrather West Kentucky Museum on the Murray State University campus is currently hosting a Harry Potter exhibit.

The exhibit consists of six panels from the National Library of Medicine and explores Harry Potter’s world and its roots in Renaissance magic, science and medicine. Admission is free and open to the public. The museum’s hours are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Upcoming events in conjunction with the exhibit will include a kids’ Harry Potter party on Oct. 15 from 1 to 3 p.m. for children age 12 and under; a lecture on alchemy and magic in Renaissance literature by Barbara Cobb, professor of English, on Oct. 20 at 7 p.m.; a Quidditch match sponsored by the Honors College on Oct. 26 at 5 p.m.; a lecture on arachnid lore and science by Laura Beckers, assistant professor of biology, on Oct. 26 at 7 p.m.; and a lecture on “Fear, Death, and Immortality in the Harry Potter series” by Staci Stone, interim dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts and associate professor of English, and Rory Goggins, associate professor of philosophy, on Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. 

All events are free and open to the public. 


Relay Paint Party At FUMC

Paris, Tenn.-A Paint Party to benefit Henry County Relay for Life will be held at First United Methodist Church in Paris from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, November 6. Tickets are $30 in advance, $35 at the door. For more information, contact Elaine Martin at 731-363-3611.

6am – 7pm

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