Local News

  • Kingston, state officials tout intersection work

    State officials gathered with their counterparts in Kingston and Roane County to dedicate the widening of the intersection at Hwys. 70 and 58.

  • Lack of laptops learning curve for Norwegian girl

    In the school Malika Skogsholm attends in Norway, technology is a part of every class.

    It’s an aspect she’s had to learn to live without to a large degree while attending Oliver Springs High School this year as an exchange student staying with Nancy Thompson.

    “We write everything by hand here,” she said. “I’m used to laptops we use. That is really different.”

    Another aspect is that at home she doesn’t have different people in the classrooms for each course. Here she changes classes and classmates.

  • Bunch backs out of plea agreement

    Using her silver Pontiac Grand Am, Roane County resident Rufena Jean Bunch served as the getaway driver for Mark Andrew Randolph when he robbed a Subway sandwich shop in Knoxville on Sept. 24.

    That’s according to a plea agreement Bunch signed on Nov. 4.

    She was scheduled to plead guilty in U.S. District Court on Nov. 20, but the hearing was abruptly canceled at the request of her new attorney – Bruce Poston of Knoxville.

    Poston didn’t enter the case until Nov. 19, when he filed a notice of substitution of counsel.

  • Exercise room on convict’s wish list

    Convicted crack cocaine dealer Ralph O’Neal is trying to take on the role of jail rights activist.

    O’Neal, who is being held at the jail awaiting trial on a first-degree murder charge, sent a letter to the Roane County Commission and County Executive Ron Woody requesting funds for the construction of an exercise room at the county jail.

    “This exercise room with some workout material could easily help curb some addiction,” he wrote. “If it helps a small percentage it would be well worth it.”

  • Operation REACH $40,000 short of goal

    ]Operation REACH has been making Christmas merrier for Roane County children for 38 years.

    This year the program, which allows the county’s most needy children to go shopping for Christmas presents for themselves and their families, hopes to help 500 Roane County schoolchildren this holiday season.

    REACH, an acronym for Roane Enriches Another Child’s Holiday, is needing help raising funds toward that goal.

    “Our fundraising goal this year is $125,000,” said Randy Ellis, this year’s Operation REACH president.

  • Prepping to give ‘The Jesus Gift’: Outdoor weekend tour to depict life of Christ

    South Harriman Baptist Church will showcase the life of Jesus Christ in a guided tour at the church this weekend.

    “The Jesus Gift,” planned from 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 13-14, features numerous scenes depicting Christ’s life at the church at 626 Ruritan Road.

    The first stop will be at The Prophet Isaiah, who relays the prophecy of the Son of God.

    Also included are The Wise Men and Nativity scenes of the holiday season, as well as portrayals of Jesus healing the sick, teaching his Disciples and more.

  • State spells out future for libraries

    Local libraries — and the county and municipal governments that fund them — may see some changes in the way they do business with the coming of the new year and new directives from the state.

    That was the message Kingston Library Board member and City Councilman John Byrkit delivered to council recently.

    Byrkit said the state gave local library officials a preview of new standards through the office of state librarian and archivist Chuck Sherrill.

  • Tai chi offers exercise for body, mind

    Concentration, stress relief and balance improvement are some of the benefits enjoyed by a group that regularly meets in Kingston.

    Twice a week, the Taoist Tai Chi Society offers beginner and continuing classes at Bethel Presbyterian Church. Many in the group of 20 have been together almost 10 years.

    The class is the only one of its kind in Roane County.

    “They love it, or they wouldn’t come back,” said instructor Terry Elliott of Kingston. “This is a social activity, but it is also good for our health.”

  • Man accused in Kingston fake money case

    Christopher J. Burchell, a 24-year-old Pleasant View man, was charged with counterfeiting on Wednesday for allegedly passing fake money in Kingston.

    According to the police report, employees at the Little Caesar’s on North Kentucky Street declined to accept a $100 bill from a man wearing a green-hooded jacket and a black wig.

    Kingston Police Lt. Caleb Strayer said he found the suspect, identified as Burchell, at the Rocky Top Market across the street from Little Caesar’s.

  • Looseleaf Laureate: Comfort dashed when it comes to ashes

    Tucked away in my dresser drawer is a small, wooden box just big enough to hold a neatly folded, but perhaps tear-stained handkerchief.

    But that’s not what it really holds.

    The box — sturdy, but poorly finished — supposedly holds the ashes of my beloved cat Yoda. Yoda’s life ended when we lived in Arizona more than a decade ago.

    While I have never been able to toss the box, I have long ago decided that it is unlikely that much, if any, of Yoda is in there.