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2014 Year in Review Jan-June

2014 year in review part 1 Year in Review Baby found Year in Review Luke Walker Year in review roper Year in ReviewJANUARY 2014
*At about 6 p.m. on Jan. 6, Tipton County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a 911 call of an accidental shooting in the 1000 block of Appleberry Road in Munford. Deputies arrived to discover the victim, Laura Ann Rains, 26 had been shot by her husband, William Christopher Rains, 25. Chris indicated his wife was handing him a pistol when the weapon discharged striking her once in the head.
Emergency medical personnel and deputies assisted at the scene in transporting the victim to the MED by wing. The victim later died at the MED from her injury. The victim was a wife of three years and a mother of one child.
Detectives from the Criminal Investigation Division responded and processed the scene throughout the night. There will be an autopsy performed at the Regional Forensic Center in Memphis.
*An Arctic blast hit most of the United States over the first weekend in January. In Shelby County, temperatures reached as low as 9 degrees leading to problems for drivers, homeowners and those working outside. The freezing conditions lead to many closures across the Mid-South. Classes were canceled on Tuesday because the dangerously for Shelby and Tipton counties low temperatures and wind chills for student safety. Shelby County’s Head Start classes and centers will be closed Tuesday as well because of the extremely cold temperatures. Most students returned to school that Wednesday.
*The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted unanimously in January to employ well-known former resident Ed Haley as the next city manager.
Board members took the action Monday night during their regular monthly meeting on a motion offered by Alderman Thomas McGhee and seconded by Alderman Frankie Dakin.
Mayor Terry Jones, City Attorney Charles Perkins and Interim City Manager Mike Chesney were authorized to negotiate a contract with Haley on behalf of the board.
A former Millington alderman and member of the Municipal Airport Authority, Haley was the Millington Jaycees’ Person of the Year in 1968, ‘69 and ‘71. He also received the Millington Area Chamber of Commerce’s Person of the Year Award in 1971.
*Longtime USA Stadium employee Tommy Rogers was surprised when he learned in January that he was being inducted into the National Junior College Baseball Hall of Fame. A rare honor indeed, but even more special because this prestigious award has only honored a handful of people who are not coaches.
In the words of Andrew Baylock, Former USA and University of Connecticut Baseball Coach in a letter of recommendation, “Tommy Rogers is and always has been the unsung hero always behind the scenes accommodating teams, players, coaches and families,”
Rogers was to be honored and receive his award on May 24 in Grand Junction.
*The 2014 TSSAA Hall of Fame inductees have been selected with Charles “Chic” Nute making the cut. The longtime coach and athletic director will be a part of eight new members being inducted into the TSSAA Hall of Fame at the Embassy Suites Hotel and Conference Center in Murfreesboro on April 5.
*The city of Millington had to resume the search for its next professional manager after former resident Ed Haley rescinded his acceptance of the job offer.
At a special meeting of the Board of Mayor and Aldermen in January, Interim City Manager Mike Chesney noted that he met with Haley earlier that day. He said Haley’s “change of heart” was for “really good personal reasons.”
“And I guess I’m just glad that we had a resolution of that now, instead of later,” he said. “So, we are moving on.”
Chesney also said Ronnie Neill of The University of Tennessee’s Municipal Technical Advisory Service will meet with him this week.
*Among a sea of Trojans, Stallions, Hornets and Eagles, new Millington Municipal School Superintendent Dr. David Roper was officially welcomed to Flag City Jan. 23.
Roper and his wife were the guest of honor that Thursday night in the Millington Central High School Cafeteria treated to a special reception. After four days on the job, Roper took a moment to meet and greet hundreds of parents and students from MCHS, Millington Middle School, E.A. Harrold Elementary and Millington Elementary.
“This was a great turnout,” Millington School Board Chairman Greg Ritter said. “We knew that we would have a lot of people here with having a program. But the support is overwhelming. We’re very excited. We knew Millington was capable of this. It salitfies a lot of what we already knew about our community.”
The community reception was hosted and supported by E.A. Harrold Student Government and PTA, MCHS Art Classes, Food and Nutrition Class, Football Booster Club, Literary Journal Class, PTSA, ROTC and Student Government, Millington Elementary PTA, and Millington Middle Cooking club and PTA. Assisting the four Millington schools in the efforts to welcome Roper were Applebee’s, Fro Yo & Jo Premium Frozen Yogurt, Insouth Bank, Living Waters Bookstore, Millington Cleaners, Patriot Bank, T Nail Salon and The Millington Star.
*The Queen of the 2014 Millington Central High School Winterfest court was Asha Burks. The senior was overwhelmed Friday night in the William Osteen Gymnasium being selected by her peers and administrators. “I’m excited,” she said with smile. “I didn’t expect it. This adds something special to my senior year. This give me something to remember and live up to.”

*Since 2005, Dr. Janet Black has conducted her dental duties at 8127 Highway 51 North in Millington.
The Jamaican native has called Flag City home since 1999. And earlier this month, Black was going along with her typical day when one of her “teammates” Patty White went to deliver her some good news.
With her surgical mask still on her face, Black made her way to the lobby to confirm that she was the 2014 Millington Star Readers’ Choice Woman of the Year. Once she received full confirmation, Black had tears in her eyes.
“I am absolutely blown away by it,” she said. “I’m so honored. I’m just beyond myself. It’s a great honor. It so nice to know somebody thought of me, to concern me for this great honor.”
One of the reasons Black was voted by The Star’s readers for this year’s honor was because patients don’t tear up during a visit at Comprehensive Family Dentistry.
“Here at Comprehensive Family Dentistry, we feel our attitude is absolutely key,” Black said. “We live by our vision and we live by our mission for the office.”
That mission is to provide a personable and professional atmosphere with outstanding efficiency surpassed by none. Black and her team strive to provide oral health support for residents in area and surrounding communities.
*Some residents of Millington appreciate some of the pieces of Americana still left in their town.
Whether that’s reading the local paper with a cup of coffee or visiting Old Timers to eat lunch with friends, those people like a few reminders of the way life used to be. And another big part of that is Boatwright Pharmacy.
Popping into the 7899 C Street location, a customer will be greeted by a familiar friendly face and a staff ready to take care of any needs or concerns. And the man who started that vision in 1957 is still buzzing around the counters, Dr. Leroy Boatwright.
After wrapping up a Naval career and serving in World War II, Boatwright looked to settle down and open a business. On Nov. 1, 1957 with his wife Peggy by his side, Boatwright opened his drug store.
With years of dedicated service and still treating customers like friends, the readers of The Millington Star voted Boatwright 2014 Man of the Year.
“I really appreciate it,” Boatwright said. “It’s very nice. We have a lot of nice folks here and I have a lot good friends who support us.
“We appreciate it,” he added. “An independent pharmacy is like a dinosaur now. We’re a dying breed. So it nice to have people still respect us and we appreciate your business and dedication.”
*The first week of February 2014 brought all types of winter weather to the Mid-South.
Ice covered trees and some roads in the area leading to school closing, rescheduling of sporting events and the cancellation of some community events all together. Then Friday night into Saturday morning snow covered the Memphis area. But by the afternoon, most of it was melted with the forecast calling for more this week. The inclement weather brought chaos for some residents of Millington and Tipton County.  On Feb. 4, almost 2,000 Southwest Tennessee Electric customers in Tipton County spent the night without power because of ice falling overnight.  Then the Winter Storm’s damage worsened when the temperatures fell below freezing, which could cause problems during rush-hour traffic.
“The cold temperature and wet streets will likely lead to icing on bridges and overpasses.  Motorists need to use extreme caution, especially on roads prone to icing such as the 385 loop,” said Bob Nations, Director of the Shelby County Office of Preparedness.
*CORDOVA — Waiting one more day didn’t bother Millington Trojan Luke Walker.
Since the 10th grade, the Millington senior has been in contention for a Regional title. Coming into last weekend’s Region 8-3A Individual Wrestling Tournament at Cordova, Walker was the favorite in the 182-pound division.
Originally scheduled to be held Friday and Saturday, snow came in the area Saturday morning moving the championship and consolation rounds to Sunday. After improving his record to 29-1, unbeaten in 182, Walker faced Collierville’s Cameron Tarver for the championship.
Using his technical skills he developed over the years and natural ability, Walker dominated the match to win on points.
“Ever since the 10th grade I told myself I was going to one day be Region champ,” Walker said seconds after winning. “My goal was obviously to be the best in the tournament. I think I deserve it. I put in work today.”
Walker and several of his Milllington Trojan teammates put in work Sunday with a total of four reaching State. Joining Walker at this week’s Class 3A State Wrestling Tournament will be Jaxon Cook (152), Brandon “The Professor” Carmichael (160) and Quinton Harrison (285).
*The Second Annual MCHS Oscar Night was held Feb. 13 at the Millington Central High School Auditorium handing out freshmen, sophomore, junior and senior awards. Then the senior superlatives were announced: hair, eyes, smile, involved, most artistic, most talented, most likely to succeed, friendliest, stylish, school spirit, most athletic, funniest, dependable and Mr. and Ms. MCHS.
Some of the performance were by Serena Davila, Helena Jones, Carlos Reynolds, Tarielle Roberson, Katie Dupree, Meghan Sands and Dawn Taylor. The night wrapped up with the Class of 2014 hitting the stage dancing after hearing peers Meghan Sands and Servando Mireles were named Ms and Mr. MCHS respectively.
*Since the year 2000, Mark Neal has called Millington Central High School his professional home. This fall Neal will take the next step in his education career as principal of Melrose High School.
“I was appointed as the new principal of Melrose High School,” Neal said. “The transition is still in the works as for when I officially take over at Melrose. But I know the position become effective July 1.”
The move to Melrose in Memphis will end a more than 14 year tenure for Neal at the home of the Trojans. Neal served as a teacher and coach before joining the MCHS administrative team six years ago. Three years ago, Neal was named the principal of MCHS.
“My roots are here,” he said. “This has been home. The community and school has been wonderful. They have welcomed me with open arms since the fall of 2000 being a Munford graduate, a big rival of Millington. “But they’ve welcomed me and I’ve worked really hard here,” Neal added. “I think I’ve earned the respect of the community and they’ve earned my respect as a community.”
*The Millington Police Department is investigating it’s first homicide of 2014 after a motorcyclist found a baby’s body just after noon of Feb. 16 on Singleton Parkway near Jones’ Orchard.
It was reported the motorist spotted the body in a ditch just south of I-269 in Millington. Millington Police Chief Rita Stanback contacted the Memphis Police Department because of it’s ongoing investigation with a missing infant, Aniston Walker.
The child found was taken from the scene by medical examiners and was not identified as Walker.
“Our investigators came out and we also called in Memphis Crime Scene Investigators,” Stanback said. “We’re not sure at this time. But with that incident going on, we felt safe in having them (Memphis Police) come out too.
“I would say it seems like the body has been there for some time,” she added.”It’s less than a year old. This is a trying scene for everyone. I’m a grandmother myself. This is something very difficult to deal with.”
The body found was dressed in a onesie. Since early January the Memphis Police Department has been working on the case of Walker, a 7 weeks old. The child disappeared on Jan. 9. According to the baby’s mother, Andrea, she left Aniston home with a 3-year-old as she dropped her 5-year-old son off at school. When Andrea returned, her youngest child was gone.
Andrea was arrested on child neglect charges but has since been released from jail.
The following day, investigators determined that the remains found in Millington near Route 385 were of the missing baby Aniston Walker.
*The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted this week to employ Memphis native and Chattanooga resident Chris Dorsey as the city’s next interim manager.
Board members took the action Monday night during their regular monthly meeting on a motion offered by Alderman Chris Ford and seconded by Alderman Larry Dagen. The motion was passed by five affirmative votes, with Aldermen Hank Hawkins and Thomas McGhee absent.
A graduate of The University of Tennessee with a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in public administration, Dorsey is a certified municipal finance officer. He also has a certification from the Municipal Management Academy of UT’s Municipal Technical Advisory Service.
From 1997-98, Dorsey served as state president of the Tennessee Junior Chamber of Commerce. He is also a certified national trainer with the Junior Chamber International’s EXCEL Program. Dorsey is a former board member of Chattanooga’s Chamber and YMCA, the Southeast Tennessee Economic Development Council and the Tennessee Municipal League.
*The Millington Municipal School web site has been launched. Just type in, and the latest news, information and announcements are on there.
Recently the Millington School Board approved the MMS logo which is atop of the homepage. And below are pictures of the Millington schools and the Mission Statement:
Our mission is to provide a safe environment that allows teachers to maximize the educational experience for each child. Upon exiting Millington Municipal Schools, every student will be prepared to face challenges with confidence and the ability to succeed.
*St. Mark M.B. Church, with pastor Keith L. McGee in Drummonds, hosted it’s Eighth Annual African-American History Observance “Celebrate the Dream” one February Sunday morning at the church located at 3220 Wilkinsville Road.
St. Mark recognized six award winners this year from the Greater Memphis area: Keepers of the Dream honorees Dr. Lai Brooks, Dr. Reginald Coopwood, Deanie Parker and Thomas Sellers Jr., and Dreamers of Tomorrow Award recipents David McKinney and his wife Dr. Shanea McKinney.
The McKinneys were recognized for their accomplishments in the legal and medical fields. The couple also launched One Smart Pet Food Company, the first and olnly African-American owned pet food company certified as a “Pick Tennessee” vendor by the Tennessee Department of Agriculture.
Brooks, a native of Fulton, Ky., is now a successful medical professional in Memphis practicing in pediatrics.
Coopwood is the president and CEO of the Regional Medical Center in Memphis. Parker led a nonprofit organization founded to build and manage the Stax Museum of American Soul Music and Stax Music Academy in Soulsville USA. Sellers was recognized for being the first Black editor in The Millington Star newspaper’s history and for his 10 years of service with the paper in the community.
Helping conduct the ceremony were Sister Johnnie Alston with the welcome, Sister Karen Payne with “Did You Know,” Dr. Herbert Lester with the message of the day, Trent McVay playing the horn, and Sister Tamara Sneed presenting the awards.
*Despite being a part of the Munford Lady Cougars’ first Sectional in 2013, many of the returning players about to take the court last Friday night for the first round Region 7-3A contest against Bartlett had limited experience.
Last season the quintet of Lauren Zvolanek, Robneisha “Bird” Lee, Shaliyah Wiggins, Alex Turner and Kierra Webb saw most of the minutes. Munford Head Coach Steve Poindexter felt that might be a factor in the early moments of the do-or-die game in the Munford Gymnasium.
“If you look out there on the floor, there’s really not much experience in this situation,” he noted. “That’s what we talked about, when you get to the first and second round of the Region, it’s loser go home. We’re young. We don’t necessarily have a senior dressing out on the floor. But most teams you play, they have people who don’t want to go home. I don’t care what the record is or what the other team looks like. You’re going to have to fight to advance.”
Munford fought to erase the Lady Panthers’ 10-7 first quarter lead and end up prevailing 50-34 to advance to the Regional Semifinals Monday night at Bolton against the Bolton Lady Wildcats.
*It’s clear why so many experts equated the graduation of Jonathan Stark with the pending demise of the Munford Cougars for the 2013-14 season.
Stark led the Cougars to the District 13-3A Tournament title and the Region 7-3A Semifinals before heading to Tulane University where he is currently averaging 14 points a game.
Entering Saturday night’s Region 7-3A Quarterfinal game in the Munford Gymnasium against the Cordova Wolves, the Munford Cougars took the court still with a point to prove.
“We play with a chip on our shoulder,” Munford senior guard David Hunter acknowledged. “Everybody says, ‘Jonathan, Jonathan and Jonathan.’ When Dyer County beat us at their place in the regular season, that’s all they talked about was how we missed Jonathan. So we’ve had a point to prove all year. We miss him but we can play too.”
The Cougars entered the Cordova contest at the 2014 District 13-3A Tournament champs beating Dyer County. Only the No. 4 seeded Wolves stood in Munford’s way of reaching the Region Semifinals for the second straight year.
Butch Hopkins’ Cougars were able to solve Cordova’s defensive scheme to box in sophomore guard Reggie Holmes to prevail 45-43.
“It feels good to be back to this point,” Munford forward Kylon Hall said. “It took hard work and determination.”
MARCH 2014
*After nearly picture-perfect Saturday March 1 with temperatures in the mid 60s, the Mid-South braced for a winter storm.
And Sunday the weather delivered with heavy rains, thunderstorms and then sleet. Before the night was over, the percepitation transformed into ice and snow. The worst damage hit Tipton County and Northwest Shelby County.
Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Jr., has declared a State of Emergency due to anticipated icing conditions on Sunday night.
*The Tipton-Rosemark Academy Lady Rebel Softball faithful are hoping the good times won’t skip a beat.
New Head Coach Johnie Sanfratello isn’t planning on stopping the music, instead he wants to add a little bit more pep to the Lady Rebels’ steps in 2014.
“I hope those expectations are higher,” he said. “I’m really honored to take over this program. The successful run it has been on the past four year, it’s really honor to step right in and know we’ll have a chance to compete for that State championship every year.
“I am trying to bring my energy, more excitement,” Sanfratello continued. “Hopefully the girls are responding to that. I’m trying to get everybody to believe in the fact they can compete.”
Competing hasn’t been an issue in recent years at TRA during the Joe Layton/Amber Needham era. In a three-year stretch, the Lady Rebels reached three Sub-State rounds, two State Tournaments and won the 2011 championship.
And four players remain from that title team entering the 2014 campaign, Jordan Collins, Sally Downing, Kayla Joyner and Ashton Needham.
*These days Marsha Davis is working out of the principal’s office at  Millington Central High School as the interim with Mark Neal moving on to Melrose High School.
It was less than 10 years ago, Davis was a fresh-face teacher moving from Mississippi getting her career started in room A27 of the MCHS Freshman Academy. Now she is the first African-American woman to hold the position of principal at MCHS.
“Until last week when a couple of people brought that to my attention, it wasn’t something I thought about,” she acknowledged. “Just thinking about the title itself came to the front of my mind. The duties and the things that come along with it. Letting that sink in and the historical references it will have for years to come even in the new Millington Municipal Schools to lead by example of people moving up the ladder.”
Davis’ climb to a leadership role at MCHS started with her parents Odesser and the late Charles Davis. They raised their daughter in North Mississippi in a town called Sturgis. After graduating from Sturgis High School in 1999, Davis headed to Jackson State University.
“I’ve always had big dreams of doing things and following in my parent’s footsteps as educators,” Davis recalled. “After leaving high school, I attended Jackson State University and majored in English. I decided to become an English teacher.”
*Pokerface Events and New Stars Wrestling (NSW) Owner Quenton “Pokerface” Williams has announced the date and location of the inaugural NSW event, set for this spring.
“I am pleased to announce Millington’s USA Stadium will be the site of NSW’s first event on March 22,” Williams said. “I am honored to be presenting the first-ever professional wrestling event in the history of the facility.”
Memphis-based Pokerface Events and NSW will present a night of entertainment featuring professional wrestlers from across the Mid-South, as well as activities for children and the entire family. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.
“I believe in giving back to the community,” Williams noted. “With Millington’s history as a military town, it seems fitting to support our American heroes through a worthy cause like the Wounded Warrior Project.”
*College Sports Madness has recognized University of Tennessee at Martin women’s basketball senior guard Jasmine Newsome as All Mid-Major Player of the Year along with first team honors. Teammate Heather Butler was named to the All Mid-Major second team.
A Millington Central High School product, Newsome was named an All-OVC first team selection and Defensive Player of the Year after ranking fourth in the league with 19.1 points per game while ranking first in assists (6.0 apg), steals (2.8 spg) and assist/turnover ratio (2.1). She poured in double figure scoring outputs in 26 of 31 games, including 20 or more points in 12 games. She hit the 30-point plateau three times, while setting a single-game record with 44 points against Quinnipiac on Nov. 16.
Newsome won the OVC Player of the Week award two times along with moving into second on the league’s all-time scoring list with 2,558 career points. She was named OVC Tournament most valuable player for the second straight season after averaging 23 points, six assists and 2.5 steals per game en route to the Skyhawks fourth consecutive OVC Tournament championship. She swiped multiple steals in an astonishing 18 games, including a career-best seven steals on back-to-back occasions against Tennessee State and Murray State.
*News spread around Millington March 13 about the passing of former MPD Police Chief Ray Douglas. Douglas served nearly 40 years in law enforcement in the Memphis area from Memphis Police inspector to Millington Chief. He passed away from complications from an illness at the age of 59. Douglas became chief of police in Millington in 2009 and resigned from the position in June 2012.
*The Millington School Board voted this week to renovate part of the Harvell Civic Center for use as the Central Office without adding a sprinkler system.
Board members took the action Monday night during a special called meeting on a motion offered by Don Holsinger and seconded by C. J. Haley. The motion was passed by a 5-2 vote, with Jennifer Carroll and Cody Childress dissenting.
Board Chairman Greg Ritter said the approval had been recommended by Dr. David Roper, superintendent of the municipal school system. It was based on a report sent to Roper on March 14 by David Hilsdon, owner of Hilsdon Engineering in Millington, and a letter he received on March 18 from Millington Fire Chief Gary Graves.
Hilsdon’s report was an architectural and engineering evaluation of the “suitability” of two options for space to house the school system’s Central Office.
He noted that the administrative staff is currently leasing a 1,000-square-foot space in the Millington Industrial Development Board building on Veterans Parkway. While acknowledging that this location was “adequate for initial purposes,” he stated that the “aggressive time schedule” set by the administration to meet its staffing goals will require a larger office space in the “near future.”
*The announcement was made of the Millington Central High School Top 10 for the Class of 2014 with 1. Lauren Lester, 2. Gregory Hairston, 3. Jamie Neville, 4. Samantha Hughes, 5. Marjorie Jamerson, 6. Kennea Raine, 7. Ciarra Robinson, 8. Wesley Luke Walker, 9. Jacob Copeland and 10. Jacob Monroe
*Usually when a person makes history, they credit hard work, determination and encouragement from those close.
Erik Furseth is no different. March 20 in the Munford High School Library he made history with the stroke of a pen. When Furseth signed his national letter of intent, he became the first Munford Cougar Soccer player to do so.
The icing on the historic cake was the school, The University of Memphis Tigers. Munford Head Soccer Coach Richard Selby said it was clear Furseth had Division I ability early in his prep career.
“His freshman year you saw he had something special,” he recalled. “He started every game his whole high school career except one. To go four years as a varsity starter is something special. The team has gotten better every year in the process.”
By the time teammates and family joined Furseth for his signing day, the Cougars were 4-0 in the young season. In 2013, Furseth led the Cougars with an MVP performance in the Best of the West Tournament and to the Regional Semifinals. The two-year captain has been a leader vocally and by his example.
“He’s the one who worked,” Selby said. “He’s the one who put in all the time. He’s the one who comes down to the field and faces shots all the time. He’s a young who, you run into kids all the time that tell you what they’re going to do. He’s one who does it. Erik is going to be the one you see out there doing the job.
“I tell kids all the time, ‘If you want something, you’ll find a way,’” he added. “‘If you don’t you’ll find an excuse.’ He has no excuses. He found a way.”
Guiding Furseth along that journey has been his parents Steven and Rebecca. Wearing his Tiger Blue shirt with a gray designer tie, Steven said he was, “beyond pride.”
*On March 25 the Brighton Cardinal Baseball team played the Millington Trojans in a Breast Cancer Awareness game. The Cardinals and the Brighton Booster Club members are asking for those who plan to attend to wear pink and show support for awareness and survivors like Brighton resident Amanda Heath.
The wife of Brighton Assistant Coach Kevin Heath, Amanda was diagnosed with the disease December 9 last year. She has already undergone surgery and is on the path to a full recovery with chemotherapy underway.
Heath, 36, is the mother of 9-year-old Molly Anne and is a graduate of Munford High School Class of 1995. She witnessed her mother and aunt beat breast cancer. And it was because of them, she went for early mammograms. The doctors at Baptist Tipton spotted something suspicious after Heath’s last mammogram in October. That started the process of saving her life.
*Mayor Terry Jones of Millington proclaimed March 25 “First Tennessee Day” in honor of the company’s 150th anniversary on March 25.  The proclamation celebrated the company’s proud history, its impact as the leading bank in Tennessee and its commitment to the communities it serves, like Millington. First Tennessee is a subsidiary of First Horizon National Corp. (NYSE:FHN).
“Whereas, First Tennessee was founded in 1864 when Abraham Lincoln was president and for 150 years has earned the trust of Tennesseans,” Mayor Jones stated. “Whereas, First Tennessee is building the foundation for its next 150 years of service to its customers, employees, communities and shareholders.”
Thelma Brown, financial center manager, accepted the proclamation from Mayor Jones at the First Tennessee Bank Millington financial center. Communities across the state are honoring First Tennessee for reaching the 150-year milestone.
APRIL 2014
*What is the Millington Area Education Foundation?
Anyone interested can find out plenty tonight at the MAEF Banquet sponsored by Ritter Communitcations with doors to the Pat Thompson Center opening at 6 p.m.
“The Foundation is a great vehicle for us to support what’s been going on in the Millington community from the educational standpoint,” MAEF President Cary Vaughn said. “This foundation was started as an initiative of the Three-Star Program of Tennessee.
“It was as component of Three-Star,” he added. “They developed a separate 501(c)(3)type of foundation that would be a platform to really promote education.”
When the doors open at 5700 Attu Street for the banquet, the stage will belong to the Education Foundation to inform the public of his renaissance, purpose and mission to better the schools in Millington.
““It’s been dormant for a while,” Vaughn acknowledged. “What we did back in June was give it life. We added a new board. We started meeting on a monthly basis, started keeping minutes. This banquet coming up April 10 will be our first function for the foundation.
“It’s a fund raiser for the four schools in Millington,” he continued. “Not only a fund raiser, but its exposure. We want people to know there is a thriving education foundation, those 10 years ago when it was up and running, raising money.”
Vaughn said the Education Foundation needed new life, new events and a new board to support Millington Central High School, Millington Elementary School, E.A. Harrold and Millington Middle School.
The MAEF Board is composed of President Cary Vaughn, Vice President Chuck Hurt Jr., Secretary Rosie Crawford, Treasurer Beth Hearn, and members Ken Uselton, Gail Delancy, Karla Hornsby, Rebecca Fears, Sam Cox, Carole McCullough, Leanna Dagen and Mark Healy.
*The legacy of W.S. ‘Babe’ Howard lives on in many ways around Millington and the Mid-South.
But the late Millington entrepreneur’s greatest impact might be left in the people he influenced over the years. Recently, Howard’s daughter Laura Rosas had a former University of Memphis Baseball players share a story with her.
He told her, Mr. Babe’s supporting American Legion Baseball in the late 1970 and early 80s gave him a chance to play the game and reach the college level.
Tiger Baseball has many similar stories and the school’s administration and coaching staff will honor the memory of Babe Howard April 12 with a dedication ceremony to name the new Baseball Office Building after him.
“I think it’s very appropriate,” Rosas said. “The Millington Telephone Company sponsored an American Legion Baseball team for 20 years. Everyone said Dad loved baseball. I tell them, ‘Not really, it wasn’t about baseball. It was about giving the guys something to do. Also giving them the ability to get college scholarships and giving them that opportunity.’”
The Howard family will be on hand April 12 for the dedication ceremony at 1 p.m. and game between the Tigers and UCF Knights scheduled to start an hour later.
*When some Tipton County residents think of Brighton High School, the name Robin Jacobs might be the first thing that comes to mind.
Some identify Jacobs with the school that opened up in 1996. The veteran coach has made his name as an assistant football coach and creating a powerhouse softball program.
In recent years Jacobs has severed as assistant head coach under Will Wolfe for Cardinal Football. The team enjoyed a successful run never seen before at Brighton with District 13-3A titles, a 10-win season and players like Ricky Foster and Charles Mosley signing to Division I schools.
Earlier this year, Wolfe made the decision to resign as Brighton’s head coach to return home to Hernando, Miss. The administrators at Brighton High School made the choice to stay home and name Jacobs the new leader of Brighton Football.
“I am shaking like a leaf right now,” Jacobs acknowledged. “It’s a little different when you finally get there. You represent a lot of people from over the years. And you don’t want to let them down. So I am excited about that.”
*For years Millington resident Cheryl Bone has brought tears of joy and looks of genuine surprise to many as a volunteer.
Bone has fed the needy, given clothes and shoes to children and donated to causes to help the poor. Working for several causes, Bone can be found either volunteering or in places bringing awareness to her charitable organizations.
So it was no suprise she attended the 2014 Spirit of Giving Awards Volunteer Recognition Luncheon hosted by the Volunteer Mid-South Hands on Network last Thursday. The shock came when Bone’s name was called during the 38th annual event for Senior Volunteer of the Year. Bone won for Mid-South Convoy of Hope/Hope for the Mid-South, selected from 12 nominees.
“It gives credibility to seniors who volunteer and also to our organizations we have here like Convoy of Hope,” Bone said of her honor.
Bone is one of the founders of Hope for Mid-South which replaced Angel Food Ministries. She is involved with Volunteer Mid-South and as a coordinator for Outreach for 10,000 at Fairgrounds scheduled for Sept. 6. That event will feed 10,000 honored guests by 2,000 volunteers with 125 churches and 200 businesses and agencies participating.
*Millington Central High School at the Memphis leg of the NAACP ACT-SO competition has become a tradition over the past 10 years.
When broadcast instructor Marshonn Calvin arrived on campus 11 years ago, he made it his mission to established a program that would product quality filmmakers and broadcasters with the potential to go beyond college. Part of Calvin’s vision would be validated through competing in competitions like ACT-SO.
From first place winners like Jordan Brooks and Randall Davis to other ACT-SO medalist like Edward Jones, Rubin Seymore and Quametra Wilborn, Trojan Broadcast has made an impact on the competition.
The latest to continue the tradition are junior Emmanuel Jones and sophomore Jherika Brown by competing in the 2014 Visual Filmmaking/Video category. The duo traveled to the First Baptist Church Broad in Memphis last Thursday to compete with students from Whitehave and Overton high schools. With only the first-place winner earning a spot in the national competition in Las Vegas, the students were anticipating the announcement during the award ceremony that evening.
The pair of Trojans won’t be heading to Nevada, but Brown took home the second-place medal and Jones the third-place medal.
“They did a great job for their first time out,” Calvin said. “They got a chance to see their work on a big platform and learn what they need to do. They’re raw right now and they have natural talent. Jherika has it. And Emmanuel, once he gets the technical phases down will reach that level of some of our past students.”
*Two Millington residents were honored with House Resolution Bills this session Pastor Quinton R. Smith and community leader Debra L. Sigee
“While I was dealing with caring for my dying father, House Resolution 0188 (HR0188) in the State of Tennessee was submitted, voted on and passed to honor me for the work I do in my community,” Sigee said. “Unfortunately, because I am grieving the loss of my Dad I did not attend the ceremony at the Capital in Nashville Monday, However, my State Representative Barbara Cooper plans to present it to me at the next Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting in Millington. I am deeply honored to be recognized from the legislatures of my State and to receive recognition at the same time as my Pastor Quinton Smith of Historical First Baptist Church.”
Pastor Quinton R. Smith did attend the recognition ceremony and he said it was awesome.  I hate I missed it.  State Representative G. E. Hardaway submitted House Resolution 0225 (HR0225) in honor of Pastor Smith.
*Boatwright Pharmacy, located at 7899 C. Street in Millington, held a Grand Opening of the store’s Gift Shop ealrier this month with many giveaways. The grand prize was a Kindle Fire HD. The customer with the winning ticket was Ann Goin of Millington. Goin also won an Easter basket during the grand opening. The remodeling project that started in early February was completed April 11.
MAY 2014
*Through hard work and some prayers, the Market @ the Park came to life Saturday afternoon of May 3.
Event organizer Karroll Warberg wanted to provide an outlet for local crafty people, bakers, artists and creative residents. More than 40 vendors were on hand in Jamerson Park near the Millington Middle School for the Market @ the Park.
“Thank God for this beautiful day,” Warberg said. “At the moment we’re tentivitily planning to do this twice a year. It all depends on how well today goes. But it’s looking good so far.”
Several of the vendors said they were glad to have a day to showcase their skills and make a little extra money.
*Millington Central graduate and former football player Terrell Woods was presented a van from the Gridiron Heroes Spinal Cord Injury Foundation on May 16 prior to the Trojan Football Spring Game. Woods suffered a spinal cord injury during his freshman year at Millington. The school is inviting the public to come out and support Woods and the Trojans. For more information, visit
*At Monday night’s Millington Municipal School Board meeting (May 5), it was announced that Clint Durley will be the next principal of Millington Central High School. Durley worked previously at MCHS as a teacher and coach. His next move was to Arlington High School, where he worked in administration as the transportation coordinator, AP administrator and school website coordinator.
*Growing up in Virginia, Rhode Island, Hawaii and Tennessee, it didn’t appear Greg Hairston Jr. would grow up to be a writer.
But through the discipline of his father Greg Sr., and dedicated teaching of his mother Vickie, Greg Jr. gravitated toward the art form. Hairston developed a love for writing creating stories from his experiences as a student/athletic at Millington Central High School. Now the award-winning student can write a story about earning the position of salutatorian for MCHS’ Class of 2014.
“When I was a kid, I never liked to write,” Hairston acknowledged. “I despised it really. My sister (Gaby) liked to write all the time. I never wanted to.
“But I guess about the time I got into high school, I had all these thoughts and things that I needed to get out,” he continued. “Being able to express it on paper is where it all got started. Now I’ve evolved into a fiction writer mostly. I really like it.”
Hairston’s creativity has been strongly influenced by his journey toward the top of the Class of 2014. The youngest of seven children Hairston was an active member of Beta Club and president of the MCHS’ chapter of the National Honor Soceity. The senior was a part of a national-awarding winning The Oracle project as well.
Hairston said some of his greatest high school memories came courtesy of DECA. The marketing club has been to Regionals and State, even with a chance to attend Nationals.
This school year Hairston went out for Trojan Tennis for the first time finishing the regular season with a winning record.
*NEW YORK — Earlier in the month, the Munford High School Marching Band received the news that they have been selected to perform in the 2015 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Munford will join the line of march and begin their performance to the sound of Let’s Have Parade, the iconic phrase that has signaled the start of every Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade since 1924. They will join nine other marching bands from across the country as well as iconic Macy’s staples: floats, giant character balloons, clowns and superstar performers galore on Thanksgiving Day 2015.
“Munford High School will represent a long tradition of marching excellences from the state of Tennessee when they appear in the 2015 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Macy’s Band Selection Committee is thrilled to recognize Munford’s great success on the field over the years and welcome them for the first time to New York City in 2015.,” said Wesley Whatley creative director, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Barry Trobaugh, band director, Munford High School Regiment said, “The Munford High School Band is humbled and honored to be chosen to represent Tennessee in the 2015 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Our program is blessed to be recognized for its accomplishments throughout the years, but none has been greater than to be in New York City and be a part of The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. To be part of such a national treasure as the Macy’s Parade will be a lifelong memory for the students involved and also for our proud community for many years to come.”
*The Library of Congress selected Forrest Gump for preservation in the United States National Film Registry as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”
One Millington Central High School student who would validate that selection is 2014 Valedictorian Lauren Lester. Several teachers, friends, family members and her parents Cara and Sam had a huge impact on Lester’s success as a student/athlete.
“I’ve always had more honors and AP teachers. So they definitely pushed me to study, and my parents as well. But extracurricular activities like soccer kind of helps with the work hard and play hard deal.”
But an x-factor contributing Lester’s drive was an Academy Award winning movie. The Lauren Lester Story shares many similarities to Forrest Gump. The character portrayed by Tom Hanks grew up in a Southern city. Forrest Gump went on to make his hometown proud, travel the world and win many awards while impacting others.
In just 18 years, Lester has lived a life to rival Gump. The Millington native became a MCHS Hall of Famer after completing her studies at E.A. Harrold and Millington Middle schools. It was at Millington Middle that Lester first watched Forrest Gump.
“I got most of the references,” she recalled. “It definitely helped re-watching it and taking U.S. History. You understood a lot of things a lot better.
“It taught me the heart is the biggest thing you can have, the most important,” Lester continued. “There’s people out there with brains and the braun. But as long as you have heart, you get the effort. And you can do anything with heart.”
Like the character who originated in the 1986 novel by Winston Groom, Lester following her heart has allowed her to reach high levels at MCHS. Gump played football, Lester was a vital part of her Lady Trojan Soccer team.
*Graduation season kicked off Thursday night May 15 in Brighton, Tenn., with the Class of 2014 flipping their tassels. The following night the Munford Cougars held their graduation on the school’s football field. And Saturday morning, the largest class in Tipton-Rosemark Academy history graduated at Millington First Baptist Church.
*The 104th Commencement for Millington Central High School was held May 20  at Hope Presbyterian Church. The ceremony was conducted by Principal Marsha S. Davis and featured speeches by students Senior Class President Nicholas Harris, Salutatorian Gregory Hairston and Valedictorian Lauren Lester.
On hand for the graduation were former MCHS Principal Mark Neal and incoming Principal Clint Durley. Davis announced the names of the more than 300 candidates. And the night included with the graduates celebrating with friends and family.
*All on the line for a trio of Munford Lady Cougars the afternoon of May 17 was history.
Munford seniors Jodie Duncan, Courtney Bonaiuto and Christina Cantrell were one game away from reaching the Class 3A State Softball Tournament every year in their prep career. The obstacle in their way at the Munford Softball Field was the Houston Lady Mustangs.
Cantrell was ready for the challenge bringing her bat, glove and running shoes. The senior center fielder came up with big hits including a leadoff single in the eighth inning.
“It was good to get on base,” Cantrell said of her hit in extra innings. “I knew I hit it well and got a base hit.”
Then her sophomore teammate McKenzie Pugh slapped a single to right field droving Cantrell home for the 2-1 win.
“I was going home and I was going to be safe,” Cantrell noted. “I was determined. When I stepped on home I felt awesome. I knew we were going to State, four years in a row. It felt good being my senior year.”
*Russ and Karin Ridley, owners of Millington Awards & Trophies, passed away. Russ was retired from the U.S. Navy and Karin was a longtime manager for H&R Block Tax Services in Millington and Frayser. More importantly they were friends to everyone they met and they loved the Millington community. The family received friends at a catered reception Saturday (May 31) and the service was held at the Munford Funeral Home Millington Chapel.
*MURFREESBORO – It’s been a busy 2013-14 TSSAA sports year for Millington’s Demarius Curry.
He started in the fall leaping in the air, snatching down touchdown passes from Eldon Tyms. During the winter, Curry came in from the cold to run some point and play tough defense for the Trojans.
Curry wrapped up his sporting year Friday afternoon in Murfreesboro with the Class 3A State High Jump final. The junior hit a mark of 6-feet, 4 inches to earn fifth place and have his name announced across the MTSU Stadium public address system.
“I felt good,” Curry said after making his personal best. “I might have scratched a bunch of times but I pulled through in the clutch.
“It feels good having a piece of jewelry on my neck,” he added. “I guess it also feels good knowing I can come back next year and go even harder.”
After clearning 5’8, Curry ran into a little trouble at the 5’10 mark. The bar dropped to the ground on his first two attempts.
*MURFREESBORO – Destination Mufreesboro became reality for the Tipton-Rosemark Academy Rebels Thursday morning.
Before the start of the 10 a.m. Division II-A State Baseball championship game against the University School of Jackson Bruins, Brad Smith’s squad arrived to the campus of Middle Tennessee State University.
Since conditioning in the fall, Rebel Baseball players set the goal to reach this point and this site. But after dropping Tuesday’s first round game to Knoxville Webb in LaVergne, TRA had to rally to reach the championship game.
After victories over Battle Ground Academy and Webb in the rematch, the Rebels were finalist and taking on USJ for the title. TRA got off to a hot start in the championship game with a four-spot.
But the Bruins settled down and regrouped to hold TRA scoreless the rest of the way. Meanwhile USJ scored a run in six straight inning to prevail 8-4 and earn the school’s third championship.
“We didn’t make plays or swing the bats,” Smith acknowledged. “We came out and swung it in the first. Then we didn’t do much after that.
“We didn’t make the plays we needed to,” he added. “Early in the game, we made some defensive mistakes. That’s a part of baseball. But you can’t make them in big time games in big time situations like this.”
The State runner up finish is the second in TRA history with this year’s team joining the 2009 club. At that time Smith was establishing a winning culture.
Fast forward 5 years later the Rebels are a respected program not only in West Tennessee but across the Volunteer State.
TRA reached the State Tournament in 2012 and this year saw the Rebels earn a No. 1 seed in the regular season for Regionals.
Smith guided the Rebels to the school’s first Region Tournament championship. Then in Sub-State TRA sweep Davidson Academy 2-1 and 7-2.
*MURFREESBORO – The Tipton-Rosemark Academy Lady Rebels didn’t need any reminders that they were the underdogs entering Friday’s Division II-A State Softball Tournament title game.
But just in case they needed one, a fan in the Murfreesboro Sports Complex & McKnight Field took it upon himself to give a refresher.
“I built on all the negativity,” TRA starter Ashton Needham said. “We’ve had a lot of people along the way say we couldn’t do it. Just reading different articles predicting other teams to win.
“Even before the game we had somebody sitting behind our dugout saying we didn’t deserve to be where we are,” she added. “This feels kind of great.”
The great feeling came at the conclusion of the State championship game when the Lady Rebels dominated the Davidson Academy Lady Bears 8-4 to win the title. The victory gave the program its second championship in school history and No. 1 for first-year Head Coach Johnie Sanfratello.
“These girls have been tested all year long,” he said. “We’ve been in so many ball games. In 11 losses, six of those have been by two or three runs. Stepping up against the bigger schools and playing some tournaments, playing Arlington and Munford, beating some of those guys that’s what you’ve got to do to get better.
“I guess we peaked at the right time,” Sanfratello added. “They were tested all year, and I knew we could do it. They just had to believe.’
JUNE 2014
*Connor Alexander was used to being first during his playing days at Tipton-Rosemark Academy.
He was the first baseball player to sign with a Division I school during early signing period. A two-sport standout at TRA, Alexander was usually the first to receive the ball from the inbound player in basketball and the coach’s first choice to pitch the big game.
Even teamwise Alexander experienced some firsts like when the 2014 Rebel Baseball team was the first win a Region championship in the school’s history.
Another first was added to Alexander’s legacy at TRA when he was voted the 2014 Millington Star Male Athlete of the Year. With that honor, Alexander became the first male athlete from TRA to win the award in its nine-year history.
“It feels pretty good because we’ve had a lot of great male athletes come through our school,” Alexander said. “To be the first one, it feels pretty big.”
Since the award’s inception TRA has featured multiple sport standouts like JT Moody, Tyler White, Dustin Whitlock and Connor’s older brother Cale to name a few. The younger Alexander used a combination of solid point guard play and dominating pitching with timely hitting to win this year’s honor.
*The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen adopted a resolution this week to approve the municipal school system’s Operating Budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year.
Board members took the action Monday night, when their “adjourned” June 9 regular monthly meeting was “reconvened.”
A motion offered by Alderman Bethany Huffman and seconded by Alderman Thomas McGhee was passed by six affirmative votes, with Alderman Frankie Dakin absent.
The Millington School Board adopted the final revision of its $25,569,113 budget during a June 11 special called meeting. Section 49-2-101 of the Tennessee Code Annotated requires that it also be approved by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen.
In its General Fund Budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year, the city board has budgeted for Millington’s local share of funding and made provisions for startup costs as additional funding in the first year.
The resolution states that the total funding from the city to the schools will not exceed the budgeted amount of $1.3 million for operations and $800,000 as beginning cash and reserve funds for the 2014-15 fiscal year.
It also states that the city board approves a General Purpose School Fund Budget made up of “spendable appropriations” of $24,769,113 and $800,000 representing cash transferred on or after July 1 to the bank account for beginning cash and reserve funds.
It authorizes the school board or Dr. David Roper, superintendent of the municipal school system, to transfer funds between accounts and to establish new accounts as necessary for the system’s finances. It also notes that the total appropriations or revenues of the $24,769,113 cannot be increased or decreased.
Shortly before the vote, Interim City Manager Chris Dorsey thanked Bruce Rasmussen, supervisor of the school system’s Fiscal Services, for working with him to “get this all put together” for the benefit of the school board and the city.
*In the nine-year history of The Millington Star’s Female Athlete of the Year Award, many Munford Lady Cougars have earned the honor.
Past winners have been Whitney Malone, Sami Jo Schulz, Cali Overbeck and the only junior to ever take home the prize Crystal Williams. Now the latest Lady Cougar to finish with the top honor is 2014 winner Jodie Duncan.
“It a complete honor and blessing truly,” she said. “Especially with the people in my class and who have won it before, it’s pretty crazy to me. It’s definitely an honor and a blessing.”
Duncan has shined at Munford the past four years in volleyball and softball reaching State in both sports. Her great hitting and fielding in softball helped the Lady Cougars reach Murfreesboro all four years and netted her a scholarship at UT-Martin joining Overbeck and Schulz as Munford Softball Division I signees. Duncan said joining that duo in that category and as Millington Star Female Athlete of the Year is a blessing from Above.
“Being in the category with Sami Jo and Cali alone is unbelievable,” she said. “They’re two girls I’ve looked up to. Watching Cali play and then playing with Sami, it’s just an honor to just be mention with them.
“That was really crazy because you grow up dreaming I want to go D-I,” Duncan continued. “I want to make it big time. All of sudden when it kind of comes true, you’re putting your name on that piece of paper. You’re signing it. You’re like, ‘Wow, this day has come.’ You think about all the people who helped you get there. You know you couldn’t have done it without them.”
Several coaches like Nina Makris in volleyball and Glenn Goulder in softball have assisted Duncan during her days at Munford High School. But from all the youth league and travel team coaches, Duncan said her first coach had the largest impact on her reaching Athlete of the Year status and UT-Martin.
*The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen and the Millington School Board each approved a $1.9 million “bridge loan” agreement last week for the school system’s initial operating costs.
The city board took the action on June 16, when its “adjourned” June 9 regular monthly meeting was “reconvened.” A motion offered by Alderman Thomas McGhee and seconded by Alderman Hank Hawkins was passed by six affirmative votes, with Alderman Frankie Dakin absent.
The school board approved the agreement last Thursday during a special called meeting. A motion offered by Cody Childress and seconded by Don Holsinger was passed by four affirmative votes, with board members Jennifer Carroll, “C. J.” Haley and Louise Kennon absent.
The agreement states that, to operate during the 2014-15 fiscal year that begins on July 1, the municipal school district will receive revenue from “multiple sources” that include required local funding from the city.
But it acknowledges that, in the “first several months” of operation, that revenue will be “insufficient” for the district to meet its monthly expenditures. The agreement states that it will be necessary to authorize the issuance and sale of “revenue anticipation notes” and to lend the district the funds received from that sale, with the expectation that the district will receive state and county revenues during the fiscal year.
During its June 9 meeting, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen adopted a resolution that allows the city to issue and sell up to $3.5 million in interest-bearing revenue anticipation notes with approval by the Tennessee Comptroller’s Office.
At a June 11 special called meeting, the school board voted to accept a $1.9 million “short-term loan” from the city and to repay it with “all applicable interest and costs” after the district has received “additional revenues” from state and county sources.
*The Millington Area Chamber of Commerce hosted a grand opening/ribbon cutting for DQ Grill and Chill located at 8569 Highway 51 North in Millington June 23. Paul Tibbetts and business partner Woody Ray were on hand to greet Chamber members and special guest for the event. Tibbetts and Ray have opened several Dairy Queen eateries throughout West Tennessee since 2011. The duo opened its first Dairy Queen in Ripley in July 2011, then one in the Munford/Atoka area in December 2012. The next location opened by Tibbetts and Ray was in Southaven, Miss., this past November. The hours of operation for the Millington DQ Grill and Chill will be from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
*Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division’s Millington Community Office, located at 5131 Navy Road, re-opened Monday, June 30.
The office has been closed since May 12 for Americans With Disabilities Act improvements; the renovation should be completed this Friday. Upon completion, MLGW will have completed ADA improvements at all of its Community Office locations.

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