Suspicious Fire Destroys South College Street Home (View Videos Here)

May 12, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

A suspicious fire that destroyed a vacant home on South College Street Saturday is under investigation.

The Smithville Volunteer Fire Department was summoned to the house by central dispatch after someone spotted the blaze and reported it.

According to Fire Chief Charlie Parker, the fire was well underway by the time firefighters were alerted and they could not save the home.

“We got the call of a structure fire on South College Street and while we were enroute the police department arrived and found heavy smoke already showing. We made a pretty aggressive attack to start with going through the front door but there was already a lot of fire that had been going on for a while and it really had already penetrated into the second floor and part of it was starting to fall in so we backed up and went defensive on it to try and keep the surrounding structures safe at that point. The fire appeared to have started centrally in the middle part of the home” said Chief Parker.

The department responded with all three fire trucks but used primarily the newest engine and the ladder truck to attack the blaze.

The cause of the fire is undetermined but will be investigated by Smithville Police and possibly the State Fire Marshal’s Office after the fire department learned that no one lived there.

“The house had been used as a rent home but it was vacant and empty. The latest tenants had just moved out a few days ago. I think the owners had it for sale and some new owners were looking at it,” he said


Although no one was injured, DeKalb EMS was on site to make sure the firefighters didn’t get overheated and stayed hydrated.

Community Unites in the Fight Against Cancer at 21st Annual Relay for Life (View Videos Here)

May 12, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

Hundreds of caring people from this community gathered at Green Brook Park Friday evening to support the fundraising efforts of the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life so that one day friends and loved ones will no longer have to hear the words “you have cancer.”

View Video Below of Relay for Life Opening Ceremony Friday at Green Brook Park

M2U02692 from dwayne page on Vimeo.

This year’s Relay for Life was the 21st annual for DeKalb County and with funds already raised and still more to come in, organizers expect to collect in excess of $40,000. “That will go a long way in funding research. We are very thankful to everybody who had a part in this,” said Iva Dell Randolph, Chairman of the Relay Leadership Team.

The theme for the 2018 Relay for Life was “HOPE”.

“We are really pleased and we appreciate our community and our county so very much. We’ve had people from all over our county here tonight and that is what it is all about. That we come together as a group to show support for our cancer survivors and to remember those who have gone on,” said Randolph.

The evening began with entertainment by Terry Hodges followed by Kathy Goodwin and then the presentation of Colors by Boy Scout Troop #347 with Axel Rico performing the National Anthem on a saxophone. Local minister Bill Robertson gave the invocation and Renea Cantrell, a member of the Relay Leadership Team welcomed the crowd.

Cancer survivors in attendance then took center stage to give a personal testimony including Grady Prichard, Gail Taylor, Jeff Winchester, June Rhody, Patsy Pack, Guylene Atnip, Margie Smith, Susan Young, Helen Smoot, Lisa Patterson, Nancy Cassity, Chizuko Howard, Roy Pugh, Carl Lee Webb, W.J. White, Wilma Cantrell, Joyce Boyd, Ronnie Redmon, Don Rigsby, Jerry Foster, and Bonnie Rigsby.

Joel Wood, Pastor of the Elizabeth Chapel Baptist Church offered a prayer for all cancer survivors and Bonnie Rigsby closed out the opening ceremony with a special song honoring them.

The cancer survivors then took a lap around the walking trail at Green Book Park bearing their “Survivors Celebrating Life” banner to kick off the event.

Center stage entertainment featured Tina Boston, Darrin Vincent of Daily & Vincent, Fluty and the Little Flutones, David Turner and Friends, the Smithville Church of God, Tom Duggin, the DeKalb County Ramblers, and the Lucky 13 Band featuring Jarrod Dodd, Scott Cantrell, and Jerry Lee Cantrell.

The Relay also included lots of food, games, and other fun activities in the park for kids and grown ups alike including a Jail for Bail.

As the sun set, Luminaria bags lining the walking track and a group of torches in the park were lit to illuminate the night in honor and remembrance of cancer survivors and others claimed by the disease.

Camp teams receiving special recognition were:

*Adoration Home Health- Best Decorated Camp Site

*Fast Pace Urgent Care Clinic-Honorable Mention

*Federal Mogul-Best Use of the Mission Theme

* Liberty State Bank-Best Theme

*NHC Healthcare- Most Kid Friendly

*Wilson Bank & Trust-Best Food

Other teams included the DeKalb Bar Association, DCHS, DeKalb West School, Elizabeth Chapel Baptist Church and the church’s youth team, Elected Officials, Northside Elementary School, the Relay Committee, and Survivor Team, Suncrest Home Health.

Special thanks to the hourly sponsors, torch sponsors, survivor reception sponsors, tee shirt sponsors, banner sponsors, more birthdays for survivors sponsors, sign sponsors, and business card sponsors.


DeKalb Middle School Hosts Career Day

May 11, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

DeKalb Middle School hosted its 2nd Annual Career Day on Monday, May 7. A total of 25 businesses participated in this event. All students in grades 6th-8th were able to spend time in the gym talking to businesses and asking questions. Students were given a set of questions and were asked to visit 3 businesses and ask those specific questions. At the conclusion of the Career Day events in the gym, 7 businesses took time to visit 8th grade classes to discuss characteristics that businesses look for when interviewing potential employees. This event was a huge success and we would like to thank everyone who participated.

Businesses that participated were:

TWRA (Tony Cross and Joe Fortner)
Foutch Industries
Fast Pace
Caney Fork
Smithville Police Dept.
DeKalb County Sheriff’s Dept.
DeKalb County Fire Dept.
Vanderbilt Life Flight
DeKalb County Ambulance Service
Butch Cook- DeKalb County Bar Association
Wilson Bank
Suncrest Home Health
DeKalb Hospital
Huff and PUff Trucking
Healthier TN/DeKalb Prevention
UT Extension
DeKalb Funeral Chapel
DeKalb County Health Dept.
98.5 Radio
Darrin Vincent (Dailey and Vincent)
Coordinated School Health
The Sweet Shop

Business that stayed and spoke to 8th grade classes:
Darrin Vincent
KFC Manager Stephanie Wann
Wilson Bank Alex Woodward
DeKalb Hospital Shan Burklow
TWRA Tony Cross and Joe Fortner
Caney Fork Tim Price
DeKalb County Sheriff Patrick Ray

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