Gaynell Haynes Agee

70 year old Gaynell Haynes Agee of Hickman died Tuesday at DeKalb Community Hospital. She was born in Stonewall, Tennessee, the daughter of the late Thellie Adell Gibbs and Hubert Lee Haynes. She was also preceded in death by a sister, Evelyn Duncan and a daughter, Ina May Nadine Agee. She was a homemaker and a long time member of the Hickman Baptist Church, where she was a Sunday School teacher, Vacation Bible School worker, and she taught Mission Friends for several years. The funeral will be Friday at 2:00 p.m. at the Hickman Baptist Church. Donald Elmore, Scott Bennett, and James Gordon Williams will officiate and burial will be in the Baird Memorial Cemetery at Hickman. The Agee family will receive friends at the Hickman Baptist Church on Thursday from 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. and Friday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the service at 2:00 p.m. Memorials may be made to the Hickman Baptist Church. Gaynell is survived by her husband of 52 years, Jackie Agee of Hickman. Two sons, Virgil and his wife Sherry Agee of Hickman and Gordon Agee of Hickman. Six grandchildren, Justin Agee of Hickman, Sarah and her husband Joshua Mofield of Hiwassee, Samantha and her husband Matt Maynard of Brush Creek, Elizabeth Agee of Hickman, Elizabeth Long and Alyissa Long of Hickman. Five great grandchildren, Caleb, Callie, and Chloe Mofield of Hiwassee and Austin and Corey Schaffer of Hickman. A brother, David and his wife Elizabeth Haynes of Gordonsville. Two sisters, Ina Haynes and Tammy Haynes both of Brush Creek. Three nieces, three nephews, four great nieces, and one great nephew. The Gordonsville Chapel of Bass Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Barbra Ann Stanley

64 year old Barbra Ann Stanley of Smithville died Tuesday at NHC Healthcare Center of McMinnville. She was a homemaker and a Baptist. The funeral will be Friday at 11:00 a.m. at the Chapel of Love-Cantrell Funeral Home. Donald Owens & Bobby Wheeler will officiate and burial will be in DeKalb Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Thursday from 10:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. and Friday from 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. She was preceded in death by her parents, William Thomas and Cleo Parker Shelton and a son, Mark William Bush. Survivors include two sons, Carl Wayne and his wife Linda Bush and Michael and his wife Mandy Stanley. One daughter, Jennifer and her husband Donald Pack. Four step-sons, Ronald Stanley, Eddie and his wife Lou Ella Stanley, Rickey and his wife Kathy Stanley, and Randall and his wife Mary Stanley. Seven grandchildren, Derrick & Kristel Bush, Brian Waggoner, Mark Stanley, Ashley Pack, and Christopher Crabtree, Donald and Dorannda Pack all of Smithville. Several step grand and great grandchildren. Four sisters, Alice and Wayne Jacobs of Woodbury, Pamela and Bobby Jacobs of McMinnville, Katherine and Jimmy Merriman of Centertown, and Gwendolyn and Gary Williams of Alabama. Love-Cantrell Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Brother Gary Taylor

61 year old Brother Gary Taylor of Alexandria died Monday at University Medical Center in Lebanon. He was a U.S. Army Veteran, a millworker, minister, and a member of the Alexandria United Methodist Church. The funeral will be Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. at DeKalb Funeral Chapel. Michael Hale, Wilson Williams, and Louie Hillis will officiate and burial will be in DeKalb Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Tuesday from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and Wednesday from noon until the time of the service. He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert Clinton and Opal Rigsby Taylor; a brother, James L. Taylor and two sisters, Judy Ann Taylor and his twin sister Martha Gail Taylor. He is survived by his wife, Julie Taylor of Alexandria. A brother, Bob and his wife Joy Taylor of Centertown. Four sisters, Carol and her husband Bob Mullican, Brenda and her husband Jimmy Woodlee, and Cathy Bouldin all of McMinnville, and Betty and her husband Jerry Baker of Viola. Several nieces and nephews also survive along with very special friends, Lee and Janet Hayes of Statesville. DeKalb Funeral Chapel is in charge of the arrangements.

Mayor Vetoes Proposed Budget Amendment for Golf Course- Council Fails to Override

The City of Smithville will apparently not be spending funds this budget year for a sprinkler system at the Smithville Municipal Golf Course.
Mayor Taft Hendrixson Monday night vetoed a recent city council vote to amend this year’s budget and spend $215,000 to purchase and install such a system.
The aldermen failed to overide the veto on a 3 to 2 vote. Aldermen Willie Thomas, Jerry Hutchins Sr., and Tonya Sullivan voted for the override, but Aldermen Steve White and Cecil Burger voted to sustain the veto.
It takes four votes to override a mayoral veto
At the last meeting on December 3rd, the board voted 3 to 2 to adopt a budget amendment ordinance on first reading to appropriate the money. Had it been approved on second and final reading, the city would have spent $215,000 taking $88,000 from the golf course checking account and $127,000 from the general fund account to pay for the project.
In citing his reasons for the veto, Mayor Hendrixson Monday night read from prepared remarks stating that “During the past several days and weeks, a large number of Smithville residents have contacted me about the sprinkler system that is proposed for the Smithville Golf Course.”
“Only a few have expressed their opinion that it needs to be done. However, many more have expressed that they do not want to see taxpayer’s money spent for this purpose.”
“The Corps of Engineers is in the process of lowering the water level at Center Hill Lake in an effort to repair Center Hill Dam, which is expected to be a seven year project to complete. At this time, the effects on our pumping station and Water Treatment plant as a result of the water level being lowered, and the cost of the additional pumping station at the water intake is unknown as this time. I feel that it is more important to provide water to the approximately 16,000 residents of Smithville and DeKalb County and upgrade and maintain our Water Plant, than to spend $215,000 from our reserve funds for a sprinkler system at the Golf Course, which could cause an additional tax burden on Smithville taxpayers.”
“In view of public opinion and also a number of questions concerning the Golf Course Lease, and the fact that the City is facing the possibility of having to expend a significant amount of money at the Water Treatment Plant and pumping station, I cannot in good faith agree to spend the taxpayers money on a sprinkler system for the Golf Course.”
“Therefore, I veto the action taken on December 3rd, 2007 by the Board of Aldermen to amend the budget for the purpose of putting a sprinkler system at the Smithville Golf Course at a cost of approximately $215,000.”
Mayor Hendrixson also Monday night vetoed another recent 3 to 2 vote of the city council to hire a certified recorder to help Secretary-Treasurer Hunter Hendrixson take the minutes of the meetings, at least until he completes his certification.
Again, the council failed to override the veto on a 3 to 2 vote. Alderman Sullivan, Hutchins, and Thomas voted for the override, but Aldermen White and Burger voted to sustain the veto.
At the last meeting on December 3rd, Alderman Hutchins made the motion to hire a certified recorder. “We’ve been having some problems with the minutes and I would like to make a motion that we get a certified recorder to be present at the board meetings until Mr. Hendrixson gets through his schooling since we have had some confusion with the minutes.”
In citing his reasons for the veto, Mayor Hendrixson Monday night reading from prepared remarks stated that ” The purchase of a $6,900 sound system for the City Council Chambers and Meeting room,that records all City Council meetings, and the fact that the Aldermen are asked at each meeting before approval of the minutes if they have any corrections or additions to the minutes of the previous meeting and are given the opportunity to correct any mistakes, and that a certified court reporter could cost as much as $16,000 to $17,000 over the next 10 or 11 months, I hereby veto the action taken by the Board of Aldermen on December 3rd, 2007 to employ a court reporter to be present at all City Council meetings.”
The ban remains on the sale of fireworks inside the city limits of Smithville.
The mayor and aldermen Monday night voted 3 to 2 to make no changes in the city regulations, which have prohibited the sale of fireworks for twenty five years.
Aldermen Sullivan and Burger voted to keep the city regulations on fireworks as they are, while Aldermen Hutchins and Thomas voted to pursue passage of a new ordinance lifting the ban. Mayor Hendrixson broke the tie by voting with Sullivan and Burger. Alderman White refrained from voting, citing a conflict since he sells fireworks outside the city limits during the Fourth of July each year.
Since 1982, the city has prohibited the sale of fireworks but in recent weeks Jewel Redman, owner and operator of Jewel’s Market on South Congress Boulevard, has requested that the ban be lifted to give city businesses and others the same opportunity to sell fireworks as those outside the city limits.
At the last meeting on December 3rd, the board voted to have an ordinance prepared to repeal the ban, paving the way for passage of a new one that authorizes the sale of fireworks with specifics on rules and regulations.
Aldermen Thomas, Hutchins and Sullivan voted for it. Alderman Burger voted no and Alderman White refrained from voting.
But on Monday night (December 17th) Alderman Sullivan said she had some reservations about making changes after receiving some phone calls from concerned citizens. She then made the motion that the city code not be changed regarding the issue of fireworks and that no further action be taken.
Although he refrained from voting, Alderman White agreed with Sullivan saying he believed the ban should be left in place. ” There was a reason for the ordinance that we have now and I think it should stand as it is. I don’t see any reason why there would need to be fireworks sold inside the city limits. We’re not that big of a city. There’s plenty of spots outside the city limits that do sell and there’s plenty of spots open for anyone that would like to sell them outside the city. I also think that it’s a safety issue and it could be a legal issue.”
Alderman Hutchins pointed out that sales of fireworks within the city would have generated some additional fees and tax revenue.
The board voted 5 to 0 to open bids on the hay contract at the airport.
Since the early 1990’s, Hugh Washer has held the contract to cut hay on the airport property. He pays the city $400 per year.
City Attorney Pryor says the initial deal was a one year contract with two, one year options for renewal, but instead of re-bidding after that time, the city has allowed Washer to keep cutting the hay each year at the rate of $400 per year.
Mayor Hendrixson says contracting this service is a good deal for the city. “We get whatever money we can get to let someone cut the hay off of that (property). If we don’t do that, we have to keep it bushhogged ourselves, using city money, equipment, and time. We’ve been getting $400 per year, so whatever we get is extra and we don’t have to do it.”
Alderman Sullivan made a motion to open up the bidding. The hay contract will be good only for two years, after which time, the board must re-bid the contract. The successful bidder must meet all specifications including applying 200 pounds per acre of triple 19 fertilizer or equivalent on the property each year.
The city is in search of a new city attorney.
Mayor Hendrixson read John Pryor’s letter of resignation to the board Monday night. In the letter, Pryor wrote, ” I have decided to pursue other career opportunities which prevent me from continuing in my position as city attorney. I have enjoyed working with each of you and have found this experience very educational. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to work with you and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.”
Pryor will serve until December 31st.
The city voted to advertise that the position is open and to seek applicants.
The board also voted 4 to 1 to advertise, seeking another certified water plant operator.
Alderman Sullivan, concerned about overworked water plant employees and some who are not certified, made the motion. “The overtime is pretty substantial. We’ve paid out for the year to date, almost $19,000, which in my mind would be enough to go ahead an advertise for another certified water plant operator to help fill those positions and to help cut down on the amount of overtime. We’ve stretched some of them (employees) kind of thin.”
Alderman White asked Sullivan “What kind of salary are you thinking of?”
Alderman Sullivan responded ” This would equate to somewhere around 10 to 11 dollars an hour, if you pay full time, whatever the pay salary is. When we’re paying overtime, we’re paying time and a half so we need to reduce that, and we need another certified person there on that third shift.”
Sullivan continued, “I’ve had numerous phone calls. I think the citizens were not aware that people there were not certified. I’ve had a lot of concerns, saying we need to have safe drinking water and a certified water plant operator is obviously needed. If we’re going to try to stick to input from our citizens, then that’s my motion.”
Aldermen Sullivan, Thomas, Hutchins, and Burger voted to advertise the opening of the position. Alderman White voted no.

Three Arrested in Burglary Investigations

Burglary investigations last week led to the arrest of three people by the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department.
Detectives arrested 32 year old Waylon Ray Farless of R. Arnold Road, Smithville on Wednesday, December 12th for burglary and theft of property over $500.00.
Sheriff Patrick Ray says Farless allegedly entered an outbuilding on Patterson Road and took 4 chainsaws, a leaf blower, and a battery jump pack valued over $500. He says Farless has admitted to the crime. Farless is under a $40,000 bond and his court date is December 20th.
Meanwhile, on Thursday, December 13th, 33 year old Joseph John Chadwick of Highway 100 Centerville and 38 year old Syntella Marie Boswell of McClemore Street, Dickson were arrested for attempted burglary after they were caught breaking into a home on Highway 53 in Alexandria.
Sheriff Ray says a witness saw both subjects around the residence on Highway 53 and contacted the Alexandria Police Department. Officers then went to the home and found that Chadwick and Boswell had attempted to enter by kicking in the back door. The home is located just outside the Alexandria city limits.
Alexandria officers contacted the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department and during the investigation, detectives discovered that Chadwick and Boswell had allegedly stolen other items in Giles County. Sheriff Ray says Giles county detectives will be filing charges against them there.
He says both Chadwick and Boswell have a lengthy criminal history of violent crimes. Bond for them was set at $25,000 each and their court date is December 20th.
In the early morning hours of Saturday, December 15th, deputies responded to a one vehicle accident on Highway 56 South. The officers arrested 32 year old Elmi Desena Ahedo of West Broad Street, Smithville for DUI . Ahedo was also cited for a violation of the implied consent law, no driver’s license, and no proof of insurance.
Sheriff Ray says Ahedo was northbound on Highway 56 South in a 2002 Nissan Xterra when he lost control and overturned. The vehicle came to rest right side up and Ahedo and tried to leave the scene. The vehicle also struck a mailbox. Ahedo was found to be under the influence of alcohol and bond was set at $1,500. His court date is January 10th..
In the late hours of Saturday, December 15th, 26 year old Hector Giron of Oriole Drive McMinnville was charged with DUI. DeKalb County deputies received a call of a motor vehicle accident on Highway 56 South. Sheriff Ray says Giron was Southbound in a 1996 GMC Sonoma when he lost control and hit a ditch. Giron was found to be under the influence of alcohol. Giron’s bond was set at $1,500 and his court date is January 10th.

Jimmy Tolbert Hendrixson

61 year old Jimmy Tolbert Hendrixson of Smithville died Monday at his residence. He was a retired business owner of Smithville Cleaners, a member of the Masonic Lodge #373, a member of the National Guard, and he attended the Elizabeth Chapel Baptist Church. The funeral will be Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. at DeKalb Funeral Chapel. Bill Robertson and Michael Hale will officiate and burial will be in DeKalb Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Tuesday from noon until 8:00 p.m. and Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. until the time of the service at 11:00 a.m. He was preceded in death by his parents, Tolbert and Bessie Hendrixson. Survivors include his wife, Kaye Hendrixson of Hickman. His children, Jimmy Hendrixson, Jr. (J.J.), Dama and her husband David Agee of Smithville and Zachary Hendrixson of Cookeville. A grandchild, Matthew Agee. A sister, Jackie and her husband Jim Slaten of Murfreesboro. A niece, Jennifer and her husband John Roddy of Murfreesboro and two great nieces. DeKalb Funeral Chapel in Smithville is in charge of the arrangements. The family has requested that donations be made to DeKalb Funeral Chapel to help with funeral expenses, in lieu of flowers.

Robert McMilen

73 year old Robert McMillen of Alexandria died Saturday. He worked with Thomas and Associates for 34 years. McMillen was also a member of the New Hope Baptist Church and he attended the Watertown First Baptist Church. The funeral will be Tuesday at 1:00 p.m. at the Watertown First Baptist Church. Don Mathis and Mike Hale will officiate and burial will be in Hillview Cemetery. Visitation will be Monday from 2:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. and Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the service at Hunter Funeral Home in Watertown. McMillen was preceded in death by his parents, Everette and Leona McMillen; a sister, Ruby Paris; and a brother, T.C. McMillen. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Betty Moss McMillen. Children, Roberta and her husband Ronnie Jackson, Teresa and her husband Dennis Slager, and Mike McMillen all of Alexandria. Grandchildren, Beth and her husband Eddie Davis and Rhonda and her husband Jake Watts all of Brush Creek, Holly Slager of Murfreesboro, Stephen Jackson and John Slager both of Alexandria. Great grandchildren, Paige, Arielle and Damian Davis, and Koby and Kelcie Watts. A brother, Victor Lee and his wife Debbie McMillen. A sister-in-law, Sue McMillen. Aunts and uncles, Thomas and his wife Bobbie McMillen, Betty Frances Harbin and Viola Stoner along with several nieces and nephews. Hunter Funeral Home of Watertown and DeKalb Funeral Chapel of Smithville are in charge of the arrangements.

Britney Campbell Makes Mid-State…Again!

For the third year in a row, Britney Campbell, a freshman at DeKalb County High School, has been chosen to represent Middle Tennessee in its most prestigious musical ensemble, Tennessee’s Mid-State Band. On Saturday, December 8th, Britney traveled to McGavock High School in Nashville to audition for Mid-State, which selects its musicians from the Middle Tennessee area based on the students’ level of musical ability. At the junior high level, any 7th – 9th grade student in Middle Tennessee can audition. During the audition process, each student is tested in three general areas of musicianship. Students will be asked to perform a prepared piece of music, which is a song that has been rehearsed prior to the audition date. Students will also be required to demonstrate their ability in playing scales, a basic pattern of musical notes. They will also be tested on sight-reading skills, which displays the ability to perform a song without having to rehearse it.
Among the 200 clarinet players in grades seven through nine who auditioned for this event, Britney was ranked sixth. She will play in Mid-State’s elite band, the Gold Band, which represents the top musicians in the entire Middle Tenneessee area. The Silver Band is the second ranking band, followed by the 7th and 8th grade band, which is not open to freshmen.
In January 2008, all the students who made the Mid-State Bands will rehearse in Murfreesboro. Students will only have a couple of days to prepare for a concert, which will be held at Middle Tennessee State University. DeKalb County High School’s Band Director, Kristin Reagh, says, “It is a wonderful experience for all involved students because they get an opportunity to play with the most talented and motivated students from all over the middle Tennessee area.”
In addition to playing clarinet in the high school band, Britney also plays percussion in the DCHS Winter Drum Line. This ensemble is completely extracurricular, and meets twice a week in the band room to prepare for an indoor marching show to be performed in February 2008.
Britney is the daughter of Mike Campbell and Kimberly Cox of Smithville. Britney’s dad says, “This is the third year in a row that she’s made Mid-State and she’s improved her position every year. I’m very proud of her. She works really hard for this every year.”
To learn more about the band, log onto

Christmas Spirit Alive and Well in Alexandria

Santa Claus made another DeKalb County appearance Saturday afternoon during the Alexandria Christmas Parade.
An enthusiastic crowd gathered downtown, in spite of colder temperatures and the threat of rain, to experience the sights and sounds of this annual event and to have a chance at winning some prizes.
The Alexandria First Baptist Church won first place and $100 in the float competition and the church’s Mother’s Day Out entry took second place and $75.00. Kevin Bandy, driving a vintage automobile, received third place and $50.

Ballot Set for Tennessee Presidential Preference Primaries

DeKalb County voters will get to choose their preferences in the Tennessee Presidential Primaries on Tuesday, February 5th.
Voters must declare in which primary they will be voting, either Democratic or Republican. You cannot vote in both.
The candidates for President in the Democratic Primary are Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Chris Dodd, John Edwards, Mike Gravel, Dennis Kucinich, Barack Obama, and Bill Richardson.
Candidates for President in the Republican Primary are Rudy Giuliana, Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, Alan Keyes, John McCain, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Tom Tancredo, and Fred Thompson.