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William Charles Thomas, 64

LEBANON — Charlie Thomas passed away on July 30, 2009 at age 64. He was a Quality Control Engineer for Seigel Roberts.

Services were conducted by Dr. Jonathan Richardson Saturday afternoon, August 1, at the Sellars Funeral Home, Lebanon.

Survivors include wife of 26 years Susan Mitchell Thomas of Lebanon; children Gregory Lee (Theresa) Lasater and Jason Edward (Chalet) Lasater; grandchildren Caitlain Lasater, Gregory Lee Lasater Jr., Susan Bailey Lasater, Nikki Lasater and Lindsey Lasater; nieces Kristy Thomas and Katie Thomas; and caregiver Janice Cooper.

Sellars Funeral Home, 313 W. Baddour Pkwy, Lebanon, was in charge of arrangements.

Ashe named Sheriff of the Year at 38th TSA Conference

The Tennessee Sheriffs’ Association has named Wilson County Sheriff Terry Ashe as the 2009 Sheriff of the year for Tennessee at the 38th annual TSA Conference in Sevier County on July 30.

Ashe started his law enforcement career in 1972 and later served as Chief Deputy of Wilson County and Chief of Detectives for the City of Lebanon. 

Budget passes, 14 laid off

From Post staff reports

Lebanon City Council approved on first reading the $18 million budget for fiscal year 2009-2010 and gave final approval to the immediate lay-offs of 14 city employees at Tuesday night’s regular meeting.

The budget must be voted on three times before it is finally approved. Council also set the city property tax rate which remains unchanged at 37 cents per $100 of assessed value.

Council will meet in two special called sessions to give second and third approval to the budget and will also hold a public hearing on the matter as required by law.

MJHS busting at the seams

Special to The Wilson Post

MT. JULIET -- Wilson County schools officially started back on Monday, and rapid growth in the western section of the county is already causing some growing pains – with Mt. Juliet High, after just the first day of school, already nearing capacity in its second year in the new school.

Wilson County Director of Schools Mike Davis said Monday evening that most of the county’s student growth is in Mt. Juliet, specifically Rutland Elementary and MJHS. He said that while the “hard numbers” of enrollment won’t be available until the end of this week, early numbers for MJHS are nearly 1,900 students in a high school with a core capacity of 2,200. He added that there are already around 10 “floating teachers,” which are teachers with no assigned classroom who move from room to room per period to teach.

Sales tax holiday big weekend for Wilson

Tennessee Department of Revenue reminds shoppers that the 2009 Sales Tax Holiday is scheduled for this Friday through Sunday, Aug. 7-9.

This annual weekend of savings provides three full days of tax breaks on clothing, school and art supplies, and computer purchases. Although the holiday provides savings for back-to-school purchases, anyone can take advantage of the savings this weekend.

McFarland eyes Wilson mayoral election in 2010

From Post staff reports

There may yet be another candidate to toss his hat in the ring for Wilson County mayor.

Former Wilson County Emergency Management Agency Director Jerry McFarland and now a member of the Wilson County Commission has indicated that he is quietly exploring a candidacy for the post which is to be on the ballot next year.

Local MOPS groups offers community, mothering support and hope to mothers of young children

A Lebanon Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS) group will begin meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 12 for the 2009-2010 year.

MOPS, a non-denominational organization, is a program designed for mothers with children from infancy through kindergarten. MOPS groups are local communities that help moms be better moms by understanding their unique needs, challenges and joys in this vital season of early mothering. The local MOPS group meets at Immanuel Baptist Church on the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month from August to May (the group follows the Lebanon Special School District schedule) from 9:30 a.m. until noon.


Legends will host CU radio show

Cumberland University, WANT 98.9 FM and Legends Sports Grill have announced a partnership to broadcast the CU Football Coaches Show this season on Wednesdays from 6-7 p.m. at Legends Sports Grill in Lebanon.

Shows will begin September 2 before the CU season opener against Campbellsville University. Cumberland football play-by-play announcer Tommy Bryan will host the show along with CU football coach Dewayne Alexander.

Bryan and Alexander will visit during the first 30 minutes of the program. The last half hour will be spent with two Wilson County area high school coaches talking about their teams.

The high school coaches will rotate each week, giving each school (Lebanon, Wilson Central, Mt. Juliet, Watertown, Friendship Christian and Mt. Juliet Christian) at least three opportunities during the season.

The show will also be available via the internet at

Bryan, along with broadcast partner and Bob Lea, handled the final two Cumberland football games of the 2008 season and have signed on for the entire 2009 campaign.

The duo, along with stat man Terry Stafford and sideline reporter Joe Gardner, will continue to broadcast LHS football games on Friday nights -- also on WANT FM. Bryan and Stafford will begin their 23rd consecutive season of Lebanon High broadcasts this fall.

County budget panel to meet

Wilson County Commission’s Budget Committee will meet at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 4 in Conference Room 2, Wilson County Courthouse, Lebanon.


Bowl for Kids Sake event planned

Bowl for Kids’ Sake event takes on Wilson Country EMTAR and friends support Big Brothers Big Sisters

Representatives from Eastern Middle Tennessee Association of Realtors and friends supporting Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee are set to participate in the 2009 Jack in the Box Bowl for Kids’ Sake at Pro Bowling Center in Lebanon on Tuesday, Aug. 11. 

Ken Knuckles, 2009 event chairperson, will be on-site as well as the Wilson County Chairs Terri Mason, Brad Smith and Joann Pucciarelli-Moore.

Hornaday dominates for 5th straight win

By TIM TUTTLE, Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

GLADEVILLE -- Ron Hornaday Jr. moved higher into the NASCAR record book alongside some famous company Saturday evening in the Toyota Tundra 200 staged at the Nashville Superspeedway.

The 51 year-old California native became just the third driver to win five straight races in a national series and the first to do so in 38 years.

Hornaday joined Richard Petty and Bobby Allison, who both did it in 1971 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, in a tie for second on the all-time consecutive win list. Petty holds the all-time record with 10 straight in 1967 in the Cup series.

"That’s unheard of (five straight) in this time and age," Hornaday said. "Five, can you believe that?"

Hornaday dominated, leading 115 of 154 laps in the Kevin Harvick Inc. Chevrolet. It was his sixth victory of the season and 45th of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career, first on the all-time list.

It was Hornaday’s first win in 13 NASCAR races at the 1.33-mile concrete-surfaced track, five in trucks and eight in the Nationwide Series.

He has long coveted winning the NSS’ trademark trophy, a Gibson Les Paul guitar painted by artist Sam Bass.

"I finally got me a Sam Bass guitar," Hornaday said.

Hornaday led the final 63 laps. He had a 2.8-second lead over Brian Scott wiped out by a late caution, which forced the race into a green-white-checkered overtime finish.

Hornaday easily pulled away from Scott on the final restart and won by .944 seconds.

Rick Ren, Hornaday’s crew chief, also moved up in the history books with his 27th victory as a crew chief in the series. He’s done it with five different drivers, but has 16 since the start of the 2007 season with Hornaday.

"We both made history tonight," Ren said. "It’s not much better than this. I think most wins is an honor, but what I really feel good about is I’ve done it with five different drivers."

Scott, who has driven with a broken right hand in the past five races, finished second with Colin Braun third.

Hornaday restarted fifth following his final pit stop on Lap 86. He had come in leading and gave up track position to leader Jason White, who had stayed out, and three others who had taken only right-side tires. Hornaday took four tires.

Hornaday made a three-wide pass for the lead at the start of the 92nd lap, going inside White exiting Turn 4. Scott went outside and held onto second place.

Polesitter Timothy Peters was fourth, followed by Matt Crafton.

Hornaday’s winning streak has put him into a commanding position in the championship. He’s 216 points ahead of second-place Crafton and 248 in front of third-place Mike Skinner, who finished 14th.

And... A Good Time Was Had by All!

By Norma Bixler

As a weekly newspaper editor many moons ago before moving to Lebanon in 1974, the newspaper I was associated with,  like most weeklies in those days, reserved space each week for communities to report on the ‘comings and goings’of the folks who lived there. In reporting an event of their community, correspondents would always conclude their columns by saying, “And, a good time was had by all.”

I used to chuckle at this pronouncement wondering if the writer did a poll in order to make this claim.
Well, folks that is just what happened July 17 at the Mature Lifestyles Senior Boomer Extravaganza’s Purity Old Fashioned Ice Cream Social held at the Gallatin Civic Center...”A good time WAS had by ALL!


POSTSCRIPTS Three Little Cribs




Traditionally my family gathers at my house on the weekend before Labor Day to have a picnic. In 1991 we had a line of three Port-a-Cribs sitting rail to rail on the patio! In them were Nathaniel DeJarnatt Partee (son of Al) age 12 months; Robert Padgett Partee II (son of Robert) age 6 months; and last and pretty much least was Jo Ellen Thompson (daughter of Peggy Jo) age 4 months.

Good job Watertown on guns in parks law
Kudos to the Watertown mayor and city council.
 To date, this one municipality in southeast Wilson County is the only local government that has voted to opt out of the much controversial new law that allows gun permit holders to carry their weapons into public parks.
Reader: Comment in column 'reprehensible', focus on insurance

To the Editor:

I am writing in response to the op-ed in the Wednesday, July 29 edition of The Wilson Post titled "Medical Care Issue too complicated for Obama" by George Robertson, M.D.

Shouldnt commission vote on school construction funding?

To the Editor:

The county commissioners are elected by the people of Wilson County to make tough decisions like whether to raise the wheel tax to fund a new Lebanon High School and to buy land for a future Watertown High School. The commissioners voting for a referendum seems like an easy way out for them to not be blamed for having to raise taxes or voting against the funding.

James "Jim" Deffendall, 82

LEBANON -- Funeral services have been scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, August 1 at the St. Francis Cabrini Catholic Church for Mr. Deffendall, 82, of Lebanon. A US Army veteran of World War II, he died July 30, 2009.

A former employee of Texs Eastern, he was an active member of the Wilson County Republican Party.

The family will be receiving friends at Sellars Funeral Home in Lebanon Friday, July 31, between the hours of 6-8 p.m. and Saturday from 1 p.m. until the service at the church.

Services will be conducted by Reverend Michael O’Bryan with interment in Cedar Grove Cemetery immediately following the service.

Survivors include his wife of 58 years Alice Welk Deffendall; children Joyce (Terry) Stafford, Danny (Prissy) Deffendall, Jim (Carmen) Caitlan, Mark (Patti) Deffendall, Kelly (Kristy) Deffendall and Bill (Martha) Deffendall.

Also surviving are grandchildren: Cory (Kellie) Deffendall, Lindsay (Jeremy) Mosley, David Deffendall, Jennifer (Jim) Stroud, Brianna Caitlan, Sharon Huppenthal, Jon Trusty, Joanna Trusty, Patrick Deffendall, Jessie Deffendall, Will, Gabe and Madeline Deffendall; great-grandchildren: Mackenzie Sewell, Sophie Mosley and Lydia Deffendall.

Grandsons will serve as active pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers: Ann Tomlinson, Mike Trusty, George Lowery, Eddie Testamand, Jerry Phares, Bud Grubbs, Red Goodman and Larry Stone.

He is preceded in death by parents Otis and Elizabeth Biggs Deffendall, three brothers and one sister.

Memorial contributions may be directed to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, 38105, 1-800-805-5856)

Sellars Funeral Home, 313 W. Baddour Pkwy, Lebanon, is in charge of arrangements.

Wilson County manufacturers keep it afloat

The Wilson Post

Although there is unemployment here, the June figure released recently by the state labor department was 9.6 percent, Wilson County has not seen large layoffs by employers in recent months.

G.C. Hixson, executive director of the Joint Economic & Community Development Board, said that Wilson County is better off than other counties because of the different types of businesses here, especially the manufacturing companies.

Chamber sets special event on tax-free day

From Post staff reports

At the invitation of the Lebanon/Wilson County Chamber of Commerce some 47 local businesses will  participate next week in a promotion to showcase local retail.

The event, to be held at Lebanon’s Prime Outlets mall, is hosted by the Chamber in celebration of tax-free Friday.

New name surfaces for Senate seat

From Post staff reports

Joe Bond, a life-long Lebanon resident and political newcomer, is exploring the possibility of seeking the District 17 Senate seat that will be vacated by Sen. Mae Beavers, a candidate for Wilson County Mayor.
Bond, the son of long-time Wilson County Criminal Court Judge J.O. Bond who died late last year after an extended illness, said recently he has been approached by several political allies about his intentions in next year’s Senate race. Bond, a former mortgage banker, is employed by Johnson Controls as an Energy Consultant, would run on the Democratic ticket.

Bennett gets fresh start with Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, FL -- Lebanon’s favorite major leaguer Jeff Bennett called getting signed by the defending American League champion Tampa Bay Rays both a blessing and an opportunity for a fresh start.

And what the Rays believe they have in Bennett, 29, is a fresh look in the bullpen, a workhorse who will likely take on a middle relief role, a slider-sinker-style pitcher who can reach 93 mph and induce ground balls.

That’s what Rays manager Joe Maddon had heard. And it’s also what he saw Saturday in Bennett’s Rays debut, when he struck out two and gave up a hit in the ninth in the 7-1 win against the Royals.

"Good stuff, just as advertised," Maddon said. "Good slider, saw that. Aggressive nature, saw that. He likes to pitch, likes to pitch often. He doesn’t back away or back down. He will fit in just fine."

Bennett, who has spent parts of four seasons in the big leagues, replaces RHP Joe Nelson, who was demoted to Triple-A Durham on Friday night.

Carrie Howell Ragsdale, 86

LEBANON – Funeral services have been scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, August 1 at the Partlow Funeral Chapel for Mrs. Ragsdale, 86, of the Gladeville Community.

Retired from the Gladeville Utility District and the daughter of the late Monte R. and Letha Dowdy Howell, Mrs. Ragsdale passed away Wednesday, July 29, 2009 at the University Medical Center in Lebanon. She was a member of the Gladeville United Methodist Church.

The family will receive friends Friday from 4 – 8 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. until the funeral at Partlow Funeral Chapel. Services will be conducted by Rev. Charles Walker and Rev. Robert Spickard. Burial will follow at the Caraway Cemetery in Gladeville.

Survivors include: siblings Billy (Thelma) Howell, Ruby Warfield and Dorothy Allsbrooks — all of Erin. Also surviving are nieces Peggy (Joe) Lannom of Gladeville, Debbie (Tracy) Largent and Laurie Howell — both of Erin, nephews Michael (Kay) Warfield of Murfreesboro, Don (Karen) Allsbrooks of Erin and Monty (Alisha) Allsbrooks of Cedar Hill.

In addition to her parents, she is preceded in death by husband Charles W. Ragsdale and brother Grover C. Howell.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Faithful Workers of the Gladeville United Methodist Church in memory of Carrie Ragsdale.

Pallbearers will be Wayne Foster, John Foster, Dr. Mike Harris, Mike Harris, James Edwin Swain and Bob Rice. Honorary pallbearer is Rick Risner

Partlow Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

Catherine Gilliam Smith, 83

LEBANON – Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Friday, July 31 at the J.C. Hellum Funeral Home for Mrs. Smith, 83, of Lebanon. The second of three children born to the late Willie Mae Corder Gilliam and George Gilliam in Wilson County and stepdaughter of the late Kathleen Bailey Gilliam, she died Friday, July 24 at her home.

Local services will be conducted by the Rev. Michael Millben. Interment will follow at the Westlawn Cemetery in Wayne, Michigan.

Survivors include: daughter Joetter Smith Jenkins of Antioch; grandchildren Katherine Drue Cunningham of Canton, OH, Tiffany Rochelle Jenkins of Nashville, April Smith Harvey of Grand Rapids, MI and Andrea Johnson of Inverness, FL.

Also surviving is sister-in-law Thelma Seay of Michigan; brother-in-laws John (Alice) Smith of Cleveland, OH, and Kent Collins; loyal family friend Coach Sam Smith and a host of other family including great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild, nephews, nieces, cousins, friends and church family.

In addition to her parents, Mrs. Smith was preceded in death by her husband Joe W. Smith and sons Bobby Drue and Andrew Louis Smith.

Arrangements by J.C. Hellum Funeral Home.

Richie Michelle Smith Clifton, 45

LEBANON – Memorial services were conducted Thursday morning, July 30 at the Ligon & Bobo Funeral Home for Mrs. Clifton, 45, of Lafayette. A native of Wilson County, she died July 27, 2009 at her residence.

Mrs. Clifton was a homemaker and a Baptist in belief. Services were conducted by Brother Chuck Groover. Survivors include: children Dallas and Riley Clifton and the father of her children Danny Clifton — all of Lafayette.

Also surviving is mother and step-father Peggy Gray Smith Leath and Joe Leath of Lebanon; brother Richard H. (Aimee) Smith III of Lakeway, TX; nieces Lauren and Ashley Smith; grandparents, Richard Sr. and Annie Lou Smith of Hermitage.

She was preceded in death by her father Richard H. Smith Jr. and grandparents Robert and Eleanor Gray. Memorial contributions should be directed to the Riley Clifton Fund c/o Kelly Ferrell at First Freedom Bank.

Arrangements by Ligon & Bobo Funeral Home.

Mary Ella Stewart, 71

LEBANON – Funeral services have been scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday, July 31 at the Sellars Funeral Home on the Baddour Parkway for Mrs. Stewart, 71, of Lebanon. She passed away Tuesday, July 28, 2009 following an extended illness.

The family will be receiving friends Friday from 10 a.m. until the funeral. Services will be conducted by Brother Gordon Lee and Brother Danny Sellars. Interment will follow in Cedar Grove Cemetery.

Survivors include children: Donna (Champ) Kellow, Susan (Darren) Vogel and Mack Stewart Jr.; siblings Kathy (Bill) Brewster and Terry (Judy) Kemp; grandchildren: Jason (Barbara) Stewart, Dustin Allen, Rachel Kellow, Clint (Chesney) Kellow, Luke Vogel and Mary Vogel; great-grandchildren: Peyton Stewart, Hayli Stewart, Katy Stewart, Allie Copas and Cyvan Kellow.

Pallbearers: Chico Hastings, Mark McPeak, Jeff Bond, Terry Kemp Jr., Wesley Kemp, Terry Luper, Dennis Luper and Stevie Luper. Honorary pallbearers: Dr. Roger McKinney and Dr. Modupe Kehinde.

The family offers special thanks to Odyssey Hospice.

Mrs. Stewart is preceded in death by parents Clifton and Bertha Starnes Kemp; siblings Peggy Foster, Sue Bonner, Carolyn Kemp, C.H. Kemp, Kenneth Kemp and Harlan Kemp.

Arrangements by Sellars Funeral Home, 313 W. Baddour Pkwy.


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