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Nickolas Williams awarded membership in East Tennessee Corvette Club
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Local Cracker Barrel Employee Nickolas Williams was awarded honorary membership into the East Tennessee Corvette Club on Tuesday, fulfilling a lifelong dream he had since childhood.

He was born with a rare genetic condition known as Williams Syndrome, a developmental disorder that affects many parts of the body and mind.

His mother, Karen Williams, said Nickolas has been infatuated with Corvettes since he was a little child.

“We had a 1977 Corvette, and when Nick was born his first ride was in a Corvette,” Karen Williams said. “But he’s always liked Corvettes ever since then.”

Nickolas Williams, a 12-year employee of the Harriman Cracker Barrel, was given a ride home from work in a Corvette of his choosing from all the club members’ cars.

“I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart,” Nickolas said. “I want to thank God and Jesus for this, for today, for all the people that are here. And I just want to keep going all the way with Corvettes and I just want to be the biggest fan I can be in my whole life.”

OSHS graduation could mark end of an era
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Oliver Springs High School graduated its 97th class on Tuesday. The Class of 2022 may be the last group to finish at the current school on Kingston Avenue.

“It should be,” Roane County Board of Education Chairman Sam Cox said.

The construction project that will move the high school in with Oliver Springs Middle School is ongoing and could be finished early next year.

“I’ve not looked at it to know exactly, but I believe that’s the schedule,” Cox said.

Some members of the Class of 2022 shared their thoughts on the transition awaiting Oliver Springs High School.

“I think it’s going to be a big change,” Senior Class President Emma Robbins said.

“I think it’ll be a good experience for them,” Senior Jacob Hileman added.

More opportunities and a better learning experience for students were some of the things school officials cited when the combined high school and middle school was in the planning stages several years ago.

“I have a brother and he’s going to be in the new school,” Senior Jasmine Smithwick said. “I think they’re going to enjoy it. They should have more room and they’ll probably have extra classes, so I think they’ll enjoy it better.”

Senior Tanner Melton said he sees students benefiting from the change.

“I think it’s going to be good for the school,” Melton said. “This school is really old. They need something new and I think it’s going to benefit the programs academically and in sports, too.”

The combined school will feature a brand new, modern gymnasium.

Cox, who attended Tuesday’s graduation, said he expects construction work to ramp up this summer.

“I expect a pretty good push because one thing, there won’t be any students around,” he said. “You’re not trying to dodge cars and all those things, so they’ll have about a three month window here where they can get more work done.”

Officials with the Town of Oliver Springs are pushing for parts of the current school to remain intact for use by the community. However, the school board appropriated funds to tear it down when they approved the bid for the project.

If this is the last class to graduate from the current school, Tuesday’s ceremony was a good way to go out, according to members of the class.

“It was a good ceremony,” Melton said. “It made me a little emotional, going here all these years and it just ending.”

Smithwick said she got emotional during the ceremony as well.

“It was beautiful,” Smithwick said. “It was great. I loved it. I almost cried a couple of times, but I enjoyed it very much.”

Robbins gave a speech during the ceremony, and mentioned how this class had its high school dreams interrupted in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“All of our teachers will agree that we’re a very strong-willed and stubborn class,” Robbins said. “But it was these characteristics that helped us to see it through. We’ve come so far.”

Harriman pre-orders firetruck for more than $700,000
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The Harriman City Council is planning to spend more than $700,000 on a firetruck. The purchase, which will replace an aging firetruck, was approved on Tuesday.

“Everything right now is a year or two on getting anything,” Mayor Wayne Best said. “There is a couple of trucks that they have, the same as we ordered last time. The Pierce truck that we have now, they use at Daytona for the races. They use it one time and then they sell them. As soon as the summer race is over that truck will be available.”

The reason for pre-ordering the particular truck is to get ahead of demand and beat a one-to-two-year long wait time. The current truck at the Harriman Fire Department is costing the city more and more to maintain.

“We’re spending roughly $40,000 or $50,000 a year on the truck we have right now just to keep it repaired and keep it going,” Best said. “I’ll be the first to tell you I’m not one to spend this kind of money on a fire truck. We have some other things we’d want to do. But we’re at the point where a fire truck lasts about 15 years, and we at that life cycle with this truck.”

The city of Harriman won’t experience any immediate effects from the purchase.

“When we do the financing for this kind of arrangement, typically we won’t make the first payment on that debt service until the next fiscal year, in 2024,” Harriman Treasurer Chris Ahler said.

Councilman Lonnie Wright asked if the purchase requires a down payment. Ahler said that a letter of intent is all that’s needed for the moment to secure a truck.

“We just sign a letter of intent to purchase, and then the next step will be to speak with the gentlemen we work with at Cumberland Securities, Scott, and we’ll do a note through him,” Ahler said. “We’ve already talked to him about this and there’s a possibility we can roll this into some other purchases as well that will have a longer life cycle like this vehicle does.”

The accepted cost of the firetruck is a low bid from Pierce Demo at $726,455, with the rejected bids at $900,000, $898,746, and $798,446.

Other items discussed at the council meeting included: Approving and accepting the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery funds of H.R. 1319 American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (CSLRF) and preparing an annual budget for the expenditure of the funds; providing up to $100,000 of matching funds for State of Tennessee American Rescue Plan Act Fiscal Recovery Funds for Water and Wastewater Projects on behalf of the Harriman Utility Board; providing up to $250,000 of Matching funds for a Sewer Extension Project along Pine Ridge Road, North of Interstate 40; appointing Sonya Thomas and Tracy Northern to the Harriman Housing Authority Board; designating the Events Center room at Harriman Municipal Plaza as “Frederick W. Gates Hall”; purchasing a Rigaku Progeny ResQ FLX for $25,150.00 from the Drug Enforcement Fund; possibly approving employee health insurance with Blue Cross Blue Shield; and approving JB Asphalt for grading and widening the entrance at Moses Lane and Roane State Highway for $7500,00.

The approval of a low bid for archaeological survey at Riverfront Park was delayed to the next meeting.

Agents find drugs in motel room
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Brian Mitchell

Cdale Lott

Two Michigan men were arrested last week after agents allegedly found suspected heroin in their Harriman motel room. Cdale D. Lott and Brian Mitchell are each charged with manufacture, deliver, or sell of schedule I.

According to the warrant, agents with the TBI, FBI and members of the Harriman Police Department executed a search warrant on room 105 at the Days Inn on May 12.

“Agents witnessed Mitchell and Lott leave room 105 and get into a gray Nissan Rogue and leave the area,” the warrant said.

They were reportedly stopped and detained by members of the Harriman Police Department.

“At the same time agents and other members of the Harriman Police Department entered and began searching room 105,” the warrant said. “During that search, agents found a lock box containing approximately 72.27 grams of suspected heroin and $1,970.”

The suspected heroin has a street value of $14,454.

The warrant said a digital scale and brass knuckles were also found.

“Room 105 was registered to Brian Mitchell with a note attached showing that Lott would also be occupying the room,” the warrant said.

Lott, 26, and Mitchell, 21, were still in custody at the Roane County Jail on Thursday.

Court records listed Lott with a Madison Heights, Michigan, address. Mitchell has a Detroit address.

Authorities also nabbed two Detroit men in Harriman last fall on drug charges. One of them, Nakia Pruett, allegedly had $26,000 worth of fentanyl in his shoes.

Bad check used at car lot, furniture store
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A man allegedly used a bad check to purchase a 2002 Chevy Blazer from Tri-City Auto Sales last week.

Rockwood Police Department Sgt. Patrick Reichard investigated.

“I spoke with the owner Victor Poole and his assistant Jennifer Hard,” the warrant said. “Mrs. Hard stated that on May 11, 2022, she was given a bad check of $3,600 from Simply Bank by a male who identified himself as Doug Malenovsky.”

Doug Malenovsky was actually Marc Alan Anderson.

“After the initial call, Mr. Poole called back in stating that the male subject who passed the bad check was back at the store,” the warrant said. “Prior to my arrival, this male had fled in the vehicle.”

Reichard spotted the subject on Tedder Street.

“I caught up to the vehicle at the intersection of Industrial Park Road and North Gateway Avenue,” the warrant said. “It then continued south at a high rate of speed until it reached Tri-City Auto Sales where the vehicle pulled over. Marc Anderson, the driver and sole occupant of the vehicle, was taken into custody.”

Reichard said Anderson agreed to speak after being read his rights.

“Mr. Anderson admitted to using the ID of Doug Malenovsky,” the warrant said.

The incident at Tri-City Auto Sales wasn’t the first time Anderson, 38, has been accused of using a bad check. He allegedly used one at Fowler’s Furniture in March.

“I arrived on scene and spoke with the manager Sammy Stephens,” a warrant filed in the Fowler’s incident said. “He advised me that the defendant, Marc Anderson, had came in on March 17, 2022, to pay his late balance on the storage building that he rents.”

Anderson allegedly gave the manager a check for $401.

“The manager went to Simply Bank on March 18, 2022, to deposit the check,” the warrant said. “Simply Bank advised the manager that the check that the defendant had given him was fraudulent.”

Anderson remained in custody at the Roane County Jail on Thursday on charges of criminal simulation, shoplifting, theft of property, a child support attachment, failure to appear, identity theft, driving on a revoked/suspended license, compliance with financial responsibility law, reckless driving, speeding and theft of services.