Fort Loudoun State Park Veterans Hunt Is Successful

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

The first Fort Loudoun State Park, Disabled Veterans Hunt took place on Monday. Six veterans from the Disabled American Veterans, a nonprofit charity that provides support for veterans and their families, joined staff and volunteers before sunrise for breakfast and a quick briefing before heading to their hunting blinds.   

 

Joe Pike, Monroe County wildlife officer and Justin Rexrode, Fort Loudoun park ranger, partnered to manage the hunt.

Anyone talking with these two men would quickly sense their dedication to this event. When asked why this hunt was planned, both Mr. Pike and Mr. Rexrode answered with the same statement, “It’s a way to give back”. Mr. Rexrode, has been a park ranger for over four years and with Fort Loudoun for over a year and Mr. Pike has been a wildlife officer for 28 years.

 

Both Mr. Pike and Mr. Rexrode guessed deer numbers in the park, a 1,200 acre island in the Tennessee River system, had increased. Mr. Pike said, “Management of the deer herd has to be looked at differently, because we’re on an island.” Mr. Rexrode knew of other veterans hunts taking place in state parks and was eager to provide another opportunity for veterans while managing the deer herd on the island. “The park is primarily a historic sight. This event allowed the park to be utilized in a different way and most importantly it gives us a chance to thank our veterans.”

 

Veterans ranged in age, branch of service and campaigns spanning the past six decades. Each shared glimpses of tremendous lives lived as they sat around the table eating lunch cooked by Freddy Kelly and Steve Massengill, TWRA employees. Veterans returned to their blinds after lunch and ended their day just after sunset. Two deer were harvested. 

 

Volunteers supported the event in many ways. Lavette Pike, wildlife officer Joe Pike’s wife, shared a passion for the event with her husband. She hauled cooking supplies and sat up an entire outdoor kitchen. Veterans received a hot, homemade breakfast and coffee along with a loving smile from Lavette. Morgan’s Meat Processor in Madisonville donated processing. Cleveland State Community College students helped process deer and take biological data. Wildlife officers were on hand to help transport veterans and harvested deer.

 

TWRA staff and park staff were humbled and proud to provide this opportunity for such great men. Comradery, laughter, time outdoors and most importantly an opportunity to say thank you was the theme of the day. Rexrode and Pike look forward to providing this event in future years. For more information on the DAV visit dav.org.




"The Bend Beneath Lookout Mountain" Hike And Program Set For March 2

Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park will provide a program at the 18th Ohio Battery positions on Moccasin Bend delving into the artillery battery’s role during the Battle of Lookout Mountain, on Saturday, March 10 at 2 p.m.  This 1.5 mile hike and program will last approximately 90 minutes. Parking will be located near 202 Moccasin Bend Road and “Special ... (click for more)

Getting Back To Our Roots

When you think about TVA, you think about a lot of things: electricity, economic development, flood control, hydropower, dams, navigation, water quality and much more. But did you know that planting trees to improve both the land and water resources in the Valley was a big part of TVA’s primary mission from the beginning? Listed as priority number two on in the TVA Act of 1933, ... (click for more)

Signal Facing Decisions On Expanding Commercial Area Past Albert Road, Mountain Community Center And Water Service

The design review committee (DRC) of the town of Signal Mountain is in the process of establishing standards for commercial buildings. In the meantime, developer Bob Elliott would like to buy property at the corner of Taft Highway and Albert Road. Albert Road has traditionally been where the commercial property ends. A number of residents in the neighborhood around that area are ... (click for more)

Initiative Launches In Support Of Signal Mountain’s Water System; Tennessee-American Says It Has Long Provided Clean Water To Signal

A citizen committee is urging Signal Mountain "to be vocal and choose local" in the imminent water department sale. The local group formed “Be Vocal. Choose Local.” after the town of Signal Mountain voted last May to initiate a Request for Proposals for the acquisition of its water department.  The committee urges the town to sell its water system to Walden’s Ridge Utility ... (click for more)

Legislators: Protect Our Students And Teachers

When students step into their classrooms, they are there to learn and prepare for their future. Our teachers serve to advance each student’s education and guide them towards success.  Educators have an additional responsibility: maintaining the trust and respect of their students by conducting themselves professionally and responsibly. The vast majority of our ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

Every day, without exception, I find a number of “treats” in my daily dose of email. These funnies, and other pertinent information, are sent to me by a myriad of “Internet Buddies” who I repay by sending out some of the funniest that I collect. Think of it as sort of a “co-op” for my readers to enjoy. When The Saturday Funnies began last summer, it was what I still think is ... (click for more)