News

To 530, ‘much is required’ from FHS Class of ’24

Farragut High School Class of 2024 seniors, 530, walked the stage for the school’s Commencement Ceremony on Bill Clabo Field Sunday, May 19, to receive their diplomas with the challenge to “make a difference” still ringing in their ears.

“To whom much is given, much is required,” FHS principal Dr. John Bartlett said in his speech. He told them to remember two questions: “What breaks your heart” and “what are you going to do about it.”

He challenged them that when something breaks their heart “to fix it.”

Bartlett announced FHS’s graduates earned $43 million in scholarships, while five grads have committed to join the military.

Among them, Benji Cho has earned valedictorian status while Danial Khan was named salutatorian.

Jack Alley was accepted into the U.S. Air Force Academy while Michael Delph was accepted into the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

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Homeowners willing to fight ‘front yard’ greenway path

Planning Commission delays action after hearing residents’ concerns

After hearing concerns by residents, Farragut Municipal Planning Commission voted unanimously to defer approval of preliminary design plans for the proposed Turkey Creek Greenway extension to the abutting portions of Turkey Creek Road during the FMPC meeting Thursday, May 16.

“It sounds like, from an engineering point of view, (the plans are) OK, but it looks like there are some issues to be resolved before we really want to recommend approval to Board of Mayor and Aldermen,” Planning Commissioner Jon Greene said.

“I definitely have some real concerns,” Planning Commissioner Jeff Devlin said. “I’d love to extend the greenway, but there are some pretty significant issues out there.”

The proposed preliminary plan shows an extension of Turkey Creek Greenway from the current western terminus on the west side of Brixworth subdivision to Sheffield subdivision and Virtue Road and improvements along Turkey Creek Road.

“The project will include nominal widening of Turkey Creek Road — approximately 3 feet — and add curb and gutter along the north side of the roadway,” Town engineer Darryl Smith said. “We anticipate six properties will be affected.

“Upon completion, the Turkey Creek Greenway will be connected by sidewalk through Sheffield subdivision to the Little Turkey Creek Greenway, which was completed earlier this year,” he added.

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Harkins outspoken to stop greenway path; Neal to handle any legal issues

Shirley Harkins is one outspoken homeowner, among a handful, fighting a Town staff-recommended Turkey Creek Road Greenway extension planned to go through their front yards and take about 25 feet across.

If carried out as planned, her home and others alongside Turkey Creek Road just east of this road’s intersection with Virtue Road will “absolutely, without question” lose value due to factors including esthetics, with the extension to include “ugly” retaining walls, she said.

“There’s six property owners that the trail would cross ... and we are adamantly opposed to it for a number of reasons,” Harkins added.

About the greenway extension being before Farragut Municipal Planning Commission during its Thursday, May 16, meeting (see related story), “It was interesting that they had it. It was the first time on the agenda, and it was just straight out to be approved (and sent to Board of Mayor and Aldermen), period,” she said, as FMPC delayed action as a handful of citizens spoke against the extension.

“The only way that we knew what occurred at the meeting was because of Tammy Cheek’s article (May 17, 2023, in farragutpress),” added Harkins, who along with two other families has hired Bearden attorney John Neal.

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FMPC, residents make points: Vision Plan for Town Center

While appreciating the work put into the Town’s Vision Plan for the Mixed-Use Town Center, Farragut Municipal Planning Commission questioned some of the elements of the plan.

FMPC took no action on the plan but did relay opinions, as did a handful of residents.

Among the features in the plan were raised medians along Kingston Pike and roundabouts, as well as signal lights at each end of Jamestowne Boulevard.

“I’m not crazy (about the medians in Kingston Pike’s center lane) either,” FMPC chairman Scott Russ said.

“It looks pretty on paper,” vice chairman Ed St. Clair said.

“Let’s be careful,” said Vice Mayor Louise Povlin, also an FMPC member. “We are not doing a road diet.”

“If we can cut down on the stacking issue,” St. Clair said. “That’s a major problem.”

“Certainly islands on a state highway could have the potential of being an issue,” Commissioner Jeff Devlin said.

“Certainly, medians … do serve some purpose on certain roads,” resident Evan Lohrey said. “Grigsby Chapel Road is one of those roads that it has served its purpose.”

However, “my fear is ones I saw proposed (on the vision plan) on Kingston Pike,” he added. “It is a Tennessee highway … it’s always going to be served in that way … especially if there is an issue on the Interstates.”

He reminded FMPC the center lane is used by emergency vehicles, such as the fire department.

“I think it’s a great plan in a lot of ways,” resident Mike Mitchell said. However, he said there are issues with the transportation component.

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town calendar

• Town of Farragut Community Development Department will host two property maintenance workshops, one beginning at 10 a.m. and the other starting at 6 p.m., both on Wednesday, May 29, in Farragut Community Center.

Workshops will be presented by Holley Marlowe, Farragut Codes/Zoning enforcement officer. “It is part of her job to maintain the Town’s property maintenance standards,” a Town press release stated.

“Addressing property maintenance issues isn’t just about aesthetics,” Marlowe stated. “It’s also about keeping our neighborhoods more safe and secure. ...”

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Salute to Tennessee’s Fallen

Salute to Tennessee’s Fallen “is a photographic war memorial that honors Tennessee’s military men and women killed in action since 9/11, stated Chris Albrecht, president and public information officer for United Veterans Council of East Tennessee, in a press release as Memorial Day approaches.

This tribute is being displayed for public viewing in the showroom of Rusty Wallace Nissan, 4515 Clinton Highway in Knoxville, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., daily, through Memorial Day, Monday, May 27.

“Unlike brick-and-mortar memorials, Salute to Tennessee’s Fallen is designed to travel and includes military and civilian photographs of the individuals, their hometown, their rank and branch of service and the date and place of their death. This memorial is available to be exhibited across Tennessee,” Albrecht stated in the release.

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KCSO reports

• At 1:33 p.m., Sunday, May 12, Knox County Sheriff’s Office units were dispatched to 11220 Outlet Drive at Cotton Eyed Joe about a suspect causing a disturbance. “Details of the call pertained to a female buying an underage female alcohol,” the report stated.

“As I arrived at the Cotton Eyed Joe, I observed a female matching the description of the suspect walking eastbound on Outlet Drive. As I went to make contact with her, the suspect who was later identified …, immediately began to yell at me, (saying) “take me to jail mother f—,” the report further stated.

Suspect “showed obvious signs of intoxication, as she had slurred speech, was extremely unsteady on her feet and had a strong odor of alcoholic beverage emitting from her breath and person,” the report stated. Suspect said she was “walking away from the Cotton Eyed Joe, and that she did not buy alcohol for a minor.

“At this time (suspect’s) behavior continued to be disrespectful toward me and other officers, to the point of making racial slurs toward an officer on the scene who was Hispanic, calling him a b——-, and that she hoped he and all b——- die,” the report further stated.

“Due to my belief that (suspect) is a danger to herself and others, she was placed under custody for public intoxication. She was transported to the detention facility. Officers attempted to look for the underage female that (suspect) was supposedly selling alcohol to, but were unsuccessful in locating her.”

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correction

• High school student Connor Archer, who recently received a Washington Crossing Scholarship, is a graduate of Christian Academy of Knoxville Homeschool program. The school was listed incorrectly in a story on page 1A of the Wednesday, May 15, issue of farragutpress. We regret the error.