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By Staff
Board should provide answers
Editor,
I think it's time for someone to let the cat out of the bag concerning the latest school fiasco. Bill Shinn doesn't want to release the information concerning the school principal, Jerry Reeves, for some strange reason. As part of my and your taxes go to this school. The public should be able to know. After all, every member of the faculty already knows and so do many people in the public
Now, here are a few of my questions. Does anyone know how I can get my house painted using school funds to supply labor and material? Does anyone know how I can use a school vehicle to take my family to Florida and get reimbursed for the expenses to go there? Does anyone know how I can purchase some Roundup and do it with school funds? How about using a floor buffer for almost a year and it not costing me anything? The list is even longer than this. Supposedly this is just the tip of the iceberg. There is also a question concerning a missing computer.
Far be it from me to criticize all this, but this stinks worse than a hog barn. Jerry Reeves is under investigation for the above allegations. He, being the principal of the high school, may have very much overstepped his capacity by getting all of the above alleged things performed or allocated. Now, in order for him to try to restore some dignity to the school, he should step down until all this mess is over. If he chooses not to, then the school board should intervene and remove him from his principal status.
Some better questions to the school board are as follows: In the beginning of all this, why was it that the board chose not to turn this over to the ethics committee, but instead, allowed Bill Shinn to investigate it, wasting time and money? Why is someone that is under investigation still being allowed to serve as school principal? Why did the board recently adopt a policy that required any school property that left the school had to be signed out, if there wasn't any problem to begin with?
My taxes should go to this school for education, not fringe benefits. The ethics committee has assigned this case a number, and are looking into this. The rumor is that Mr. Reeves has hired a criminal defense attorney. If this is true then this case has a great deal of merit to it. If, by any circumstance, any other employee of the school system is involved with it or the cover up, then they should be held accountable also. With the state school budget taking a major cut, this is no way to spend local and state funds.
Mike Dowdy
Hartselle
Fallen officers are heroes, too
Editor,
In my 23 years as a police officer, my heart has never been so broken because of the senseless cowardly murders of two of Athen's finest.
How society and certain sectors of the press look at the loss of life in the line of duty regarding public safety officers is as Andy Griffith would say, "Peculiar…mighty peculiar."
I admire and respect firemen. Many of my best of friends are firemen, they are special people. Many of my fellow police officers are volunteer firemen. Firemen are murdered in the line of duty as well. An example is a fire officer being killed battling an arson fire. But I have to point out, the term hero is almost always used when this tragic death occurs. There is no argument and absolutely no question or doubt that this is a true hero. Do you ever hear that term used when a police officer is murdered in the line of duty? Sometimes, but rarely. You will see the terms victim of a violent death, officer slain, victim of a sniper, officer killed to name a few.
In Athens, the word hero has escaped the headlines as well. No one is calling the two murdered officers heroes, but I will.
I have overheard questions asked from one officer to another if they knew the fallen Athens officers, the same question being asked from civilians to officers as well. Yes, we knew them, although we may never have met them, nor knew of their existence until we heard of them after they paid the ultimate sacrifice. They were dedicated family men, and dedicated to their profession.
They saw the ugly side of life, and the most humbling side of life, also. They wore a uniform, a gun, and raced across city streets to render aid, and to prevent the destruction of life and property. They took verbal abuse from citizens of whom hated what they stood for, and for what they enforced. They were seldom told "good job," and never ever got paid enough for the daily danger they faced.
In their 19 and 15 years of service, I submit to you that they by either using CPR or making an arrest to diffuse a deadly threat to life, or by using common sense to resolve a dangerous episode, they saved lives.
They trained, they testified, they sacrificed. They lived to protect and to serve. Yes, we knew them and they knew us. And now because they sacrificed beyond what we have, we not only knew them as police officers, but as heroes as well.
Randy Cavnar
Hartselle

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