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Entries in Tennessee (52)

Saturday
May182013

Tennessee Man, 77, Shoots Third Hole-in-One in One Month

Polka Dot/Thinkstock(SMYRNA, Tenn.) -- Bob Robertson is 77 years old and a faithful golfer in more ways than one.

The Tennessean plays golf four days a week and says he asked God to let him score a hole-in-one for a good cause. Robertson not only got a hole-in-one last month, he shot a hole-in-one three times in 29 days on the same hole.

He’s an Air Force veteran who had a stroke six years ago, which left him blind in one eye.

Robertson says the improbable golf shot wasn’t by chance. He planned it.

“I told God if he let me that win that money, that I’d donate that money to mission work and he let me win it,” Robertson said. “I know it might be hard to believe, but it’s true.”

Robertson’s granddaughter is studying to be a missionary and is leaving Saturday for a mission trip to Indonesia.

Robertson plays in a senior golf league at the Smyrna Golf Course every Tuesday. Two of his hole-in-one shots were during league play, making him the winner of a $500 pot to which 75 seniors contributed.

“After I got the hole in one for the prize money, one of my friends got awfully close to a hole in one, so I decided if they were going to slice up the prize money I wanted a second slice of it,” Robertson said.

He says even after a stroke and five heart-bypass surgeries, he wants to improve his golf game.

“What I’ve been trying to do is smooth out my golf swing. I was reading an article just now about how to get it right and yesterday I broke 80 for the first time since last summer,” Robertson said.

For all of the people who look to him for inspiration, “I tell them that I didn’t do it alone. Faith did it.”

The director of the Smyrna Golf Course, Hal Loflin, told ABC News that he can’t believe Robertson’s accomplishments.

“I’ve never seen anything like it and I’ve been a PGA pro for 23 years,” Loflin said. “I’m jealous and envious because I’ve playing since 13 and never made one.”

Loflin said Robertson is a celebrity on the golf course. The hole where Robertson has hit his multiple hole-in-one shots is a par 3 and roughly 109 yards. Robertson plays off the tee designed for older golfers.

As for another hole-in-one, Robertson says just wait and see.

“I’ve got some more coming,” he said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Friday
Dec282012

Two Atlanta Boys Still Missing After Leaving on Trip With Father

Theresa Nash(ATLANTA) -- The search continues for Benjamin and Henry Cleary, two young brothers who have been missing for five days from the greater Atlanta area.

Benjamin, 9, and Henry, 7, had plans to leave with their father, Daniel Cleary, on an overnight trip to Chattanooga, Tenn., on Dec. 22. When they failed to return as scheduled on Dec. 23, their mother, Theresa Nash, who does not live with the boys' father, went to his house to check on them, only to find the phone disconnected and the house empty.

Nash last saw her sons Dec. 22 at their father's home, she told ABCNews.com. When she returned to Cleary's home, she found all his belongings, including computers and televisions, gone. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children issued an Amber Alert for the boys, who were supposed to have been returned to their mother last Sunday.

"There is a court order for them to contact me every day," Nash told ABCNews.com. "When I hadn't heard from them, and their father's phone was turned off, I went to their father's house to see if they were there. The house was cleared out as if they had moved."

Nash called Cleary "unstable," and said he had only been using cash since the boys went missing. Police said they had not found any charges on his credit card.

"He's smart enough to know that if he uses a credit card he's going to hit the grid," Lt. James McGee, spokesman for the Roswell, Ga., Police Department, told ABCNews.com

McGee said the police also knew that Cleary had recently purchased a gun. (A license is not needed to purchase a gun in Georgia.)

"We don't believe they [the boys] are in imminent danger, but as time goes along and people's mind-set changes, and with the introduction of the weapon, we definitely want the kids back as soon as possible," McGee said.

Cleary, 46, and his sons are believed to be traveling in a silver 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee bearing Georgia license plate number 10742627. The boys are believed to be wearing light-blue winter vests and Nike sneakers. Cleary is 6 feet tall, weighs 240 pounds and often wears a baseball cap.

The three were spotted Friday at a Walmart in Jackson, Tenn., McGee said.

"They [Benjamin and Henry] are outgoing," Nash, their mother, said. "They are very aware of the danger, and they will probably appear upset. They will be stressed, they will be crying."

Benjamin and Henry are very smart and play soccer, Nash said, adding that Henry's birthday is Saturday.

Anyone with information on Cleary and the boys' whereabouts is asked to call the Roswell Police Department at 770-640-4160.

"They've been begging for an Xbox 360 for Christmas, and Santa brought them one so they need to come home because it's waiting," Nash said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Nov252012

Caught on Tape: Extreme Couponing Turns Violent

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- The quest to save some money using coupons turned into a violent confrontation between an extreme couponer and the manager of a discount store.

Melissa Mozzo-Mart and Jennifer Hill were shopping at a Dollar Tree store in Germantown, Tenn., the day before Thanksgiving when they say they apparently brought too many coupons for the store to handle.

"We were told we were harassing her (the store manager) to use those coupons and she threatened to call the cops," Hill said.

The store had posted a large sign on its windows that it was now accepting coupons.

But Mozzo-Mart and Hill say that when faced with accepting a lot of them, the manager turned sassy.

They hit the "record" button on their cell phone, and captured this exchange:

Mart: Can I get the rest of Advil?
Store manager: No
Mart: and what's the reason?
Store manager: I cannot
Mart: so, there's no reason why I can't buy more than four items?
Store manager: I guess you better make like water and get to running.

Hill left the store first and watched from a distance as Mozzo-Mart collected her coupons and made her way to the door. But before Mozzo-Mart could exit, she was physically attacked.

"With her fist balled up that's when she hit me in the eye and the face," Mozzo-Mart said.

Local police reportedly charged the store manager with misdemeanor assault.

The women both say they never thought they'd come to blows for clipping coupons.

"We were trying to save a little money," Hill said.

Dollar tree officials told ABC News that they are taking the incident "very seriously" and it is under investigation. They said it was inappropriate for them to comment further at this time.

ABC News' attempts to contact the store manager were unsuccessful.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Nov042012

Rescue of Hiker Trapped by Sandy Caught on Video

ABC News(GATLINBURG, Tenn.) -- A 56-year-old hiker was trapped in the Tennessee mountains for three days by the remnants of Hurricane Sandy.  The storm, having come inland, pounded the Appalachian Trail with record levels of snow.

Steve Ainsworth set out Monday for the final leg of a planned two-thousand-mile trek along the Appalachian Trail, just as Superstorm Sandy approached the Northeast.

On Friday, his rescue was captured on video after he got a strong enough signal on his cellphone to call 911.

“I was absolutely stunned. I had no idea there was going to be that much snow,” said Ainsworth, who was blocked by snow drifts up to five feet high.

With food and water running low and hypothermia setting in, Ainsworth waited for help to arrive.

On Friday, Tennessee Highway Patrol Sergeant Brad Lund and a team took to the skies by helicopter and were able to trace footprints in the snow for a mile and a half. They led to the general area where Ainsworth had taken shelter.

Braving howling winds and freezing temperatures, trooper Jeff Buchanan was lowered from the helicopter to find the trapped hiker.

“He stuck his head out of his tent and said he’s never been so glad to see anybody in his whole life,” Buchanan said.

Ainsworth, who was in his socks, was pulled on board the helicopter. His rescue was recorded on video by the Tennessee Highway Patrol.

After three days in the cold, Ainsworth suffered no injuries but said he was hungry.

The rescue team joked he could buy them steaks, he said.

“As long as I can have the first one,” he told them.

Ainsworth said he was thankful for Sergeant Lund and his team.

“You know, they’ll say, ‘That’s our job. That’s what we’re supposed to do,’” he said, “But I am telling you, that’s more than a job.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Sep272012

Tennessee Children Missing After House Fire Kills Step-Grandparents

Ryan McVay/Thinkstock(UNIONVILLE, Tenn.) -- Investigators in Tennessee are searching for two children after discovering that their bodies were not at the scene of a deadly house fire as earlier believed.

Police initially thought Chloie Leverette, 9, and her brother, Gage Daniel, 7, had been killed in a house fire Sunday in Unionville, Tenn., about 40 miles southeast of Nashville, along with their step-grandparents.

But after investigators failed to recover their bodies, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) issued endangered children alerts.

"The fact that we don't have sufficient evidence from fire investigators right now to positively conclude that they died in this fire makes us want to make sure that they are not somewhere else," TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm said Wednesday.

Cadaver sniffing dogs combed through the house that belonged to Leon and Molly McClaran on Wednesday as investigators used infrared cameras attached to helicopters to scour the scene.

Fire officials say they've recovered the bodies of Leon McClaran Sr., 72, and his 70-year-old wife, Molly, inside the home, but not the bodies of the children.

"If we just had ashes, their little bodies, you know, but we don't have anything," Mary Lamb, the sister of Molly McClaran, said.

The children were reportedly last seen near the home around 6:30 p.m. Sunday, about three hours before the fire began.  Investigators initially believed that all four family members were asleep when the flames engulfed the home.

"Their mother has been spoken to, she does not have the children," Helm said.  "There are other family members that we are looking to speak with today."

As detectives try to piece together what happened to Chloie and her brother, their family is enduring a waiting game.

"We will wait and pray," said Lamb.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug022012

Anti-Nuke Nun, Protesters Enter Tennessee Complex

File photo. iStockphoto/Thinkstock(OAK RIDGE, Tenn.) -- Two men and an 82-year-old nun who allegedly broke into the U.S. government's only storage facility for weapons-grade enriched uranium in Oak Ridge, Tenn., Saturday and splashed it with human blood are awaiting a preliminary hearing on trespassing charges today in federal court.

The peace activists, Sister Megan Rice, 82, of Nevada; Michael Walli, 63, of Washington, D.C.; and Greg Boertje-Obed, 57, of Duluth, Minn., were arrested after allegedly breaking into the Y-12 national security complex at 4:30 a.m. Saturday, according to Y-12 spokesman Steven Wyatt.

The protesters, who are members of the "Transform Now Plowshares" movement, allegedly cut through four fences to gain access to the Highly Enriched Uranium Materials Facility, which holds enriched uranium. According to Wyatt, they spray-painted the building and splashed human blood on it, Wyatt said. They also left banners and read from the Bible.

No nuclear materials were ever at risk during the break-in, Wyatt said.

The use of blood was meant to "[remind] us of the horrific spilling of blood by nuclear weapons," Plowshares said in statement released via its website Monday.

"We come to the Y-12 facility because our very humanity rejects the designs of nuclearism, empire and war," the statement said. "Our faith in love and nonviolence encourages us to believe that our activity here is necessary; that we come to invite transformation, undo the past and present work of Y-12; disarm and end any further efforts to increase the Y-12 capacity for an economy and social structure based upon war-making and empire-building."

Before being taken to the Blount County jail, where they're currently being held, Walli, Rice and Boertje-Obed gave bread to the Y-12 security officers.

The three were arraigned on federal trespassing charges in district federal court in Knoxville Monday. If convicted, the activists could face up to $100,000 fine and up to a year in prison.

Following the break-in, B&W, the management and operating contractor for Y-12, ordered a temporary security stand-down, which is expected to end next week. All nuclear operations will stop during the stand-down and security personnel will undergo training and refresher instruction.

"We've just got to do this to make sure we get the answers we need to address what happened and move forward," Wyatt told ABC News.

The Department of Energy Inspector General is investigating how the trio broke in. "There's never been anything quite like this before," Wyatt said.

The targeted facility was built in 2010, Wyatt said. It is longer than a football field and was built with security in mind. Additionally, Y-12 employs more than 500 security officers.

Walli was one of ten activists who were convicted last year of trespassing after they intentionally crossed a blue line separating state and federal property at the Y-12 complex in 2010, Knoxville ABC affiliate WATE reported.

"When we spoke with them from jail on Saturday, they were, I have described it as elated, because they did what they wanted to do, they came back," Ellen Barfield, a friend of the activists, told WATE.

"The number of previous acts by some of them throughout the country at different federal facilities, the transient nature of their movement through the country, the nature of the facility here that was breached," Bill Killian, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, told WATE.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jul062012

Fourth Child Dies After Missouri, Tennessee Lake Electrocutions

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(KNOXVILLE, Tenn.) -- A fourth child has died after a pair of separate electrocution incidents at lakes in Missouri and Tennessee.

Nathan Lynam, 11, died Thursday night at Children's Hospital in Knoxville, Tenn., authorities said.

On Wednesday afternoon, Noah Winstead, 10, Lynam's swimming companion at Cherokee Lake outside Knoxville, died after the two boys were electrocuted, possibly by a faulty houseboat electrical cord.

Two other children swimming in another lake, this one in Missouri, also were electrocuted on Wednesday.

Alexandra Anderson, 13, and her brother Brayden, 8, were killed while swimming near a private dock in the Lake of the Ozarks around noon, a couple of hours before the Tennessee incident.

Adults standing on a dock heard screaming and jumped in.  Police say those who jumped in felt electricity and cut off power to the dock.  The adults immediately began CPR, but it was too late.

Sgt. Paul Reinsch of the Missouri State Highway Patrol said the electricity could have come from any number of sources.

"Obviously, the lights, lots of times, they have slides and they have pumps that pump water onto those slides so the children can use them," Reinsch said.  "There's a lot of reasons electricity is on that dock."

Two hours later, the other two boys were shocked at Cherokee Lake outside Knoxville.

"Someone started hollering, 'The kids are getting electrocuted,'" witness Betty Hamilton said.

Other witnesses said the boys had been swimming from one house boat to another when they suddenly cried for help.

"We believe that somehow or another, the electricity at this point got into the metal of the boat, and when the children touched the metal ladder to get in, that's when the electrocution occurred," Grangier County Sheriff Scott Layel said.

Police said seven other people were also injured by the electricity in Cherokee Lake -- four adults and three children -- and were taken to area hospitals for medical attention.

Police in Missouri and Tennessee said they were still unsure what energized the lakes.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jul052012

Missouri, Tennessee Lake Electrocutions Kill Three Children

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The Fourth of July turned deadly after three children died in two separate electrocution incidents in Missouri and Tennessee.

Alexandra Anderson, 13, and brother Brayden, 8, were killed while swimming near a private dock in the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri around noon Wednesday.

Adults standing on a dock heard screaming and jumped in.  Police say those who jumped in felt electricity and cut off power to the dock.  The adults immediately began CPR, but it was too late.

Sgt. Paul Reinsch of the Missouri State Highway Patrol said the electricity could have come from any number of sources.

"Obviously, the lights, lots of times, they have slides and they have pumps that pump water onto those slides so the children can use them," Reinsch said.  "There's a lot of reasons electricity is on that dock."

Two hours later, at Cherokee Lake outside Knoxville, Tenn., a 10-year-old was killed and another boy was seriously injured in an eerily similar incident.

"Someone started hollering the kids are getting electrocuted," witness Betty Hamilton said.

Other witnesses said the boys had been swimming from one house boat to another when they suddenly cried for help.

"We believe that somehow or another, the electricity at this point got into the metal of the boat, and when the children touched the metal ladder to get in, that's when the electrocution occurred," Grangier County Sheriff Scott Layel said.

Witness Hamilton said, "People jumped into the water.  My son and brother helped get the one little boy out.  They gave him CPR and everything.  I was comforting the parents the best I could."

Police say seven other people -- four adults and three children -- were also injured by the electricity in Cherokee Lake and were taken to area hospitals for medical attention.

Police in Missouri and Tennessee say they are still unsure what energized the lakes.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jun052012

Tennessee TV Weatherman Shot by Crossbow

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(JOHNSON CITY, Tenn.) -- A Tennessee man is in court Tuesday facing charges that he shot his former roommate, a TV weatherman, with a crossbow during a home invasion.

Gerald Taylor, 53, is accused of breaking into the home he once shared with Rob Williams early Monday morning and shooting him with a crossbow.  Taylor allegedly also fired a pistol at Williams but missed, according to Johnson City police.

Taylor fled the scene on foot and was apprehended on a boat dock below the home, police said.

“Mr. Taylor was found to have a pistol in his hand when approached by officers and after a brief stand-off, and being tased by officers, he was taken into custody without further incident,” police said in a statement.

Williams, who works as a meteorologist at local CBS affiliate WJHL, had served Taylor with an order of protection on May 29, according to Johnson City Police, forcing the suspect to vacate the home.

It was unknown what caused the falling out between the two men.

The meteorologist said he is recovering and thanked well-wishers for their concern.

“I am working with police as they continue their investigation into this matter. I’m looking forward to returning on air very soon,” he said in a statement issued to his station WJHL.

Taylor faces charges of attempted first degree murder, aggravated burglary and violation of an order of protection.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jun042012

No One Wants Body of Adam Mayes, the FBI's Former Most Wanted

ABC News(MEMPHIS, Tenn.) -- The Mississippi state crime lab is trying to figure out what to do with the body of Adam Mayes, the man who allegedly murdered a mother and daughter and kidnapped the woman's two other daughters before shooting himself.

The lab has had Mayes' body since mid-May, and doesn't know what to do with it.  Mayes' family won't accept his body.  If no one takes the body after six months, it has to be returned to Union County, where he died.

According to Mississippi state law, if there are any living relatives, it is the family's responsibility to take care of the body.  But Mayes' wife and mother are behind bars in connection to the two murders and kidnappings.  Mayes' brother refuses to accept the body.

Police believe Mayes killed Jo Ann Bain and her daughter, Adrienne Bain, 14, in their home in Whiteville, Tenn., on April 27, and then fled with Bain's two other daughters, Alexandra, 12, and her sister Kyliyah, 8.

The two girls were rescued after a nearly two-week ordeal.  On May 10, Mississippi state highway troopers spotted a small blonde child peeking over a ridge, police said, which led to the girls' rescue.

Moments later, Mayes shot himself as he knelt in the grass next to the children, in what his mother-in-law called the "coward's way out."

Mayes is suspected of killing the girls' sister and mother in order to kidnap the younger girls, whom he thought were his children, relatives have said.  The girls had been living with Jo Ann and her husband, Gary Bain, and the family was planning to move to Arizona at the end of the school year.

When Adam Mayes went on the run with the girls, he was put on the FBI's Top 10 Most Wanted List.

His wife Teresa Mayes is charged with murder and especially aggravated kidnapping for her role in assisting Mayes.  She is being held in a Tennessee jail.

During the investigation, police also arrested Mayes' mother, Mary Mayes, in connection with the murder and kidnapping.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







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