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Features

  • In recent months I have watched a few recorded episodes of the first three seasons of Downton Abbey, a British drama about a family trying to hold onto a castle and to their entitled place in British high society.

    Doing this has been treating my withdrawal pains last winter from the tragic ending of Season Three. It has also gotten me ready for the first installment of Season Four. To whet their appetites, fellow Downton fans may enjoy some of my thoughts about our favorite dramatic series.

  • Christmas came early for Clay Village resident Roy Butler, whom many call the “Father of Medicaid” in Kentucky.

    In the fall, he was inducted into the University of Kentucky College of Public Health Hall of Fame, which

    recognizes individuals who “made exceptional contributions to the health and welfare of the citizens of the commonwealth, the nation and/or the world,” according to a press release.

  • The Sentinel-News, since 2008 has honored at year’s end five Shelby Countians we think have had a significant impact on our community during this year. We sought your nominations on our Facebook page, and we believe each person – or in one case, team – selected for what we call Shelby County’s Fabulous 5 has in his or her own way left an imprint that merits our honoring and emulating, represents a broad spectrum of a diverse society and truly is one of the best of our best.

    Steve Eden

    Mayor of Simpsonville

  • Operation Care next year will expand its women’s center by adding an additional location on Main Street in downtown Shelbyville – for free.

    What’s more, the acquisition of the new building won’t cost Operation Care a dime, with the purchase of a 2-story, 4-plex frame house next door to Bell House Restaurant having been paid by a $125,000 donation from Southeast Christian Church.

  • Heads together, giggling, surrounded by the smell of gingerbread and the sound of carols playing softly in the background, Janice Harris and Tyra Beach reminisced at a Christmas party two weeks ago about a Karaoke session they had attended at a Shelbyville restaurant.

    Harris: “You did sing.”

    Beach: “Did not.”

    Harris: “Did too, and I have the pictures to prove it.”

    Beach: “Well, I just did some backup.”

  • Dressed in a softly flowing robe, surrounded by contented sheep and goats and even a donkey, a shepherd paused to contemplate the animals surrounding the manger before pulling a small device out of a pocket.

    “Bet you never saw a shepherd with an iPhone before,” he said with a grin, as he snapped a photo of the scene.

    Steve Price coordinated that live Nativity scene that was held Tuesday at the Community Christmas event held at Shelby Industries, at the request of the plant, he said.

  • Everyone has a favorite part of the holiday season.

    Some enjoy giving gifts, others the parties and festivities. But from the children to Santa, there is one important piece of the holiday season that everyone looks forward to – the food.

    And what takes center stage?

    The Christmas ham shares its time with Easter, the turkey with Thanksgiving, the trimmings with every holiday – although I think we would all agree that mac-and-cheese should share more dinner tables.

  • In my previous column, I described the Cuban Missile Crisis of Oct. 16-28, 1962, when a threatening nuclear disaster was defused by the nerves of steel and the negotiating skills of President John F. Kennedy.

    During this period I was serving as director, Marine Reserve, in U. S Marine Corps headquarters in Arlington, Va., within a mile of the Pentagon, as one of the officers standing the rotating watch as duty general officer in the Marine Corps Command Center. I had been keenly aware of the imminent threat of a nuclear missile striking Washington.

  • On Thanksgiving Day, while driving to visit relatives, it took my wife and me an hour and a half to finish thanking God for all the blessings in our life.

    One of the biggest gratitudes for me was that that day was my 30th “birthday” of my new life in sobriety and recovery. It was not until my third year of recovery that I could see that its blessings were going to outweigh the pleasures and comforts I had gotten from my two addictive habits.

  • At a time of year when churches invest so much time and effort into holiday celebrations and draw their biggest attendance, the few members of one of Shelby County’s oldest are their church’s doors are still open.

    Buffalo Lick Baptist, 208 years old this month, is holding on with just 23 members, its pastor said, and it isn’t going anywhere.

  • Walking into the home of Al and Goldie Smith at Christmastime could either be a child’s dream or an adult’s delight, with four large Christmas trees, red and white poinsettias placed throughout the home, and two vases of brilliant green holly with bright red berries on the fireplace mantel.

    “Those aren’t fake. We grow them right here,” Smith said, pointing to the holly.

    The living room contains two of the trees, one of them a stately Christmas tree at the entrance with a smaller, silver Christmas tree at the other end of the room.

  • In June 1961, while serving as director of the 4th Marine Reserve and Recruitment District based in Philadelphia, I was selected for promotion to the rank of brigadier general. In the Marine Corps promotion is based upon the recommendations of selection boards composed of about seven officers senior in rank to those officers in the selection zone.

  • SIMPSONVILLE – The crowd was small Tuesday night at the community Thanksgiving worship service held at Simpsonville Christian Church, but the message was powerful – count your blessings.

    Ric Holladay, minister of Simpsonville United Methodist Church, delivered that message to the 65 or so people who gathered in the candlelit sanctuary as the first snowfall of the year fell gently outside, blanketing the world in white, fluffy arms.

  • A lot of families in Shelby County will gather today for Thanksgiving, enjoying a meal and fellowship and the festivities and traditions that go along with this special day.

    But for one of those families, this will be a lot more than just sitting down to a turkey dinner with all the trimmings.

    Kamron and Megan Terry use the day to introduce their two children, Miles, 5, and Scarlett, 7, adopted from the Republic of Congo in Africa, to American customs, especially at Thanksgiving, has been a blessing in itself.

  • As we gather around tables to feast on turkey with all the trimmings and give thanks for what’s important in our lives, it just may be that out in the woods behind the house those turkeys that found a way to stay in the wild and avoid the ovens are giving thanks for being dropped back in Shelby County.

    A rural community filled with outdoorsmen, there is no doubt that in this county many of the centerpiece turkeys have been hunted and harvested by someone sitting at that table, but not too long ago that wouldn’t have been possible.

  • Brenda Jackson, known for her decades of representation on the Shelby County Board of Education, is helping ensure that everyone in Shelby County who might not have a Thanksgiving Day meal can find food and company.

    She is the guiding spirit behind the community Thanksgiving Day dinner scheduled for Thursday at Stratton Center, and she may have started a new tradition, Rhonda Gillman said.

  • On a Friday afternoon, 50 years ago today, an American tragedy unfolded in the downtown streets of Dallas. The moment when an assassin’s bullet took the life of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy and in so many ways changed the course of American history is not something anyone alive that day can forget.

    In fact, it has become the most significant “I remember that day” anecdote that men and women have passed down through the generations, through oral histories, written memories or simply reliving the moment through media presentations.

  • Joel Kaufman is dying to know just who Elizabeth is.

    “That’s my main question; Just who was Elizabeth and how did she get this name?” he said.

    Elizabeth is a 1938 Ford that resided in Shelby County, originally purchased by Ruth Davis and later given to Don Turner.

    Kaufman, 60, lives in Hickory, N.C., and purchased the car online, and now he wants to tell its story along with returning it to the road.

  • Christmas – that magical time of year that children dream of all year long – is just around the corner, and some charitable organizations are struggling to come up with enough money to make sure that children around the county will have a gift on Christmas morning.

    Officials of one event that has been instrumental in providing gifts for children in need during the past decade said that funds are down by 50 percent this year, a situation that means that some children who received gifts last year may not receive anything this year unless more donations come in.

  • Trims and Whims, the annual holiday arts and crafts show, made its return on Saturday and Sunday to Wright Elementary School in Shelbyville.

    Hundreds attended to browse through displays, chow down in the tea room and soak up the holiday atmosphere.

    Check out these scenes from this year's event.