‘The Lord prepared me’

Local runner gives personal account

At mile 26, Shawn Hazelrig was nearing the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Until she noticed runners heading her way, the wrong way. “It’s over,” she heard them say. “There is no finish line.” Before the race even began, Hazelrig had been speaking to a fellow runner about the police and military presence at the marathon. “Gosh, this would […]

An infomercial on child abuse

Judge appointed to hear lawsuit against county


Retired Etowah County Judge William Cardwell has been appointed by the Alabama Administrative Office of Courts (AOC) to preside over a lawsuit filed last year by Blount County landowner Todd Palmer and associated timber interests against Commissioner Allen Armstrong and the Blount County Commission. Cardwell replaces Circuit Judge Steven King of the 41st Circuit Court (Blount County) who recused himself […]

Hospital not only staying but settling in for long term


Questions have been phoned in to the newspaper about St. Vincent’s Blount for more than a month. Basically they’ve fallen into two (1) treatment of employees and (2) whether St. Vincent’s plans to continue operating the local hospital. It wasn’t a mountain of questions, but definitely more than the newspaper normally gets about any particular local employer or institution. So […]


Alabama Accountability Act: A promise that can’t be kept

Have you ever made a promise you knew you couldn’t keep? I sure did every time mama took a switch to me. “I promise, I promise, I won’t ever do it again,” I hollered as I tried to dance out of her reach. Unfortunately, when you cast aside all the pleadings that “this is for the children” and when you […]

Thanks from the chamber

The Blount-Oneonta Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 30th anniversary last month at the annual banquet held at The World Outreach Center and more than 400 people gathered to celebrate life in Blount County. Annual awards were presented to several individuals and businesses as part of the celebration. Many, many “thank you’s” are in order as volunteers and organizations stepped forward […]

Drop off unwanted prescription drugs

Next Saturday, April 27, the public will be given the opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. From 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., Blount County District Attorney’s Office and the Oneonta Police Department will be collecting unwanted prescription drugs at the Oneonta Walmart, no questions asked. The […]


Tackling the Medicaid monster

As the 2013 regular legislative session winds down, the continuing saga of balancing the beleaguered General Fund Budget will be issue No. 1. As legislators wrestle to finalize the General Fund Budget the obvious complementary dilemma that confronts lawmakers is what to do about Medicaid. The growth and expansion of Medicaid is the biggest problem facing the General Fund and […]

A look ahead with county engineer Winston Sitton

The county engineer occupies a critical position in assuring the longrange condition of county roads, bridges, and other structures, as well as in the orderly development of subdivisions. A recent conversation with county engineer Winston Sitton identified several concerns that are on the top of his list for attention in the coming months. Job 1: ATRIP “Getting our ATRIP (Alabama […]

From the Archives

The Blount Countian April 16, 1997

Hospital controversy aired at state CON board meeting What began as a state agency hearing became “more of a ventilation,” according to Dr. Gilder Wideman, chairman of the state’s Certificate of Need Review Board. The hearing was to determine whether to grant a certificate of need (CON) to Blount County Hospital Board for its proposed replacement of for Blount Memorial. […]