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MJMS student helping friend meet weight goals
Tuesday, May 5, 2015

A Mt. Juliet Middle School student might have saved a family friend’s life. 

Zack Garringer, 15, and his family have been friends with Jamie Lee’s family for years. They are more like family than friends. 

In 2004, Lee’s middle son was born with a heart problem. In 2008, he had to have a heart transplant, and all the doctor visits forced Lee to quit his job teaching at Lakeview Elementary. 

Since that time, Lee has seen his weight go  from around 290 pounds to over 500 pounds. Lee said it was partially the stress he was under, but also the boredom of being at home and grabbing junk food to pass the time. 

“I knew there was a problem when I remembered I needed to DVR “The View”,” Lee joked. 

Several months ago, Garringer knew that Lee needed help. Garringer is an aspiring athletic trainer, and he knew his family friend could be in serious trouble if he didn’t start taking care of himself. 

“I talked to my parents about it because I knew he didn’t have much longer,” said Garringer. 

Garringer approached Lee about taking the weight off and talked about a training plan he had researched. 

“He was shocked, but humbled,” said Garringer. 

Lee said it was the exact thing that he needed, but he was resistant at first. 

“I was like, why am I going to listen to this 14-year-old,” said Lee. “And then in one week I lost 15 pounds and I said, that’s it, I am going to listen to this kid.”

Lee said he knew he needed to make a change because he was about at the point of being immobile. He said he just didn’t know how to start, and the encouragement from Garringer was exactly the right thing. 

Garringer got Lee started on lots of cardio, which Lee had trouble with at first, but was able to get through the exercises. The duo have added in strength training now, and Lee has dropped well over 100 pounds in the time they have been together. 

“It makes me feel great helping a friend out,” said Garringer. “Our families have definitely gotten closer.”

Garringer and Lee have set a goal of 220 pounds for Lee, but they aren’t stopping there. They said they are just going to keep going, and keeping that strong friendship intact along the way. 

 
Beckwith North deferred
Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The controversial Beckwith North project, which would put another one million square foot facility in Mt. Juliet was deferred by the developers Monday. 

Annexation and changing the zoning classification were on the agenda Monday, but developers decided after it already been posted to defer it. The reason was that they are still working with the neighbors on Hunting Hills Drive, which are strongly opposed to the project. 

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MJPD officer suspended for alleged time card fraud
Tuesday, April 28, 2015

A 16-year veteran of the Mt. Juliet Police Department was decommissioned last week after it was found that he possibly falsified his time cards. 

Crime Suppression Unit Sergeant Jason Ezell, 40, is the subject of an investigation of possibly entering time on his time cards that he did not work. After becoming aware of the timecard discrepancies, Chief Hambrick immediately instructed staff to conduct a complete and thorough investigation into the issue.

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Commission disappointed with Expo Center vote
Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Mt. Juliet Board of Commissioners were disappointed that the Wilson County Expo Center proposal was approved by the County Commission last week. 

An 86,000 square feet Expo Center was approved by the Wilson County Commission 17-7 Monday, April 20. The site will be at the James E. Ward Ag Center, and will not cost more than $10 million. 

“If it would have been here in Mt. Juliet, it would have been better,” said Mayor Ed Hagerty after the Board of Commissioners meeting Monday. 

The Board of Commissioners had passed a resolution the April 14 meeting asking the county to do a site analysis and financial feasibility study on the proposed site because they felt there were sites in Mt. Juliet that would work better. Hagerty said he did not receive any feedback from the resolution before the County Commissioner vote. 

Hagerty said he understood what County Mayor Randall Hutto was trying to do with the Expo Center, trying to draw tourism and bigger events to Wilson County, but he felt a site in Mt. Juliet would have better access to hotels and the airport. 

Hagerty said that the Board of Commissioners will be not taking anymore action on the matter, and are moving forward with City business. 

 
Wright wants new schools, technology
Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Wilson County Director of Schools Dr. Donna Wright stopped by the Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce Luncheon to talk about the challenges the school system is facing in the next few years. 

Wright headlined three things that face the school system - building schools, teacher compensation and technology. 

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