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Top stories of 2013
Tuesday, December 17, 2013

This is our last paper of 2013, so we are going to take a look back at what shaped our great city over the past year. 

January

The traffic cameras disappeared from intersections around Mt. Juliet as the contract was voted not to be renewed by the City Commissioners. 

Bryam Megan Ewers was arrested for attempting to hire a hitman to kill her ex-husband. The Wilson County Sheriff’s Office used an undercover officer to pose as a hitman. She offered $5,000 to have him killed. 

A EF-2 tornado touched down on the north side of Mt. Juliet, heavily damaging properties near the intersection of Lebanon Road and North Mt. Juliet Road. Most businesses opened back up within a few days, but some, like the Dollar General, have not returned. 

February

The Board of Commissioners started the process to get an interstate exit at Central Pike and I-40. The BOC voted on a resolution saying they supported and appropriated funds to prepare an Interchange Access Request. 

March

Former Tennessee Titan Erron Kinney was offered the Fire Chief position, and later accepted to become the first Fire Chief for the Fire Department of Mt. Juliet. 

A meth lab was busted at 11 Cooks Rd. in Mt. Juliet. Carroll Johnson Cook, 49, was arrested for manufacturing meth and possession at the residence, and was also accused of selling the drug in Davidson County. 

The first two liquor stores were approved in Mt. Juliet by the Board of Commissioners. Mt. Juliet Wine & Spirits, which is already open, and Providence Wine & Spirits, which is currently under construction. 

April

Vice Mayor James Maness presented his “20/20 vision” for Mt. Juliet, and the projects he would like to see done or in process by the year 2020. Some of the projects were the Central Pike Exit on I-40, the widening of Old Lebanon Dirt Road to four lanes, the widening of South Mt. Juliet Road to Central Pike to five lanes,  and the Eastern Connector from the Beckwith exit on I-40 to Lebanon Road. 

May

Dr. Timothy Setterlund was named the new Wilson County Director of Schools. Setterlund was previously employed as the Assistant Superintendent of Memphis City/Shelby County Schools. 

Mt. Juliet Youth Football found a new home, as it was worked out to have them move to Mundy Park. The football league had outgrown their home at Charlie Daniels Park, and needed more space. 

Great Britain’s Prince Harry visited Arlington National Cemetery, and placed a wreath at the grave of Mt. Juliet soldier, Michael L. Stansbery, Jr. Stansbery was killed on July 30, 2010 by an improvised explosive device while on patrol in Kandahar Province. The grave was chosen at random of the soldiers that had died in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

June

Mt. Juliet Head Coach Roger Perry, who had led the Mt. Juliet Bear football team to back-to-back state semifinal appearances, stepped down as Head Coach. Perry underwent a quintuple heart by-pass in the spring. His son, Trey Perry took over as Head Coach, and Roger Perry returned to the sideline as Offensive Coordinator for the 2013 season. 

Mt. Juliet cut the ribbon on Fire Station No. 1 to kick off the Fire Department of Mt. Juliet. 

The Exchange Club of West Wilson County, American Legion Tyler Cates Post 281 and Vietnam Veterans Chapter 1004 held a Flags of Honor event at the corner of Division Street and N. Mt. Juliet Road. The corner was filled with flags purchased by people to honor Veterans. 

Mt. Juliet Wine & Spirits opened their doors, becoming the first wine & spirits store located in Mt. Juliet. 

5-year-old Ethan Page was tragically killed in an accident when he fell into the path of a truck on a relative’s property. 

July

The City remembered the 10th anniversary of Sgt. Jerry A. Mundy’s death with a wreath laying ceremony at his memorial in Charlie Daniels Park. Mundy was killed along with Wilson County Sheriff’s Deputy John Musice while in the line of duty trying to stop someone running from the police. 

Lifestyle Communities, a high end urban living style community, announced they would be coming to Mt. Juliet. The property will be located between Jonathan’s Grille and Deer Park Apartments, and will be a community that caters to young professionals in the 25-35 age range. 

Ava’s Splash Pad opened at Charlie Daniels Park. The park was created with donations and grants in honor of Ava Bright, who passed away tragically at the age of two after complications from a tonsillectomy. 

August

Heavy rains caused area flooding which made several roads impassable in the area. 

The Board of Commissioners voted to make an offer on the Joy Church Property on Charlie Daniels Parkway. The building will be used as a new police station, freeing up more room in the current building for City Hall offices. Joy Church has a new property near the corner of Benders Ferry Road and Lebanon Road. 

Garr’s Rental & Feed closed down after 35 years in business. Re-Move Training is now in the building. 

September

Outdoors retailer Gander Mtn. submitted plans to the City for a possible location Providence Marketplace. It would be located next to Two Rivers Ford on Belinda Parkway. 

October

Wilson County Schools decided to move the high schools away from block scheduling, and move to a 7-class schedule starting next year. 

Jeremy Wayne Darnell was arrested in connection to the attempted abduction of a 14-year-old girl in Providence Marketplace in 2011. The girl was able to get away, but Darnell’s identity was not known until recently. 

November

A new school calendar was approved by the school board that would reduce the 2-week spring break to one. The school board said they may reduce fall break as well in future years to get more instruction days in before testing. 

Governor Bill Haslam visited West Wilson Middle School to announce that Tennessee had the largest academic growth of any state this past year. It was the largest jump in the history of the test. 

Joey Cooper was named the Director of WEMA, replacing John Jewell. 

The first Mayor of Mt. Juliet N.C. Hibbett passed away at the age of 79. 

Wilson Central High School won a Kelly Clarkson concert and $100,000 for State Farm’s Celebrate My Drive contest. They got people to pledge to be safe drivers. Mt. Juliet won $25,000 in the contest. 

A large subdivision, Nichols Vale, was approved on the north side of town. It will contain over 300 single family homes and over 50 townhomes, and have access points at Benton Douglas Parkway and Falkner Lane.