News Ticker

Suicide intervention and prevention

January 2, 2013 Kenny Martin 0

Suicide knows no boundaries. There is no typical suicide victim. It happens to young and old, rich and poor. Many people at some point in their lives think or talk about suicide, but come to realize that the crisis is temporary and death is permanent. People having a crisis sometimes perceive their dilemma as inescapable and feel that their life is out of control.

Research suggests that the majority of people who attempt suicide literally do something to let others know their intentions before they act. These warning signs consist of personal behaviors, verbal and non-verbal communications, and include but are not limited to the following:

Changes in personality: sad, withdrawn, irritable, anxious, tired, indecisive and apathetic. 

Changes in behavior: can’t concentrate on school, work or routine tasks.

Changes in sleep pattern: bedridden, constant fatigue, insomnia and frequent nightmares.

Changes in eating habits: loss of appetite and weight or overeating.

Loss of interest in friends, hobbies or other activities previously enjoyed.

Anxiety about money, personal health and other illnesses, either real or imagined.

Fear of losing control, going crazy or harming self or others.

Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness and low self-esteem.

Feelings of overwhelming guilt, shame, self-hatred and no hope for the future.

Drug and alcohol related problems or abuse.

Loss of religious or spiritual faith or in other personal beliefs or philosophies.

The giving away of prized possessions.

Previous suicide attempts. 

Talks about committing suicide.

Talks about putting together a will. 

Most depressions contain some element of grief and/or recent losses tied to death, divorce, separation, broken relationships, personal status, etc. Watch for statements like “nobody cares”, “everyone will be better off without me”, and “I wish I were dead”. Mental and emotional illnesses such as bi-polar disorders are often tied to suicidal feelings. Many suicides occur in the winter months or after the holidays. Some professionals claim being trapped inside and the grayness of the outdoors during the winter months can lead to winter blues and depression, while others claim the after holiday blues and incoming bills can lead to depression as well.

Most people can be helped in getting through their moment of crisis if they have someone who will spend time with them and take them seriously and help them talk about their thoughts and feelings. If you are someone you know is going through tough times and are depressed or contemplating suicide, there are programs and places available to help. Please remember, “You’ve got a Friend”. 

For further assistance please contact your local law enforcement agency, the 24 hour Crisis Center at 244-7444 or the Hope Line at 1-800-SUICIDE. 

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Holiday Crime Prevention Measures

December 12, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

With the holiday season upon us, we should take advantage of and use any and all extra crime prevention, safety and security measures available to prevent becoming the victim of a crime. One such measure is to be on the look out for drunk drivers. The number of drunk or drinking drivers increases around the holiday season.

If one intends on drinking they should plan ahead and get a ride to and from an event. If for some reason you end up drinking and didn’t plan on doing so, simply either stay where you are and call either a friend, family member or a taxi cab to carry you home. Taking these measures will save you money, accidents, injuries, jail time and even your life.

Another measure to take is to use common sense. During the holiday season, thieves and burglars scope out local subdivisions and parking lots looking for Christmas gifts stored in automobiles. When shopping or storing gifts in your vehicle, always either cover the gifts or store them out of sight or in the trunk of your vehicle. Never leave gifts in your vehicle over night, unless locked away and out of sight.

Another thing to consider is the day after Christmas. Drive through any subdivision or community the day after Christmas and you’ll notice lots of empty boxes at the curb of people’s yards and driveways. These boxes usually have things like 27-inch color television, hi-fi stereo and sound system or any other expensive brand name you can think of on the box.

This is a bad practice that should be avoided if at all possible. This practice simply advertises to any thief or burglar that you just received more valuables for him or her to steal. If you have boxes the day after Christmas, simply break down the boxes and place them in trash bags. This may seem like quite a bit of work, but it is well worth the effort.

In closing, don’t make burglarizing your home or automobile easy for a thief or burglar. Who knows, maybe if we make it tough enough on them they’ll actually get jobs and buy the gifts themselves, like the rest of us.

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Buy Mt. Juliet First

November 28, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

As with any community, the importance of its citizens spending their hard earned tax dollars locally is vitally important to the community’s economy and its citizens. With Mt. Juliet’s rapid growth and new businesses literally opening daily we’re starting to see an even greater need to spend our tax dollars locally. For example, Mt. Juliet businesses depend upon our tax dollars for survival. They make huge investments in our local community in an attempt to provide a service or convenience and desperately need and deserve our support.  Our schools, businesses, roads and many other services depend on the local economy for survival. When a business sets up shop in Mt. Juliet their goal is to provide services and conveniences to local citizens. In return, the local economy gets a boosts from the additional revenue generated locally and a trickle down effect occurs. Without local businesses providing these much needed services citizens are forced to call on vendors in other cities and towns. As a result, these vendors have to drive and ship their merchandise further and that cost is passed on to the customer/consumer. Unfortunately, money spent in other cities and counties benefits that community and not ours.

Therefore, I would like for each citizen to make every effort possible to spend your tax dollars locally. I totally understand that Mt. Juliet doesn’t currently, nor will it ever be able to offer every available service or convenience, but I would like for everyone to please patronize the businesses and services we have. In other words, if we have a business that offers something we need, we should make every effort to patronize that business and not a business outside our community. What is spent here benefits here, what is spent elsewhere benefits that community. For example, if you know that you need gasoline, try and plan your gas purchases locally, if you need groceries, buy them locally and so on. The more we spend locally the better off our community will be.

In a nut shell, if you can buy it at home and support our local businesses, then please do so. Current businesses, services and products not currently located in Mt. Juliet are much more likely to locate here if they see that our citizens support and patronize their local businesses. Our community and its businesses depend upon your support and patronage.

In closing, please buy and shop locally. Its money well spent and will benefit us and our community!

Kenny Martin 

754-2552

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Go Mt. Juliet Go

November 21, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

With yet another great year of retail and business growth in our great city, Mt. Juliet has emerged as a force to be reckoned with. Mt. Juliet is quickly becoming a full service city with every service and convenience imaginable.

Not only do we have many more businesses, but we now have multiple choices when it comes to our needs, which we all now is better for the customer. In other words, competition is good for the customer and business owner as well. Over the past year Mt. Juliet has welcomed many new businesses to our great city. When you combine those new businesses with our existing business base, it’s easy to see why Mt. Juliet is now a force to be reckoned with.

I’d also like state how much we appreciate our business community and business owners. With that being said, I can’t over state the importance of buying, shopping and patronizing all of our local businesses first. When we choose Mt. Juliet First we not only support our local businesses community, but we also support our community as a whole. The dollars we spend locally stay in our community. The dollars we spend in other counties and communities support that community and not ours. 

Our business community needs and deserves our support. Their continued wellbeing and existence depends upon our support and patronage. In other words, in order to have business convenience, we must have consumer and customer patronage.

And if the 2012 business year is any indication of what 2013 will be like, then we are in for our best year yet. Many projects like the Paddocks Development, Mt. Juliet Towne Centre, Graves Crossing, Providence Central, Providence West, Mt. Juliet Village, Bel-Air at Beckwith and many, many more businesses will begin to blossom.

So please support your community by supporting your Mt. Juliet business community first.

Kenny Martin

754-2552

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Domestic violence and the holidays

November 14, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

Most law enforcement agencies across the country see increases in domestic violence calls around the holiday season. As we all know, the holidays are supposed to be joyous times spent with family and friends. However, for some the holidays are filled with heartache, resentment, sorrow and guilt.

This unfortunate occurrence leaves many families and friends torn apart and traumatized from the event. Reasons for the increase in domestic violence calls can be attributed to the financial burdens placed on many families when the bills begin to roll in after Christmas. Other factors include the natural depression that sets in from the lack of sunlight during the winter months. The winter months seem to contain many more rainy, snowy or otherwise cloudy days than do the summer months. The lack of outside activities and natural sunlight can lead to depression, frustration, boredom and arguments from simply being cooped up in the same house and around each other longer than usual. Another major contributing factor in domestic violence incidents is alcohol consumption. Alcohol is a natural depressant and its consumption usually tends to increase around the holidays. 

Many families unknowingly place themselves in bad situations around the holidays by spending too much money on Christmas. The joy of Christmas and Christmas shopping can cause a roller coaster of emotions once Christmas has passed and the bills begin to roll in. The shock of opening the bills long after the joy of Christmas has passed can lead to resentment, frustration, arguments and domestics. The holidays are meant to be filled with love, peace and harmony, not fights, ill will and torn apart lives. Even the best of relationships can become strained around the holidays, so please be patient, forgiving and loving.

In closing, if you are the victim of domestic violence are need help with domestic violence issues, please contact your Mt. Juliet Police Department for assistance at 754-2550  

Kenny Martin

754-2552

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Family

November 7, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

Have you really ever thought about how short our time on earth really is? It seems like we can just snap our fingers and ten years have past us by. Life just seems to be moving at such a rapid pace these days which should encourage each of us to live life to the very fullest. For example, so much of our lifetimes are spent on work and worry and not near enough time on family, fun and friends. 

Think about it, even when we’re with family and friends we’re talking about work and worry. It’s like we can’t get work and worry out of our minds long enough to relax, rest, re-energize and enjoy a moments peace. As you can imagine, this can cause major stress and anxiety which can eventually cause major problems in any family’s relationship.

With all this in mind, I’d like to encourage everyone to take along hard look at your life to see if you’re spending enough quality time with the ones that you love. Not to be morbid or a stick in the mud, but none of us are guaranteed tomorrow. I want you to really, really think about your family and all the people you love. Now I want you to picture their faces, voices, mannerisms and smiles. Can you imagine never getting another chance to speak with them, visit with them or even touch them again? Pretty sad isn’t it? 

Well, life doesn’t have to be like that. Our lifetimes here on earth aren’t that long. Think about it, how many of us have said it seems just like yesterday when I graduated from high school, got married or had our first child? And before you know it your children are grown, you have grandchildren, you’ve been married fifty years and are retired and don’t know where your life has gone. You find yourself saying, where did all the years and wasted opportunities go?

In closing, don’t waste a single moment speaking or visiting with the ones you love for we are not guaranteed tomorrow. Our lives are much to short to have regrets for not living and loving to the very fullest we could have in our lifetime. Pick up the phone and call someone you love each and every day. They’d love to hear from you!  

  

Kenneth Martin

754-2552

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Halloween Safety Tips

October 31, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

Well, it’s Halloween time again. With that in mind, I would like to encourage everyone to have a safe and happy Halloween. Below is a list of preventive steps I’ve prepared for the citizens. These are tips you may find helpful in making your Halloween a safe and fun adventure for all involved.  

1. Prepare ahead of time the route and location of your trick or treating

2. Only trick or treat in areas and locations you are familiar with

3. Make sure the costume you are your child wears, has large eye and mouth openings. This will assure that you and your child can see and breath clearly

4. Make sure the costume can be seen at night. For better visibility, attach reflective material to the costume itself

5. Purchase a flashlight for guiding your way around obstacles and better visibility

6. Walk up to houses using driveways and sidewalks to avoid unseen obstacles and tripping. When having to walk through yards, make sure to watch for clothes lines, dogs, small trees, low lying limbs, potholes and other obstacles

7. Never trick or treat alone. Always walk and stay with a parent, guardian or friend

8. Upon receiving treats, never consume the treats until they have been properly and carefully examined by an adult, parent or guardian. Criminals have been known to place needles, small nails, razor blades and other toxic substances in or on candy and other treats.

9. Another option is to contact your local hospital to see if they are offering free treat x-rays and examinations on Halloween night

10. Other popular alternatives to trick or treating are Halloween Parties and Church Trunk or Treat Functions.

 In closing, let’s all have a fun, safe and happy Halloween, especially the kids!    

Kenneth Martin

754-2552

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Deer season and traffic crashes

October 24, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

With auto accidents involving deer rising daily, I thought this would be a great time to remind all citizens to take extra caution this time of year. Did you know that each year there are approximately 500,000 deer/auto collisions resulting in over 100 deaths and thousands of injuries? With Wilson County’s growth and the urban sprawl, the deer population is being forced out of the woods and into our neighborhoods and on our roadways. Deer are most likely to come out between the months of October thru January, but are apt to come out at anytime of the year. Deer also tend to come out between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. or early in the morning hours. 

According to statistics, automobiles make up 61 percent of the animal/deer related crashes, trucks 26 percent, vans 7 percent and tractor trailers 2 percent. But keep in mind, those are only statistics. 

The following are defensive driving tips for avoiding deer/animal collisions:

1. Be vigilant in the early morning hours, the most active time for deer.

2. Use your high-beam headlights, which reflect in the deer’s eyes, to see the deer better.

3. Slow down and blow your horn with one long blast to frighten the deer away.

4. Brake firmly when you notice a deer in or near your path. Do not swerve. It can confuse the deer about which way to run. It can also cause you to lose control and crash.

5. Be alert and aware at all times. Drive with caution.

6. Always wear your seat belt. Most people killed or injured in deer/animal collisions weren’t wearing seat belts.

7. Look for other deer after one has crossed the road. Deer seldom run alone.

8. Be prepared for anything at anytime and anywhere!

In closing, our roadways can be a very dangerous place to travel in the first place and any unexpected obstacles only make the process that more dangerous. So please buckle up, slow down and drive safely. We can’t afford to lose any of our most precious cargo.

Kenneth Martin

754-2552

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If it sounds too good to be true

October 18, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

In a perfect world with only honest people we wouldn’t have to worry about this, but since we do have criminals to deal with, I felt it appropriate to advise all residents, especially our seniors, about scam artists. Many, low income elderly Americans are targeted by scam artists who use high pressure tactics to sell unneeded and overpriced home improvements. These scam artists target the elderly because of their trusting nature.

Often these scams bilk our senior citizens out of life savings, leaving them unable to pay their own bills. And with a majority of our seniors on fixed incomes, this is something we must make every effort at stopping. In an effort to fight such scams, The Mt. Juliet Police Department recommends the following crime prevention measures.

There are several basic steps one can take which can prevent a problem from arising:

Never deal with any door-to-door salesman, contractors or buy repairs advertised on TV. Deal with local trades people recommended by friends or reputable businesses.

Before agreeing to hire any home improvement contractor, get a second estimate for the same work from another contractor.

Get a written contract or estimate describing the work, the price, the materials, the responsibility for cleaning up, and the hourly rate for any additional work.

Get references for the contractor and speak to those references. Ask about satisfaction and any problems that arose. Call the local Chamber of Commerce and Better Business Bureau. 

Take a look at other work performed by the same contractor.

If problems have developed with a contractor’s work, seniors should immediately take steps to protect their interests, such as:

Obtain an estimate from a professional detailing how much damage was done by the contractor, and the value of what services were rendered.

Take detailed pictures of the work or damage left by the contractor and date them. These photos can be used in court to show the nature and extent of the problem.

Hire an expert (architect, reputable contractor, etc.) to look at the work for quality and compliance with specifications. The expert can also provide an estimate regarding the fairness of the price for work completed, the extent of physical damage, and its cost to repair.

Call your local law enforcement agency and report the incident.

We must do all we can to protect our seniors. These are the fine people that protected us all our lives, now it’s time for us to step up to the plate and protect them. There will be further scam protection articles in weeks to come. In the meantime, if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. 

Kenneth Martin

754-2552

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Random Acts of Kindness

October 10, 2012 Kenny Martin 0

I got an idea once from a local church pastor. He discussed a program called RAK. The program encouraged church members and citizens to commit random acts of kindness. Think about it, when was the last time someone did something nice for you when you least expected it? 

Random acts of kindness can come in many forms. You can hold the door open for someone, buy someone lunch, help a senior citizen with yard maintenance, say have a good day to someone or just do anything nice. As we all know, the last thing most people expect to happen for no reason is something nice. Not that it doesn’t happen every once and a while, but probably not as often as we would like.

Simply saying have a great day can have a major affect on most people on a given day. Now just imagine doing something way outside the box like telling the restaurant manager how good your waitress or waiter was or sending a nice complimentary letter to the company headquarters. There are many opportunities for participating in random acts of kindness. You can visit your local nursing home, a sick friend in the hospital, the children’s hospital or just do anything nice for no reason.

Trust me, it’s addictive. Once you’ve done it once you can’t stop and that’s the purpose. If we can convince more people to perform random acts of kindness, then the world and communities we live in can and will be a better place to live. Niceness comes in many forms, some expected and some unexpected. Either way, kindness is kindness and most of us appreciate and enjoy kindness. As a matter of fact, I can’t remember the last time I heard someone say, please quit being so kind and nice to me, it’s starting to get on my nerves, it just doesn’t happen.

Anyway, random acts of kindness can be given and received by anyone, especially family and friends. But to those that aren’t expecting it, it’s an awesome feeling and sight to behold. Random acts of kindness works both ways for the giver, it brings joy and happiness for the receiver and joy, happiness and fulfillment for the giver.

In closing, it never hurts to be kind, courteous, respectful, nice and sincere. We could all benefit from Random Acts of Kindness.

Kenneth Martin

754-2552

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