It is about a one-hour drive northwest of Chattanooga to get to Tracy City. The small town raised some eyebrows a decade ago when its voters chose a man who had died more than a month before election day as their new mayor.
It takes almost exactly two hours to make the 135-mile drive north of Chattanooga to Lebanon, the seat of Wilson County. An unusual scene unfolded there recently when a Tennessee man who had been charged with marijuana possession took a decidedly theatrical approach to making his opposition clear to our state’s weed laws.
It is almost exactly a two-hour drive northwest of Chattanooga to get to the campus of Vanderbilt University. The well-regarded school is where Tennessee native Joejuan Williams played his college football.
If you drive about 180 miles west of Chattanooga, you can find a medical records warehouse in Wayne County. The optometrist who owns the warehouse was recently arrested on drug crimes charges by officials who claim the property was used to house a marijuana-growing operation.
There’s an old saying that there are always two sides to every story. The adage is certainly buttressed by the conflicting versions of events given by a Tennessee grandmother and federal prosecutors in a trial being held about 100 miles northeast of Chattanooga.
Tupac Shakur was a groundbreaking musical artist who infused his powerful West Coast hip hop with biting social commentary. The rapper sold more than 75 million recordings and starred in multiple feature films before he was gunned down in a drive-by shooting in September of 1996.
If you pile together enough rocks, you essentially create a mountain. That is apparently what the federal government’s Drug Enforcement Administration had in mind when they named a recent law enforcement action “Operation Crystal Mountain.” The sweeping effort involved federal agents, as well as state and local police departments in three states: Tennessee, West Virginia and Kentucky.
It’s about a 250-mile drive west of Chattanooga to get to Jackson, Tennessee. The city of about 65,000 is home to the so-called “Rock Doc,” a flamboyant nurse practitioner who tried to remake himself into a star. Jeffrey W. Young II was recently described by Tennessean as “a tattooed, rebellious, womanizing party animal who worked hard, played hard and lived by his own rules.”
Before he became a police officer, Geraldo Orta was a University of Tennessee football player perhaps best known for being accused of beating up a teammate. Today, he has become known as a former cop who was fired for lying and for being accused in a federal lawsuit of using excessive force while making a drug arrest.
To the northeast of Hamilton County sits our neighbor, Rhea County. Though Rhea has just one-tenth of the population of Hamilton, it is rich in natural beauty, including the Laurel-Snow State Natural Area and others.