The List

By Ralphine Major It all started with the heart.  Many Focus readers may remember my first column, “The Real McCoy,” which ran on February 7, 2011.  Dr. Kyle McCoy is the cardiologist who treated our mother after her heart attack.  “Life is a Gift,” my tribute to the late Criminal Defense Attorney Zane Daniel, was […]

Having Fun in the Snow

By Ralphine Major We waited—and it came.  The world seems to come to a stop, or at least slow down, when Mother Nature blankets the earth in snowflakes.  What was once a common sight in East Tennessee winter is now more rare.  The second week of February 2014 brought one of those rare sights, and […]

Standing Tall on the Court (Part VI): Life on the farm

By Ralphine Major He scored over 2,000 points in both his high school and college careers.  He became a college All-American and was later named to Carson-Newman’s Team of the Century.  He played softball for 22 years and was named to the Knoxville Softball Hall of Fame.  Despite his achievements in athletics, however, Tommy Everette […]

LOVE makes ‘a good team’

By Ralphine Major It was likely the most popular decade of our time.  Rock-n-roll music, poodle skirts, and bobby socks were images of the fifties.  Eisenhower was our nation’s leader, “Don’t Be Cruel” was made popular by a young Elvis, “Tennessee Waltz” topped the charts, and Dean Martin’s “Memories are Made of This” all helped […]

Holston Middle to Present Disney’s ‘Aladdin Junior’

By Ralphine Major You may have seen them at area malls or at the historic Tennessee Theatre. Wherever they perform, they are sure to draw a crowd. Organized in 2009, the Holston Middle School Kids in America Show Choir will be performing “Disney’s Aladdin Junior” on February 6-8, 2014, at the Holston Middle School Auditorium. […]

Standing Tall on the Court (Part V): Life after basketball

By Ralphine Major The coach gave his player a piece of advice: “There is life after basketball.” Tommy Everette, the tall center who played on the successful 1964-65 Gibbs basketball team, remembered the comment made by his high school coach, Bob Dagley. Everette became a college All-American and had an outstanding basketball career at Carson-Newman. […]

What’s in the Bag?

What’s in the Bag?

By Ralphine Major It had buttons for its eyes and a red felt tongue. The little blue and white teddy bear has survived years of house cleanings. When other keepsakes were eventually discarded, the little blue bear always found its way back into our home and my heart. It was one of my Christmas gifts […]

All Roads Lead to Clapps Chapel, Part III

By Ralphine Major “ . . . rejoice, and sing praise.” (Psalm 98:4 KJV) “It was impressive,” Bob Dagley said.  He could have been talking about the amazing Gibbs High School basketball team he coached fifty years ago.  But this time, he was talking about Ronald Rogers and the bands at Farragut.  After all these […]

A Birthday Celebration

By Ralphine Major It was well underway when we arrived. With the hillside full of cars, it had the look and feel of a tailgating event—especially since the University of Tennessee was hosting the University of Georgia. Some guests were coming outdoors to eat. Others were just inside where the tasty barbeque and all the […]