Three local mayors say they have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, both personally and professionally.
At the top of Bradley County Mayor D. Gary Davis’ personal list is health of family.
“Four children, four grandchildren — all healthy, all here in Cleveland, so I’m thankful for that,” Davis said.
Cleveland Mayor Tom Rowland and Charleston Mayor Walter Goode have similar feelings.
“I’m thankful for my family and friends and living in this country, which is so blessed and free,” Rowland said.
Goode said he is thankful for his family and thankful to God for giving him a family.
“As far as the city goes, we are not in deep debt with anything [and I’m thankful for that],” Goode said.
On a professional note, Davis said he is thankful unemployment is not as bad in Bradley County as in some other areas of the state.
Area industries that have been hiring are also something the mayor is thankful for.
“The (lower) unemployment situation is something to be thankful for, even though it could always be better,” Davis said.
This Thanksgiving sees Davis on the other side of a large expansion of Bradley County Fire-Rescue. Davis said he is thankful the new stations were completed and everything was up and running by the deadline.
“I’m thankful for the new playground for the kids up here to enjoy,” Goode said.
The Charleston-Calhoun-Hiwassee Historical Society and civic organizations are also on Goode’s list of thanks.
“I think something kind of unique in Bradley County is nonprofit volunteer organizations that do so much for the community,” Davis said. “Those volunteers are out there every day helping people less fortunate. We have kind of come to expect it in our community.”
Davis said it is something that can be easily overlooked, but for which he can be grateful.
“The great thing about our community to be thankful for is this is a place that when someone is hurt, everyone hurts. I know this is a community made up of people who respond when bad things happen to good people,” Rowland said. “I’m thankful the people in our community put the needs of others ahead of themselves.”
Davis said he is also thankful for the trust people put in him as their mayor.
“I’m thankful for our city employees who take their roles as public servants seriously,” Rowland said.
Goode also said he is thankful for “the people I’m working with in the city.”
“I’m thankful for living in a caring community where people live the giving spirit all through the year, and not just during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season,” Rowland said.