But recently, our community received a thank-you note from a grateful traveler and I would like to share this with all Bradley County residents.
The letter, which was published as a “Letter to the Editor” in the Sunday, Aug. 17, edition of the Cleveland Daily Banner, is as follows:
“Hello, my name is Jacquelyn Abrams and over the weekend I had the good fortune of breaking down in your town (county).
“It began Saturday evening. I was heading back from a vacation in Florida and following my GPS (mind you, I have been on many vacations to Florida and have only traveled I-75 straight through) when it told me to cut through your town. I was definitely nervous at first.
“Myself, my cousin and three very irritable kids were making our way through, when I got a flat on the corner of Dalton Pike and Falcon Road. Almost immediately a man pulls up and asks if we need assistance; however, I had already called a tow company and told him no thanks.
“While waiting for our tow, we then had several other people stop to ask if we needed help, every one of them super nice and very friendly. After waiting about half an hour and a couple of calls to the tow company, the [sheriff’s deputy] then stopped by to see how we were doing. I explained that we had a tow on its way and he assured me he would stop back by to check on us. Yet again, super friendly people.
“Finally, after waiting an hour and half for our initial tow company, only to be told [our contact] was still looking for a driver, I gave up and called North and South Towing. The very sweet and very nice lady said she would have someone there promptly, and she did.
“During the wait, additional people would stop by and ask how we were doing. One elderly retired mechanic even stopped by twice to see how we were and told us if he was able to change it, he would.
“Finally, the [sheriff’s deputy] pulls up again and asks if we were still doing OK and I explained that I had to get another tow company and they were on their way. He used his walkie-talkie to get an ETA and waited there with us.
“At this point it is now dark, the kids have become very irritable and the temperature was sweltering. Even with all this horrible situation going on, this friendly town kept our spirits going.
“Just a little bit after the [sheriff’s deputy] came, the tow truck arrived with a very nice man named Troy who helped us out by changing our tire, while the [sheriff’s deputy] sat behind us with his lights on so the driver could see. It took us quite a while to get the tire changed, but neither the [sheriff’s deputy] nor Troy, the tow guy, acted as though it was a bother.
“Once the spare tire was put on, Troy told us it was flat and we needed to get air in it immediately. Most people I know would have just left us at that. Not this town, not these people.
“After a very nice goodbye to the [sheriff’s deputy], Troy then followed us to the Walmart gas station to get air in the spare and gave me a business card with his personal cellphone number on it, in case I had any more problems.
“It was the most fortunate three hours I have ever spent in a town broken down. Take pride and pleasure in such a great wonderful town such as yours with such sweet, caring members.
“I saved the location in my GPS just so that when I travel again to Florida in the future I will always take this route.
“I don't know if there is a way, but I would very greatly appreciate it if you could send a huge THANKS from the Mom in the flat tire minivan to Troy at North and South Towing and the [sheriff’s deputy] whose name I did not get. He wears glasses and is very nice.
“I made it home safe to Berea, Ky., because of these people.
Thank you to the residents mentioned in the above letter.
And thank you to everyone each day who seeks to have a positive impact on the lives of each and every person they meet in the course of each day.
This “Southern Hospitality” on display daily is yet another reason that Bradley County truly is Tennessee at its best!