Athens (Alabama) Man Searching For Childhood Hero

Athens, Alabama – Moments in our lives change the course of history for ourselves and those around us. For Eric Michael White of Harvest, Alabama, one moment in particular had a major impact, because in that moment, at just 15 months old, his life was saved. Eric wrote the following in hopes of finding that hero that helped save his life 38 years ago.

“On July 15th, 1982, when I was 15 months old, I drowned in the bathtub at our home at 710 2nd Avenue in Athens, Alabama. I was unresponsive and had no heartbeat. After my siblings ran into the kitchen and told my mom that I went to sleep in the bathtub, she ran in there and found my lifeless body. She described me as feeling like a rubber doll and my skin color was blue. She recalled running out the front of the house holding me and screaming, ‘My baby is dead! My baby is dead! Please! Somebody help!’, hoping a nearby neighbor would be able to hear her and help. That day, there just happened to be someone visiting at a neighbor’s home who knew what to do. This gentleman heard her screams, ran across the street, and pried my body from my mother’s hands. He took me to the neighbor’s home, a couple of houses down from ours, and placed me on their kitchen table and began CPR, breathing life back into me. The gentleman was able to get me breathing again as the ambulance arrived to take me to the hospital. My dad told me later that he remembered receiving the call at his job that his son had drowned and died. My dad worked for GM in Tanner, Alabama, and said he jumped in his car and was flooring it all the way to Athens-Limestone Hospital. He told me that Athens Police were chasing him, because they didn’t know why he was speeding, but he never slowed down or stopped for them. My dad drove straight to the hospital and when he arrived, jumped out of his vehicle and ran into the hospital, telling the officers that his son had drowned. I sometimes think about the events of that day and that man who just happened to be in the ‘right place’ at the ‘right time’ to save my life. At the time, the doctors weren’t even sure if I would ever be able to learn to walk or talk, because of the damage they believed had been done for lack of oxygen for an extended period of time. In spite of this, I did recover and I do live a normal life, all because of the timing of that man who was visiting his friends on the night of July 15th, 1982. His quick action, running across the street and taking me to administer CPR immediately, saved my life! To this day, I still don’t know who he was, but, if he’s still around, I’d like to thank this hero for saving my life.”

If you would like to help Eric find who this hero was, please share this story. If you have information, you can email The Mark White Show at TheMarkWhiteShow@gmail.com.

Alabama Human Trafficking Summit Happening Tomorrow

HUNTSVILLE, AL – The Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force will host the 6th Annual Alabama Human Trafficking Summit on Friday, January 31 from 9 AM – 4:45 PM at Renaissance Montgomery Hotel Convention Center (201 Tallapoosa St Montgomery, AL 36104). A record 485+ expected.
The Human Trafficking Summit will highlight the “TraffickingFree Zone” initiative, 100+ Human Trafficking Awareness Proclamations issued by towns & cities, and the launch of a statewide billboard campaign. A Survivor Panel Discussion will feature 3 female & 1 male survivor of human trafficking. Breakout Sessions will address Law Enforcement, Faith Based, Medical, Service Provider, Legal, & Education responses to human trafficking.

The following presenters and speakers are confirmed:
Joe Scaramucci – Detective, McLennan County Sheriff’s Office (TX)
Pat McCay – Chair, Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force
Darren Beams – Lieutenant, Tuscaloosa Police Department
Ali Perron – Office Coordinator, A21 Campaign
Pamela Casey – District Attorney, Blount County
Adrian Carpenter – Chair, Renew Hope
Chris Ziebach – Founder, Camille Place
Carolyn Potter – CEO, The WellHouse
Donna Armstrong – Executive Director, Hope Haven
Doug Gilmer – Resident Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations
Teresa Collier – Intelligence Analyst, Alabama Law Enforcement Agency
Amy Wagar – AL State Director, Trafficking Hope
Sara Laster – Founder, Budding Hope Ministries
Dr. Melissa Peters – Medical Director, Children’s of Alabama CHIPS Center
Jan Bell – Executive Director, Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County
Sallye Longshore – Director, Alabama Department of Child Abuse & Neglect Prevention
Lynn Bius – Executive Director, Alabama Network of Child Advocacy Centers
Greg Zarzaur – Attorney at Law
Robin Wilburn – Child Labor Supervisor, Alabama Department of Labor
Shelly Johnson – Counselor, Shelby County Board of Education
Jordan Giddens – Community Engagement Coordinator, Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County
Lynn Caffery – Executive Director, Safe Harbor Youth
Dixie Shannon – Peer Advocate, The WellHouseAudrey Jordan – Assistant Attorney General, State of Alabama
Dr. Gary Warner – Director of Research in Computer Forensics, UAB
Jim Phillips – Compliance Intelligence Officer, Regions
Chris Lim – Project Director, AL Uniform Integrated Human Trafficking Initiative


The Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force was established in 2014 and meets once a quarter at the Alabama State House. Meetings are open to the public. For more information about the Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force or the Alabama Human Trafficking Summit, please visit www.enditalabama.org, like us on Facebook at
www.facebook.com/enditalabama, or follow us on Twitter @enditalabama.

MARCH AND RIBBON CUTTING PLANNED TO CELEBRATE OPENING OF NEW ATHENS BIBLE SCHOOL CAMPUS

The Persell Family gathers for the dedication of the Persell Campus at the new Athens Bible School location on Highway 31 in Athens, Alabama.

Athens, Ala. – Athens Bible School has a rich history in Limestone County and offers a quality education in the Tennessee Valley. The school was founded in 1943 and is a PreK-12 private school now located at 700 U.S. Highway 31 North, Athens, Alabama, whose mission is to provide a quality education on a Biblical foundation in a Christian environment. Athens Bible School holds a very unique position in the Athens-Limestone County area as a school that offers “Better Education on a Better Foundation”. Athens Bible School consistently provides a well-rounded education for its students by teaching them how to succeed in life academically, physically, socially and most importantly spiritually.

Athens Bible School campus in 1949.

Athens Bible School (ABS) will conduct a migratory march from the old campus (U.S. Highway 31 and Forrest Street intersection) to the new Persell Campus 700 U.S. Highway 31 North, Athens, Alabama 35611-5001 on Tuesday, August 6, 2019 at 9:15 a.m. followed by a ribbon cutting at 10:00 a.m. The Athens Police Department will close portions of Highway 31 to allow students, faculty, administration, alumni, and the community to make the ceremonial march. 

The community will join in congratulating Athens Bible School in the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony.

The Chamber of Commerce will join the ABS Board of Directors and Administration to officially open the doors on the new academic facility. 

Immediately following the ceremony, the audience is invited to join the students in the Rollings-Lovell auditorium for a prayer of dedication and singing of the alma mater. Refreshments will follow in the student commons, and the campus will be open for touring.

These activities are being coordinated by Gayle Hagewood, Assistant Director of Development. For more information call 256-232-3525 or 256-683-6778.

Two WWII Veterans Need Your Help

WWII veterans George Mills and Jim Feezel share their experiences at a FYSV meeting in Madison, Alabama.

Madison, AlabamaForever Young Senior Veterans in Alabama are currently working to return WWII veterans Jim Feezel and George Mills to Belgium and Germany for the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge, but there’s one major challenge. Both veterans, who are in their 90’s, need their caregivers to accompany them on this trip. That’s where you come in! A special fundraiser is now underway to send both Jim’s and George’s caregivers with them on the trip. First, let’s find out more about Jim & George and their service during WWII.

Jim Feezel is a WWII veteran who was a tank driver and served in Belgium and Germany in 1944 and 1945. Jim is also a liberator of Dachau Prison Camp and with his tank, he knocked down the gates to the gas chamber at Dachau! Forever Young Senior Veterans is returning Jim to Belgium, Germany, and Dachau in September 2019, but again, Jim needs his caregiver to accompany him on this healing journey. You can honor Jim’s service by returning him to the land that he helped to liberate by donating.

George Mills is a WWII veteran who was captured during the Battle of the Bulge and was a POW for 5 months. Forever Young Senior Veterans is returning George to Luxembourg to the very house from which he was captured. George has suffered and sacrificed for our country, and now, you can honor his service and help bring him peace and healing by donating to this effort

Although there are two fundraisers, Jim and George have agreed to split the funds equally. Let’s help both Jim and George by sharing this effort. Make helping Jim and George your purpose right now.

Jim Feezel – gf.me/u/tyq2p4

George Mills – gf.me/u/tyq24j

Alabama High School has Seven Seniors Graduating from College First

Seven seniors from ABS will graduate from Calhoun Community College on Friday night. Front Row L-R: Jantzen Flatt, Lillian Bradford, Laura Silvernail. Back Row L-R: Clayton Hamm, Matthew Usery, Cade Abernathy, Nicholas White.

Athens, Ala. – In the main hallway of Athens Bible School, there is an area dedicated to President Dwight D. Eisenhower. As a former general and president, Eisenhower understood organization, strategy, and implementation. President Eisenhower once said, “Plans are nothing; planning is everything.”

For the graduating class at ABS, it’s been about planning. As 97% of the class of 30 plans to attend college, 23% of the class are finishing with a college degree from Calhoun Community College in Decatur, Alabama. While it’s not unusual for high school students to acquire college credit through dual-enrollment (the average at ABS is 36 hours), it is highly unusual for a high school student to finish their Associate Degree during their high school career. At ABS, not one, not two, not three, but seven students will be walking across the stage at Calhoun Community College on Friday night to receive this honor, 11 days before they receive their high school diplomas. Since 2006, those who had received their Associate Degree had been females. This year, the group consists of four males and three females.

While the state of Alabama no longer offers an Advanced Diploma, ABS offers their own University Preparatory Diploma which requires advanced math, science, and two years of the same foreign language. Out of the class, 23 have earned the University Preparatory Diploma.

While success academically is clearly important at ABS, Gayle Hagewood, who is the Assistant Director of Development and an ABS graduate herself said, “Having such a successful senior class places a spotlight on our spiritual focus and respect for authority.”

As the ABS Class of 2019 moves forward, there’s one other quote from President Eisenhower that rings true for this small class of seniors, “What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight – it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”

Go get ‘em, Trojans!