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    County Mourns Loss of Jailer Bill Dunn

    By Judge Executive Shane Gabbard
    The last couple of days have been some of the saddest days since I came here in 2015. It seemed like last Tuesday was just a bad dream but sadly it wasn't. I got the call that afternoon that our Jailer, Bill Dunn, was in ICU in bad shape. It was just a brief time later I got the call that he had passed away. I had spoken with Bill the previous Friday and he was his regular jolly self. He didn't complain about feeling bad and said he was doing good. I guess that's why all this has been such a shock. We send our prayers and thoughts to all the family, friends and staff at the jail. I know many hearts are broke including ours in the Fiscal Court. Myself and The Sherriff met with jail personnel and discussed operations for the next week or so. The Jailer's Association and The Laurel County Judge Executive and Jailer have all extended their help during this time. They will be sending as many guards as needed to cover the jail, so our jail employees can attend the Funeral and visitation. The inmate numbers have been ranging between 90-100 in the last couple months, so we can't just leave it unattended. We have good neighbors in Laurel County and appreciate the help during this sad time.

    Travis Sparks Wins 17 Jack Gabbard Citizenship Award

    Story Submitted
    Travis Sparks, a local citizen, had just celebrated his 96th birthday when he learned he was the winner of the 2017 Jack Gabbard Citizenship award. This prestigious award was given to Sparks by The Jackson County Development Association on Tuesday, December 5th. Mr. Sparks was born in Jackson County in 1921 and was one of the first to graduate high school from the newly built McKee High School overlooking the city of McKee at the end of the 1930s, Travis worked for his Uncle Lloyd Sparks in a store in McKee for about one year until he was 19 years old and he decided to travel to Ohio to find work. Travis said that many others had found good employment in the Dayton area, so he decided to travel north and seek his fortune. He may have left home to find a steady job, but his heart remained in the hills of Jackson County. His future wife, Nannie Martin (also a Jackson County native) also went north to seek a future. Nannie worked in Detroit, Michigan for a year before she and Travis were married in 1942. They settled in Dayton, Ohio where Travis spent 42 years working for General Motors. He and his beloved wife raised two sons (Marvin David & Phillip Wayne), who still live there.