To the Editor:
I would like to take a moment to thank the citizens of Elizabethton. Recently, my precious nephew, Tanner Perkins, passed away unexpectedly. On August 17 we rode in the funeral procession to Happy Valley Cemetery. We had such an amazing experience for it to be such a tragic time in our lives. As we started past the Fire Station near the Covered Bridge, the firemen were at the redlight holding the traffic for Tanner’s family and friends. Next, at 111 G St., a gentleman was using a weed eater. As we passed, he turned off his weed eater and stood still as we proceeded on to the graveside. The oncoming traffic on G Street came to a complete halt as Tanner’s family and friends passed.
A little way down the road in front of Burgie Drug Store, the mailman (Frank Quintero). With his hand over his heart, he saluted us when the first car passed until the very last car passed by him.
Next, we saw a woman beside a chain link fence on G Street near West Side School. She was pulling weeds from around the fence. When she saw the funeral procession, she stopped and stood at attention with her hands respectfully behind her back.
Finally, there were the road construction workers behind Grindstaff Chevrolet. They were working on the new Gap Creek Road. Each and every worker stopped working and took off his/her hat paying tribute and respect to my nephew.
After the graveside service everyone returned to Tanner’s parents’ home. We discussed how respectful everyone had been on the way to the graveside. Tanner’s uncle from Florida said, “Things like that don’t happen in Florida.” He said people didn’t pay their respects to others this way.
I’m sure very few, if any of these people, knew Tanner or the family. However, I want to personally thank each of you from the bottom of my heart for being so respectful to my nephew, Tanner Perkins. He is and always will be missed far beyond what words can describe.
-Kristi Perkins , Elizabethton