Founding ALA Unit 248 President Betty Wood honored

Community, News

President Thelma Coffone, Treasurer Barbara Stodghill, and Betty Wood

Betty Wood has been an inspiration to many women of the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 248 since its humble beginnings in 2002.

Woods has led the group of women, many wives and mothers of veterans while others had/have family members who served/serving in all branches of the military. Each monthly meeting, Wood continues to promote the Preamble to the Constitution “associating ourselves together for the following purposes:

  • To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America;
  • To maintain law and order;
  • To foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism;
  • To preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in the Great Wars;
  • To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation;
  • To combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses;
  • To make right the master of might;
  • To promote peace and goodwill on earth;
  • To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;
  • To consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.

ALA 248, in conjunction with the 100th birthday of the American Legion, wanted to recognize Wood for her dedication to our Veterans and the women who support them.

President Thelma Coffone and Treasurer Barbara Stodghill presented Wood with a beautiful, blue plaque that said:

“Presented to Betty Wood – Founding President – A very honorable and heartfelt for organizing the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 248 and for your leadership and continued dedication to all members. March 2019.”

With not a dry eye in the room, she humbly accepted the gift.

ALA Unit 248 today is what it is due to the hard work, dedication, and love Betty Wood has shared in years past. Members are looking forward to her sound wisdom in making the future even brighter.

For more information on becoming a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, please contact President Thelma Coffone or call (706)455-8422. attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month for ad server. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 to 60,000 per week Facebook page reach. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or visit



North Georgia Honor Guard hold memorial service for Tom Foster

Community, Obituaries


A good turnout by the NHGH on a cold and rainy day to honor a comrade,” stated Greg Coffone, a member of the NGHG, who was present at the memorial for Tom Foster, Jr., 84, a U. S. Army veteran from the Korean Era.

Bill Stodghill, as Chaplain, led the group in prayer. Coffone was in charge of giving commands to members of the Guard as they proceeded with the ceremonial rites for Foster. Other members with assigned duties were:

  • Steve Strickland- Tuck (the flag).
  • Chief Gerald McMillen- Rifle Squad Brass.
  • Thelma Coffone- Memorial Lady.
  • Richard Crosley – Rifle Squad Leader.
  • Nick Wambley- Post US flag Fold with Strickland assisting.
  • Garnett Webb- Posting the 2nd Army flag in honor of Foster.
  • Maria Kidder – Memorial Lady in training.
  • Jim Holland – Rifle Squad.
  • Murl Tackett- Rifle Squad.
  • Garnett Webb – Rifle Squad.
  • Bill Hall – Bugle (TAPS).

Courtesy of, the Fosters’ obituary is as follows:

Tom Foster Jr., and Joyce Pruitt Foster died together unexpectedly February 7, 2019, at the ages of 83 and 82.

Tom and Joyce were survived by siblings, Howard and Jeannie Pruitt, of Talmo, Georgia, Wallace and Janice Pruitt, of Gainesville, Georgia, Sue and Ronnie Graham of McCaysville, Georgia; nephews (second parents), Stephen and Cecelia Pruitt, of Atlanta, Georgia, Wally and Laurie Pruitt, of Gainesville, Georgia, Matt and Baya Pruitt, of Flowery Branch, Georgia, and Joseph Pruitt, of Gainesville, Georgia; great nieces and nephews (second grandparents), Samuel Foster and Abigail Joy Pruitt, of Atlanta, Georgia, Erin and Hugh Pruitt, of Gainesville, Georgia, and Parker, Carson, Quinn and Cameron Pruitt, of Flowery Branch, Georgia.

Tom was born December 17, 1935, in Lenoir City, Tennessee, to Tom Sr. and Willie Foster. He graduated from East Tennessee State University in 1958 with a degree in education. “Coach Tom” as he was known throughout Fannin County began his teaching and coaching career at West Fannin High School in 1958 where he amassed an impressive coaching record, but he believed his greatest accomplishments were influencing the lives of many young men and women.

Joyce Pruitt was born May 27, 1936, to Howard Young Sr. and Arie Pruitt. Joyce worked for more than three decades with the Dickey McCay Insurance Agency as an accountant. Joyce received a Bachelor’s degree in accounting from Brenau University, an accomplishment she undertook with great pride.

Tom married Joyce in 1960. Over the greater part of the next 60 years, the couple welcomed many family, students, friends and children into their home. Each person who entered their home was treated as family. Tom and Joyce were very proud of their careers and had many accomplishments along the way, but it was their love and personality that changed the world of each person who met them.

Their love of travel was well known to all, but their capacity for love was legendary. Tom loved golf and Joyce loved travel and cold weather. They both loved the University of Tennessee football program and could usually be found on fall Saturdays at Neyland Stadium cheering on the Vols. But besides each other, their greatest love were people.

They spent many hours working and volunteering at First Baptist McCaysville where Tom served as deacon while Joyce served many roles at the church. Most recently they served as best friend to Senior Pastor Matthew McDaniel. They were still close to the Fannin County School System and worked diligently with the athletic departments in Fannin County and Lenoir City with their Halls of Fame, both of which Tom was an inductee. Most of all, they took great pride and pleasure in their family and the nephews and great nephews and nieces that they saw as their children and grandchildren. Each of them know their lives were better for having Tom and Joyce as a beacon of light giving them love, hope and guidance. They and all those who learned from and were cared for by Tom and Joyce, in turn, are grateful to be their legacy. attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month for ad server. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 to 60,000 per week Facebook page reach. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or visit


American Legion in Blue Ridge celebrates its 100th birthday

Lifestyle, News

Some of the members of AL who attended the party.

American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) of McCaysville Unit 248 hosted a very special birthday this year at the Veterans Conference Center in Blue Ridge, GA at its monthly meeting on March 4, 2019.

The American Legion (AL), with Posts throughout the United States is celebrating its 100th birthday on March 15, 2019. To help honor this momentous occasion, ALA prepared and served a delious meal for Veteran members of the local American Legion Chancy Harper Styles Post 248. Green bean salad, fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, mashed potato salad, brownies, homemade fudge, and cakes were just a few of the items set out for Veterans to enjoy.

ALA President Thelma Coffone presented a cake honoring the Legion’s birthday to AL Commander Richard Crosley before the feast began.

AL Cmdr Richard Crosley and ALA President Thelma Coffone showing off the beautiful birthday cake.

According to American Legion website, March 15th “is the day in 1919 when the first American Legion caucus, held by members of the American Expeditionary Force, convened in Paris; the date on which the Legion came to life. Chartered and incorporated by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veterans organization, the Legion is devoted to mutual helpfulness.”

To support the Legion, “In the spirit of Service, Not Self, the mission of the American Legion Auxiliary is to support The American Legion and to honor the sacrifice of those who serve by enhancing the lives of our veterans, military, and their families, both at home and abroad. For God and Country, we advocate for veterans, educate our citizens, mentor youth, and promote patriotism, good citizenship, peace and security.” Its purpose is:

  • To support and advocate for veterans, active military and their families.
  • To support the initiatives and programs of The American Legion.
  • To foster patriotism and responsible citizenship.
  • To award scholarships and promote quality education and literacy.
  • To provide educational and leadership opportunities that uphold the ideals of freedom and democracy and encourage good citizenship and patriotism in government.
  • To increase our capacity to deliver our Mission by providing meaningful volunteer opportunities within our communities
  • To empower our membership to achieve personal fulfillment through Service Not Self.

If you are a Veteran and would like to meet with your fellow comrades, please contact Cmdr Richard Crosley at American Legion members meet the first Monday of each month at the Veterans Conference Center in Blue Ridge.

If you have had a member who served and/or currently serving the military and would like to join the Auxiliary, please contact ALA President Thelma Coffone by phone (706)455-8422 or email her attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month for ad server. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 to 60,000 per week Facebook page reach. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or visit



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