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Our thoughts... Strengthening tough
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 When the going gets tough, the tough get going. That saying is a true reflection of the mentality of our local residents.

 Last August, the family of wounded Newton County deputy Wesley Atha became concerned that the sheriff’s deputies needed better protection.

 They requested that Level III bulletproof vests be purchased and Sheriff Ezell Brown agreed. However, the county had no money for unbudgeted expenses for these higher grade vests.

 That fact did not deter the Atha family as they, along with Sheriff Brown, embarked on a fundraising effort to generate the needed money for the vests.

 The community responded with open hearts and little by little, $89,167.23 was raised. That amount along with a federal grant of $28,770.50 was used to purchase 99 new vests for our local heroes.

 Because of the efforts of the Atha family and the sheriff’s department our deputies’ families can sleep a bit sounder knowing their loved ones are better protected. Also, community members have shown that when a need is there, we can take care of our own, with or without tax revenue.