Letter to the Editor

Evans says thanks, ready to open new chapter

Sunday, January 3, 2016

To the editor:

To the Citizens of Brazil,

It has been an absolute privilege to serve you these past 2 years as City Councilman for Ward 4. I'm thankful I've had this opportunity to see Brazil from this side of service. It has opened my eyes and my heart to doing what I can to make Brazil better.

Many of you already know me from my past involvement in Relay for Life and the fight against cancer in Clay County. I've cried with many of you as you've shared your struggles with cancer. I've cried harder when that struggle ended without your loved one at your side. I've laughed with some of you as you've told of those hilarious moments that made the chemo and radiation treatments bearable. I've held your hand as those treatments took their toll. And I've done my best to guide you through the steps to get help through American Cancer Society and Relay for Life when your life overwhelmed you and you had nowhere to turn. I've stood in your shoes as I've been the hand that was held, the heart that was broken when my loved one passed, and laughed when it was too painful to do anything else.

As City Councilman, I've done my best to have that same approach, that same amount of care, for I, too, am a taxpayer with questions. I've taken your concerns seriously and I've met with you personally when you called. I've done my best to address your concerns with straight answers and solutions and followed up with at least one call or visit to make sure the solution was to your satisfaction.

I very much appreciate working side by side with Mayor Brian Wyndham and Clerk/Treasurer Karen McQueen, as well as my fellow City Council members, Brad Deal, Angie Modesitt, (Sam Glover and Michelle Harden-Price in Ward 2 prior), Ann Bradshaw, and Tyler Hutcheson. Being an active part of getting better streets and sidewalks has been very rewarding. It's been amazing to see good things happen in Brazil. I attribute a great deal of those good things to Mayor Wyndham, who has searched out infrastructure grants and done what it takes to get them. I've enjoyed working with Shawnette Szekely of the Water Department, Billy Goodrich of the Wastewater Department, and Brian Bemis of the Street Department.

I've served on the Planning Commission and the Downtown Revitalization Committee with Planning and Zoning Administrator Teresa Glenn. I've very much enjoyed serving on these two boards, for I've been able to see the possibilities that lie is store for Brazil.

I'd like to thank Police Chief Clint McQueen and Fire Chief Jake Bennett. Both men have answered my questions and helped me understand what it takes to keep Brazil safe and secure.

Lastly, I'd like to say I believe the future of Ward 4 is safe in the good hands of Roy Kellar, Sr., who was elected Ward 4 City Councilman last month. I ask that you please extend to him the same kindness, courtesy, and patience that you've afforded me these last 2-plus years. Roy has told me he is excited to step up and be counted as someone who cares about our city and is excited to see what the future holds for us. I wish him the best of luck as he takes office next week.

As I look forward to this New Year, I am excited for a new arena of my life as I begin to serve on the Park Board. The excellent examples of service that Ruth Anne Jeffries, Linda Mesmer and Tokie Kesler have provided is a great blueprint of how to move ahead. These women have given their hearts to making our parks beautiful and we should all give them our thanks and gratitude.

Carrol Evans