Saturday, December 3, 2016

Statement Regarding the Wildfires of the Smoky Mountains


Hi there. This is Jeff Lawhead, author of Phantoms Fill The Southern Skies and operator of jslawhead.com here.

As at least some of you know, this week the area I live in has been in a state of emergency since Monday, November 28th, due to a near unprecedented series of wildfires that nearly devastated the Smoky Mountains in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Although I was not personally affected by these fires and did not lose anything in the event, it has proven to be a historic tragedy in East Tennessee due to what many, many others have lost. As of writing, 13 people have died, over 80 were injured, innumerate people lost their houses and businesses, and the entire general flow of life here has been heavily upended.

As a result, I am going to temporarily cease operations of posting paranormal stuff on my website and actively trying to sell Phantoms Fill The Southern Skies. Beyond my hobby of writing about the paranormal, I work in the tourism industry for my day job, and as the wildfires and the damage they cause as part of what needs to be my business to know, I feel it's inappropriate to be talking about tragedies and ghosts in the mountains and woods when we are currently experiencing that ourselves in a way that's garnering nationwide headline news. Just really not the right time.

Again, this is only temporary and I expect to try to be resuming posting paranormal articles and videos here maybe mid-February as well as trying to sell my book.

I would also like to encourage anyone reading this to come visit the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge all the same. Even though the wildfires have devastated us, we are very much NOT closed for business. Our spirits and livelihood burn brighter than any fire and we will have an amazing Christmas holiday here nonetheless.

I think that's all I have to say about that for right now. For tourism information on the Smokies, I refer you to www.allthesmokies.com. For news on the wildfires, I refer you to www.wbir.com. Thank you!

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