LETTER: Thanks for saving trees

This letter is a follow up on my trees and to thank the people who helped me. After I was told by MTEMC engineers that my trees were to be cut down, I had no other options. I felt that my options had run out. I then did the following.   

 I contacted Mike Gannon, and he made several calls for me. I received a call from Charles Bowman, who was very nice and helpful. He informed me that he would speak with MTEMC about the situation. I would also like to apologize to Charles for me not being patient enough. However, it is hard to be patient when you feel that you are up to your waist in a swamp with alligators snapping at you. That is exactly how I felt.
MTEMC had already informed me that my trees would be cut down without any questions answered. I felt that the chainsaws were already running and the trees were falling down.      

I called Mark Pody and discussed the situation with him. Mark informed me that he would speak with his assistant, Debbie Stephens, regarding the situation. Within two hours, Debbie called me back to inform me that a higher up with MTEMC would be contacting me the following Monday.

Frank Jennings, Vice President of MTEMC, called me that Monday and discussed the situation with me. Frank asked me to move my fence inside the tree line and told me that MTEMC would trim four of the trees. Now, I had an answer to the question that I had asked MTEMC engineers when they came to my home.   

I am especially grateful to Mark Pody and Debbie Stephens for their help in this matter. If Mark Pody does not get but one vote in the next election, I can guarantee you that that vote will be mine unless Debbie Stephens is his opponent.     

I know that some people are wondering why it is such a big deal to me regarding my trees. My trees were not tall enough or would they ever be tall enough to hit an electric line. They are my trees. I paid for them, I planted them, and I have watered them. The trees have been there for 22 years. You cannot go on someone's property and decide to do away with something that he has worked so hard for.

The moral to my story is that even if a tree engineer with a degree in trees tells you something, it may or may not be true.       Thanks to all my family, neighbors, friends, fellow church members, Mike Gannon, Charles Bowman, Mark Pody, and Debbie Stephens. I will forever be grateful to all of you.

Dwaine Prater
Woodbury, TN