The latest mass shooting on Feb. 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, has spurred a number of potential threats across Western North Carolina. 

• Jackson County leaders plan to prevent Jackson County leaders plan to prevent school violence
• Swain High students walk out of class

School officials and law enforcement officers are investigating several students who’ve made comments about school shootings while others have dealt with social media threats. Not all of the student comments have been found to be a credible or eminent threat, but local law enforcement agencies have made it clear such statements will be taken seriously. 

After rumblings and rumors around town, Mission Health confirmed it is actively looking for a new location for MAMA II, the medical emergency helicopter currently stationed at Angel Medical Center in Franklin. 

Haywood County’s new emergency alert system startled many Jan. 11 with a “shelter in place” notification just after 6 p.m., related to shots fired on Biodome Drive.

Collaboration between Mission Health and Macon County leadership, with support from the Highlands-Cashiers Hospital Foundation, Mission Health Department of Philanthropy and community donors, has resulted in the fully funded purchase of a much-needed, brand new ambulance for emergency patient transport in Macon County.

A unanimous vote from the Jackson County commissioners will allow construction of a 185-foot radio tower in Cullowhee to move forward, but the decision came after vocal opposition from six of the seven county residents who spoke at a 3 p.m. public hearing on Monday, Nov. 27.

A brand new emergency department at Harris Regional Hospital in Sylva received its first patients Monday, Nov. 6, marking the end of a project that’s been more than a decade in the making.

The fire review process included a thorough analysis of all communications and decisions made from the time the fire began on Nov. 23, 2016, to the time it left the Great Smoky Mountains National Park at 6 p.m. Nov. 28. According to the review team, here’s how it unfolded.

Nine months after a small wildfire in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park metastasized into a deadly blaze that wreaked havoc on Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, a report reviewing the National Park Service’s decisions and actions leading up to the Nov. 28 firestorm has been released.

Austin Bohanan, 18, had been lost in the wilderness for 11 days when he woke up the morning of Aug. 22 to see boats floating on the water below the ridge where he’d slept.

Those boats were his ticket out of the nightmare that began Aug. 11 when he’d gotten separated from his stepfather Hubert Dyer, Jr., during an off-trail excursion in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Chilhowee Lake. Bohanan scrambled down to the water, which turned out to be the tail end of Abrams Creek, and waved down one of the boats. The boaters gave him a ride down to Shop Creek, where his family was gathered to support the crews searching for him.

The Franklin Town Council recently approved a $700 expense that will allow the town’s police force to be armed with a life-saving drug Narcan.

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