Be a Part of the Military Family Community Covenant

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Be a Part of the Military Family Community Covenant

Posted: 07/02/2009
As always you can enjoy good food, good fireworks, good music and good times at the Festival on the Fourth, the City of Knoxville's annual Independence Day bash in World's Fair Park on Saturday. 
 
This year you can also let the men and women who serve in the nation's armed forces - on Active Duty, in Reserve units and in the National Guard - know that you support them and their families by signing The City of Knoxville & Knox County Military Family Community Covenant.

The City of Knoxville and Knox County will hold a Community Covenant signing at 7 p.m. on the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra Stage on the South Lawn of World's Fair Park. The Knox BrassWorx will perform the music for the ceremony and the KSO is making its stage available for the event. 
 
Representatives of Knoxville-area Reserve and National Guard units as well as children of some of them will join U.S. Congressman John J. Duncan Jr., Brig. Gen. Terry M. "Max" Haston, Mayor Bill Haslam, and Brig. Gen. David Smalley and others in signing the Community Covenant.

The document affirms the city and county's support of service members. Knoxville and Knox County will become the second and third communities to sign Community Covenants in Tennessee.

Clarksville, with strong ties to neighboring Fort Campbell, Ky., and the 101st Airborne Division, is the only other Tennessee city that has hosted a signing.

In addition to the official document that will be signed on the stage there will be two banner-sized replicas of the document available for signing by folks attending the festival. Those will be sent to Tennessee units that are being deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan. 
 
"We're very pleased to have the opportunity to do this," said Mayor Bill Haslam. "Practically everyone in Knoxville has a family member, a friend, or a neighbor serving in the military and we want them to know that we support them and their families." 
 
The Secretary of the Army began the Community Covenant initiative in 2008. It has since evolved into a recognition for all of the armed services and their members and to date over 100 towns, cities and states have held ceremonies. 
 
"We are thrilled to take part in this Community Covenant to show our support for those who have made the greatest sacrifice," said Mayor Mike Ragsdale. "These men and women leave their homes and lives to make sure that we get to continue experiencing the freedoms so many before them have fought to provide, and for that we should all be eternally grateful. I am so glad our community has been able to be a part of such an amazing program." 
 
John L. Dyess, the U.S. Army Reserve Ambassador for Tennessee, approached Knoxville and Knox County about participating in the Community Covenant program and has worked with the city and county to make Saturday's signing ceremony a reality.

More than 6,500 men and women serve in Knoxville-based and Knoxville-area units of the Tennessee Army National Guard, Tennessee Air National Guard, U.S. Army Reserve, U.S. Naval Reserve and U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.

There are also active duty members of the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps in Knoxville who serve in various recruiting offices or in ROTC units at the University of Tennessee.