effingham

List with Coldwell Banker Intercoastal RealtyThis Fall…

List with Coldwell Banker Intercoastal RealtyThis Fall…

The fall real estate market is almost always a hot season. Home selling in the fall is the second best time of the year to sell a home. Families have returned from summer vacations. Kids have gone back to school. The holidays aren’t here yet. It sounds like a great time to prepare to home to sell.

     People are happy and relaxed as the temperature begins to drop. Home buyers are out looking, thankful the summer heat is behind them.

     If you have been contemplating putting your house on the market, now is the time to do it.

Coldwell Banker Intercoastal Realty would like to offer you some tips for attracting buyers in the fall.

*Clean Up the Yard

Rake dead leaves and debris in your lawn. Don’t let overgrown vegetation block the windows or path to the entrance. Cutting bushes and tree limbs will let the sun inside and showcase the exterior of your home. Cut away summer vines and cut down dead flowers.

*Create Fall Curb Appeal

The most popular fall flowers are chrysanthemums (or mums), and they bloom for a long time. Marigolds are also good for fall. Plant them in pots and place them on the steps and along the sidewalk. You can accent with pumpkin or other fall favorites.

*Clean the Windows

Rain and wind from the summer months can make your windows dusty and streaked. You might not notice smudges, but buyers will. To sell a home, your windows need to sparkle. Remove screens and spray them down.

*Check the HVAC

You want the air inside your home to smell fresh. When was the last time you changed your AC filter? Have the HVAC system checked before you need to turn on the heat.

*Clean Out the Fireplace

Ah, nothing smells better than smoke from a wood-burning fireplace. If  you have a gas fireplace, light it when buyers come through. If the fireplace is filled with cobwebs because it hasn’t been used for months, vacuum it out.

*Turn on the Lights Everywhere

Bring in the light. When days get shorter, the sun sets lower in the horizon and casts wider shadows. Pull up the blinds and push back the drapes on every window. Turn on every light in the house

*Call Coldwell Banker Intercoastal Real Estate and list your home

The friendly agents at Coldwell Banker are ready to serve you.  Just give them a call and set up a listing appointment.  All the agents at Coldwell Banker are experienced and have your best interest in mind. They will guide you through the process and help you get the best dollar for your home.  Call them today at (912) 826-0927

The Salon at MCall Plaza

Do you have a local hair salon in Effingham?  The kind that makes you feel like family when you walk in the door? If not, you need to give The Salon at McCall Plaza a try.

     The Salon specializes in new and innovative coloring and cutting techniques. They use and sell Olaplex, Antidot, Paul Mitchell, Redken and Kenra products.

     In addition to cuts and colors, The Salon also offers perms, smoothing treatments, special occasion hairstyling, make-up, waxes and more.

     While you wait, please relax, read a magazine and enjoy a cup of hot tea or coffee in our waiting area.

     Sheila Cela, owner of The Salon at McCall Plaza has been a hair stylist for 35 years.   Keeping it in the family, Sheila’s daughter Shalon has also become a stylist and has worked side by side with her mom for the past 13 years.

     The team at The Salon takes great pride in their family-friendly atmosphere. “My girls are all professionals. They all have wonderful clients and they do a great job and serving them and keeping them happy. I am proud of them all,” shares Sheila.

     The Salon serves men, women and children, making everyone in the family feel comfortable from the moment they walk in the door.

     For the children, they have plenty to keep them busy while mom or dad is having their hair done.

     The Salon has a knack for taking care of their male clients. Men can feel a little uncomfortable in a salon setting.  But that never happens at The Salon at McCall.  Men are very comfortable there.  Their friendly staff makes the guys feel right at home.

     For all of the brides-to-be and her wedding party, ask about their bridal hair session. Bridal packages are available in the salon or on location, offering make-up as well.

     The Salon has eight stylists with over 100 years combined experience. They are Angela Thomas, Debbie Cubbedge Sykes, Brooke Langford, Johnna Klontz, Sheila Cela, Shalon Cela, Shelby Schrader and Kristy Teston.

      They attend hair shows as often as possible.. For their stylists, it is very important to know the newest color techniques, cuts and styles to provide clients with the best the industry has to offer.

     The Salon is open Tuesday through Saturday with late evening appointments available for those who cannot make it in during the daytime hours or  Saturdays.

     So if you are looking for a family friendly salon, check out The Salon at McCall Plaza. You won’t regret it.

Winston Hencely : Soldier and Survivor

Story By Kathryn Vandenhouten     Photos By Nelson
LaPorte

Winston Hencely doesn’t consider himself a hero. He says he was just doing his job. He never imagined a confrontation with a suicide bomber would leave him struggling to survive. He’s still on the road to recovery, but the Effingham soldier is defying expectations at every turn.

     In November of 2016, the ECHS graduate was an army specialist soon to be promoted to sergeant when he was nearly killed. He recalls knowing instinctively that something was wrong that day. Unlike most Afghan Nationals, the man looked mean and out of place, so Hencely approached him.

     “If I see something, I’m going to say something,” he says. When the man ignored Hencely after questioning him, he grabbed the man’s shoulders from behind, and that’s when he felt the vest. “He blew up right next to me.”

     The explosion killed five people and injured sixteen. Four died onsite and another succumbed to injuries later. Hencely suffered a penetrating traumatic brain injury and multiple shrapnel wounds. “Shrapnel went in the front of my forehead and lodged eight bone fragments in the frontal lobe, and the shrapnel is still back between the occipital lobes,” he says.

     He then lifts his shirt to show a large scar across his chest where he was cut open to remove even more shrapnel from his body. Immediately after the incident, a large piece of his skull was removed due to brain swelling.

     Most people celebrate their twenty-first birthdays by going out on the town; Hencely spent his 21st birthday getting a metal plate in his head.

     His mother, Vicki Hencely, says she remembers the day of the bombing like it was yesterday.” I was sitting here, and I was watching the news, and ticker tape went across the screen and it said ‘Suicide bomber on Bagram in Afghanistan kills 4 and injures 17,’” she recalls.

     When she couldn’t reach her son by phone, friends tried to assure her that she would have gotten a call if something had happened to Winston. Twelve hours later, she got a call from Fort Hood, Texas that confirmed her fears. “I just had that gut feeling. Just that uneasiness. That feeling that something wasn’t right,” she says.

     When her son arrived to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., doctors had to prepare her for what she was about to see. “It was hard to walk in and see him on life support and the machines breathing for him, and he’s just shaking because the part of the brain that controls body temperature was damaged so they couldn’t control his body temp,” she says. “It was horrible.”

     Miraculously, Hencely woke up from his coma and never looked back. Doctors said he would be paralyzed on his left side, likely never to walk again. Hencely had other plans. “I made a decision early on,” he explains. “I could’ve easily given up and just be in the bed the rest of my life. Have somebody feed me, change me-I could’ve, but what quality of life is that?”

     So he did what any soldier would do; he fought. After months in the hospital and multiple surgeries, he never stopped fighting, and his hard work has paid off. “They told me that I wouldn’t walk. Six months later I was walking. They told me that I wouldn’t run-what next?” says Hencely.

     If there’s one thing he loves, it’s proving people wrong when they say he can’t do something. “I use a lot of that as motivation,” he explains. “Sometimes you just get dealt a really bad hand. Whining about it doesn’t make your situation any better.”

     It is that determination that has gotten him this far. He still has a long way to go on his road to recovery, but after multiple surgeries, months of hospitalization, and ongoing therapy, he is proud of how far he’s come.

     “I’ll never be the same as I was, and I’ve accepted that,” he says. His mental scars will last as long as his physical ones. Since the explosion, Hencely has suffered from post traumatic stress and anxiety. The constant fear of danger is never far from his mind.

     Fortunately, a service dog, Loki, was donated to Hencely to ease his anxiety, and the two are now inseparable. “It’s just nice to have something you can talk to that doesn’t talk back but still shows some sort of love for you,” he says.

     The love and support from the community has been overwhelming as well. Hencely and his family were amazed at the homecoming he received in Rincon when he came back. Hundreds of people lined the streets to welcome him home. There are still yellow ribbons lining the road to his home, put up by friends and neighbors to honor him.

     “I’ve never seen so many people come together,” he says. “I want to thank everyone for their support and prayers and everything they’ve done for me.”  The homecoming parade, get well cards, and thousands of well-wishes on social media shows the overwhelming support he’s received from family, friends, and the entire community.

     “Americans don’t know how good they have it, that’s for sure,” say Hencely. “It’s nice being back in America.” If there is one thing he has learned from his brush with death, it is gratitude. In fact, he says the whole experience has made him a better person.

     “It took all this happening to me to realize I don’t deserve anything,” says Hencely. “I’m really more open minded now. I value my life a lot more.”

     He wears a memorial bracelet with the names of those who died that day. It reminds him how lucky he is to be alive, and he vows to do something great with his second chance at life. “I have that with me because they didn’t get the chance to live and I did,” he says. “It’s really hard. Every day is a struggle for sure. My body’s getting better, but I have a lot that I need to work on to mentally overcome.”

     He still struggles with survivor’s guilt, but he is more focused on the future than the past. “There’s a lot I want to do,” Hencely says. “I want to focus on something in neurology or neuroscience. I have a lot of interest in that and I’ve learned a lot.”

     Along with his many coins, awards, and his Purple Heart, he has an exact replica of his skull with a hole in it the size of a fist. To see it is to truly realize how lucky he is to be alive.

     Hencely’s motto is “make the rest of your life the best of your life.” No matter how cliche it may sound, he believes he is here for a reason and he plans to live life to the fullest.

     “There’s a lot more in store. I have big plans. Be patient with me. I love the support and I plan on giving back,” he says. One of the causes that have become even more dear to the Hencely’s is the Adopt A US Soldier program, which connects supportive civilians to deployed soldiers.

     Hencely himself spent months in the hospital, and his mother and grandmother never left his side. Other soldiers are not so lucky. “Walter Reed took a part of my soul away,” says Vicki Hencely. “You can’t visit a facility like that and walk away whole.”

     She says the image of sick and injured soldiers with no family was heartbreaking, which is why the Adopt A US Soldier program is so important. “It’s our young kids missing two arms, missing both their legs and don’t have anybody. Their mom’s not there. Their dad’s not there. Their family’s not there,” she adds.

     Luckily, Winston had strong family and community support throughout his entire ordeal. In fact, he says that waking up to see his family there gave him the encouragement he needed to get well. “That was key to my recovery,” he adds. “Waking up and having my family there.”

     In addition to supportive family and friends, he also gives credit to the staff at Effingham County Hospital, where he continues physical therapy. Little by little, he is regaining strength and mobility.

     Winston Hencely will never be the same person he was before he was injured, but maybe he wasn’t meant to be. And though he doesn’t like being called a hero, this soldier’s battle to recover has made one thing certain: he is a fighter.

Christopher Chavis : Conquering the Catch…Hook, Line and Sinker

“As no man is born an artist, so no man is born an angler.”

~Izaak Walton

Story By Katrice Williams Photos By Shelia Scott

Christopher “Chris” Chavis is an Ellabell native who has lived in Effingham for over 10 years, along with his wife LeAnn. The couple has a son, Landon, 16, and daughter, Gracy, 13. Chris has been doing millwork since graduating from high school and is currently a longshoreman at Georgia Port Authority in Savannah.

     Bass fishing has long been Chris’ passion, as he has loved it as far back as he can remember.

     “I’ve been fishing ever since I was old enough to hold a fishing pole. My granddad used to carry us everywhere with him. He fished tournaments as we were growing up. That’s where I got my passion for it from,” Chris mentions. Chris’ granddad Lee Benson is definitely his biggest mentor.

     Chris fished on the local small club level as a member of the Three Rivers Bass Club for a while. During only his “second year of fishing at the club, he had several good finishes and won angler of the year in points.” After his first year, he “got more into the competitive side” of things after becoming more acquainted with that arena.

     He remembers thinking, “If those guys can do it, I can do it.”

     Early on, he knew that it would be most beneficial to “start fishing really well at home before going abroad to compete;” he was confident that after mastering his skill on his home turf that he could begin “venturing out” much more. Chris fished in team and local, open tournaments and even participated in various charity competitive events.

     Chris began competing as a co-angler, an individual who sometimes fish in the rear of the same boat as a highly skilled and professional boater at competitions; the pairings are often randomly selected prior to events, as the two usually compete independent of one another. Actually, “the very first time that Chris fished as a co-angler, he won.” What’s more, Chris fished in a couple of Bass Fishing League (BFL) Tournaments and American Bass Angler (ABA) Tournaments where he performed very well.

     Chris declares, “I never would have thought in two years that I would’ve done as good and went as far in it as I have.”

     Chris is enormously grateful for all of his accomplishments on the water. Some 2016 finishes included 1st place at the BFL at Clarks Hill in March 2016, 2nd place at the BFL Savannah River Division at Lake Hartwell in April, 1st place finishes at Catt Trail and the Savannah River Elite Anglers last September and 1st place at the Halloween Tricky Two-Day Competition last October just to name a few. Actually, he did a phenomenal job this year alone, placing 3rd at the ABA National Championship at Lake Old Hickory in April, 3rd at the ABA South Carolina Division at Lake Russel in May, 3rd at the Coastal Bass Anglers Memorial Day Open at the Savannah River in May and 2nd at the Metter Bass Masters Open in July.

     Chris has a host of other accomplishments where he led in points over the past few years. All-in-all, Chris has “fished two national events which included over 300 anglers, ten regional events having over 250 anglers and about 20 local events, which included nearly 100 anglers;” he is pleased at his placement in each tournament.

     Further, Chris began fishing as a boater this year, and he continues to exceed even his own expectations. In fact, some boater “trails to be finished” include: American Bass Anglers Ram Open Series in South Carolina, the FLW (Forest L. Wood Fishing League)/BFL Savannah River Division and the FLW/BFL South Carolina Division, all being regional tournaments. In contrast to a co-angler, there is normally more vested interest and overall responsibility with being a boater; Chris really enjoys the challenges that come along with it.

He states, “I’ve done really well as a boater for my first year. There is a lot more on the line.” Chris welcomes anyone interested in learning more about his fishing endeavors to look him up via Facebook.

     Chris has some very beneficial advice for anyone desiring to get more into the sport and compete against others. He suggests, “Make sure you are good around here, then go out and fish as a co-angler for a while until you feel really good and confident that you can do a good job against those guys on their home lakes.”

     With all of his skills, accolades and accomplishments, Chris has a sincere love for the sport—a love that would be difficult to remain over the years without the tremendous support of his wife and kids. They are his biggest cheerleaders. They are truly proud of him and are looking forward to his professional growth in the sport and all that the future has to offer.

     LeAnn comments, “We’re happy to support him. I’m excited for him. How many times do you get to support somebody trying to live their dream? He would support me in anything I wanted to do. We’re behind him completely.”

     She admits that she does go fishing with her husband on occasion and is pretty okay with leaving most of the real fishing up to him. However, she always goes with the goal of getting a catch.

     LeAnn jokes, “I like to go fishing, but I really like to go ‘catching.’ I’m like, hey, let’s go. If we don’t catch anything, I’m ready to go.”

     Chris, a genuinely humble guy, would rather talk about his family or his second love, fishing, than ever be boastful about himself or his achievements.

     LeAnn insists, “He would rather talk about anything other than himself.”

     Going forward, Chris is looking forward to working his way up to the upcoming FLW Tour or the Bass Masters Elite Series, the goal of nearly every angler striving to consistently capitalize on their professional skills. Hence, he has several noteworthy goals in mind.

     Chris remarks, “Next year, I would like to try to fish the FLW’S and the Bass Masters Open. My goal is to take it another step up and go from there and see how it goes. I’m confident enough in myself that I feel like I can go compete and do good…take the chance and go after it.”

     Chris is certainly grateful to all of those family and friends who show their support. Also, he feels very privileged and thankful for all the companies who have chosen to sponsor him, including BD Landscaping, D&V Electric, Beasley Conditioned Air and Greenleaf Construction.

     “Having the support of local companies and good friends and family—it makes a humongous difference to keep you going,” Chris asserts.

     When he is not reeling in a catch, Chris enjoys spending quality time with his family, as he appreciates all of the time that they so willingly and open-heartedly sacrifice for him to follow his aspirations.

     Christopher Chavis is looking ahead to all of the opportunities in store for him as he persists to reach other noteworthy heights. While continuing to embrace the same humility and modesty that is instilled within, the opportunities are nearly endless for this talented and accomplished fisherman.

Traci Wells : Salesperson of the Year 2016 Cora Bett Thomas Realty

Traci Wells has enjoyed great success as a Realtor for over 15 years.  Therefore, it is no coincidence that when Traci made the decision five years ago to join a local firm with global exposure she joined Cora Bett Thomas Realty.

     As a result of this successful partnership, Traci has been able to make a difference in the lives of her clients located in Chatham, Bryan, Bulloch, Effingham, and surrounding counties. Interestingly, a real source of pride for Traci is the company’s relocation and referral department.  She mentions, “We have a phenomenal relocation department.   We are contacted by potential clients from different parts of the world as well.”

     More importantly, when Traci meets with clients she is actively listening to their vision along with their needs and desires for their new home.  This intuitive approach, coupled with Traci’s vast experience is the formula for success for her clients in finding and purchasing the house they will call home.  Whether it is a couple purchasing their first home or a client who is selling their home to move on to a different chapter in their life, Traci is enthusiastic and passionate about her work.  Helping clients fulfill their dream remains the most rewarding aspect of her career and the biggest reason Traci continues to love what she does each and every day.

     Traci and her husband, Andy, are natives of Bryan County and now reside in Effingham. However, banking was Traci’s initial profession though real estate proved to be a better fit.  This financial experience compliments her real estate career.  Success in both of these complex fields require great attention to detail and an ability to understand and communicate with people from all walks of life.  Traci possesses that unique ability.

     She remarked, “Banking is a great background to have!  Once I entered into the world of real estate, I was intrigued as to “how and why” these processes work.  I have always wanted to know the nuts and bolts of everything”.   With Andy’s background as an independent construction contractor this proved to be Traci’s greatest motivator and encourager as she began to move towards a career in real estate.  “He taught me the new construction background.  Working with and learning from Andy proved invaluable.”

     Traci considers it a privilege to be a part of Cora Bett Thomas Realty, who has set an unparalleled standard in the local market.  Notably, Cora Bett Thomas Realty is not a franchise but is indeed “globally networked just like a franchise.”  The benefits include a higher degree of capitalization on meeting customers’ needs and industry demands, as well as allowing the company to have a complete customer focus and client goal-orientation.

     She explains that though the company has an inception date of 1995, Cora Bett has been in real estate industry for much longer.  Cora Bett is an expert in the ins-and-outs of real estate, enabling her to develop and maintain an exclusive brand.   Cora Bett Thomas Realty is renowned for the firm’s downtown Savannah presence.  The addition of Traci to Cora Bett’s office allows for the opportunity to respond to the market growth demands occurring on the outskirts of Savannah.  Traci is thrilled to be able to focus on the outlying counties.   She remains confident that the company can accommodate her clients’ needs while offering an unparalleled level of service.

     Cora Bett is also affiliated with the “Leading Real Estate Companies of the World.”   This distinction is an “invitation only affiliation”.   Obviously, not all real estate firms have this premium level of notoriety.  With such a distinguished industry standard, it is of no surprise that Cora Bett Thomas Realty currently ranks 7 in their Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

     Traci is thankful to be a part of such a professional and supportive team.  She asserts, “we all support each other; we work hand-in-hand together.  The company provides us with all the necessary and most up-to-date tools to get our jobs done – and done well.”

     More importantly, the market is still climbing out of the slump caused by the 2008 crash, Traci feels that the market is on a course of steady incline.  She explains, “you do not want a rapid incline; you want a steady incline – that is what makes the economy turn.”  Furthermore, Traci is pleased with the course set by Cora Betty Thomas Realty.  She adds, “I feel that the company is going in the right direction for what the market and economy allow.”

     As a Realtor, Traci has many accomplishments.  She is a member of the Savannah Board of Realtors, the Georgia Association of Realtors, the National Association of Realtors, and has served on the Community Housing Committee for Pembroke for quite some time.  She was also named Cora Bett Thomas Realty’s 2016 Agent of the Year.   She does feel that working with an outstanding team of professionals and a company of unparalleled service while being able to fulfill dreams is her greatest success.

     In addition to her Realtor status, Traci has her Council of Residential Specialist (CRS) designation.  To obtain a CRS status, “Realtors must meet a number of stringent requirements that combine advanced hours of education and training, experience and demonstrated success in the marketplace.”  This certifies that the individual “has completed advanced professional training and demonstrated outstanding professional achievement in residential real estate.”  This small community of distinguished agents are among the top three percent of all Realtors in the United States.  Traci takes pride in her CRS designation, as it is an accolade that she takes tremendous pride in and feels it sets her apart from others in the industry.

     In her spare time, Traci enjoys spending time with her family and traveling with her husband.  They are both NASCAR enthusiasts, traveling to races whenever possible.

     Over the span of her career Traci has employed many different methods of selling and marketing, learned endless new regulations, and scouted new markets.  She and Cora Bett Thomas Realty have set new standards as they continually strive for excellence in an ever-changing real estate world, filled with endless possibilities.

creativedesigns by Gina

Story by Stephanie Cardozo

My goal is to be a one-stop shop for businesses.”

     Raised in Effingham, Gina Brown is a mother of two boys and is growing her business right from her very home. She aims for excellence with her graphic designs. “I can make anything you need.” She designs everything from websites, decals, t-shirts and much more!

     This humble, hard working mother, began freelancing before she started her business. “I started to get so many compliments and I just fell in love with it,” she expressed, going back to the moment that brightened the creative light inside of her. Gina explained that going full-time with CREATIVEDesigns proved to be much more difficult than she imagined but she knew it was what she was meant to do. So she worked harder for what she felt passionate about. “It started by just doing it here and there, now it’s full time and I love it,” she said with a smile in her voice.

     How do you manage working from home and taking care of two boys?

     “My boys are older so they get it. They help me some, here and there. My youngest is very creative. He likes to see what his mama is doing. But once they go off to school in the morning, I sit at my desk and I start working and about the time they get home, I shut everything down and that’s family time.” Gina is sure to stay organized with keeping her business and family separate, proving that moms can run a business and still have time for the kids.

“Part of the reason why I wanted to do this full-time is because I wanted to spend time with my kids. Working full-time where I was working—I was not able to do that. I worked all the time, now I’m able to make my own schedule and if I need time off, I can allow myself that time,” adds Gina.

     Gina says she enjoys creating logos for her clients the most because it allows her the opportunity to bring their vision for their business to life. “Logos are my favorite to do, I like to get into my client’s head and see what they envision for their business. Your logo is your staple.  My job is to bring that vision to life for my clients.

     Big moves were made when Gina and her family moved from Richmond Hill back to Effingham. When asked about the change, she simply answered, “I grew up in Effingham. It was nice to get away but Effingham is home,” she expressed with joy.

     Setting goals for more success

     Gina has been working hard from her home office and is looking to open a store where she will have the tools to create bigger jobs for her clients. She is hopeful that this will be soon, as her business proves to be a success with loyal customers returning for professional designs.

     Potential clients are encouraged to head over to Gina’s website, https://creativedesignsbygina.wordpress.com, where you will find details on her creations such as, product designs, graphic designs and media maintenance. You can also follow Gina’s Facebook page for updates on her creations, www.facebook.com/CREATIVEDesigns.bygina

     Prices vary and are made to order. Gina takes a lot of pride in the quality of work she provides for her clients, and makes their needs and vision a priority.

Ear, Nose and Throat Associates of Savannah

Celebrating four decades of treating patients in the Coastal Empire

Story By David Pena

For the past forty years, when patients in the Coastal Empire have experienced any type of head and neck disorders, they usually found their way to offices of ENT Associates of Savannah. Since starting the practice four decades ago, Dr. Zoller and his colleagues have seen many technological advancements in the medical field, but one thing remains constant with him and his staff: a dedication to giving the best possible care to every patient that comes into their offices, which are located in Savannah, Rincon, Pooler, Statesboro, Blufton and Richmond Hill, in addition to the ENT Surgical Center located on the Armstrong campus.

     Dr. Zoller recently reflected on the enormous growth of his practice over the years. “Having trained in Boston, I started in 1977 in Savannah. Seven years later I was joined by Dr. Fred Daniel, who trained in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Twenty-two years ago, Dr. Stephen Rashleigh joined the practice, having trained in Chicago, and Dr. William Moretz III joined us  ten years ago after being trained in Augusta. Dr. Brad Rawlings joined six years after his training in Norfolk, Virginia. Our most recent addition, Dr. Diane Davis, was in practice for over thirty years in Dublin, Georgia before joining ENT Associates two years ago.  We’ve had to add those physicians as well as our physician’s assistant, Michelle Yamada, in order to handle the volume of patients at the various satellite offices,” he says. “In fact, we’ve been in Effingham County and Richmond Hill for about twenty-five years now. We initially had our office in the Effingham Hospital, but we later moved to Rincon in order to serve our clients who didn’t want to drive in to town for their appointments. I also see quite a few of our Effingham patients at my Pooler office.”

     In addition to the physicians, ENT Associates of Savannah has five doctors of audiology on staff who are experts in the newest hearing aid technology.  The Audiology Department works both independently and in conjunction with the physicians to provide a wide range of hearing services, both diagnostic and rehabilitative. Additionally, there is an allergy clinic for  testing and treatment. For over two decades now, residents in Effingham county can now benefit from the services that ENT Associates have been offering to Savannah residents for forty years.

     “The population in Rincon grew so much that we eventually made the decision to move there. Now we have one of our senior partners, Dr. Stephen Rashleigh, M.D., who is at the Rincon office one day a week. He stays extremely busy,” says Dr. Zoller with a smile. Dr. Rashleigh adds, “We’ve been going to Effingham for over twenty years, and it’s been a mutually beneficial relationship. There’s definitely a need for our services, since many of our patients don’t care to drive into Savannah.”

     Dr. Zoller adds, “It’s really nice to be part of the Effingham community, which has grown significantly. Many of our patients who have moved there from Savannah can now receive the same top notch service from our satellite office in Rincon.” Founded in 1977, ENT Associates has been proud to provide the residents of Georgia and Low country of South Carolina with outstanding ENT care and is looking forward to another successful forty years.

Martin Construction

Local business that has over thirty years experience of helping to build dreams in Effingham.

Story By David Pena

Jesse Martin, owner of Martin Construction, has over thirty years experience in renovations, remodeling, additions, designing, and general repairs. Martin takes pride in the fact that he owns and operates a local business that has been honest, reliable, and fair to all his customers. “We would like to thank all our customers that have made our success possible,” says Jesse.

     His wife Cindy, who recently retired from pediatric nursing career after over thirty years in the profession, plans on joining her husband in the family business. They will continue to offer their customers the same quality workmanship that is expected from Martin Construction on each and every project. “We are extremely flexible with scheduling and work to meet all of our customers’ needs,” says Jesse. The Martins are also very proud of the superior customer service they’ve been able to give to each of their customers through the years. “Our customers appreciate dealing directly with us,” he adds, “because we are hands-on and stay focused on each job until it’s complete.”

     Cindy and Jesse hope to teach their grandchildren that commitment, reliability, and workmanship are necessary in order to be successful in any endeavor. God has blessed the Martin family and their business, and they hope to give some of that back to their community. Cindy says, “We plan to give our time and talents to the needs of the community as well as to worthwhile causes.”

     Please contact Jesse at (912) 429-5488 or Cindy at (912) 429-2120 for more information about Martin Construction Company or to schedule an appointment.

Clyo Homemakers : Giving Back To Effingham For 50 Years

Story By Susan Lee Photos By Shelia Scott

In January of 1966, a new women’s club was formed in Effingham. The week after their first meeting, the ladies opened the Springfield newspaper and read an article that began, “The Haymakers Circle was organized on Monday afternoon at their club room in Clyo.”

     While the actual name of the group at the time was the Clyo Homemakers Circle, the erroneous title of Haymakers wasn’t that far from the truth. The old saying, “make hay while the sun shines” essentially means taking advantage of an opportunity and doing something while you have the chance. And that’s exactly what this group has been doing for half a century. Whenever they’ve had the chance to help someone in need or an opportunity to donate to their community, they’ve always been on hand with generosity and kindness.

     The group changed their name to the Clyo Homemakers Club in 1989 and celebrated their 50th anniversary last year. The charter members were: Edna Allen, Jaunita Allen, Evelyn Arden, Eva Crenshaw, Shirley Exley, Carolyn Exley (Seckinger), Marie Exley, Marsha Exley (Buckley), Maude Gnann, Margaret Groover, Caryl Morgan, Carolyn Morgan, Julia Rahn and Linda Rahn. Most of the women were previously members of the Clyo Home Demonstration Club, affiliated with the State of Georgia through the Extension Service.

     In the early days, the Homemakers met for years in the former Metzger store across the railroad tracks, renting it for the amount of the annual tax payment. Because the building wasn’t furnished, the ladies brought in tables and chairs and did their best to transform it into a welcoming club house (despite the fact that it had no restroom or kitchen).

     As early as 1976, the group began discussing plans to build a meeting place and soon opened a bank account to start saving toward that goal. They became incorporated in 1991 and soon after purchased the lot north of the Clyo Fire Department. This .7 acre lot had been the site of the home and office of Dr. William Wyburg Smith.

     The club’s building committee was Jaunita Allen, Julia Rahn, Edna Allen, Margie Sullivan and Carolyn Morgan. They not only spearheaded the fundraising, but they also contacted several contractors for bids, selected the floor plan, borrowed money and managed the building process.

     In 1993, they accepted a bid from Harvey Kieffer to build a brick building 32 feet by 50 feet for $46,000. “I have not included any expense or profit for myself in these figures,” Harvey noted on the bid.” They had to obtain a small loan on the building for funds not raised through fundraisers.

     Julia’s fondest memory is when they broke ground. “It was almost hard to believe what this group of women had done, all of us working together,” she said. “We had dreamed for so long of having our own building and now it was a reality.”

     The official ribbon cutting ceremony was held on June 22, 1993, at the first meeting in the new clubhouse. By June 1996, the loan had been paid and they ceremoniously burned the note at a family night supper meeting.

     A true civic organization in every sense, the Clyo Homemakers Club has raised money to support the Effingham community from its earliest days. As Edna Morgan wrote in the club’s 1966-1990 history: “At the first regularly scheduled meeting on Jan. 25, 1966, the treasurer’s report showed a balance of $7.11. A money making project was needed. The first project was for each person to put one dollar to work for a month, either make a pie, cake or hand work, sell it, and put the profit into the treasury. As time passed, we became more generous and our money making projects increased.”

     Over the years, their fundraising projects have included bake sales, barbecue dinners, yard sales and Tupperware parties, to name just a few. Each October, the club meeting includes a “Feed the Elephant” auction. “Members bring an item, wrap it up in any way to disguise it, then members bid on it,” explained Patsy Usher. “At the beginning they were mostly baked goods but now we have a variety of items. You just don’t know what you might get.”

     They have also published an enormously popular series of cookbooks since 1976, the most recent entitled “The Best of Effingham”. And each year since the very beginning, the women have sold raffle tickets to award one lucky winner a beautiful hand-stitched quilt. Current members of the quilt committee are Helen Edwards, Julia Rahn, Claudine Arnsdorff, Hazel Lee, Dottie Hamilton and Linda Murray. All proceeds from the ticket sales are used to award a $500 annual club scholarship as well as a $500 scholarship for 4-H students.

     Last year the group made an additional quilt. “For our 50th anniversary, the group made a special quilt that included patches saved from each of the past quilts,” said Edna Allen. The raffle for this commemorative quilt was only open to club members.

     The proceeds from their fundraising endeavors have helped countless Effingham people and community organizations over the years. The group has provided Christmas gifts and food for needy families, delivered Thanksgiving baskets to homebound seniors, helped transplant recipients with needed funds, and hosted birthday parties at the nursing home. They have donated to the Effingham schools, Clyo Fire Department, American Cancer Society, Diabetes Foundation and many other groups.

     The Clyo Homemakers Club’s current officers are: Bonnie Morgan, President; Patsy Usher, Vice President; Julia Rahn, Treasurer; and Betty Allen Sikes, Secretary. The Board consists of Dottie Rahn, Hazel Lee, Brenda Dasher and Past President Patsy Usher. Club Chaplain is Marlene Porter. Scholarships are coordinated by Betty Allen Sikes and Lee Ellen Hanberry. Lee Ellen also manages rentals of the clubhouse. Brenda Dasher coordinates ticket sales for the quilt.

     Currently, the Clyo Homemakers Club has approximately 35 members. “Our members come from throughout Effingham,” said Betty Allen Sikes. “A new member is recommended by a club member and voted on by the club.” She added that 10 new members were added last year.

     “I really enjoy the meetings because it’s a nice group of ladies and I enjoy the fellowship,” said Lee Ellen Hanberry. “You never know what you might learn or who the speaker might be. And you also know you’re doing good for other people. I go home after a meeting always feeling better than before I came.”

     Edna Allen was a charter member of the Clyo Home Demonstration Club. “It’s an honor to continue to carry on what we had started years ago,” she said. “I’ve met so many wonderful people that I would never have met if I didn’t belong to this club.”

     For many club members, the Clyo Homemakers Club is a part of their heritage. Julia Rahn’s mother, May Exley, was a member of the Home Demonstration Club and later joined the Clyo Homemakers Club.Betty Allen Sikes’ mother was charter member Jaunita Allen. “My mother loved this club,” said Betty. “She was the chairperson when our club building was constructed. I’m proud to be a member to honor her and continue to help the community.”

     Bonnie Morgan’s mother, Marie Exley, was also a member. Because her mother was not able to drive to the meetings, Bonnie drove her to the club and eventually became a member. “We’re a close-knit bunch,” she said. “We’re family.”

     Each September, all of the members who are 69 years old and younger host a luncheon to honor the members who are over 70 years old. It’s a special event, with the younger ladies providing the covered dishes and entertainment.

     For half a century, the women of the Clyo Homemakers Club have given of their hearts and souls and dedicated themselves to their community. Fortunately for the people of Effingham, they don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.