Andrea Garcia : ECHS Volleyball Player

Andrea Garcia
ECHS Volleyball Player

Story by Cindy Burbage

photos by Shelia Scott

Although volleyball is more than a hundred years old, it is just now developing into a favored sport. Local volleyball player, Andrea Garcia, proves that perseverance is the way to succeed and accomplish life goals.

     The Effingham High School athlete has been playing volleyball for almost 5 years; but getting serious about the sport in the 8th grade. “Before I started middle school, I had no idea what volleyball was. On the first day of school, there was an announcement saying that volleyball tryouts were going to be held the next day. I asked my mother if I could tryout and she said yes, thinking that I was joking with her because I had never touched a volleyball in my life. The next day, I went to tryouts; after tryouts, I looked at my phone to discover that I had about 24 missed calls from both my parents and 50 texts asking where I was. I called them and they yelled at me for 10 minutes asking where I was and why I didn’t call them. I said that I was at volleyball tryouts and they stayed quiet for about one minute. ¨You were being serious about that?¨ my mom asked me. I said yes and asked if they could pick me up at 5:00 for the next two days. They agreed to, but, they thought I would be cut from the team immediately. To our surprise, I made the team,” she exclaimed and then jokingly replied, “I even got the rookie award my 6th grade year.”

     She did not realize her calling as a volleyball player or knew that her future in the sport could change.  “I didn’t become serious about volleyball until Coach Amy Duke came to one of our practices and invited me to be a guest player for her club team. That tournament changed my life! For the first time, I got to see what volleyball was really about. I made friends with many different people, created memories that I will treasure for the rest of my life, and developed fundamental character traits, all while learning how to play. For the first time, I was excited to go to practice and to get better. Without Coach Duke, I would never have discovered the passion I had for volleyball,” she recalled.

     Andrea chronicled, “For the first two years, I played as the setter. In my eighth grade year, the coach put me in as an outside hitter. That year I also won MVP. It wasn´t until my freshman year of high school that I was told I was too short to play hitter. My dreams of being a volleyball player were crushed. That is until the high school varsity coach, Brittney Lein, told me to try playing libero. ¨Li-what?¨ I had never heard of that word. I agreed and spent the majority of tryouts passing instead of hitting. The day they announced what teams we made, I expected to be put on the JV team because I thought there were other players that were so much better than me. Seeing the amount of skill this team had pushed me to work hard and be just as good as everyone else. Though I had no idea what the libero was, I knew I had one job: to keep the ball from hitting the ground. Since then, I have been playing libero for the Effingham County High School Varsity volleyball team. And I enjoy every minute of it. Now, I can’t imagine playing any other position than Libero.”

     After playing a match against a rival school, Andrea’s volleyball careered changed. “The GACA North-South All-Star Classic is a two day event where the best players from all over the state are chosen to compete against each other. I was nominated by Coach Bob Massey from Statesboro High School. After playing against their school team, Coach Lein came up to me and said that Massey wanted to nominate me to play for North-South All-Star game. I was able to meet amazingly talented girls from around the state and bond over our love for volleyball. After putting a lot of hard work into our practices, The North-South teams faced each other in a best 3 out of 5 match. After putting our all in four sets, our team won 3-1. This was one of the best experiences of my life because I got to see true passion and determination with girls I have never even played with. I am very grateful that I got to participate in this once in a lifetime opportunity.”

     Volleyball is not the only sport that the sixteen year old Junior has mastered. “I grew up playing soccer. Since I come from a culture where soccer is idolized, my uncles, Salvador and Javier Figueroa, urged my mother to let me play soccer. For the first few years of my life, I lived and breathed soccer. I played on an all boys team coached by my uncle Salvador until the age of 13. As I got older, my mom was worried that I would get hurt playing with older boys. That is when Robert Long approached me and invited me to tryout for a new soccer club. I played for that club for two years until I decided to take a break from soccer. I thought that when I grew up, I would become a professional soccer player for the women’s national team. But as high school went on, I realized that I couldn’t be in AP classes and do both sports at once. I had to choose which sport I wanted to continue to play. It was one of the hardest choices I’ve ever had to make, but in the end I chose the sport that made me the happiest.”

     Andrea’s drive is one that she learned firsthand from her family.  “My family has always been very supportive of me. They put a great deal of time and energy into our family restaurant, to create a good future and wellbeing for my sister and I. My parents grew up in poverty in Mexico, and started their lives together in the United States with little money and little-to-no family. After living in Houston and working in restaurants for a few years, they decided to move to Georgia to have a fresh start and attempt to pursue their dreams and open their own restaurant. Since then, my parents have successfully managed two businesses. My older sister, Nadia Garcia, has been like a second mother to me. Because my parents spent a majority of their time working, my sister has been responsible for keeping me on track with school work and making sure I had food to eat after a long day of practices and school. My family has done so much for me and I am very grateful to have them in my life,” Andrea shared.

     Andrea Garcia’s future is bright. After graduation, she plans to attend a four year college/university where she will pursue a master’s degree in both Aeronautical engineering and Mechanical Engineering. Hopefully the high school honor student will  design and build airplanes to travel around the world.

CHRIS SHEA : Effingham County’s Agribusinessman of the Year


Effingham County’s Agribusinessman of the Year

story by Kelly Harley     photos by Tonya Perry

If you’ve ever worked on a farm, you know it’s not an easy job. Even if you haven’t ever stepped foot on one, you can likely imagine the time and energy that goes into maintaining one. It involves manual labor. It depends on the weather, which could affect grain prices and ultimately your crops.  Chris Shea knows that farming requires a certain type of work ethic. “When you have a farm, you always have something to do. It’s not a 9-to-5 job, you have to work around the clock, even on weekends,” says Chris.

     Chris should know. He owns two farms, one in Effingham County and one in Statesboro, Georgia. The Effingham County-native, with his family, started the 80-acre cow farm 15 years ago and now raises 75 cows. He lives on the farm and between him and his family, they do all the work. They farm the hay for the cows and feed them. His daughters, ages 17 and 11, also play an active role on the farm. “It’s enjoyable. It takes time, but it’s valuable time,” adds Chris. They raise the calves and sell them when they get around six to eight months old, usually at a cattle auction in Swainsboro, Georgia.

     Chris’s other farm in Statesboro is a 243-acre longleaf pine farm. He started that farm about a year ago as a business opportunity. He sells the pine straw for people to use for things such as flower beds and then cuts the timber off the mature trees. Chris offers advice for someone considering farming, “If you have a passion, go after it. Do what you love.”

     That’s exactly what Chris is doing. His passion for farming, cows and the outdoors started at a young age. He calls himself a normal country boy who grew up hunting and fishing. When he attended Effingham County High School, he participated in the Future Farmers of America (FFA) organization. FFA was founded by a group of young farmers in 1928 with the mission to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding a growing population.  The program teaches that agriculture is more than planting and harvesting – it’s a science, it’s a business and it’s an art.

     While Chris participated in the program, one of the highlights for him was showing cows. He raised the Red Angus cows that he showed. He participated in local fairs and competitions. He says being part of FFA taught him responsibility and he built lasting relationships with other people who had similar interests, interests that his daughters now share. Both are part of the FFA program and they, too, show cows. “It’s really rewarding as a father to see my daughters do this. I help them with the cows and spend great quality time with them. I even teach them some tricks I know,” says Chris.

     Chris isn’t just a farmer, he’s also a businessman. After graduating high school in 1999, he attended Abraham Baldwin Agriculture College in Tifton, Georgia. He then transferred to Georgia Southern in Statesboro, Georgia, and graduated with a business degree. From there his love of buying and selling heavy equipment took off.

     “I’ve always bought and sold tractors and backhoes with my father, so in 2004, I went to work for Low Country Machinery,” says Chris. After working as a salesman at Low Country Machinery selling JCB equipment for 12 years, Chris worked his way through the ranks and, in 2016, decided to purchase the dealership. In addition to owning Low Country Machinery, he also owns the subsidiary businesses of Low Country JCB, Low Country Massey Ferguson and Low Country Kubota in Statesboro. Since 2016, Chris says his companies have doubled and he now employees 48 people. Chris says every day is different and he enjoys meeting new people.   “Customers are looking to me for advice on what kind of equipment to buy,” says Chris. “It makes me feel good that they put their trust in me. Some people work their whole lives to buy one tractor.”

     Chris’ hard work pays off, not only personally, but professionally. In 2017, Chris was honored by being named Effingham County’s Agribusinessman of the Year. The award was presented to him at the 2017 Effingham County Young Farmers Annual Awards Banquet at Ebenezer Retreat Center by Georgia State Representative Jon Burns. Ironically, Chris worked for   Jon at a feed store while he was in college.  The award isn’t something you apply for, you have to be nominated. “I was totally shocked when I received the award. I thought we were there for my daughter who was getting an award for showing cows,” says Chris. He says the award means the world to him because he went from loading bags at Ijon Webb’s feed store at age 14 to owning his own company.

     As a farmer and business owner, he is very aware of the changes in the farming industry and Chris says the farming industry is constantly evolving. Tractors are becoming automated and are equipped with GPS, auto steer and auto spray. He says the smaller farmers are fading out and bigger farmers are coming in. He credits that change to cost in equipment. “A lot of smaller farms are teaming up with other smaller farms in order to share equipment cost,” says Chris. “One farmer might have a cotton picker and the other a combine and they will help each other out. It takes teamwork to keep smaller farmers going.”

     Chris doesn’t come from a family of farmers. He learned the trade just by being around friends that had farms and working at the feed store. Of course, FFA played an invaluable role in preparing Chris for what he’s doing now. Chris recommends everyone find something they enjoy doing, especially when it comes to children. “I think everyone should learn a trade. Kids sit behind a shut door and play video games or text on their phones,” says Chris. “If we want to occupy the time of the younger generation, we need to teach them how to do something.”

     If you spend enough time with Chris, you might find his passion for farming and helping others achieve their success in farming may rub off on you. If it’s not farming, it could be his genuine interests in helping his customers or his passion for working hard every day.

Gnann’s Fix-It Shop

Gnann’s Fix-It Shop was founded in 1964 by Bowers Gnann, Jr.and was originally a small-town repair shop intended to fix small appliances such as lamps, toasters, electric irons, etc. Today, over 50 years later, Gnann’s is still running strong; now specializing in sales and service of power machinery and lawn equipment such as lawn mowers, chain saws, tillers,  and the like.

     Although this small, family-oriented business has grown considerably from its humble roots, the core values of sales and service has not shifted in the least. Gnann’s Fix-It is now owned and operated by Clarence and Charlie Gnann, two of the sons of founder Bowers Gnann. Both Clarence and Charlie grew up working in the store and both know the business from the ground up.

     Gnann’s Fix-It Shop is more than simply a repair shop. They are certified dealers of well-known and reliable brand names such as Snapper, Stihl, Exmark, Billy Goat, Briggs and Stratton, Kohler, Tecumseh, and more.

     Gnann’s Fix-It stands behind all of their equipment 100% and are always available to answer any power equipment questions you may have, even if you did not purchase it from them. Gnann’s offers full service on most equipment, and has a well-trained staff of friendly and knowledgeable mechanics and sales personnel.

     If you prefer to repair your equipment yourself, Gnann’s can also help with that. Their parts department is stocked with a wide variety of various parts for all types of lawn equipment, and if they don’t have it in stock, chances are they can get it within a short amount of time.

     If friendly, reliable, and honest service is what you are looking for, Gnann’s Fix-It Shop is the way to go. Whether you need new equipment, need old equipment repaired, or are just seeking the expertise of qualified and responsible mechanics,

     Gnann’s Fix-It can help satisfy all of your lawn and garden needs. Gnann’s Fix-It Shop is located at 1015 South Laurel Street, and is open Monday thru Friday from 8 am to 5:30 pm and on Saturday 8 am to 12 pm. Their telephone number is (912) 754-3745.

Zebrandon Gant : State Wrestling Champion

Zebrandon Gant

State Wrestling Champion 

“Failure is a choice, winning is the challenge.”

story by Cindy Burbage     photos by Shelia  Scott

Effingham County High School senior, Zebrandon Gant was first introduced to wrestling four years ago. “My friend Austin (A.J.) King and I were jumping on his trampoline one day and he said ” Z, have you ever thought about wrestling, would you try out for the wrestling team?” I was going to basketball tryouts, but I changed my mind and went with A.J. instead,” the athlete shared.

     His first year of wrestling proved he had natural ability. He went on to state as an alternate wrestler. The following seasons demonstrated he was growing as a competitor. “My 2nd year I placed 3rd in the state. Last year, I placed 2nd in the state. And this year I became the State Champion with a 57-0 record,” he humbly said.

     But the 2017-2018 wrestling season was not about the championship; it was to honor a great friend. It was to express to the world what a footprint a comrade had made in Zebrandon’s life. “My friend A.J.  was like a big brother to me. We did things together like playing basketball, riding bikes, playing football and fishing. Fishing, I have to say was our favorite. A.J. passed away in an accident on August 5, 2017. I wanted to do something that would honor him, so I went into the 2017-2018 wrestling season with the commitment to practice hard, work even harder- that was what A.J would have done. He was a hard worker. His legacy will live on in those whose life he touched while he was here. That was where the 57-0 record came in. He wasn’t the best wrestler, but he was the hardest working one. He had great work ethics”, he sadly articulated.

     It seems that sports in general is “Z”’s niche; he also participates in the football as well. “On the football field, I play several different positions, which include running back, quarterback, linebacker and strong safety. I play where I am needed to get the job done,” the team player voiced.

     The football field is not the only field Zebrandon plays on either. The Effingham Rebel is a starting striker for the school’s soccer team. “I was nominated and won at the high school level for the Wendy’s Highschool Heisman. I excel in those sports as well. Failure is a choice, winning is the challenge,” he modestly said. This award is not a simple win; with over 29,000 public and private school scouted for a Heisman winner, “Z” has proved to be that all around athlete and a role model for others.

     Being a dedicated sportsman is more than a one-person feat. Zebrandon is a member of a big family who cheer for him. “I live with my parents, Ricky and Sandra Gant. I have two sisters Miah and Ariana, three brothers Lee, Marques and Jacquavious. I also have three nieces and one nephew. I have lots of support from my other family members and my church,” he proudly admitted.

     After high school, the eighteen-year-old plans to attend college and eventually become a marriage counselor.

     For Zebrandon Gant’s size, determination and just plain ole hard work has demonstrated to be a good recipe for success. “The other thing that I would like people to know about me is that I am a gentle giant. Most people are intimidated by my size but I would give the shirt off my back and help anyone who needed it. One word that has been used to describe me is humble, it is never about me alone. The best work is teamwork. I owe a special thanks and recognition to Coach Guggino, Coach Jordan, Bobby our athletic trainer, Isiaiah Royal, Alex Williams, Lee Johnson, and my teammates Zekeil Walls and Josh Wright,” the demure gentle giant closed.



1. Don’t skip breakfast. Studies show that eating a proper breakfast is one of the most positive things you can do if you are trying to lose weight. Breakfast skippers tend to gain weight. A balanced breakfast includes fresh fruit or fruit juice, a high-fiber break-fast cereal, low-fat milk or yogurt, wholewheat toast and a boiled egg.

2. STRETCH: Learn to do stretching exercises when you wake up. It boosts circulation and digestion, and eases back pain.

3. Neurobics for your mind. Get your brain fizzing with energy. American researchers coined the term ‘neurobics’ for tasks which activate the brain’s own biochemical pathways and to bring new pathways online that can help to strengthen or preserve brain circuits.

     Brush your teeth with your ‘other’ hand, take a new route to work or choose your clothes based on sense of touch rather than sight. People with mental agility tend to have lower rates of Alzheimer’s disease and age-related mental decline.

4. Brush up on hygiene. Many people don’t know how to brush their teeth properly. Improper brushing can cause as much damage to the teeth and gums as not brushing at all. Lots of people don’t brush for long enough, don’t floss and don’t see a dentist regularly. Hold your toothbrush in the same way that would hold a pencil, and brush for at least two minutes.

     This includes brushing the teeth, the junction of the teeth and gums, the tongue and the roof of the mouth. And you don’t need a fancy, angled toothbrush – just a sturdy, soft-bristled one that you replace each month.

5. Get what you give! Always giving and never taking? This is the short road to compassion fatigue. Give to yourself and receive from others, otherwise you’ll get to a point where you have nothing left to give. And hey, if you can’t receive from others, how can you expect them to receive from you?

6. Get smelly. Garlic, onions, spring onions and leeks all contain stuff that’s good for you. A study at the Child’s Health Institute in Cape Town found that eating raw garlic helped fight serious childhood infections. Heat destroys these properties, so eat yours raw, wash it down with fruit juice or, if you’re a sissy, have it in tablet form.

7. Get spiritual. A study conducted by the formidably sober and scientific Harvard University found that patients who were prayed for recovered quicker than those who weren’t, even if they weren’t aware of the prayer.

8. Bone up daily. Get your daily calcium by popping a tab, chugging milk or eating yogurt. It’ll keep your bones strong. Remember that your bone density declines after the age of 30. You need at least 200 milligrams daily, which you should combine with magnesium, or it simply won’t be absorbed.

9. Knock one back. A glass of red wine a day is good for you. A number of studies have found this, but a recent one found that the polyphenols (a type of antioxidant) in green tea, red wine and olives may also help protect you against breast cancer. It’s thought that the antioxidants help protect you from environmental carcinogens such as passive tobacco smoke.

10. Berries for your belly. 

Blueberries, strawberries and raspberries contain plant nutrients known as anthocyanidins, which are powerful antioxidants. Blueberries rival grapes in concentrations of resveratrol – the antioxidant compound found in red wine that has assumed near mythological proportions. Resveratrol is believed to help protect

against heart disease and cancer.

11. Curry favour. Hot, spicy flavor foods containing chillies or cayenne pepper trigger endorphins, the feel-good hormones. Endorphins have a powerful, almost narcotic, effect and make you feel good after exercising. But go easy on the lamb, pork and mutton and the high-fat, creamy dishes served in many Indian restaurants.

12. Cut out herbs before ops. Some herbal supplements – from the popular St John’s Wort and ginkgo biloba to garlic, ginger and ginseng – can cause increased bleeding during surgery, warn surgeons. It may be wise to stop taking all medication, including herbal supplements, at least two weeks before surgery, and inform your surgeon about your herbal use.

13. I say tomato. Tomato is a superstar in the fruit and veggie pantheon. Tomatoes contain lycopene, a powerful cancer fighter. They’re also rich in vitamin C. The good news is that cooked tomatoes are also nutritious, so use them in pasta, soups and casseroles, as well as in salads.

     The British Thoracic Society says that tomatoes and apples can reduce your risk of asthma and chronic lung diseases. Both contain the antioxidant quercetin. To enjoy the benefits, eat five apples a week or a tomato every other day.

14. Eat your stress away. Prevent low blood sugar as it stresses you out. Eat regular and small healthy meals and keep fruit and veggies handy. Herbal teas will also soothe your frazzled nerves.

     Eating unrefined carbohydrates, nuts and bananas boosts the formation of serotonin, another feel-good drug. Small amounts of protein containing the amino acid tryptamine can give you a boost when stress tires you out.

15. A for Away. This vitamin, and beta carotene, help to boost immunity against disease. It also assists in the healing process of diseases such as measles and is recommended by the WHO. Good natural sources of vitamin A are kidney beans, liver, dairy products, green and yellow vegetables, pawpaw, mangoes, chilli pepper, red sorrel and red palm oil.

16. Load up on vitamin C. 

We need at least 90 mg of vitamin C per day and the best way to get this is by eating at least five servings of fresh fruit and vegetables every day. So hit the oranges and guavas.

17. No folly in folic acid. Folic acid should be taken regularly by all pregnant women and people with a low immunity to disease. Folic acid prevents spina bifida in unborn babies and can play a role in cancer prevention. It is found in green leafy vegetables, liver, fruit and bran.

18. GI, Jane. Carbohydrates with a high glycemic index, such as bread, sugar, honey and grain-based food will give instant energy and accelerate your metabolism. If you’re trying to burn fat, stick to beans, rice, pasta, lentils, peas, soy beans and oat bran, all of which have a low GI count.

19. Pure water. Don’t have soft drinks or energy drinks while you’re exercising. Stay properly hydrated by drinking enough water during your workout (just don’t overdo things, as drinking too much water can also be dangerous).

     While you might need energy drinks for long-distance running, in shorter exercise sessions in the gym, your body will burn the glucose from the soft drink first, before starting to burn body fat. Same goes for eating sweets.

20. Mindful living. You’ve probably heard the old adage that life’s too short to stuff a mushroom. But perhaps you should consider the opposite: that life’s simply too short NOT to focus on the simple tasks. By slowing down and concentrating on basic things, you’ll clear your mind of everything that worries you.

21. Do your weights workout first. Experts say weight training should be done first, because it’s a higher intensity exercise compared to cardio. Your body is better able to handle weight training early in the workout because you’re fresh and you have the energy you need to work it.

     Conversely, cardiovascular exercise should be the last thing you do at the gym, because it helps your body recover by increasing blood flow to the muscles, and flushing out lactic acid, which builds up in the muscles while you’re weight training. It’s the lactic acid that makes your muscles feel stiff and sore.

22. Burn fat during intervals. To improve your fitness quickly and lose weight, harness the joys of interval training. Set the treadmill or step machine on the interval program, where your speed and workload varies from minute to minute. Build up gradually, every minute and return to the starting speed. Repeat this routine. Not only will it be less monotonous, but you can train for a shorter time and achieve greater results.

23. Sunscreen can be a smokescreen. Sunscreen is unlikely to stop you from being sunburned, or to reduce your risk of developing skin cancer. That’s because most people don’t apply it properly, and stay in the sun too long.

The solution? Slather on sunscreen daily and reapply it often, especially if you’ve been in the water.

24. Your dirtiest foot forward. If your ankles, knees and hips ache from running on pavement, head for the dirt. Soft trails or graded roads are a lot easier on your joints than the hard stuff. Also, dirt surfaces tend to be uneven, forcing you to slow down a bit and focus on where to put your feet – great for agility and concentration.

25. Beat the sneezes. There are more than 240 allergens, some rare and others very common. If you’re a sneezer due to pollen: close your car windows while driving, rather switch on the internal fan (drawing in air from the outside), and avoid being outdoors between 5am and 10 am when pollen counts are at their highest; stick to holidays in areas with low pollen counts, such as the seaside and stay away from freshly cut grass.

26. Doggone. If you’re allergic to your cat, dog, budgie or pet piglet, stop suffering the ravages of animal dander: Install an air filter in your home.

Keep your pet outside as much as possible and brush them outside of the home to remove loose hair and other allergens. Better yet, ask someone else to do so.

Omelette Cafe

Omelette Cafe

When the sign went up for the Omelette Café, the first thought was, wow, another breakfast restaurant. But, once you walk in the door and see the menu, your mindset will quickly change.

     The Omelette Café in Rincon, Georgia opened its’ doors five years ago and has been booming with business ever since.  Omelette Cafe is a part of the Sunnyside Up family of restaurants which have been around this area for over 16 years.  The restaurant is one of the 8 locations owned within the surrounding areas.

     Many people think the Omelette Café is a breakfast location only. But, their menu far exceeds that of any breakfast menu around. The other Omelette Café Restaurants in the area are open from 6AM-3PM for breakfast and lunch.  The Rincon location is the only location open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Their extensive lunch and dinner menu gives you many delicious choices…. from burgers to chicken fingers to seafood’s and specialty salads. Some of the local favorites, aside from the breakfast menu with their Signature Omelettes, is the Fried Shrimp, Monster Burger, Catfish, Philly Steak Sandwich and of course their Omelettes.

     The Omelette Café is family oriented and provides a family environment for their customers.  The full service restaurant can seat up to 70-80 people at one time and provides ample booth space as well as tables and a diner countertop.  The kitchen is an open kitchen, so customers can see their food being prepared by the chefs.

     The restaurant proudly uses shell pasteurized eggs, and they believe they are the only restaurant in the county to do so.  In fact, they were so impressed with the quality of these eggs, that now all of their family of restaurants have switched over to the shell pasteurized eggs for a better quality of taste for their customers.  They also use chicken that is cage free, antibiotic free and steroid free.  The shrimp used in the restaurant has no phosphates, again providing an excellent taste to the palate.

     The family of restaurants are all available for eat in or take out if you want to take your food to go.  The staff eagerly awaits helping the customers in any way they can, and provides exceptional customer service.

There are 8 restaurants in the Sunnyside Up family located throughout the area:

Omelette Café :

Rincon, Georgia
410 S., Columbia Ave.

Suite AA

Rincon, GA 31326



Pooler, Georgia

325 SE Hwy 80

Pooler, GA 31322



Richmond Hill, Georgia

10070 Ford Ave.

Suite 1 (Ford Plaza)

Richmond Hill, GA. 31324



Savannah, Georgia

49 W. Montgomery Crossroads

Unit B

Savannah, GA 31406


Hinesville, Georgia

103 E. General Screven Way

Suite C

Hinesville, GA 31313



And a new restaurant will be coming soon to Buckwalter, in Bluffton, South Carolina

Sunnyside Up:

Hwy 21

Hwy 80

Derenne Ave.

Please check them out on Facebook at FB/TheOmelette.Cafe, and stop by to see them at one of their many locations.

Edel Caregiver Institute

Edel Caregiver Institute:

Helping caregivers so they can better help their loved ones

Hospice Savannah is a program for the terminally ill which includes services for care and support of patients at home, in a nursing home or assisted living facility or in Hospice House. Usually abstaining from extraordinary measures to lengthen life, they focus on pain and symptom control and emotional support for the loved ones.

     Hospice Savannah concentrates on the patient and their loved ones; The Edel Caregiver Institute concentrates on the caregiver.

     Caring for a loved one with any type of illness or disorder is not planned and many times the caregiver is at a loss for what they need to do. Caregivers can be friends, relatives, in-laws, spouses – anyone who provides assistance to another, in whatever capacity and whatever their relationship, with no financial benefits. The Edel Caregiver Institute offers support for non-paid, non-professional family caregivers. Again, its primary focus is the caregiver, not the care recipient. The care recipient is rarely hospice patient. It is usually someone who has been diagnosed with a long-term chronic illness such as Congestive Heart Failure, Dementia, Pulmonary Disease, etc.

     The Edel Caregiver Institute opened its doors a year ago, with a vision of helping families. In fact, the Institute has helped over 300 families to date.  With a-state-of-the -art facility nestled off Chatham Parkway, they offer an array of classes and programs for caregivers.  Within their skills lab, they provide hands-on training with medical equipment from oxygen tanks to Hoyer lifts.  The skills lab is able to assist 12-15 people per class and can be disease- specific. Basic nursing skills are also taught to caregivers.

     Taking care of a loved one stricken with disease or a disorder, such as Autism, can take an emotional and physical toll on the one providing the care. The Edel Caregiver Institute delivers wellness for the caregiver, including nutrition education and exercise. It also offers help with navigating the medical world through the assistance of eight retired physicians on hand who are available to go with patients and caregivers to doctor appointments to communicate information. Dementia coaches are also available. They are placed in the homes to help with problem solving and offer hands on help.

     The Edel Caregiver Institute is a not for profit organization that relies on funding from the United Way, donations and fundraisers. All services offered by Edel are free of charge. Please see the website for complete information regarding all the classes and support offered.

Edel Caregiver Institute

6000 Business Center Drive (off Chatham Parkway)

Savannah, GA 31405

EdelCaregiverInstitute.org     912-629-1331

Counties and communities served:

• Bryan: Ellabell, Pembroke, Richmond Hill, Midway

• Chatham: Savannah, Tybee, Pooler, Bloomingdale,

   Thunderbolt, Garden City, Port Wentworth

• Effingham: Rincon, Guyton, Clyo, Springfield

• Liberty: Hinesville and surrounding communities

• Long: Ludowici and surrounding communities

The Edel Caregiver Institute can also provide:

• Reduced rates for daytime respite at local assisted living facilities.

• Discounted rates on local agency sitter services.

• Resource information and referrals to community services. By appointment.

• Caregiving 101 skills follow-up support.

• Individual consultations for disease specific education with fourth year medical

   residents. By appointment.

• Social work support. By appointment.

• In-home respite care scholarships for qualified individuals.*

(*Participating caregivers who wish to apply for a respite scholarship must have had a personal consultation with the manager of the Institute. A participating caregiver is one who has completed a questionnaire, attends classes, and has an established relationship with the Edel Caregiver Institute.  Respite scholarships are offered on a limited basis for a pre-determined amount based on availability).

Ear, Nose and Throat Associates of Savannah

Ear, Nose and Throat Associates of Savannah

Celebrating four decades of treating patients in the Coastal Area

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. Michael 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.

     In addition to their Rincon office, they have locations in  Pooler, Statesboro, Bluffton and Richmond Hill, an ENT Surgical Center located on the Armstrong campuses as well as their main office in Savannah.

     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,” says Dr. Zoller.

    “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. 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 in our Pooler office,”  he adds.

     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. Many of our patients who have moved to Effingham County from Savannah can now receive the same top notch service from our satellite office in Rincon.”

   Founded in 1977, ENT Associates of Savannah has been proud to provide the residents of Georgia and the low country of South Carolina with outstanding ENT care, and they are looking forward to another successful forty years.

Vapor City

Vapor City

By Stephanie Cardozo

     Robert Medrano is the owner of the Vapor City, LLC, and, he has had an extraordinary story that led him to starting this business.

   About four years ago, Robert was diagnosed with larynx cancer. The larynx is located in the neck.  This cancer is common among smokers. “I used to smoke a pack and a half to two packs of cigarettes a day. I went to the doctor and they found a tumor in my throat,” he explains.

    Naturally, he went on to have surgery to remove the tumor, and the doctors advised him to avoid smoking as much as he could. Robert’s search for alternative methods to quit smoking began. He then stumbled upon vaping, which has proven very successful for him in more ways than one. The passion of the vaping industry sparked a fire in Robert that pushed him towards more research, as well as, various conventions to further his knowledge. He met with distributors and vendors and decided to open Vapor City in April of 2015. This business is owned and ran by Robert and his family.

   “Thank God, I have been cancer free and smoke free for three years,” says Robert.

   “About a year ago, I started bringing in a product called CBD. It is an oil extracted from a hemp flower plant, a great product that is completely natural. It is legal in all states and does not contain THC,” he continues to explain the benefits of the oil and how it relieves inflammation, stress, anxiety, arthritis, muscle tension, insomnia, and PTSD amongst many others.

    Robert himself began using CBD two years ago. “I had three dislocated disks in my back. I used to get cortisone injections twice a year.” He has stopped the cortisone shots for a year and a half after vaping CBD. This all natural oil has helped relieve his pain as well as many of his customers.

     “We have expanded the selection of CBD milligrams, the higher the dosage, the better and faster it works,” Robert said. He also sells CBD is gummy and capsule form. Now, everyone has a different system on how they choose to use it. Robert would like potential customers to please take note that it does not contain any THC and it is made from the hemp flower.

    “In my personal opinion, vaping is a great alternative to smoking.” Robert encourages people to do the research before simply writing vaping off as an option to quit smoking. It has helped many people kick the habit and can help so many others.

    Robert and his family currently run three Vapor City stores.  Their locations are Springfield, Hinesville and Swainsboro.

    For more information and a closer look, please visit one of the Vapor City shops. Experience why they continue to grow and succeed in helping customers leave the nicotine addiction behind.