General Motors Strike

General Motors' Flint Assembly Plant employees line the street with picket signs during the nationwide UAW strike against General Motors on Monday, Oct. 7, 2019, in Flint, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)

DETROIT (AP) — Talks between General Motors and the United Auto Workers union hit a snag this week about what the union says is a lack of commitment by GM to build new vehicles in U.S. factories.

The strike includes workers from the Spring Hill GM factory in middle Tennessee.

In a letter to members, union Vice President Terry Dittes wrote that the union has told GM that it doesn’t see a commitment from the company to a workforce that has helped make it billions of dollars.

“We believe that the vehicles GM sells here should be built here,” Dittes wrote. “There is no job security for us when GM vehicles are made in other countries for the purpose of selling them here in the U.S.A.” GM did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Although both sides were still talking, the union demand could be a major sticking point because GM produces pickup trucks and several SUVs in Canada, Mexico, China, South Korea and other countries, and imports them to the United States.

Dittes wrote that GM’s alleged lack of commitment is one of the union’s top priorities in talks to end the strike, but little progress has been made.

“Economic gains in this agreement will mean nothing without job security,” Dittes wrote, adding that the union is fighting for a middle class way of life. 

Remains of Korean War

soldier buried in Arlington

MEMPHIS — Remains belonging to a soldier from Memphis who was killed in the Korean War were buried Wednesday at Arlington National Cemetery.

State officials said the remains of Capt. Rufus J. Hyman, of Memphis, were interred Wednesday at the cemetery in Virginia.

Hyman was a 23-year-old Army infantry officer when his division began fighting the North Korean Army near Kwonbin-ni, South Korea, in 1950. Hyman was declared missing in action on July 30, 1950.

One year later, the American Registration Service Group found an isolated burial near Hyman’s last known location. But the remains couldn’t be identified.

In October 2017, the remains were disinterred. Hyman was identified through dental records and DNA testing in February.


Forestry professor predicts

subdued Smokies fall colors 

MARYVILLE — A forestry professor says the fall leaf colors in the Smoky Mountains will be more subdued this year.

Wayne Clatterbuck told The Daily Times that color changes probably won’t happen until November. And when they come, they will likely be of short duration.

The University of Tennessee professor said the problem is the recent heat and lack of rain. Clatterbuck said some species of trees that require more moisture already will have lost their leaves by the time the leaves start to change.


Police identify body

found floating in river

NASHVILLE — Police in Nashville have identified a body found floating in the Cumberland River during the weekend.

Nashville Metro Police confirmed Tuesday that the woman discovered by an off-duty officer on a jetski was 43-year-old Sonta Tycee Gentry. Police spokesman Sgt. Noble Taylor said Gentry was found dead and unclothed on Saturday afternoon with a laceration on her leg and possible head trauma. Investigators don’t think she’d been in the water for long.

The Tennessean reported Gentry’s cause and manner of death haven’t been released.

Police said one of her coworkers at a local grocery store called authorities and told them she thought a description she heard on the news was that of Gentry.


Appalachian commission

plans $44.4 million drive

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Appalachian Regional Commission has announced $44.4 million for 54 projects affecting coal-impacted communities in Appalachian states.

The commission said Tuesday that the Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization Initiative aims to create or retain more than 5,700 jobs. It said the initiative also seeks to leverage more than $39 million in private investment, create or retain 2,940 businesses and train thousands of workers and students.

More than $14.6 million will develop business incubators, increase access to capital and provide other services in Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and West Virginia.

More than $13 million will support broadband development in New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. More than $8.3 million will focus on strategies to strengthen recovery in Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia.


Man charged with murder, 

arson in woman’s death

KINGSPORT — A Kingsport man has been charged with first-degree murder and aggravated arson in the death of his ex-girlfriend, whom he had been court-ordered to avoid.

The Bristol Herald Courier reported 30-year-old Nathaniel White-Young was arrested Monday in the attack on 37-year-old Melissa Mingle. He initially was charged with attempted murder; the charge was upgraded after Mingle died.

He was convicted of aggravated domestic assault in January and ordered to avoid Mingle and serve just under a year of probation.

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