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Robert Nikolovski

Robert Nikolovski, 63, of Tyes Ferry Road, Rockholds, KY, passed away Friday, June 28, 2019 at Baptist Health Corbin in Corbin, KY.

He was born April 10, 1956 in Scopia, Yugoslavia, to the late Uros and Radmilla Nikolovski.

He is survived by his wife Deborah Nikolovski of Rockholds, KY, three children, Tracy Nikolovski Clukey of New York, Tiffany Nikolovski of Florida, Erica Nikolovski of Florida; grandson Joseph Vargas of Florida; sister, Helen Kaiser of Las Vegas; four stepchildren, Scott Sharpels of Florida, Brian Urback of Florida, Benjamin Urback (Adelle) of Arizona, Becky Sue Urback of Florida; niece, Samantha Kaiser of Arizona, and a host of other relatives and friends to mourn his passing.

Funeral services were private.

Croley Funeral Home of Williamsburg was in charge of arrangements, where condolences may be made to the family at


Linda Green

Linda Green, 56, of Duff, TN passed away Wednesday, July 3, 2019 at her home.
She was born May 19, 1963 in Jellico, TN.

Linda was preceded in death by her parents, Elmer and Mary Huddleston Green; brother, Keith Green.

She is survived by her husband, David Evans; son, Bryan King and wife Brittany; daughter, Tina Huddleston and husband Shane; step-daughters, Racheal Evans, Casey Grubb, Raven Sabino; eleven grandchildren; brother, Audie Green; and a host of nieces, nephews, friends and family to mourn her passing.

Funeral services were held Saturday, July 6, at the Little White Oak Baptist Church with Rev. Ray Woods officiating.

Burial followed in the Bolton-Campbell Cemetery.

Harp Funeral Home of Jellico was in charge of arrangements.


Violet Sue Ward

Violet Sue Ward, 70, the wife of Tom Ward of Punta Gorda, FL formerly of London, KY passed away Monday, July 1st in Florida.

Memorial services will be conducted at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 20th at the Souls’ Harbor Church in London, KY.

There will be NO VISITATION but a reception will immediately follow after the service.

Private graveside services and burial will be at a later date at the Larkey Cemetery in London, KY.


Rose Mary Brock

Rose Mary Brock, 60, of London, passed away on Thursday July 4, 2019 at the Jean Waddle Care Center in Somerset.

Funeral service for Rose Mary Brock was held Sunday July 7, at the Vankirk-Grisell Funeral Home.

Burial followed in the Paint Hill Community Cemetery.


Jack Bridges

Jack Bridges, 76, of Elk Valley, TN passed away Thursday, July 4, 2019 at his home.

He was born February 16, 1943 in Capuchin, TN. Jack was a member of the Elk Fork Baptist Church for 61 years, a deacon for 45 years and served as Sunday school superintendent for 31 years.

Jack was preceded in death by his parents: Eckley and Mary Bridges; brothers, Leon Bridges, Bill Bridges.

He is survived by his wife, Inez Perkins Bridges; son. Eckley Brian Bridges; daughter, Christy Bridges Paul; grandchildren, Josh, Zoe and Malaki; brother, Scott Bridges; sisters, Maxine Day, Sharon Blankenship, Betty Gross; a very special friend, John Thomas Bridges; and a host of nieces, nephews, friends and family to mourn his passing.

The funeral service was held Sunday, July 7, at the Elk Fork Baptist Church with Rev. Jacob Lay officiating.

Burial followed in the Valley View Cemetery

Harp Funeral Home of Jellico was in charge of arrangements.


Carolyn Jean “Jeanie” Slaven

Carolyn Jean “Jeanie” Slaven, 70, widow of Ronnie H. Slaven, died July 1, 2019 at the University of Kentucky Medical Center.

Born Nov. 24, 1948 in Corbin, KY, she was the daughter of Geneva Smith Palmer and the late Thomas W. Palmer.

Mrs. Slaven retired from the U.S. Government as an accountant with AAFES (Army & Air Force Exchange Service) and also from Blue Star Plastics.

She was an avid reader and loved couponing.

Survivors include two children: daughter, Sondra (Jeff) Leet, and son, Ronnie (Alyssa) Slaven, Jr.; four grandchildren, Brittany Leet, Scott Leet, Jake Steele, and Maya Slaven; and nephew, Danny (Marketta) Gray.

In addition to her father and husband, she was preceded in death by a sister, Elaine Gray.
Funeral services were held Friday, July 5 at Kerr Brothers Funeral Home, Harrodsburg Rd. by Pastor Russell Wethington, Jr.

Burial followed in Lexington Cemetery.

Memorial contributions are suggested to the American Cancer Society, 1504 College Way, Lexington, KY 40502.

This announcement is a courtesy of Croley Funeral Home of Williamsburg.


Elmer Siler

Elmer Siler, 83, of Cincinnati, Ohio and formerly of Williamsburg, departed this life on Wednesday, July 3, 2019 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

He was born on March 27, 1936 in Williamsburg, to the late Roscoe (Toad) Siler and Nannie (Lawson) Siler.

He was also preceded in death by a sister, Marie Wilhite; and brothers, L.O., William, Clarence, L.D., Floyd, Lloyd, Charles and Berry Siler.

Elmer loved and was proud of being a UAW member and worked at GE (General Electric) for 42 years. Elmer loved to work in his yard.
He is survived by, his wife of 61 years, Edith Brenda (Wilhite) Siler; he was the loving father of Tammy Kay Siler, Elmer Ray Siler and his wife Rhonda and Robert Allen Siler and wife Melina; loving grandfather of Miranda Couch, Matthew Doan, Paige Siler and Jaxson Siler; great grandfather of Ava Couch; brothers, Roscoe Siler and wife Joyce and Arnold Siler and wife Joann; and a host of other family and friends to mourn his passing.

Graveside services were held Sunday, July 7, at the Siler Cemetery with Rev. Rick Croley officiating.

Condolences may be made to the family at

Croley Funeral Home of Williamsburg was in charge of arrangements.


McCreary County pulls funds from Knox-Whitley Humane Association

The Knox-Whitley Humane Association is attempting to make up a $40,000 budget shortfall, but will have fewer animals, following the McCreary County Fiscal Court’s decision to end its agreement.

During a special called meeting on June 20, the magistrates voted not to renew the contract.

“It wasn’t anything Knox-Whitley did or didn’t do,” said McCreary County Judge-executive Jimmie W. Greene, II, explaining that a local group had established an animal protection league and had kennel facilities in McCreary County.

“It was a hard decision to give them a chance because they are new,” Greene said of the McCreary County facility. “We told them they have big shoes to fill, and we were giving them one chance.”

Greene said between 300 and 500 dogs from McCreary County were sent to the Knox-Whitley facility each year.

In addition to animals from Knox and Whitley counties, the KWHA facility also takes animals from Clay County.

“When we combined the four counties for our shelter, all four counties were able to spend less money than what they would have to spend doing a shelter themselves. Losing their funding will hurt us and I’m afraid them losing us will hurt them,” said KWHA Board President Devonna Giles. “Ultimately, we want what is best for the animals, and would like to help as many animals as we can help,” she said.

Giles said in an effort to make up for the lost of revenue, the shelter is holding additional fundraising events, such as the Stars and Stripes Adopt-a-Thon that occurred Saturday.

The next scheduled fundraiser is the 5K run/walk and dog walk at 6 p.m. on November 2.

In addition, donations to the shelter, in the form of money, gift cards, or new or gently used pet items are always accepted.

The shelter is a 501c3 non-profit entity, so any donations are tax-deductible.

The shelter is part of the Amazon Smile program, which allows individuals purchasing items at to designate the shelter to receive .5 percent of the purchase price of selected items as a donation.

“We have survived with three counties before and can do it again, but it won’t be easy,” Giles said. “We will need the support of our communities to help us continue to provide a safe place for homeless animals who are waiting for their forever homes.”

“We also have a wish list Amazon,” Shelter Director Melissa McElroy added. The link to find the list is,

Anyone who would like to donate their time to help the shelter is more than welcome.

Giles said there are a variety of ways to help the animals, either directly, or indirectly. Volunteers may give as much or little time as they have, and assist in whatever capacity they feel comfortable.

More information is available by contacting the shelter at 526-6925, or on the shelter’s Facebook page.


Legislative update: Public pensions remain a topic of discussion

Regina Bunch Huff is the 82nd District State Representative.

I know that everyone has heard significant discussion about the pensions systems of our state employees, teachers, state workers, and other public servants. These systems affect taxpayers and public employees alike. Thousands of Kentuckians receive or will receive retirement through the funds and Kentucky spends 14 percent of our total budget on pension contributions and that number is expected to grow.

Due to a wide range of issues, including poor management and oversight of the funds and a lack of commitment to proper funding, Kentucky has the second-worst funded pension system in America and over $60 billion in unfunded liabilities. This enormous hole was not dug in a short period of time, and will not be filled in a quick manner. Issues which have contributed to this unfunded liability include underfunding by past governors and legislatures, unrealistic assumptions as it relates to payroll growth and investment returns, and poor management of the systems themselves.

I am committed to working to fix the problems with our public pension systems. Our law enforcement officers, teachers, other state workers and taxpayers demand no less. Thankfully, some progress has been made on this issue thanks to action by the General Assembly. Funding in the last budget totaled well over $3 billion dollars between all of our pension systems. For perspective, that was more than one and a half times what the budget allocated for building and maintaining roads and infrastructure.  But as reports indicate, there is far more to do.

The Public Pension Oversight Board, a legislative committee that keeps a watchful eye on Kentucky’s pension systems, recently met to hear a quarterly report from the agencies themselves. While there was some positive news in thanks to increased funding by the General Assembly, our pensions continue to face problems which demand action. For example, the Teachers’ Retirement System (TRS) is currently facing a negative cash flow, meaning that fund is paying more money out than it takes in.

You do not have to look far to see the toll that the pension crisis is taking. As of July 1, regional universities and quasi-governmental agencies saw their pension contributions skyrocket to almost 83 percent of the salary of each employee. These include many organizations whose employees are not state employees, but are still in the pension system and provide an array of valuable services at local health departments, rape crisis and domestic violence centers. As you may remember from a previous update, we passed a solution to address this issue during the 2019 session, but unfortunately it was vetoed by the Governor.

As I write this, my colleagues and I wait for word about a possible special session to vote on a proposal put forth by the Governor. The Governor’s proposal, while not perfect, is the result of meaningful discussions and two months of consideration. While I would have preferred to see the measure we already passed become law, I do believe some good-faith efforts have taken place to produce a bill that still provides both necessary relief and reforms. We technically have some time, as the pension bill for these agencies will not become delinquent until August 10. But I would prefer to see a special session, which only the Governor can call, convened as soon as possible to come to a solution providing relief for these agencies.

I want to share and stress that I have not committed to vote for this bill. This is an incredibly important piece of legislation that relates to an even more critical issue, so I want to give it as much attention as possible.

Failing to provide relief puts these agencies, their employees, and the men and women they serve at risk. However, it is critical to note that failing to provide a long-term solution that addresses the root of the problem has even more dangerous implications. Simply freezing their rate without reforms will cost taxpayers and the pension system an estimated $121 million, without coming to a solution that stops the bleeding. I remain committed to providing relief from the crippling increase in contributions for our quasi-governmental agencies and regional universities, so that they may continue to offer valuable services to our communities.

As always, I can be reached at home anytime or through the toll-free message line in Frankfort at 1-800-372-7181. You can also contact me via e-mail at You can also keep track of committee meetings and potential legislation through the Kentucky Legislature Home Page at


UC converting all Cumberland Inn hotel rooms into student housing

Starting early next month, the Cumberland Inn will be no more at least in terms of operating as a hotel for the first time in the 27-year history of the building.

The University of the Cumberlands, which owns the facility, announced Tuesday that starting on Aug. 5, the facility will be transitioned to all student housing. The move comes as the University anticipates record enrollment this fall.

In the fall of 2018, UC announced “The Cumberlands Commitment,” a pledge to cut tuition for traditional, on campus undergraduate students by 57 percent. In response, the University has experienced increasing undergraduate enrollment numbers.

“Cumberlands’ mission has always been to provide quality, affordable education to our region,” said Dr. Jerry Jackson, Vice President for Enrollment and Communications at UC. “As a result of our Cumberlands Commitment, we expect the largest enrollment in the school’s history – both on campus and overall.”

In late March, UC announced that starting July 1, the 33 hotel rooms in the Templeton Wing at Cumberland Inn would be converted for student housing.

As enrollment numbers have continued to rise over the summer and demand for student housing has increased, the University is now converting the remaining 17 rooms at the inn for student use. The facility will continue to be operated and staffed by Aramark.

“We are truly excited about the expected enrollment for the fall and the growing need for student housing,” said Quentin Young, Chief Financial Officer at UC. “Financially speaking, it only made sense to utilize an existing facility and transition it to student housing. While we may no longer operate as a hotel, we see this as an opportunity for our loyal guests to support other hospitality businesses in the City of Williamsburg.”

UC spokesperson Andrew Powell said that all wings of the building are named and the main wing of the hotel is known as the Alison Temple Adams Center. Most likely the new name for the facility will be a variation on that name.

The Templeton Wing of the hotel, which previously had 33 hotel rooms, is being called Templeton Hall, Powell noted.

Because of the changes, the Cumberland Inn facility will no longer be available for catering, conferences or weddings.

The main lodge and restaurant at the Cumberland Inn opened for business in in 1992 with 18 hotel rooms open. In 1994, the Templeton Wing opened with an additional 33 rooms.

The Cumberland Inn has undergone a number of changes in recent years.

For the first 18 years of the Cumberland Inn’s existence, the restaurant operated as the Athenaeum Restaurant, a fine dining facility that closed in December 2011.

The restaurant re-opened in February 2012 as the Patriot Steakhouse, and featured a more casual dining experience. It was also included as a dining option under the student meal plan.

Five years later on June 4, 2017, the Patriot Steakhouse closed for business, and no restaurant has reopened in its space.

In 2017, the university closed the museum portion of the Cumberland Inn, and repurposed that space for administrative functions.