Two Tennessee hikers attempt FKT of Smokies trails to raise money for park

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Two Tennessee hikers attempt FKT of Smokies trails to raise money for park

Two hikers from Tennessee plan to walk over 900 miles and raise $60,000 for Great Smoky Mountains National Park Preventative Search and Rescue. Nancy East and her hiking partner Chris Ford are attempting a fastest known time (FKT) attempt of hiking all the trails in the national park. Along the way, the duo plan to raise $60,000 for preventative search and rescue programs.

The money will fund two seasonal rangers who will implement a robust PSAR program, according to East’s blog. “This program will undoubtedly save lives,” East says. Follow their progress on East’s Facebook page. 

Damascus, Va. adds self-guided, walking history tour

Damascus, Va., known to Appalachian Trail aficionados as “the friendlies town on the Appalachian Trail,” has added a self-guided walking trail highlighting the rich history of the town. The self-guided tour includes 12 custom-designed signs placed along a 2-mile stretch in town at locations of historical importance. 

The project was funded entirely by donations. “Hundreds of people walk by these [landmarks] every day,” said town historian Richard Smith. “[The signs] give a real view of what it was like here more than 100 years ago.” 

Cancer patients sue over emissions from Ga. Plants

Six cancer victims are suing the operators of two Atlanta-area medical sterilization plants over their use of a gas containing toxic levels of ethylene oxide. The victims claim emissions from the Sterigencs plants caused their breast cancer and leukemia, Greenwire reports. Ethylene oxide was classified as a human carcinogen in 2016.

An attorney representing the victims told reporters that they are working “for the whole community who wants and deserves to have clean air and a place that they can raise their kids and have their families and not have to worry on a day-to-day basis that somebody’s getting cancer.” Last year, authorities in Illinois closed another sterilization plant owned by Sterigenics outside Chicago. The company is also facing lawsuits over the ethylene oxide emissions from that plant.

Sunrise Landscape Great Smoky Mountains National Park Gatlinburg TN – courtesy of Getty Images by WerksMedia

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