Talkin' Tville June 12: Passion thrives as All-American City Finalist

City comes together for one cause
Jun. 11, 2013 @ 11:44 AM

If given the chance to spend countless hours preparing for a rare opportunity to put your city on the map, would you do it? That is exactly what a number of individuals from the Thomasville community have done in rehearsing for this weekend's All-America City presentation in Denver, Colo.

After an extensive process that requires full involvement from each individual on the team, it would be reasonable to assume the group would encounter a few personality conflicts and difference of opinions — and agendas. In listening to three of these 31 individuals, it seems the opposite is true.

Tony Hyde, who served as co-chairman of the All-America City application committee, gave an impassioned speech June 6 during one of their final rehearsals, indicating everyone has come together for one cause. And according those in attendance that day, the end result is something special.

In this edition of Talkin’Tville, we offer the passionate thoughts and comments expressed by Hyde, Tracy Brinkley and Dr. Christian Brandyberry about the All-American effort.

We're going to have the opportunity to change the city because of the recognition we're going to get for this. It's by the grace of God that we're all able to stand here tonight. Ten years ago, Tracy [Brinkley] could see. She had an accident and she lost her vision, and when she lost her vision, she lost a great part of her life. She has a sickness now that affects her, but she's not letting that sickness stop her. That sickness is changing the city for what she's doing...she's changing people's lives. I'm not 1 percent of the person Tracy is, and I've got good vision. This lady has more vision than I'll ever have in my life.

— Tony Hyde


Most of the 31 people I have had an association with, but only a handful that I feel like I had a cohesive relationship with before this project. I'm getting to know these 31 people in a different setting, thrown together with script and with stories. Just to be a part of that excitement is a microcosm of what Thomasville has been about. Everyone is making it as easy as possible on each other. The awesome thing is that we have some who are as young as Michael Burchel — and other elementary school age children — all the way to men in their 70s. We have come together like family, and that's what Thomasville does.

— Tracy Brinkley


Dr. David Williams plays an integral part in just about everything in this city. This guy is the man who helped raise the money for this project, he and Mary Jane Akerman. It's unbelievable, because these are cities from all over the country applying for this special award. We just want to represent well. We don't really brag on ourselves, so this is a way to put our name out there and get people interested. It allows us to get more people involved.

— Dr. Christian Brandyberry