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Veterans to lead pledge before meetings
Veteran led pledge
Retired Staff Sgt. John Brantley, right, led the Pledge of Allegiance during Monday night’s Warren County Commission session. Commission chair Blaine Wilcher aims to start a new tradition of having someone lead the pledge who served or is currently serving their country or community. Brantley received a standing ovation from commission members and a plaque from Wilcher. - photo by Lisa Hobbs

A new tradition has started in the monthly sessions of Warren County government to honor those individuals who serve their country and community. 

“Starting tonight, we will have a special guest leading our Pledge of Allegiance,” said Warren County Commission chair Blaine Wilcher. “These individuals will be men and women who have served our country, in the military, or our county in one of the many different service organizations, such as the Warren County Sheriff’s Department and McMinnville Police Department.”

Leading Monday night’s pledge was Staff Sgt. John Brantley, who expressed gratitude for the opportunity and was presented a plaque from Wilcher. 

Brantley joined the United States Army in 1995 and was stationed in Hawaii for three years with the 1st Battalion 21st Infantry. He served 18 years in the Tennessee National Guard. In 2008, he was among the military assistance in Hurricane Gustav Relief in Baton Rouge. From 2009 to 2010 he served in Iraq.

Brantley retired in 2017 after 21 years of service, and currently resides in Warren County with his wife Deana and their three children, Jaydon, Justin and Jace.