This story was submitted by Tammy Bacon as a nomination to the Reader’s Digest “Top 10 Nicest Places in America” contest: a crowd-sourced effort to uncover nooks where people are still kind and respectful in an era of cultural and political divides. If you know of a community, business, or nonprofit where kindness prevails, then be sure to submit a testimony or anecdote here before the June 5th deadline.

I was raised in Corryton, Tennessee, but later married and moved to a neighboring county. After 26 years and a divorce, I decided that I really wanted to return home.

I bought a small, run-down, house nearly a century old, and began working to bringing it back to life. Aside from a little family help, I did this largely on my own.

While working on my house, I had several neighbors stop by to compliment my work and efforts in restoring this little house. Those neighbors, and many others, later returned to offer their assistance with whatever my current project may be, much to my great appreciation.

Stories About Corryton

My neighbor Tommy has come over in the dead of winter to fix my plumbing when the pipes froze; help me clear brush; and assist me in building my chicken coop. He has helped me build raised beds for my garden, as well as a fence to protect it. He even built and installed a clothesline for me, and his entire family has been very kind and friendly to me since my move.

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Another neighbor, Mark, used his tractor to level my property so it would be mowable, and worked the land around my pond to allow for better water flow. His family has been extremely sweet to me as well.

Many other neighbors have been happy to offer a helping hand. They even made me homemade candies for Christmas.

I didn’t know a single person when I moved here a year ago, and now I feel as though my neighbors are family – and not a single person has been willing to accept payment for the hours and hours of labor spent on my property.

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Having grown up in Corryton, I knew the people here were supportive and friendly. My elementary school principal, Bob Martin, helped me all throughout grade school, and even got me my first job. He has been retired for years, and still helps the community by running the town food bank for needy families.

That neighborly attitude is exactly the reason I came back to my little hometown – [but] I honestly didn’t expect to find this degree of neighborly love when I returned. The support and welcoming attitude of my new neighbors has been a reminder to me that there are still many friendly, helpful people in Corryton. This will forever be my hometown.

Reprinted with permission from Reader’s Digest. To learn more about GNN’s part in searching for the Top 10 Nicest Places, click here.

Share The Sweet Story Of Community With Your FriendsPhotos by Tammy Bacon

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