When David Falls' father passed away in 1995, David promised he would take care of his mother, Lydia Falls, and help her with her new antique mall that she had only opened up a year earlier.
Soon after, he moved from Chattanooga to his hometown of Calhoun in order to keep that promise. David didn't know that transition would eventually lead him to open his own estate business and an antique store with his future wife, Melissa Falls.
He wasn't interested in the business at first, but with time, David found himself fascinated with products, their history and the process in which they were manufactured. Over the first few years David worked as the store manager. He slowly got more captivated with product research and took over a few booths to display his new collections of trucks, metal toys and Coca-Cola antiques.
"I needed to know what stuff was worth, so I started studying," David said. "I studied marbles, cast iron, different kinds of pottery. You have to know just enough not to get burned."
After 10 years of working for his mother, he opened up his own estate sales and auction business, still working part time at the antique mall. When Lydia retired and sold her business, David decided to go full time into his estate sales. And when David and Melissa began to look for office space for his already established company, they decided to open their own antique store in addition to their estate business.
At 609 N. Wall St, the Falls' new store, Perfectly Imperfect Antiques, is now open for business. The store opened in November, and has refurbished and repurposed pottery, ceramics, quilts, furniture and tables on display.
"All antiques have stories and little marks that tell you where it came from," Melissa said. "They all have their stories and little imperfections. That's where our name comes from."
David says they both enjoy discovering the history behind some of the objects they repurpose. Over his years of experience working with antiques, he has collected hundreds of reference books in order to better understand a product or company.
"We focus on unique items and repurpose those," said David. "I learned years ago how to repair things and make something that looked like crap and turn it into $100."
David said working with Melissa over the past couple of years has been great and that they make a good team together. David said his wife of three years has a better creative eye, and he is more gifted at working with his hands to make new pieces. And even though the task of shopping at estate sales, facilitating such sales and auctions, repurposing objects and running the antique store might seem like a lot to juggle, both of them agree that what keeps them going is their love for their work.
"We probably don't make a killing doing it, but we enjoy it so it's not like it's work," Melissa said. "We can be out working and laughing and cutting up and the kids are riding their bicycles around the building. It's family time for us, and the kids will come and help sometimes."
With their estate business, the Falls have sold Ford Model T vehicles, a Ford Mustang, high-end glass and porcelain, and even recently a Picasso lithograph. They also pride themselves on only hiring family and longterm friends to work at their store or at auctions, which they say makes the business more comfortable and welcoming.
The Falls are excited to host their first Christmas party at their Wall Street business on Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. At the party, children can write out their wish lists, visit with Santa, get a candy cane and potentially even win a free toy. This is the first big event that the new antique store will be hosting, and David and Melissa foresee this Christmas party continuing for years to come.
The GBI is headed to Calhoun to investigate an officer-involved shooting near the BP gas station at the corner of Line Street and North Wall Street, where a Calhoun officer was shot and another returned fire and killed the female suspect, police say.
Calhoun Police Chief Tony Pyle said the names of the officers and suspects involved are not being released at this time.
According to Pyle:
A Calhoun police officer pulled a vehicle over at the gas station around 3 p.m. Tuesday. The officer asked the driver for her license and proof of insurance, at which point one of the two females in the vehicle pulled a handgun on the officer and shot him.
The bullet struck the officer in his protective vest and ricocheted into his arm for a nonlife threatening injury — he was taken to Hamilton Medical Center in Dalton. Another officer returned fire and struck the female with the handgun, killing her.
The other female in the vehicle was taken into custody.
Pyle requested the GBI to conduct the investigation into the shooting.
"I think (Christmas is) more than a sweet story about shepherds and angels and a young woman named Mary," said John Barber, the pastor of Calhoun First Baptist Church, during the presentation of a Christmas musical. "And I believe the reason this story is so well known and so well loved is because it's a story of truth. It's a story of love."
Barber's comments on the meaning of Christmas came after church worship leaders Hannah and Hollis Mathis sang a harmonized version of "Love Will Make a Bethlehem" during a performance of "Wonder and Glory" on Sunday. The musical was dubbed a "multi-generational Christmas musical," where choirs of all ages sang holiday songs.
Audience consisted of church members, community citizens and guests. Barber opened the night by saying everyone was welcome at the church to celebrate the special holiday of Christmas. He said this time of year is one where everyone should be together.
Musical Minister Lance Cole directed the choirs in songs that illuminated the history of Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ and the joy that the season brings. The musical reflected the beliefs of the church, and Cole encouraged the audience to keep Jesus Christ a focal point as they celebrate Christmas.
Bringing the event to a close, Calhoun High School student Andie Robinson shared a few words with regards to the common holiday phrase, "We believe." Robinson said while this phrase is plastered on every shopping center and advertisement during the holidays, the church takes its meaning to a different level.
"In the end, belief in the season without belief in the savior is empty," Robinson said. "It's only when we believe in the reason for the season that the phrase means something different. The foundation upon which we stand, that will never change."
The student and youth choirs rejoined the church worship team at the end of the concert for a group presentation of "We Believe," a song made famous by a Christian band known as Newsboys. Following the last song and a short benediction from Cole, the congregation and guests gathered for fellowship and light refreshments.
Robinson said this musical was a way for the church to gather together and join Christians throughout the ages to declare what the Christmas season truly means.
Barber said he hoped the service would be a blessing to everyone's Christmas season and thanked all those who were in attendance.
Gordon Hospital will officially take on a new name starting Jan. 2, when it will transition to AdventHealth. But indications of the name change are already appearing, most recently with a new sign being installed on the exterior of the hospital.
Adventist Health System, which is one of the nation's largest faith-based health care systems, owns close to 50 hospital campuses and employs more than 80,000 employees. In the 1990s, they purchased Gordon Hospital and have owned it since, according to Marketing Director Garrett Nudd.
A couple years ago, the organization looked into changing all of their local hospitals' individual names to be the same so they would all be more unified, Nudd said. They decided to follow through with this idea, and have recently been changing Gordon Hospital signage to instead reflect their newly adopted name, AdventHealth.
"With the name change, the health system will move to being one consumer-centric, connected and identifiable national system of care for every stage of life and health," a news release from Adventist Health System stated.
Other local health centers affected in this name change will include Murray Medical Center and Gordon Physicians Group, yet there will be no change in ownership, personnel or business structure as a direct result of the transition, according to the news release.
"We are transforming to better meet the needs of those we care for and the communities we serve," said Terry Shaw, the president and CEO of Adventist Health System.
Gordon Hospital President Pete Weber also said the hospital's first priority has always been the community, and that this transition will provide more opportunities to better serve patients and their families.
In preparation for this change, the organization spent around eight months focusing on the launch of their system-wide brand and solidifying new procedures, training and techniques regarding both employees and patients, which will also be a part of the transition.
"We want our hospitals and care sites to be places where people can experience hope as well as healing, and the AdventHealth name so appropriately expresses that sense of expectation and optimism while also connecting with our promise of wholeness and our rich faith-based heritage," said Gary Thurber, the board chairman of Adventist Health System.
In September, this transition began via television and print ads for both Gordon Hospital and other involved hospitals across the nation. The new AdventHealth sign has been installed on the central hospital building as well as visual and marketing elements on other buildings on the property.
The Calhoun Times is looking to feature student artwork in our Young Artists section. Pictures of artwork can be emailed to Managing Editor Spencer Lahr at SLahr@CalhounTimes.com. Please keep photos in their original format and do not alter them. Also, be sure to include the name of student, their grade and the school they attend.