The planning process toward a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the first transatlantic flights led by John H. Towers, the Rome native who is regarded the father of Naval Aviation, in May of 1919 is underway in New York.

It was May 8, 1919 when three aircraft from the Navy Seaplane Division One took off from the Rockaway Naval Air Station, but only one actually made it all the way to Lisbon, Portugal over the course of three weeks.

Special ceremonies are set for May 8 at Rockaway at 9:30 a.m., according to the current schedule. The area is now part of the Gateway Recreation Area of the National Park Service.

An HU-16 Albatross Seaplane will take off from Jamaica Bay at approximately 10 a.m., which was the time of the original takeoff.

The Secretary of Defense, Secretary of the Navy and many other dignitaries have been invited to take part in the ceremony.

Towers, who was a Commander in the Navy at the time, started planning the mission during World War One. The aircraft Towers was in had to ditch in the Atlantic, but was able to stay afloat for several days until it reached Ponta Delgada in the Azores.

"What was amazing is that he sailed it backwards," said Howie Lowden of Rome. "The engines worked but the plane was broken."

Lowden said several members of the extended Towers family are planning to attend the ceremony.

Coosa Valley Financial Group relocates

A Rome investment management company, Coosa Valley Financial Group, Inc. has consolidated its offices to 415 East Second Avenue in Rome. All of the firms divisions, including tax and accounting, personal property, casualty and life insurance, commercial property and casualty insurance lines, and financial planning, are now under the same roof.

“We feel this is a positive move for the firm as it brings all of our resources together for a better customer experience,” said Mark L. Busby, president of Coosa Valley Financial Group, Inc.

The move puts the business inside a qualified Opportunity Zone which company officials believe may lead to further investment opportunities.

Additionally, Stephen E. Smith, director of Tax and Accounting, has been recognized by the Dave Ramsey organization as an Endorsed Local Provider for taxation and small business consulting. Smith handles clients not only in the immediate Rome area, but as far away as Gadsden, Alabama and Chattanooga, Tennessee.

“Working with the Dave Ramsey organization has been a tremendous opportunity for our firm. We have been blessed as a company to be working with such a top- notch group of people that work for Ramsey,” Smith said.

Coosa Valley Financial Group, Inc. is a privately-owned company which specializes in several of the key sectors of the wealth management spectrum from cash flow and debt management, insurance to business and financial planning.

Bridal Expo set for Cartersville

The Clarence Brown Conference Center, across Georgia 20 from the Georgia Highlands College campus in Cartersville, will host the Northwest Georgia Bridal Expo Sunday, Jan. 27.

Prospective brides, friends and families will have a chance to meet with more than fifty wedding vendors under.

Specific wedding and reception venues will be represented along with bridal shops, tuxedo and formal wear stores, photographers and videographers as well as honeymoon and destination wedding locations.

Florists and decorators will be represented along with disc jockeys, photo booths, cake and catering companies (who will have samples on hand), as well as  wedding planners and  special event coordinators.

Area real estate and mortgage advisors are also slated to be in attendance to help newlyweds with the fir first home.

Two special fashion shows will be held at 1:30 and 3 p.m.

Tickets for the event are $10 and are available online at www.nwgeorgiabridalexpo.com.  Tickets will be $15 at the door. All brides who register will be eligible for a variety of door prizes.