St. Agnes Academy-St. Dominic School is happy to offer live streaming of our 2018 graduation ceremonies. If you are unable to join us in person, you may watch live online or access the recording anytime after the eventStreaming is free, you simply have to sign up at You can watch the graduations on laptops, tablets and smart phones. No app needed. You can download the video for $9.99. 

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Graduation Schedule Streaming Live at SAA-SDS:

  • May 19 -         SAA Upper School Graduation @ 9:30  am 
  • May 22 -         SAA 8th Grade Graduation @ 10:30 am
  • May 23 -         SDS 8th Grade Graduation @ 10:30 am
  • May 24 -         Kindergarten Graduation @ 9:00 am 


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The St. Agnes Academy Class of 2018 was honored during a beautiful Baccalaureate Mass and Ceremony at St. Louis Church. Following the Liturgy, awards were presented, and the seniors were inducted into the Alumnae Association during the traditional candle lighting ceremony continuing the light of sisterhood.  The Class of 2018 earned $9.6 Million in scholarships, and they were offered admission to over 70 colleges and universities from coast to coast. The class earned over 340 Scholarships for academics, arts, athletics, leadership and service.

The following awards were presented during the Baccalaureate: 


The Barbara H. Daush Valedictory Medal

Caroline Melancon

Salutatorian Medal

Abby Sellers 

Third Honors Medal

Sophia Bufalino. 



Literature Medal

Kendall Stallings 

Writing Medal

Abby Sellers


Fine Arts

Drama Medal

Elizabeth Brady

Music Medal

Instrumental – Lauren Bean

Vocal – Abby Clark 

Visual Arts Medal

Jordan Cardell 



Abby Clark 



The Mertie Buckman Medal

Sophia Bufalino 


Social Sciences

The Mr. Bill Cate Excellence in Social Sciences Medal

Arabella Hamm 



Abigail Dalton 



The Saint Agnes Medal

Mary Norsworthy 


World Languages

The Dr. Joy Maness Excellence in French Medal

Samantha Jackson 

The Mr. Frank R. Martinez Excellence in Spanish Medal

Anna Nieman 


 Colleges Offering Admission to the St. Agnes Academy Class of 2018

Arkansas State University

Auburn University

Austin Peay State University

Belmont University

Boston College

California Polytechnic State University

Christian Brothers University

Clark Atlanta University 

Clemson University

College of Charleston

College of Charleston Honors College, South Carolina

College of William and Mary 

Colorado State University

Columbia College

DePaul University

DePaul University Honors Program 

Elon University

Emerson College

Emmanuel College

Florida State University 

Furman University 

George Washington University 

Lake Forest College

Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College

Loyola University of Chicago

Loyola University of New Orleans

Marymount Manhattan College Honors Program

Middle Tennessee State University

Millsaps College

Mississippi State University

Mississippi State University Shackouls Honor College

Montana State University

Murray State University

New York University 

Northwestern University 

Ouachita Baptist University

Oxford College of Emory University

Pace University

Point Park University

Rhodes College

Rockhurst University

Saint Louis University 

San Diego State University 

Santa Clara University

Savannah College of Art and Design

Sewanee: The University of the South

Southern Methodist University

Spring Hill College

Texas Christian University John V. Roach Honors College

The New School

Thomas Aquinas College

Tulane University 

Tulane University Honors Program

University of Alabama

University of Alabama Honors College

University of Arkansas

University of Arkansas Honors College

University of Central Arkansas

University of Colorado

University of Colorado Boulder Honors Program

University of Georgia

University of Georgia Honors Program

University of Iowa

University of Kentucky

University of Memphis

University of Memphis Helen Hardin Honors College

University of Mississippi

University of Mississippi Lott Leadership Institute

University of Mississippi Provost Scholars Program

University of Mississippi Sally McDonald Barksdale Honors College

University of Missouri

University of Notre Dame

University of Richmond

University of South Carolina

University of Tennessee Chancellor's Honors Program

University of Tennessee, Chattanooga

University of Tennessee, Knoxville

University of Tennessee, Martin

University of Utah Honors College

University of Virginia

University of West Florida

Virginia Commonwealth University

Washington and Lee University 

Webster University 




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St. Agnes Academy is pleased to announce the top honors in the Class of 2018. Congratulations to Valedictorian Caroline Melancon, Salutatorian Abigail Sellers, and the recipient of Third Honors Sophia Bufalino

Valedictorian – Caroline Melancon

The St. Agnes Academy Valedictorian for the Class of 2018 is Caroline Melancon. A National Merit Finalist and an AP Scholar with distinction, Caroline will enroll at the University of Notre Dame in the fall where she plans to study astronomy and pursue a career with NASA. 

An outstanding scholar and leader, Caroline is a member of the Aquinas Chapter of the National Honor Society, La Societe Honoraire de Francais, Bill Cate Rho Kappa National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta Mathematics Honor Society, International Thespian Society, and the National English Honor Society.  She is a four-year member of the National Beta Club and Key Club.  Active in the St. Agnes theatre program, Caroline has worked as production assistant, working lights and sound for the various school plays and musicals.   Caroline has exhibited a deep commitment to community service and is a recipient of the school’s Gold Medal Presidential Volunteer Award for completing over 250 hours of service.  She volunteers her time as a tutor in the Math Lab at SAA.  She serves as a group leader on the retreat team that plans and coordinates retreats for the Upper School, as well as a Peer Mentor guiding freshmen through the transition to high school.  

In addition to Notre Dame, Caroline was also admitted to Loyola University, Chicago where she was awarded a Presidential Scholarship. She also earned a Tennessee Hope Educational Scholarship and a General Assembly Merit Scholarship. Caroline is the daughter of Brent and Melinda Melancon. 


Salutatorian – Abigail Sellers

St. Agnes Academy Salutatorian Abigail Sellers has distinguished herself as a scholar and athlete.  A 15-year student at St Agnes, Abby is a National Merit Commended Student and earned recognition as an AP Scholar. She is a member of the Aquinas Chapter of the National Honor Society as well as the Bill Cate Rho Kappa Social Sciences Honor Society, Sociedad Honoraria Hispanica, English Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta. Abby is captain of the SAA Mathletes team, as well a four-year participant in Youth in Government and Model United Nations. She is also the captain of the cross-country team and the distance track team. 

A talented equestrienne,Abby began horseback riding when she was only five years old, and she has been showing competitively since she was eight. She has qualified for the junior hunter championships the past four years, and last summer she won a team silver medal at the 2017 USHJA Zone Jumper Championships at the highest height offered, 1.35 meters.   Following graduation Abby plans to spend a year competing internationally. In the fall of 2019 she will enroll in the John V. Roach Honors College at Texas Christian University where she received the Texas Christian University Deans Scholarship. She plans to pursue a career in the medical field.  

Abby was also accepted to the University of Notre Dame, Auburn University, and the University of Georgia Honors Program where she earned a Presidential Leadership Scholarship and Waiver. She was also offered admission to the University of Mississippi State Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College where she earned an Academic Excellence Scholarship, an Academic Excellence Non-Resident Scholarship and a Holmes Scholarship, and she was accepted at the University of Memphis where she earned a Cecil C. Humphreys Presidential Scholarship. Abby is the daughter of Todd and Heather Sellers. 


Third Honors – Sophia Bufalino 

Sophia Bufalino earned Third Honors in the St. Agnes Academy Class of 2018. In the fall Sophia will enroll in the University of Virginia, and she plans to pursue a career as a doctor. Known by her friends and family as a “science girl,” Sophia has always had a profound interest in science, and during her senior she volunteered at the Pink Palace Museum. Using a microscope cart, she used her passion and knowledge of biology to teach children the difference between plant cells and animal cells. 

Sophia earned honors as an AP Scholar with Distinction.  She is a four-year competitor on the St. Agnes Mathletes team and serves as a tutor in the Math Learning Center. She is Vice President of HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America). Through her work with HOSA she has helped to raise awareness for mental illnesses. She has been inducted into the Aquinas Chapter of the National Honor Society, the National English Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, Bill Cate Rho Kappa National Social Studies Honor Society, and the Sociedad Honoraria Hispanica. She has participated in Model United Nations, and is member of the Spanish Club, Key Club and National Beta Club.  

Sophia was also accepted to Boston College, the Oxford College of Emory University, and the University of Alabama. She was awarded a Tennessee Hope Educational Scholarship and a General Assembly Merit Scholarship. Sophia is the daughter of Jim and Nikki Bufalino. 






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The Stars track team finished 2nd overall at the Division II West Regional Championship, and they are the Regional Runners-up for the third straight year. The Stars will compete at the state meet in Murfreesboro later in May. The Stars made school history by qualifying 11 athletes for the state meet. Go Stars! 


Results of the Division II West Regional : 

The 4x100 team of Mya Rogers, Olivia Berntson, Keana Dotson, and CeCe Aaron broke their just established school record and posted the second best time in the state at 49.78.

The 4x400 team of Mya Rogers, Marisa Lewis, Abby Williams and Carolyn Barksdale came in 1st with a time of 4:17. 

The 4x 800 team of Marisa Lewis, Carolyn Barksdale, Abby Williams and Rebecca Calderoni came in 1stwith a time of 9:47.1. They improved their season best time by nine seconds and have the second leading time in the state.

Kate Sander came in first in Pole Vault. She is state leader with a height of 11’ 8” and is nationally ranked as a sophomore.  

Keana Dotson finished runner-up in the 100 High Hurdles and the 300 Intermediate Hurdles. 

Olivia Berntson came in the 2nd in the Pentathlon. She finished 1st in the 4x100, 4th in the 300 IM Hurdles, 4th in the 100 High Hurdles, and 3rd in the Long Jump



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During the Feast of St. Catharine celebration students received the Dominican Torch Award - Pictured from l. to. r.: (Row1) Shuler Tidwell (SD3), Emma Casey (SA3), Luke Lucchesi (SD5), Mary Francis Berry (SA4); (Row 2) Jack McLaughlin (SD7), Kendall Stallings (SA12), Melody Green (SA10), and Megan Norsworthy (SA7).


Bishop Martin Holley was our celebrant as the St. Agnes Academy-St. Dominic School community gathered for the Feast of St. Catharine. As part of the celebration, students were presented the Dominican Torch Awards and Dr. Kathy Zanone was presented the Albertus Magnus Award, which recognizes an outstanding educator who demonstrates the four pillars of the Dominican tradition: Study, Prayer, Community and Service. Our Littlest Stars and Suns even had a special visit with the Bishop 

St. Catharine is the saint associated with the Dominican Sisters of St. Catharine, KY who founded SAA in 1851. In 2010, our sponsorship shifted as seven communities of Dominican Sisters joined together to become the Dominican Sisters of Peace.  The Dominican Sisters of Peace sponsor 4 elementary and secondary schools, three universities, and three literacy centers among their considerable missions.

Torch Awards Recognize Students Who Exemplify the Four Pillars

 The Torch Awards recognize those students who exhibit, by their example, the four pillars of the Dominican charism: Prayer, Study, Community and Service. Students are nominated for this honor by their classmates and teachers, and the awards are presented twice a year. Below are excerpts from the nominations, which were submitted by classmates and teachers:

Emma Casey: “I think Emma is a good example to others because she is joyful, helpful, truthful and responsible.” 

Shuler Tidwell: “I nominate Shuler because he is very kind and respectful. He is honest and helpful whenever anyone is in need. He even has good handwriting!!

Mary Frances Berry: “When I look to see what Mary Frances is doing on her computer, she is always on Quizlet, studying for a test. She also reads lots of books. She can put a smile on your face in 5 seconds! Mary Frances follows the Justice, Respect and Peace rules. She has a positive attitude and always tried to help people. 

Luke Lucchesi:  “I nominate Luke because he always has a smile on his face. He never argues with people and isn’t afraid to speak up and defend people when someone is picking on them.”

Megan Norsworthy: “She goes out of her way to be kind and helpful.  Megan works hard to learn and succeed. She is a quiet, reflective person who is focused on God. Her calm spirit eases the stress and worries of those around her.”

Jack McLaughlin:“Jack represents the 4 Pillars to the world. He is the go-to person when someone needs help. He is like a brother to everyone.”

Melody Green: "She always greets you with a smile and is so positive.  Her enthusiastic outlook is refreshing to anyone that is around her.”

Kendall Stallings: “Kendall is a beautiful model of graceful leadership.  Her confidence and talents are laced with humility.  She is a team player who is more concerned with success of the project than accolades for herself."


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Students recently unveiled the 2018 issue of Calliope, the award-winning art and literary magazine published by the St. Agnes Academy Upper School. 

The student- generated magazine combines creative literature, skilled artwork and defining photography. Calliope is dedicated to preserving and encouraging the arts. The publication is a means of expression for the students of St. Agnes Academy, allowing them to reveal their passions and talents and to have their works published and read by a wide audience. Students at SAA began publishing Calliope in 1986. 

The 2018 Calliope Editor-In-Chief is Ellen Lemm, Art Editor is Mary Elizabeth Whittier, and the Literary Editor is Kendall Stallings. Staff members include Lauren Bean, Ruth Ellen Berry, Lucy Brennan, Kayla Cochran, Grace Gage, Denise Geronimo, Amelia Hancock, Gabi Nunnelee, Sarah Grace Price, Geneva Savage, Talia Shadroui, Emma Stark, Brittain Ross,Eliza White and Natacha White. Janis McCarty is the teacher sponsor.   

We hope you enjoy viewing the latest issue! 

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St. Agnes Academy Upper School English teacher, Dr. Kathy Zanone, is the 2018 recipient of the Albertus Magnus Award. The award, presented annually by the St. Agnes Academy-St. Dominic School Board of Trustees, recognizes an outstanding educator who demonstrates the four pillars of the Dominican charism - Study, Prayer, Community and Service.  

Dr. Zanone joined the Upper School faculty in 1997, and her dedication to her students and passion for learning are evident to all.

Members of the Class of 2018 submitted nominations supporting Dr. Zanone for the Albertus Magnus Award. Senior Kendall Stallings wrote,  “Dr. Zanone’s passion for teaching is truly inspiring. As one of her current students, I can sincerely say that there is no teacher held in higher regard by students. She is by far the most influential teacher I have had at St. Agnes, and she has a gift for instilling in her students a desire to learn. She has an evident love for English, though she teaches as many life lessons as she does lessons about literature and writing. Finally, she demonstrates a clear commitment to the four pillars and an admirable dedication to teaching.” 

Dr. Zanone serves as Chair of the English Department and teaches Honors and AP English 3 and 4. She is the yearbook advisor/journalism teacher, senior class sponsor, and the Upper School Summer Program Coordinator. Additionally she serves on the Teacher Excellence committee. Dr. Zanone earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in English from the University of Alabama, and Doctorate in English from the University of Mississippi. Her daughter, Anna, is an eighth grader at St. Agnes Academy.


Dr.Kathy Zanone  is pictured above with Jim McCullough, Chair of the Education Committee of the Board of Trustees, and Joy Maness, Dean of the Upper School.





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On Friday, April 20, students at St. Agnes Academy joined forces with high school students around the country in the National High School Walk Out to rally against school gun violence and encourage the passing of laws to protect students. The Walk Out was held on the 19th anniversary of the Columbine shooting, and over 2,000 schools nationwide participated.

St. Agnes Upper School students walked out of class at 10:00 a.m. and assembled on the front lawn of the school where they heard from several student speakers as well Gabby Salinas, a St. Agnes alumna and a candidate for Tennessee Senate District 31. 

SAA junior Talia Shadroui told her fellow students, “You and I are love and strength and courage. You and I are powerful and resilient. Now is not the time for us to stay quiet. Now is the time to speak up. Now is the time to act.”  She was followed by sophomore Veronica Thompson who told classmates, “I have had ENOUGH. Enough of the people who told us we didn’t have a voice. Enough silence. Everyone is stronger together.”

Students all signed a banner reflecting on the reasons they chose to Walk Out. Then they returned to their classrooms sending the message that high school students are taking back their schools – reclaiming schools from gun violence. Prior to the Walk Out, St. Agnes students participated in a series of workshops aimed at teaching the value in listening to another person, hearing their perspective, and attempting to reach a compromise. The workshops included several group activities focused on building empathy. 

The Walk Out was coordinated by students in the St. Agnes Facing History and Ourselves program and the Justice, Respect and Peace program. Faculty coordinators are Lauren Boccia and Sara Nearn. 

“Our students participated to walk out in solidarity with their peers across the country,” said Lauren Boccia.   “Mrs. Nearn and I want to help our students teach other students how to voice their opinion in ways that inspire and motivate peaceful discourse, as well as recognize when to use their collective voice to enact change,” Ms. Boccia said. 





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St. Agnes Academy senior Alayna Jetton signed a letter of intent to continue her volleyball career as a Lady Buccaneer at Christian Brothers University. 

Alayna has competed as a member of the STARS volleyball team for four years earning numerous honors throughout her career. She was named to the Best of the Preps All Metro team in 2016 and to the Division II AA West All Region First Team.  She holds the best percentage for hits and kills in Division II AA and was named to MaxPreps Top 20 Players in Tennessee.  In addition to competing for St. Agnes Academy, she also played with the Memphis Volleyball Academy and Memphis Juniors, helping lead her team to a first place finish in the Bluff City Festival and a 2ndplace finish in the Governor’s Games. 

An outstanding student and leader in the community, Alayna has earned Summa Cum Laude honors for six semesters at St. Agnes and has been inducted into the National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta Math Honor Society, and Spanish Honor Society. She was recently accepted into the Volunteen Program at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Alayna plans to pursue a career in medicine. 

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The St. Agnes Academy Canstruction team won first place in the Structural Ingenuity category at the 2018 Canstruction competition held at the University of Memphis on April 6. The Structural Ingenuity Award, which is based on innovative structural design as shown through complexity and stability, is the Civil Engineering award for the competition. 

The St. Agnes team competed against students from 17 area high schools. In the competition teams are charged with building creative theme designs with non-perishable cans of food, benefiting the Mid-South Food Bank. The theme of the SAA build was Sending Hunger Out of This World. The students began brainstorming the design of the structure in the fall and selected the type of cans to be used in the build. They collected 450 cans, or 422 pounds of food, which are being donated to the Mid-South Food Bank. 

“The girls planned the design and then made alterations from the paper design to the actual build,” said David Tran, Upper School Faculty Advisor for the team. “Through trial and error, the girls determined the best way to support and balance all the cans in the structure accounting for the slight variations in the cans. They learned how to build a structure within a budget. They also learned how to balance forces to maintain structural integrity, while at the same time planning for environmental factors, such as wind, that that could compromise the structure,” said Mr. Tran

SAA Canstruction team members are Karis Pepke SA9, Veronica Thompson SA10, Valerie Williams SA11 (co-captain), Maria Thompson SA11 (co-captain), Cara Fagan SA11 and Caroline Woods SA11.   The goal of the Memphis Canstruction Jr competition is to increase high school students understanding of civil engineering and the role of the civil engineer in society, as well as to raise awareness about hunger in the Mid-South. 






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St. Agnes Academy-St. Dominic School is pleased to announce the addition of Jared Marks to the faculty. Mr. Marks will teach mathematics in the Upper School and serve as the Head Varsity Volleyball Coach beginning in the 2018-2019 school year. 

Mr. Marks has a Bachelor of Science in Finance with a minor in International Business from The Pennsylvania State University, Smeal College of Business. He also studied abroad at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic.  Mr. Marks has been a math instructor in the Shelby County Schools since 2014, teaching courses in calculus, trigonometry, geometry, and college algebra. He served as a curriculum lead instructor and math team leader.  Prior to that, he was selected from over 40,000 applicants nationwide to join Teach for America where he taught mathematics in a summer school program.  

Since 2014 Mr. Marks has been coaching an elite volleyball club team in Memphis, and many of his players have continued their careers in the college ranks at Division 1 programs. Additionally, he has been an assistant coach at Hamilton High School and head coach at Fairley High School.  Under his leadership at Fairley, the team advanced to the Regional finals for the first time in 10 seasons. 

“We are excited to have Jared join our St. Agnes-St. Dominic family. We look forward to the energy and leadership he will bring to the classroom and to our volleyball program,” said Jim Lassandrello, Athletic Director. 




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The St. Agnes Academy Theatre Department presents Once on This Island  April 5, 6 and 8. This beautiful and inspiring show tells the tale of Ti Moune, a fearless peasant girl who falls in love with a wealthy boy from the other side of the island. When their divided cultures keep them apart, Ti Moune is guided by the powerful island gods on a remarkable quest to reunite with the man who has captured her heart. 

Bursting with Caribbean inspired songs,  rhythms, and dance, Once on This Island reminds us that out of what we live and we believe, our lives become the stories that we weave.

Performances are in the Hook Performing Arts Center in Siena Hall on the St. Agnes-St. Dominic campus, 4830 Walnut Grove Road. The curtain rises at 7:00 pm on April 5 and 6 and 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm on April 8. For more information and tickets email 


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On Wednesday, April 4, students at St. Agnes Academy –St. Dominic School participated in a prayer service and children’s walk commemorating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King. Students reflected on many of the pivotal moments of the Civil Rights Movement and followed each reflection with a prayer. Events they studied included Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the struggles of the Freedom Riders, the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, the Selma March, Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech, and the Sanitation Workers Strike in Memphis.

Prior to the tribute students engaged in lessons centered on the civil rights movement and Dr. King’s impact. Students in grades 4-6 viewed the film, The Children's March by Teaching Tolerance, which tells the story of how the young people of Birmingham, Alabama, braved fire hoses and police dogs in 1963 to fight segregation. Meanwhile students in grades 7 and 8 watched the Academy Award-winning film, A Time For Justice.

A group of Upper School students attended the MLK50 event on April 3 at the Mason Temple commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Mountaintop speech Dr. King gave in support of the sanitation worker's strike.  Later this week the St. Agnes-St. Dominic 8th-grade class will visit the MLK Memorial during a trip to Washington, D.C, where they will lay a wreath and conduct a short prayer service.

“Being Memphians and educators of our future leaders and young citizens, we have a call to honor Dr. King’s legacy,” said Chris Burke, Dean St. Dominic School. “Dr. King is one of the most notable role models of character and personal sacrifice that anyone can point to in recent history.  His example is one we must emulate and use to educate our boys and girls about what it is to be a civil servant to our community. Guided by our Dominican pillars of Study, Prayer, Community, and Service, we strive to plant the seeds of moral and civic integrity in our students,” Mr. Burke said.


As we venture forth to be women and men of service, go before us as our Guide.

Renew us with the spirit of service and sacrificial love exemplified in the life of Dr. King.

May we be vessels of hope and justice in a world inundated with countless forms of violence and injustice.

May we never stand on the sidelines as we witness injustice done upon our sisters and brothers but walk with eyes open to the needs of our communities, with ears open to the needs of our world, and with hands open in helpful service to our neighbors.

Then we will not only be blessed, but be a blessing to our world. We ask this in Jesus Name,  Amen.

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St. Agnes Academy
St. Dominic School

4830 Walnut Grove Road
Memphis, TN 38117

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