ROGERSVILLE (WATE) – The men who helped rescue Hawkins County kidnapping victim Carlie Trent are donating part of their nearly $40,000 reward to 26 non-profit and service organizations in the county.
Carlie was the subject of an eight-day Amber Alert in May. She was taken from school by her uncle-by-marriage Gary Simpson and people spent countless hours searching for her. She was finally found in a rural area by three men: Stuart Franklin, Larry “Hambone” Hamblen and Donnie Lawson. Franklin, while riding an ATV, found Carlie carrying a teddy bear on property belonging to Lawson’s brother.
Previous story: ‘Heroes’ to be offered $35,000 reward for finding Carlie Trent
Carlie appeared to be unhurt. Simpson was arrested on a number of charges.
In the days leading up to her rescue, many people in the community also stepped up to offer rewards for her safe return. Carlie’s pediatrician, Dr. Chris Calendine, offered a $10,000 reward. The U.S. Marshal’s Service offered $5,000 and two Knoxville banking executives pledged $10,000. Nashville musician Trey Healy added $5,000 and several other people added to the reward as well.
At the request of the four men who found Carlie, the money will be donated to Planned Giving of Hawkins County, operated under the umbrella of One Accord Ministry. It will then be distributed to nearly two dozen organizations in the county.
“This worked, praying to the good Lord and I want to thank everybody,” said Carpenter.
One by one, 26 organizations in Hawkins and Hancock counties went up to receive their portion of a $35,000 reward.
“I do hope she knows from the bottom of my heart that any amount of money it would’ve taken, she would’ve had it,” said musician Trey Healy, who donated to the reward fund.
It was a blessing for Healy to finally meet Carlie’s heroes.
“To be able to say you’ve met guys who’ve obtained that amount of money and were so unselfish to give that back is unbelievable. To be able to do that and still be able to care for that little girl is unbelievable.”
Carlie is now a big part of lives of the four heroes.
“She is doing good. She’s started back to school now so let’s just continue to keep her in our prayers that she does good,” said Carpenter.
Many are wondering about Carlie and her family. Carpenter says some of the reward has been set aside and they’ve created a special fund.
“We will try all our best to do the right thing with this and I think with God’s help we can do that,” added Carpenter.
The organizations which received the money include:
- Hawkins County Boys and Girls Club
- Hawkins County Family Resource Center
- Over Home Clothing Center
- Christmas for the Children – Hawkins County
- Christmas for the Children – Hancock County
- Lunch Box Summer Feeding Program
- Jubilee Summer Feeding Program
- Imagination Library for Hawkins and Hancock Counties
- Shriners Travel Fund to Children’s Hospital
- Kingswood Children Home
- Chip Hale Center
- CASA – Hawkins County
- Boy Scouts – Troop 100
- Hancock County Arts
- Foster Care for Kids – Hawkins and Hancock Counties
- Sneedville Summer Rec. Program
- East Rogersville Baptist Church
- Camp Hope for Kids
- OOA Home Repair Fund
- Hawkins and Hancock Counties Rescue Squad.