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Fiddler Wil Markham Receives Share America Scholarship

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Wil Markham, second from left, receives the 2014 Pearl and Floyd Franks Scholarship from Randall Franks, third from left, . Others joining the presentation are, from left, Gary Knowles, SAF chairman; Jimmy Terrell, SAF vice chairman; and James Pelt, Share America Foundation secretary., Share America photo by Jane ScrogginsThe Share America Foundation, Inc. announced its first 2014 scholarship winner recently at the Ringgold Depot in Ringgold, Ga. Fiddle player Wil Markham of Signal Mountain, Tenn. was selected as one of the 2014 winners. Markham is the son of Skip and Harriet Markham of Signal Mountain, Tenn. He is the grandson of Wilbourne and Delores Markham and Phil and the late Stuart Wilkerson.

The events help fund the organization’s Pearl and Floyd Franks Scholarship. Pearl and Floyd Franks are the late parents and former entertainment managers of actor/entertainer Randall Franks, "Officer Randy Goode" from TV's "In the Heat of the Night." The scholarship honor students excelling in the Appalachian musical arts.

“Music has been a significant of my life since I was 7 years old,” Markham said. “Classical violin gave way to fiddling with Mountain Cove. High school brought an opportunity to join the marching band Drum Line and eventually Drum Co-captain. “In the past few years I’ve become an accomplished guitarist and bassist,” he said. “I enjoy writing, recording, and producing music.” He performs regularly with Mountain Cove Bluegrass. The group’s latest CD is “Mountain Cove III."

Markham is attending the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He wants to work in the music business industry and aspires to open a recording studio in Chattanooga.

“My plans are to major in marketing and work in music production. It's an honor to be a part of a selected group of musicians that are so passionate and care so much about music from our region,” he said “This organization has helped so many students pursue their passion for music and obtain their education at the same time. I will always be thankful for this opportunity!”

“We were honored to present a $1,000 to assist him as he begins his college studies,” said Share America Chairman Gary Knowles.

Leader, Cody Harvey of Signal Mountain, started Mountain Cove Bluegrass during lunch hours at the new SMHS. The band is comprised with five members, Cody Harvey, Colin Mabry, Eli Beard, Tyler Martelli and Markham. For more information visit or Facebook at Mountain Cove.

“Wil is an exceptional musician and brings with him a great deal of enthusiasm in his craft,” Franks said.

Share America Foundation Board members include Franks, Knowles, Jimmy Terrell, vice chairman; James Pelt, secretary; and Jerry Robinson, Sr., vice president; and Adam Cathey.

The next Sacred Sounds Fridays is Nov. 7, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. featuring the Hullender Family and Aimee’ Garner at the Ringgold Depot. Admission is a $5 donation. Franks will host the event.

For more information about the organization and its programs, contact Share America, P.O. Box 42, Tunnel Hill, Ga. 30755 or visit

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