State Watch

Anti-mask parents mock Tennessee student describing loss of grandmother

A Tennessee high school student was heckled at a school board meeting while sharing the loss of his grandmother due to COVID-19. 

Grady Knox, a junior at a Rutherford County school, attended the county’s school board meeting on Tuesday to advocate for a mask mandate and brought up the case of his grandmother, WSMV reported

“This time last year, my grandmother, who was a former teacher at the Rutherford County school system died of Covid because someone wasn’t wearing a mask,” Knox said, according to the Nashville, Tenn., TV station. As he tried to continue his speech, adults in attendance began to laugh at and heckle him.

“Hey guys, we’re here to act professional,” the school board chairman reportedly said to calm down the crowd. 

Knox told WSMV that he was shocked at the behavior of the adults at the meeting who heckled him.

“If they laugh at me about a personal story about my grandmother, that’s just disrespectful, I feel. So, I was like shaken a little bit,” Knox said.

Knox also said the incident will not deter him from speaking up in favor of a mask mandate.

“As long as I can get my message across, I don’t really think it matters what the crowd thinks of me,” Knox said. “Overall, they’re not the ones making the decisions for the school.” 

Board member Claire Maxwell expressed regret over the incident, telling WSMV that the board was “ashamed about what happened” and wants to ensure “nothing like that ever happens again.” 

Another Tennessee county school board meeting got out of hand last month, when parents surrounded health care professionals after they advocated for a mask mandate in the local school district.

Tags anti-mask school board meting school mask mandate Tennessee
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