TOP PHOTO: La Follette native Four-Star General Carl Wade Stiner passed away on Thursday morning. A 1954 graduate of La Follette High School, he is pictured here at the La Follette High “Best of Times III” in 2010. Childhood friend, Betty Siler Snodderly, is to the right of The General. (PHOTO COURTESY OF WLAF’S CHARLIE HUTSON)

LAFOLLETTE, TN (WLAF) – Carl Stiner was a common man who led an uncommon life. The man who described himself as a farm boy from the valley and went on to lead his country as a Four Star General passed away Thursday morning. We all called him “The General,” but he was officially Four-Star General Carl Wade Stiner.

As the community grieves its loss, WLAF shares your thoughts about General Stiner.

“Campbell County lost a general, dad , grandfather and favored son today. To say he accomplished many things is a true statement. It goes much further than that. His favor among men is second to none. He is a true hero and one of the strongest men I have ever known. From the time I road the bus his dad, Emit, drove to school, I heard about him. His mother, Hassie, was one of the strongest women I have ever known. He had to be a hero to all of us and our country. He will be greatly missed,” – Rhonda Longmire, Market President for Community Trust Bank.

“He was just a true American hero, and we didn’t know what we had here in Campbell County when we had him. General Stiner was such a humble servant; a true American hero,” Terry Smith owner of Cross-Smith Funeral Home.

“That breaks my heart (hearing of the passing of General Stiner). He was an amazing man. He always advised me on how to vote. Just an amazing man. He was so down to earth. Those four stars never changed him. He always ate breakfast here at Big O’s. And when he moved away. Wow! I missed him coming in,” – Sheila Marlow of Big O’s Git-n-Go.

“He was a good family friend; very good friends with my father. I’ve had the opportunity to really get to know General Stiner well over the years, and he has been a mentor to me. He was a great American; just a really down to earth guy. He was so knowledgeable and shared so many ideas with me, and he was always very encouraging. I’ll miss him,” – Sheriff Robbie Goins.

“He was my Dental patient here at Ft Bragg! Much Respect for him! Rip Soldier!,”- Joan Brocki.

“An amazing man and friend.  You will be missed General,” – David Brown, Cumberland Gap Medical.

“Wade is what we always called him. After he retired, he was cutting hay one day, and when he came in for dinner, his mother, Hassie, told him he’d had a call. He asked who it was, and she said she did not recall though she had written down his name and number. It was Colin Powell who had called for General Stiner,” said Frankie Bacon at State Farm Insurance.

“General Carl Stiner was the best “boss” that I ever had. From the RDJTF,  FT. BRAGG, USSOCOM and JUST CAUSE. He was a great leader in every way. He will be missed on the “drop zone,”- Colonel Paul Morgan.

This photo of General Carl Stiner and Noah Smith was taken in July 2018 at a scouting event at Knoxville.

“General Stiner was an American Hero, Patriot, Warrior, and Campbell Countian! One of the world’s finest and courageous leaders I’ve ever met. We are better as a society because of the life of General Stiner. All throughout my time in Boy Scouts, up even past when I received my Eagle Scout rank, General Stiner was a source of encouragement, mentorship, and role model I strived to be like. I credit General Stiner and his character in the military as a big reason and influence for me in choosing to join the UTK Army ROTC and soon to be commissioned as an Officer in the Army. His influence on my life has made me a better person, and I am forever grateful for such an incredible person as General Stiner. I am truly heartbroken to hear of his passing,” – Noah Smith, WLAF Alum.

“My son, Tom Slover, Jr., served in Special Forces as a helicopter pilot and often flew General Stiner. He was a very special person always treated Tom so well,” – Ellen Slover of La Follette

“A great American! I’ll always be grateful for him meeting with my son Logan and writing a letter of recommendation for him to get into pharmacy school at ETSU. He was known and well respected all across our region, this nation and many foreign nations. Our community and country has truly lost a true American hero!,” – Kenny Baird, LUB General Manager.

Darryl Chapman (left) with Carl Stiner.

“I felt like I was a part of history listening to General Stiner’s stories about President Ronald Reagan, Colin Powell and other American leaders. I was privileged to be a part of the “breakfast club” at Big O’s eating breakfast with The General every morning. He’d get there at five until 6am and had his own chair. No one would sit in that chair, because it was The General’s chair. Some of my best times were with The General and the others at Big O’s. But, you know, he probably talked more about farming, 75%, I’d say, than anything else. He loved farming and loved farming in the valley. He meant a lot to me,” – Darryl Chapman, La Follette Police Officer.

“We were always very proud to tell everybody that we were from the same town as General Stiner, and I had the honor to serve under The General.  Even though General Stiner had traveled all around the world, and met so many world leaders, he never forgot he was the farm boy from La Follette.  It’s very rare to find a person who has the ability to communicate between the rows on the farm and the diplomats table internationally, and convince you that he actually cares,”- E.L. Morton, Mayor of Campbell County. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 06/03/2022-6AM)