My name is Jeff Styles. 57 year old veteran of Talk Radio in the Scenic City/Dynamo of Dixie/"Best Town Ever" (Outdoor Magazine)...Chattanooga, Tennessee. Actually, you can add an extra 12 years of advertising/media/event & concert planner and more to that earlier figure, having moved here in 1984 to become a hangglider pilot. In that time, I've become one of the region's biggest champions and cheerleaders. AND, admittedly, quite often a gadfly and critic, when necessary. As in, when neighbors, elected officials, self-appointed community leaders or anyone given a vest & flashlight and some small amount of power let that very same (however small) go to their head and do/say things to embarrass our town and the good folks in it. Hence...I've made many (thin-skinned and pissy) enemies as well as many friends...both meek and powerful. CEO's, Mayors, legislators and special interest groups have all taken their shots at me over the years. All have failed. Until, that is, on June 15th, 2018...when a truly terrifying and ultimately life-destroying sequence....none of MY choosing...was set into motion. And you might be next. Not only here but anywhere in America where memories are long and common sense/logic and compassion run short. This is a cautionary tale.
The picture I'd like to present to you, to hold in mind as you peruse this site: It's Friday. It's payday. I had several hundred dollars in cash in my pocket. It was Father's Day weekend (I have 6 children and one grandson). It was the second Friday of our big, 8-day summer music festival, "Riverbend", where I was introducing a couple of hot new acts I had personally booked. PLUS...it was the first day of the first vacation I'd had in over a year, having broken my leg on May 8, 2017...laying me low for the entire summer and fall, even creeping into early winter. I was, literally, either in the hospital or convalescing at home for 4 solid months over the course of 5 surgeries (but worked during most of that time, broadcasting from home whenever possible). Plainly, you can see why I would have been filled with anger and rage. Hell, I was giddy with delight, looking forward to MUCH-needed time off to pursue my favorite activities...chiefly in the stunning natural beauty of the outdoors...which revives and replenishes me. But that was not to be.
I exited my car with arms outstretched in a beseeching manner...but also, in this instance, an
'I'm OVER this!' manner
...a line any real man would finally reach after being chased, threatened, run off the road and consistently shown the distinctive finger/thumb combo 'I'LL SHOOT YOU' hand gesture, would eventually cross.
MY line was 14+ miles . It HAD TO STOP!".
I did NOT advance toward him. Did not 'swing' the tool in my hand. Didn't strike the vehicle more than the one time that deflected his coming shot. Did not even get to mouth the words I'd had in my mind. In one swift motion, I was in his crosshairs. And 'NO'...a piece of glass is not a 'barrier' when it comes to powerful firearms aimed at your body mass.
"I never intended to USE the 'Shrike' in any manner. But was forced to in order to save my own life.
My thought and fear? He's about to shoot and kill me."
The LAST thing my darkest nightmares could have conjured up was a firefight with an unknown assailant with an unknown weapon at a crowded, (Friday evening) intersection. With several dozen commuters jammed together under an otherwise uneventful red light...I didn't want to BE shot. Didn't want to kill another person. And cerainly didn't want any innocent people caught up in a crossfire.
Chattanooga's Homeless Camps - done for "Homeless Coalition" (first 'Go Pro' video produced for anything other than my own enjoyment...raised $10,000+ in successful "Grateful Gobbler" campaign)
Unveiling of "People's Memorial" to Chattanooga's '7/16 Fallen 5'...done anonymously, like other contributors. Mayor Berke and Chief Fletcher would not have attended if they knew I'd written words on plaque.
The LST325 - From D-Day to Vietnam - Visit's Chattanooga's "Riverfront Night's" - Our city broke all records for visitation to this legendary landing craft.
Opening of "latest section" of Riverwalk...done at request of friends at Tn. Aquarium -
Peace March for Venezuela - 2014
Case settled on June 5, 2018...only 10 days before he attacked Styles