BY LISA WARREN
Internationally-known pediatric neurosurgeon and author Dr. Ben Carson was the keynote speaker Tuesday evening for the annual Hope Center Benefit Celebration.
The event was held at the General Morgan Inn.
Carson spoke about the need for Americans to "wake up" and take charge of their country's future and to not allow what he termed, "the secular community" to spread a "blanket of silence over us."
Carson said it is time for America to once again become an innovative, hard-working nation with "a can-do attitude" and get away from the notion of being an "entitlement nation," in which its citizens ask what the government can do for them.
A crowd of more than 340 attended the dinner, which officials at the General Morgan Inn said was the largest served-meal event the hotel has handled since opening in September 1996.
The Hope Center is a local, Christian-based crisis pregnancy center, operated as a division of Free Will Baptist Family Ministries.
The annual Hope Center Celebration provides financial support to the facility, which states that it works to meet the physical, spiritual, emotional and social needs of women who are facing a crisis pregnancy.
The title sponsors of this year's benefit celebration were Scott and Nikki Niswonger, SJ Investments and Takoma Regional Hospital.
The event was chaired by Daniel Wolcott, president and CEO of Takoma Hospital, and his wife, Cynthia.
Additional details from the event will be published in Thursday's edition of The Greeneville Sun.