Blake Farmer

Emergency officials increased the death toll Friday morning. There are now 12 deaths related to the firestorm that engulfed Gatlinburg Monday night. A 13th fatality was blamed on smoke inhalation as a woman fled the fire, leading to a heart attack.

The Tennessee Valley Authority plans to stay the course on reducing its dependence on coal, even under the Trump Administration, which is expected to loosen environmental controls.

Leon Russell never was exactly a household name. But Elton John called the piano player and songwriter his idol. "He's the master, I'm the pupil," he said.

Leon Russell was a musician who worked his way to stardom and then nearly faded into obscurity. He died in his sleep over the weekend in Nashville.

Gov. Bill Haslam says he's confident he'll have a good working relationship with President-elect Donald Trump's administration, even though Haslam didn't support Trump before the election.

For the first time in Governor Bill Haslam's administration, the number of people applying for jobs with the state is going down, not up. And that's after instituting pay-for-performance and adjusting the salaries of some of the state's lowest paid jobs.

Tennessee's social studies scores from the first year of the TNReady test show just how much harder it is. High school results in all subjects were released Friday with a warning that they represent a "reset moment" for the state.

The polarizing presidential campaign has officially resulted in Tennessee's largest-ever turnout for early voting. More than 1.6 million people cast ballots — easily surpassing totals from President Obama's elections.

Middle Tennessee drivers are beginning to feel a pinch at the pump as gas becomes a bit harder to find. The Colonial Pipeline, which supplies most of the region's gasoline, is expected to be down for the rest of the week after Monday night's deadly explosion in Alabama.

Turnout continues at a record-setting pace in Tennessee, with nearly 1.2 million ballots cast as of this weekend. Among those who've made a point of making it to the polls, some admit that they haven't always.

Tennessee is getting a big pat on the back from the country's top education officials. Science scores are in from the National Assessment of Education Progress, and the state leap-frogged ahead to become "most-improved" since 2011.

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