Tommi Carrier only worked at 10th Inning Bar & Grill at Snowden Grove for a few months. Her co-workers remembered her as being very sweet and fun to be around.
They were left saddened and in shock at the news that she was killed in a triple homicide on New Years Day in Olive Branch.
“She was best friends with one of the girls who worked here and was around here a lot even before she worked here,” said Manager Kaysi Perry. “She was always very quiet and sweet and fun.”
Carrier, 40, was found dead along with two other victims near the corner of Jefferson and Shiloah early on New Years Day. The motive for the killing is still unknown. Two men, Ivan C. Rodriguez, 26, and Dylan Howard, 21, were arrested and charged with the murders.
Owners of 10th Inning in Southaven held a chili cook off competition on Sunday to raise money for Carrier’s family.
“We wanted to give back to her and her family and children,” Perry said.
Five teams participated in the fundraiser.
“It’s really just a bunch of friends getting together in a friendly competition for a good cause,” said Brett Wilson of Hernando, who stirred the pot for his team, C&B World Famous Everything.
Wilson said they don’t really have a recipe they use. They simmer a combination of beans, ground beef, sausage, onions and peppers for 30 to 45 minutes until they get the taste they are looking for.
“We just keep adding and adding until we like the taste,” Wilson said. “I want a mild taste at the beginning and then heat in the end.”
Wilson and his team partner, Chris Blankenship, won awards last year for their chili and salsa at Bluff City Fire and Ice Chili cook-off and believe they will have the winning entry.
“We‘ve won three in a row already,” Blankenship said.
Jerry Suzore of 10 Bones BBQ boasted that they have the best recipe.
“It’s just got the best flavor,” Suzore said. “I don’t know if there is a secret. You just try to get the right mixture of spice to go along with the meat and tomato.”
Bill Morrison whipped up his father’s recipe that has been in the family for 60 years.
“I used to watch him cook it,” Morrison said. “Everybody always liked it.”
Morrison said the secret to a good chili is in the spices and the timing that you add the ingredients.
“A lot of people put their seasonings in one at a time,” Morrison said. “We don’t. We do what’s called a dump. A dump is when you add seasoning and let it simmer then add more seasoning. We use five different chili powders. You don’t want it to be too spicy. But you want it to have a little bit of a bite.”
Morrison joined in the good natured bragging.
“I just know mine is going to be the best,” he said.
The competition raised about $1,200.