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For now, though, the courtroom drama has been the topic around town, said Tamara Gray, a 19-year-old waitress at a diner near the hospital.

“My thought is, if you donate money, it should go where you expect it to go,” Gray said Wednesday.

“I think they both have an important impact on the community,” 31-year-old J.T. Chronister said as he sat in a coffee shop across from the hospital. “It seems like there was just a communication failure in there somewhere. That’s my guess.”

Catrina Steury, who works in a hair shop along Garth Brooks Boulevard, said “it’s cool to have a big star from the community” but that the singer isn’t usually a topic of conversation.

But most said there were clearly no winners in the case and wished the entire situation could have been avoided.

“It’s given everybody a black eye: the city, Garth, the hospital, everybody,” said Benson, the local relator. “I think it’s very unfortunate.”