The Harbours Gate Story

Harbours Gate is a mission which grew from the experiences, successes and struggles of the founder and Executive Director, Tom Garner. Tom came from a solid faith based background and family, the son of a minister. A successful athlete, he came out of high school with many high hopes and dreams of a bright future. Soon after graduation Tom begin social drinking; led to drug experimentation and in a short amount of time became an alcoholic and addict. Still functional, he graduated from college with honors; on to law school and a very lucrative career in real estate closing transactions. But all the time he was still digging deeper into the pit of drinking and drug habits.

Three failed marriages later, Tom was able to get clean and knew that life had a deeper meaning than the pursuit of material wealth. At one point prior to this he was involved in an accident which left him in the hospital for 6 months after being declared DOA. His friend, who had been driving the car impaired, died, and his decapitated head was found on the seat beside Tom’s. Still…Tom kept on his destructive ways.

Tom Garner’s life was changed forevermore after finding sobriety. He immediately sold his business interests and began his journey, exploring ways to help other people. Volunteering with Knox Area Rescue Mission, Salvation Army, Celebrate Recovery, Crossville Mission Bible Training Center, Church of the Cove, FCS Ministries and many others, Tom received invaluable real life experience in serving others struggling with many different forms of life hurts.

After several years of this exploration, Harbours Gate became an official 501(c) 3 in 2012, though Tom had been operating as a Mission for 4 years prior. Our first and still home base is in a mobile home park in Blount County. We also have a location in Cagle Terrace Knoxville and a new group in the north Georgia area.

Our history is long and storied, with many miracles in life transformation. People getting clean, getting education and jobs, families and relationships restored. Those who had given up hope, those who did not have a voice, had at last found an advocate in the good servant ministers of Harbours Gate.

To hear more about real life examples of life change, please contact Tom Garner directly. He will be honored to come meet and share more. We also have some powerful videos and testimonials. WE ARE ON CALL 24/7, 365.

‘Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” That is our response: Send Harbours Gate! (Isaiah 6:8)