By Betty Shearer
The official opening of the Hatchery was held Wednesday afternoon at two o’clock. This has been a long-time coming, but from the reports I’ve had it was well worth the wait.
David and Mel, were in Sardis, helping Charlotte get the Southern Reporter completed. That leaves only Jack and me to man the fort at the Herald on Wednesdays. Jack being the husband of Hatchery Museum Director Jessie needed to be there, and being the chief photographer and reporter for the Herald had to be there. I was left to keep the Herald open.
Everything I’ve heard about this Yalobusha gem and its opening ceremony was exciting. I was there several months ago, and even with only part of the exhibits in place, it was a great place to visit. I’m really looking forward to getting over to see the completed project. I urge everyone to go by for a visit—think you’ll be impressed.
At prayer meeting Wednesday night I was surprised to learn that Lt. Rick McCuan of the Water Valley Police Department had undergone multiple by-pass surgery. The latest report is that he is recuperating nicely. Had missed Rick on Wednesday morning—he often helps me carry in the Heralds at Sprint Mart. I’ve know him for many years and he’s an outstanding policeman and a lovely person. Do miss you Rick, and hope you’re good as new real soon.
The annual Chamber of Commerce Banquet was held Thursday night. Entertain-ment was by the Sharecroppers, some of my favorite musicians. It’s always great to hear Jessey Higdon play and sing, and Ed always said Darly Burney was the best bass he ever played with. You know I love drummer Clay Ashford—he’s one of my adopted children. Was also enjoyable to hear Missy Burney’s daughter, Briley Kilgore, sing. She has a great voice and will probably go far in the musical world, if she chooses.
The Chamber could not have made a better selection for the Braswell Hatcher Community Support Award. Binnie Turnage has done so much for Water Valley and all its citizens, and for people in distant parts of the world, through his mission team leadership. He’s a jewel of a human and one I’m proud to be able to count among my friends. Also love his wife, Jo, and children, Bobby, Dawn, Bain, and Cora Lynn—they’re a wonderful family.
The principal speaker was Congressman Travis Childers who certainly said all the right things. Usually when you have a man in the political realm, who’s on the right track, everyone will say, “Yes, I knew he’d do a great job, and I sure voted for him.” Well I’m honest and I did not vote for him, but I will next time he runs if he holds true to the course he’s set for himself.
Congressman Childers stated that United States is to heavily in debt. He advocates a balanced budget. Says the City of Water Valley, the County of Yalobusha, and the State of Mississippi, along with all other like areas in the U.S., are required to balance their budgets—why not the United States. This has always made good economic sense to me.
He says that it can be done, but it will take some drastic cuts, lots of sacrifices by all of us, and it won’t be accomplished overnight. He didn’t mention this, but it will also probably require raising taxes. He also referred to our heavy debt to China and we all know that this is very scary. He complimented the Valley on all the good things going on here. I was very impressed by this man—as you probably have gathered by now.
Well, I rarely go up to speak to our guest, but I sure did this time and assured him that I’d keep him on my prayer list (which I am doing) and urged him to stay his course.
Was good to visit with so many friends, among them William Browning. William worked for the Herald for a couple of years while completing his journalism degree at Ole Miss. He is now employed by the Greenwood Democrat and doing a great job. David’s father, John, was also over for the banquet and it was good to see him again. He was in the Valley for the year after Ed died, helping at the Herald. After that he, his brother, Rupert, and Rupert’s wife, Rita Jean, had to leave us and go run the Panolian—we miss them. Ate next to Nell Cox and enjoyed visiting with her. Her grandson, Reid Bankston, an Ole Miss journalism student, is presently our sports writer.
Food was excellent and the decorations were beautiful. Bonnie Cox, Glenda Gordon, and all others helping with this event, did an excellent job.
Had a great day Friday. Helped Chad Moore put down some tile in the sunroom. First time I’ve been an assistant in the construction sector since Ed died. I’m sure Chad would have done the job faster without me, but he was patient and let me help. We talked all day, ate lunch together, and I had a really good time—hope he did. Chad works for Caterpillar and these workers are taking one week off a month, so that all the employees can keep their jobs. I think this is an excellent plan. Chad can do anything, so if you need help with any project from yard work to construction, give him a call. I’ll let you borrow him—he can get my odds and ends taken care of at anytime.
Went to Mom’s early Saturday morning. Knew that Jimmie was involved with the Pope Women’s Club’s Easter Egg Hunt. However, she came on up for a short time, after she finished her 150 cupcakes and got the egg hiders started. She’d packed eggs earlier in the week.
After lunch, I cooked Easter Sunday’s lunch—traditional baked ham, and I even made potato salad (this is Jimmie’s job) but mine was pretty good.
Went on home early, as I had to cook tons of sausage for our Easter breakfast at Woodland Hills. Also made a new coffeecake, which I liked, as did the family. Wasn’t much of it eaten at the church—we had way too much food.
I make biscuits at the church, so it was up early and off to my post. We have cranky ovens and Bro. Ken came in to turn them on—I really can do this, but he was coming anyway, so I let him help.
Everyone apparently slept in Sunday morning, because at 8:30 I had 80 biscuits ready, and no one there to eat them—I was about to get angry.
Shortly, though, folks began arriving and we wound up with good attendance. Even with many of our regulars out, the hall was filled almost to capacity—choir remained in the choir loft. I did go down to sit with one of my adopted sons, Bobby Suratt, who was visiting with us. It was good to worship with him. It was also great to have worshipping with us the former Amy Childress, daughter of the late Mary Lou and Tom Childress and niece of Betty and Edwin Earl Hill. We were honored to have all our visitors.
After lunch Mom and I were left alone, so we watched the conclusion of the Masters. I was pulling for Kenny Perry, but he lost on the second hole of sudden death playoff, after having led through much of the final round. –––
Received a call yesterday from HS classmate Dorothy Jean Hardin, who lives in California, but is in Mississippi. She came for the 50th Wedding Anniversary of her brother and his wife, Harold Dean and Brenda Atkinson Wiggs of Marks. Brenda is Circuit Clerk of Quitman County and Harold Dean is a retired mail carrier, now a major catfish farmer.
Dot was getting up a dinner party for tonight. Told her I’d be there, even though I might be a little late. She said everyone agreed that they’d wait in the rocking chairs on Crackerbarrel’s porch until I arrive. Hope they don’t starve before I get there. This will be a fun night—these get-togethers always are. Tell you more about it next week.