Heard on the Street
Each month we will publish this column that is packed with interesting tidbits of life in Huntsville, who we met during the month, some upcoming events, etc. There are birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc. If you are in the Huntsville area or even just have a connection to Huntsville, we want to hear from you! And one day you might just see your name in "Heard on the Street"!
Congratulations to Ruth Rasmussen who was the first caller to correctly guess the Photo of the Month for December. That beautiful little girl was none other than Jackie Reed, who attends each City Council meeting in Huntsville and always voices her opinions. Ruth is a retired apartment manager and worked at that for 30 years.
I talked with the sweetest guy recently. J. C. Moore lives in Fayetteville now but worked in Huntsville as an aerospace engineer for Wernher Von Braun starting in 1953. He was a fighter pilot in Burma during WWII. He and his lovely wife Florence have been married for 65 years and will celebrate their anniversary in February, same month that Florence has a birthday!
The residents at Redstone Village Retirement Community were in for a real treat when they were visited by the Nashville Suzuki Players on their Fall 2009 Tour. They vary in age from 6-17 and all of them play the violin. They played wonderful fiddle music as well as traditional violin, and were just fantastic, per the residents.
Be sure to keep your eyes out for bicyclists on the road - there are many more now traveling to work and biking for leisure, and they’re hard to see. Just be careful and watch out for them as well as motorcyclists & scooter drivers.
Joan Babin was a familiar name to many in Huntsville. Joan was a member of Holy Spirit Catholic church and a mom to 11 children. In her spare time, she frequently took in foster-care kids! Joan died at the young age of 79, and will be missed by so many.
Elwanda Hallman lives at the Russel Erskine apartments downtown, She was married to Jim Hallman, who was the son of a Methodist preacher, and is now deceased. He wrote memories of life as a preacher’s son, and Elwanda treasures each minute she had with him.
Happy Birthday to Heather Bzdell. She is the sweet daughter of proud dad John Bzdell, owner of Marathon Painting. John recently lost his Dad Stephen Bzdell, Sr., and we want to send our sympathy to all families who have lost loved ones over the past year. It is really difficult going through the holidays, when someone so very special is missing.
Chuck Bobo is a fascinating gentleman to talk with. His family has lots of history in the North Alabama area. Chuck was born in Limestone County and grew up in Madison and Morgan counties. Chuck left this area to work but when he retired he returned to Huntsville. He just couldn’t believe the difference that 50+ years made in the Huntsville area. As a youngster he lived in the Gladstone Community north of Pulaski Pike. His friend Jim Webb and he would hunt squirrels in the woods on the farm of Mr. Robert White. They would swim at the swimming hole on Beaverdam Creek at Pulaski Pike. Jim’s dad managed Huntsville Wholesale Nursery at Gladstone and most of the boys in the community had summer jobs there.
Calvin Holder was telling us recently that his father drove the Westlawn bus years ago, he was Calvin Holder, Sr. Some other bus drivers back 50 years ago were Mr. Armstrong, who drove the Lincoln bus, and Herman Gardner who drove the Fairground bus.
Jane and Louie Tippett helped to host a rocking annual Christmas party held at the Eagles Club on Bob Wallace. Rudy Mockabee played for the partiers and there was a huge crowd there, all having a great time. Tim Spivey was playing as well. Tim is part of the band Hot Mix and it’s always good to see him. It was great seeing old friends and catching up with folks we hadn’t seen in a while.
Gibson’s BBQ is a well-known eatery to many locals here in the North Alabama area, but for you newcomers they have the best pie you’ll find anywhere. Their mile-high coconut pie just won the Huntsville Times Readers Choice Best Dessert, and I can vouch for that - there’s no way that meringue topping can stay that high through cooking but it does. My personal favorite is Gibson’s Peanut Butter pie, so you guys have just got to try it. Congratulations to the folks at Gibson’s for the award!
Joyce Russell, of New York Life Co., sure had alot of birthdays in her family in December. Her daughter Megan Mack turned 27 on the 19th, her grandson Trenton Keefer turned 12 on the 19th, and her handsome grandson Nate Keefer turned 16 on the 4th. To add to the count, her daughter Megan delivered a beautiful baby boy on Dec. 14, whom they named Robert Butler Mack, to make one more for December!
Speaking of birthdays, we always had a soft spot for those who have birthdays close to Christmas. Audra Wilson of Salon Bella had a birthday right after Christmas and her gorgeous daughter Olivia also has a close-to-Christmas birthday. We hope everyone had a wonderful birthday/Christmas combo!
We keep hearing about people who leave their valuables/purses in their cars, in full sight of anyone looking in. It is too much of a temptation for some folks if they see that. The smartest thing to do, if you HAVE to leave valuables in your car, is to leave them in the trunk or hide them somehow. Also, when you’re shopping at the mall and notice that someone is following you, just go back in the store. It’s not worth the risk. Be aware of everything around you. And finally, when you do get into your car, immediately lock your doors. Oftentimes crooks will wait for a victim to get into the car, knowing it’s going to be a minute or two before you leave.
The Channel 31 annual Christmas parade downtown was a huge hit, with hundreds of floats and organizations. We look forward to that every year, it’s just part of our holiday traditions! And the bands are always the greatest! Love A&M!
A special hello to our friend Linda Hamlin of Linda’s Printing. She is just the sweetest lady and so much fun to talk with!
We want to wish you all a warm and wonderful and successful New Year, it’s GOT to be better than last year. And please watch out for your older neighbors.
Congratulations to William
Henderson for being the first caller to correctly guess the Photo of the
Month for October. We have gotten hundreds of calls so far and most of them are
correct! The adorable boy is M.D.
Smith IV, who has been associated with TV and radio, (WAAY-TV) and now the
internet (HIWAAY.net). William is
retired from the Post Office and the Air Force, and is a Proud 1957
Jesse Hopkins was a very hardworking member of the Golden K Kiwanis, and headed up the distribution of “Old Huntsville” magazine. Jesse passed away at 88, on November 10. Even though he had some serious medical issues, you never heard Jesse complain or be anything but positive. Our deepest condolences go to Jesse’s family and many friends.
We are so proud of Debra
Jenkins, co-owner of Merrimack Hall
Stephen Bzdell, Sr. was 91 when he passed away Nov. 13. His son John Bzdell, of Marathon Painting, would often take his Dad with him on jobs, which they both really enjoyed. We send our sympathy to the family of Mr. Bzdell, who lived each day to the fullest.
That smiling face you see when you
walk into Redstone Federal Credit Union on So. Parkway near Gibson’s BBQ is
that of Beth Dunson, who works there as a teller & receptionist. She
wants to say “Merry Christmas” to her dear husband Carl, as well as kids
Kimberly & hubby Nathan, and daughter Michelle and
husband Anthony who live in
We wanted to wish a special Dec.
22 Happy Birthday to Princella Hatcher, who works at BB&T (Colonial
Scott Reeves is a young Systems Engineer who works for Nasa. He just won an award from Space Flight Awareness which sent him to Kennedy AFB to see the launch of the Space Shuttle. This award is given to only a few annually who have gone over and above in flight safety. We are so proud of you Scott!!
Happy Birthday Robert Madison! He turned 66 years old and is one good-looking dude!
Many remember Bryce Davis,
who often would eat breakfast at Eunice’s Country Kitchen on
The spirits were moving on Halloween night at the Historic Lowry House. The first annual Costume party attracted a large crowd of spooks who danced to the music of the Fairlanes and sampled heavy hors d’oeuvres. The winning couple were Judy and M.D. Smith IV. Judy came as the Swine Flu and M.D. was the doctor! Plans are underway for next year already!
Happy Birthday to Mable Hawkins,
who turned 96 in October! And she still
lives at home! Her very proud daughter is Linda Taylor, whose hubby Ollie
John Shaver, of Shaver’s Books located at the Railroad Station Antiques, sure is looking happy these days. He and sweet wife Sue have a brand new granddaughter, Suzanne (Annie) Shaver. John, of course, wouldn’t think of bragging, but he told us that she is by far the most beautiful baby on Earth!
Chuck Bailes was the long-time love of Jackie Reed, and she said he was her absolute rock. He especially enjoyed helping her prepare for the City Council meetings that she has spoken at for so many years. He died in August at only 77. Chuck will never be forgotten, and we send our deepest condolences to Jackie.
Malcolm Miller recently underwent a pretty serious operation but we’re happy to hear that he is doing fine and a good recovery is expected. Malcolm is a very talented musician and also writes stories. His dear wife Lois is taking good care of him.
We read in the Times recently that
Mike Marshall was wondering about the history of the road that travels
over Monte Sano to Hampton Cove. Mike remembered when he traveled that road 8
years ago with Cecil Ashburn, the premiere roadbuilder in
Angela Copeland-Humlicek is the owner of “The Design House” located across
Jana Hinsley, who works for Edward Jones as a financial advisor, has a big day coming up in December. She and her fiancee Will Wise, an engineer at Redstone Arsenal, will be getting married during the month. Congratulations to both Jana & Will!
Maple Hill Cemetery had their largest crowd ever at the October cemetery
stroll. Costumed volunteer actors stood atop the graves and shared stories of
more than 60 people of the past. One of the most outstanding of these was Christy
Webb who portrayed a very believable Molly Teal (1852-1899). Miss
Teal was the very popular “lady of the night” who gave her large Victorian home
to the city of
Christy gave a charming and
extraordinary performance, and has been named the Best Madam Teal to
date. In fact, Christy has already been tapped by the Pilgrimage Asso. to play
Miss Teal again next year! When she’s
not performing, Christy owns Sexy Shoes in the City, next door to
Have a warm & wonderful Christmas, and watch over your older neighbors.
Congratulations to Betty Browner for calling with the first correct guess for the Photo of the Month in October. Betty is a safety patrol lady at Westlawn Elementary and helps keeps the kids safe. The little boy with the huge smile was none other than our City Councilman, Bill Kling! Congratulations to you Betty!
Our friend Betty Williams
Gordon called the other day. She currently lives in Callahan, Fl. Betty was
here for their family reunion, with the family who’s left (2 brothers) and told
us she was born in
Congratulations to that
good-looking couple, Joe and Liz Waggett of
Huntsville’s Operation Green
Team is an award-winning,
hard-working group of people. They have so many projects going on, but couldn’t
do it without the help of the
One recent collaboration with the
Green Team is that of Old Town Historic District and the little park on
Pratt/Walker and White streets. This former eyesore was totally transformed by
the OTHD board & residents along with much help from Joy McKee and
the staff of the Green Team. The new
We are so proud of Johnny
Johnston! He worked for years at the
old airport off South Mem. Pkwy., and now entertains thousands when he speaks
before groups and tells them how it used to be in
BB&T bank, which used to be Colonial, has a birthday in November! Jane Eller, a very sweet lady and customer service rep at the bank, is celebrating on Nov. 15. Happy birthday to you Jane!
James Hughes was 84 when he passed away in late August. James was
the manager of Eastern Airlines when our airport was located off
It was great running into Meckel
Richardson recently at Larry’s Pistol & Gun shop on
From Nov. 27- Dec. 13 on the Alpha
M.D. and Judy Smith recently hosted her best friend, Anna Gene Cliff Chesnut and her husband Charles Chesnut. They were here for the 50th anniversary of Huntsville High’s class of 59, and had a great time visiting friends.
Happy 30th wedding anniversary to
our dear friends Barb & Ron Eyestone. To celebrate such an important occasion, they
are traveling to
Another 30th anniversary is being celebrated by Hospice Family Care. They are the only non-profit hospice service in this area and have provided comfort and help to thousands of people. To celebrate the event, they are hosting a gala at the Jackson Center of HudsonAlpha Institute. It will take place on Nov. 13, tickets are limited and sell for $75 each. Call 650-1212 for more info.
Rob Zimmerman loved history and was very successful in radio advertising sales. We remember Rob for his smile and wonderful sense of humor. He died recently after having been sick for several years, he was only 61 years old. We will miss Rob.
A special hello to Mildred
Johnson, our 81 year-old friend from Fulton, Ms. who loves reading about
We were really sorry to hear that Scottie Brier’s mom had passed away, in October. Jane Scott Brier was born in 1918 and had a good long life. We send our deepest condolences to Scottie.
Dick Maroon is a Twickenham resident who thinks about kids probably 15 hours a day! He spends most of his waking hours building little wooden toys, trucks, trains, etc. for sick children who have no insurance. He brings his toys, thousands of them each year, to Huntsville Hospitals Children’s unit, as well as to DHR, each Christmas. He does all this on his own, spending thousands of $$ each year to buy the supplies. Dick brings so much happiness to this sick kids and definitely has a place in heaven!
Harrison Brothers is that unique store downtown that many new people to Huntsville Love! They are having their Christmas Open House on Nov. 19 from 5-8pm, and our mayor Tommy Battle will be there to unveil their 2009 Christmas window!
Happy November Birthday to Stephanie Troup, my beautiful daughter who is mom to Hannah and Evan, and wife of John Troup. You’re the BEST!
Anyone who’s teeth have been to Dr.
Whitworth’s office in
We were so sorry to hear that Jim Worden, of Munith, MI. had died in February. He loved reading about the history of this area. He and his wife Doris raised 4 wonderful daughters, and he will be so missed among his friends and family.
Have a warm and wonderful Thanksgiving with friends and family, and be sure to take walks around the downtown neighborhoods - it’s beautiful this time of year.
Many were so disappointed last spring when the Maple Hill Cemetery Stroll had to be cancelled due to heavy rains. Well, you’re in luck because it has been rescheduled for October 18, a Sunday from 2-4:30 and is FREE to the public. Any donations received go to the cemetery for its maintenance and upkeep. Mark your calendars - and if you’ve never been, it’s a fascinating look back at Huntsville’s history, with actors standing on selected graves to tell visitors about their lives.
We were so saddened to hear of the death of Ralph Butler. He was the beloved big brother of Joyce Russell of Huntsville. We send our deepest sympathy to his many friends and family.
Happy Birthday to our good friend Darryl Goldman! We hope you and sweet wife Linda did something really fun! Darryl is the handsome interim pastor at First Presbyterian Church.
Hall Bryant, Jr. looks really good to be 125 years old! No, seriously, it’s his company that is celebrating its anniversary, having been founded in 1884 and still going strong. H. C. Blake installed the first indoor plumbing at Harrison Brothers downtown, and a book could probably be written on all the events that have taken place over the last 100+ years. Congratulations to Hall and his employees at H.C. Blake!
Colonial Bank on Church Street (now BB&T) employs some really hard-working ladies, but two of the sweetest ones are Thelma Schaefer and Kristyn Towers. They are celebrating birthdays in October, Thelma’s is Oct. 20 and Kristyn’s is Oct. 23.
John Bzdell and Margaret Watson went to Louisville, KY recently and supported a local fellow school teacher at Challenger. Barry Leshinsky, who’s 49 years old, had trained for this event for over a year. He completed an Ironman competition which is a 2.5 mile swim in the river, then a 112 mile bike race, then ran a 26.2 mile marathon, all with no breaks. It took him a little over 15.5 hours of non-stop effort, and his girlfriend Susan Cox was there supporting him the whole time!
Mickey Moore and Robert Staggs are two of the graduates of Huntsville High’s class of 1959 who will be here celebrating their 50th. anniversary! There were alot of characters in that class and they will all be in Huntsville on Oct. 2 and 3 for the fun event at Huntsville Depot and Earlyworks. The popular band Reunion will be performing Oct. 3rd - for more information call Mickey at (256) 541-1430.
Lynn Turton celebrated her 65th birthday recently, and her good friend Gale Nichols says, “Happy birthday, you ole heifer!”
A beautiful baby boy named Wyatt Daniel Hollingsworth was born Sep. 1 to proud parents Adam and Mary Hollingsworth. Big sister Jade was there to welcome the baby boy. Grandparents are Larry and Barbara Hollingsworth of Gurley, and Danny and Kathy Dolberry of Woodville. Congratulations!!
So many people were saddened to hear that Susie Hudson had passed away, at the young age of 68. She was the businesswoman who was known for her love of downtown Huntsville and is credited with revitalizing downtown restaurants, condo’s and the entertainment scene here. In 2000 Susie and her husband Jim Hudson co-founded Cityscapes, which bought old buildings and transformed them into beautiful apartments, condo’s and restaurants. Susie was a kind and gentle lady who made people feel good just by being close to her. She will be terribly missed by her many friends and family.
Kerry and Carolyn Pinkerton are so proud of their baby granddaughter Kennedy. She has the biggest brown eyes you’ve ever seen, and looks exactly like her grandma Carolyn!
Many restaurant patrons know Lisa Cook, who has waited on many Huntsville folks at the LIttle Diner. She is now working at Dee’s Diner, located on Oakwood and No. Parkway, and her customers are definitely following her to her new location!
It’s hard to believe that Marie Hewett is retiring from the business she founded, PAMA (Professional Academy of Modeling & Acting). She’s way too young! The business will continue, however. A fun wine & cheese party was held in late August to honor Marie.
It was great to see Ellen Holder walking along the Green Mountain Nature Trail recently with her daughter-in-law Tamra Holder and granddaughter Noelle. Noelle turns 14 in October and is as beautiful as her mom. Tamra and Noelle live in Covington, GA and were here for a visit. Tamra’s Mom and Dad are Steve and Kathy Cotney.
Terese Stevens, owner of Cloud Nine, made an interesting trip recently. She traveled to Michigan for a family reunion, stopped in Cleveland to tour the Rock & Roll museum and ended up in Tennessee for a BMW motorcycle rally with “8,900 of her closest friends”, to camp for the rest of the weekend. She did all of this on her Motoguzzi motorcycle and did it solo! 1,841 miles in 10 days! Way to go, girl!
Lots of new folks are moving to the Huntsville area as a result of BRAC, but two we met recently are Cynthia Cindric and Mike Connor. They have only been here a short time but already love Huntsville. Having moved from the Washington, DC area they LOVE our lack of traffic and beautiful weather. Welcome!
We were so sorry to hear of the death of Shirley Winter, who resided at Redstone Village. She was an active member of Temple B’nai Shalom Sisterhood, and the loving wife for 59 years to Ret. Col. Leonard Winter. We send our deepest condolences to Shirley’s many friends and family who will miss her so much.
Have a safe & fun October & watch over your neighbors!
Donna Gurley of Owens Cross Roads is the winner of the Photo of the Month for August. The beautiful girl in the photo was Erin Dacy, and I promise you we will never run her photo again - we had calls each day that started at 5am and continued through midnight - who were calling to guess the photo! Erin works at Channel 31 and is a hugely popular anchor there. Congratulations, Donna!
John Bzdell was visiting his doctor recently (Dr. Kaufman) when he saw a good friend of his. Michelle Berres Nelson from Davis Hills and Lee High was there too and they were able to catch up with the news. Michelle’s husband, Bruce Nelson, has worked at PPG for 36 years!
We want to wish Darryl Goldman and his wife Linda a happy 40th wedding anniversary that was celebrated in mid August! Darryl is the interim pastor at the historic First Presbyterian Church on Gates Avenue. Congratulations to you love birds!
Many people remember Cecil Tipton. Cecil had a September birthday and was 87 when he died nearly 2 years ago. Cecil was the Madison County Health Department officer for many years. His daughter Debbie Maples and her Mom Gladys Fanning loved Cecil so much and will never forget him.
A special hello to our dear friend Robert Martin, who lives at Valley View Health & Rehab, in Madison. He’s so proud of his son Randy Martin, who retired from the Army as full bird Colonel.
Steve Cappaert, of Averbuch Realty, and his gorgeous wife Kim are proud grandparents again of another sweet baby boy! Max Caden Sylvester was born on July 2, and his proud parents are Michael Sylvester (of MS Masonry) and wife Lindsay.
That fabulous musician Malcolm Miller celebrated his 82nd birthday on Aug. 10. We send our congratulations to Malcolm and his loving wife Lois.
Happy birthday to the most beautiful Mom a girl can have. Annelie Owens was born in Berlin where she studied to be a medical doctor, met her handsome Army husband-to-be and traveled to the U.S. to make a life here. Her birthday was celebrated with family at her favorite German restaurant, Cafe Berlin!
If you’re a dog lover you’ve got to put September 12 on your calendar. That’s when Huntsville Obedience Training Club is sponsoring it’s Dog Fair from 9am - 3pm at Monte Sano State park. Lots of fun canine activities!
While eating at Lee Ann’s Restaurant & Bar recently, we caught up with Joe Walker. Joe is one of the sweetest guys I know and I love his light blue eyes! Joe and his brother Jeff Walker stay really busy with their company, Southern Sealing and Striping.
A couple of very important birthdays were close together - Jane Tippett celebrated hers on August 29, while Judy Smith had hers on Aug. 30th. Happy birthday to two beautiful ladies!
We were so very sad to hear of the death of Margaret Ashburn. She was 86 when she died, leaving husband Cecil Ashburn. She loved her family dearly. In addition to Cecil, she leaves daughters Jenny Ashburn and Judy Nayman, as well as countless friends who loved her. We send our deepest condolences to Cecil and his family.
On September 29 Virginia Mae Esslinger turns 100 years old! What a happy birthday that one will be! Virginia lives in the same house she was born in 100 years ago, and her daughters Betty Esslinger and Mary Thomas take good care of her. Virginia is a New Market native and retired school teacher. She taught at Riverton, then Plevna, and finally at New Market school. Congratulations to you, Virginia!
Happy 10th birthday to a pretty young girl - Rachel Sisk had an August birthday party given by her parents, Glenn and Jodi Sisk. Rachel is home-schooled and is just a sweetheart.
A beautiful young lady who works for Amedisys Home Health Care is Tiffany Day. Tiffany works there as a Physical Therapist Assistant and does an outstanding job with her clients. We met her recently and her clients think the world of her!
The Huntsville Beautification Board was first created in 1965 and works really hard each year to identify and rate business properties in regards to appearance. The 35th Annual Awards program was held recently at the Wynn drive location of Redstone Federal Credit union. Joy Parker is the Beautification Board President and Peg Heeschen is the Board Vice President. These ladies have worked in overdrive, along with Huntsville’s Green Team, to judge and select worthy properties that received the awards.
Mayor Tommy Battle made the presentations to the hundreds of property owners. We were really proud of Louie & Jane Tippett’s Historic Lowry House, which has won the award two years in a row. Congratulations to all the winning companies for keeping our city so beautiful!
Trade Day this year is going to be held on Sep. 12 from 8-5, a Saturday. Because of the sidewalk construction around the square, the event had to be moved a couple of blocks South to Constitution hall Village on Gates Ave.. It is always fun and there are so many interesting items to look at, entertainment, food, etc. just like in the old days!
Shirley Bush, of Colonial Bank, is retiring on Sep. 18! She has done a great job in her position and is always one of the first smiling faces you see when you go to the main branch on Church Street. Shirley is retiring after 31 years, 4 months and 18 days - but who’s counting?? We are very proud of you, Shirley!
Lewis Mills lives in Decatur now. He moved in 1955 to Huntsville from Texas, and owned the Buckskin Western store on North Parkway and Blue Springs Rd. Lewis loves history and reading about all the events that happened in this area over the years.
Sam and Glenda Huffstetler are proud of their beautiful granddaughter, Morgan Rae Carter. Morgan married Chris Scott in a moving ceremony at Holmes Street United Methodist Church.
Have a safe & fun Labor Day, and be sure to support our local, home-owned companies!
Our winner of the July Photo of the Month contest was Eddie Wilson. The cute boy in the photo was Donnie Thigpen, who co-owns Po-Boy Factory on Andrew Jackson Way with his pretty wife Marie. Eddie is an old guitar-picker from way back and even remembers playing at the Snuff Dippers Ball downtown! Congratulations to you, Eddie!
It seemed like the day would never come, but Joe Lougheed has finally decided to retire from Huntsville Firefighters after many years of service. Joe’s sweet wife Connie Broadway-Lougheed threw him a rocking Mexican-themed party which was not only a retirement party, but a birthday party for Joe too! It was definitely an unforgettable night, made even more fun by the live Mariachi band!
We met a really interesting lady recently in downtown Huntsville - Marsha Lucas works for GMAC Real Estate and knows many folks in this area! She was alot of fun to talk with.
One recent summer afternoon we were sitting at an outside table at the Kaffeeklatsch bar on Jefferson Street and Mark Haynes stopped by! Mark is from Huntsville and has lived here for years but is now selling trucks in Nashville. He looked great and none the worse for wear after having added about 5 years to his age!
Will Stutts was amazing in his performance of Antonio Salieri in the UNA Florence production of “Amadeus”. The audience was mesmerized by him and the entire cast did a great job. Will also was Producing Artistic Director of the play.
George Boles used to live in Huntsville and worked with the DA’s office til 1993. He now works in Birmingham and tells hilarious stories. He is known as “Bosco” to his family and has brothers living in St. Louis and in Scottsboro. An unnamed family member let us know that George had a very important birthday on Aug. 1, not an old one - just a good one. It does have a 7 in it, somewhere. Happy birthday to you, George!
Many, many people know of Dr. Mabry Batson Miller. If you have anything to do with the arts or civic organizations here, you have met her. Dr. Miller was recently given a very prestigious award in Montgomery - she was one of four recipients to receive the Governors Arts Awards. Congratulations to you, Dr. Mabry Miller! We’re very proud of you.
John Rader worked for Hewlett-Packard as parts manager for many years in Huntsville. John always had a huge smile on his face and a kind word for everyone. John passed away in July at the young age of 77. He leaves his daughter Renay and her husband David Nunn, and his loving wife Phyllis. John and Phyllis had just celebrated their 50th anniversary, and were always in love. We will miss John very much, and we know his friends and family are so saddened at the loss.
Ken Owens, of Huntsville, recently celebrated a milestone birthday. We won’t say exactly what but it comes right after 59. He looks great for being an older guy and is really enjoying life right now with his feisty wife Diane.
Merrimack Mill has announced that it will be holding its first original production. “Upon Their Shoulders: The Merrimack Story”, which was written and researched by local playwright Ron Harris. It is a play that illustrates the rich history of Huntsville through the lives of real people who labored in the city’s textile mills. The play traces the development of child labor laws, mandatory school laws and the socioeconomic impact on Huntsville today. The play will be performed Oct. 15-18.
Our good friend Mike Kaylor seems to be pretty content with being semi-retired. After 20 years of working nights, his wife Jenny loves having him home these days!
Louise Hope was 90 when she passed away the end of June. Many remember Louise and her sweet husband Harley Hope who preceded her in death. Harley was a member of the Golden K Kiwanis and is missed, to this day. He and Louise were a very loving couple, and we went to send our condolences to the Hope family and many friends.
Happy Anniversary to that great couple, Stephanie and John Troup! They make being in love look easy! John is also celebrating his birthday on the same day in August - Happy Birthday to you John!
Linda Hamlin, owner of Linda’s Printing Services, and Christina Reynolds are the proud recipients of the 2008-2009 Tom Milford Rotarian of the Year award from the Greater Huntsville Rotary Club, #6860. Linda and Christina co-chaired this year’s The Great Gatsby Gala event. Their efforts raised $22,926.51 for the Community Free Clinic and $18, 785 going to the Rotary Educational Assistance program. Congratulations to two very hard-working ladies!
If you’re into great garage sales & antiques, you won’t want to miss the event to the held again this year at Lincoln Antiques on Meridian Street. It’ll be Saturday, Aug. 1 and starts sharply at 9am - no early sales!
Then, when you’re ready for some unique gift ideas and crafts, try the NEACA (Northeast Alabama Craftmen’s Association) fall craft show that will be held at the Von Braun Center Sep. 18-20 - the whole family will love it!
We met a really sweet guy recently. Jim Long, owner of Clayton Amusements, loves to spend time grilling and using his smokers, and he’s really good at it. In addition to that, he loves to cook and his pretty wife Karen doesn’t mind that a bit!
Huntsville was the proud host of Sports Week in July - State high school coaches were spotted at many places around town and Auburn’s new Head Coach Gene Chezik was at the Furniture Factory during the middle of the month. He was here with his football staff along with the Alabama Football coaching staff. Everyone who was at the club enjoyed hanging out with the coaches and listening to “JUICE”!
The weather has been incredible lately and get out and WALK! Come to the historic districts and just enjoy August!
Our Photo of the Month winner for the June issue was Angel Pennington. Angel called with the first correct guess, that the picture was of Lee Ann Lancaster, boss lady of Lee Ann’s Bar and Restaurant on Church Street. Angel said she just knew when she saw those eyes that it was Lee Ann! She works as hairstylist and make-up artist at Salon Solutions, on Andrew Jackson Way. Congratulations to you, Angel!
Phyllis Rader let me know that she and her sweet husband, John, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on May 7. They went to Venice, Florida and had a great time. John and Phyllis still act like kids in love and are just a joy to be around. Their proud daughter and son-in-law are Renay and David Nunn. Congratulations, you two!
Ron McIntosh was only 67 when he died in early June, after a long struggle with cancer. Ron is the beloved husband of Jean McIntosh, and dad to Lynn Albritton and son Bruce McIntosh. We send our deepest condolences to Jean and her family and their many friends.
Hattie Gentle of Huntsville has seen alot of changes in the city. She will be turning 94 years young on July 28, and just loves the history of this area. Her sister is Mildred Helton, and is the grandmother of Margaret Bondar who is so proud of both Hattie and Mildred. Mildred wants to send a special June Happy birthday greeting to Margaret.
Mr. Bill Miller, owner of Miller & Miller, was a man who touched so many lives during his life. He died in June at the age of 86. Bill was the “bridge builder” in North Alabama and words can’t describe what a kind, caring and ethical person he was. He leaves many friends and family who will never forget him and his gentle spirit. We’ll miss you, Bill.
John Bzdell organized a surprise birthday party for his beautiful young lady friend Margaret Watson. The event took place at Gibson’s BarBQue on South Parkway and she was SO surprised! Way to go, John and Happy Birthday, Margaret!
There are many older folks who have no air conditioning, in these really hot days. CASA of Madison County is a nonprofit agency that collects air conditioners from people willing to donate them, or to donate money for them. It only takes $100 to buy an A/C for an elderly person, and it could possibly save a life. They would even accept used, working AC units. If this is something you might like to do, please call Larkin Grant at 533-7777.
I didn’t realize you could trim monkey grass! The people who take care of our front yard in Old Town, Perfect Turf, did that the other day and it looks so good! Those are some really hardworking young guys.
We met with Steve Scarbrough of Gurley recently, at Lee Ann’s on Church Street. He was working in construction and in the process of tearing down a home, found some really good information about Huntsville in the 60’s and donated it to “Old Huntsville.” Thank you, Steve!
At the end of June Redstone Village celebrated the opening of their new addition, Grandview Gardens, Memory Support Neighborhood, for those with Alzheimers and memory challenges. Many were there to help celebrate the growth of Redstone Village.
Ellen McAnelly was a lady whom many people in Huntsville knew, especially the Irish. She was the owner/operator of Finnegan’s Pub in Huntsville since 1977, an Irish pub where dogs as well as humans were always welcome. She operated it for 32 years, and died at the age of 77. She will always be remembered as a generous, kind person who loved animals and made great friends along the way.
In July, Highlands Baptist Church will celebrate its 50th anniversary. The church is asking all its former members to call about the plans for the event - call Louise at 852-1661.
Another very important event happening in August is the Rison-Dallas Assoc. 37th Annual Reunion, to be held Aug. 8 at the Jackson Way Baptist Church. This is hosted by the class of 1949 in celebration of their 61st anniversary, and all U.S. Veterans are cordially invited. Call Sue at 464-9432 for more info.
Louise Avery celebrated her birthday in June and always has her grandkids for a visit in the summer, called informally “Camp Moo-Moo.” You’ll often see Louise at the Concerts in the Park on Monday nights with her friends, along with thousands of others!
Marie Hewett hosted her annual birthday party for Cecil Ashburn at her beautiful bluff home on Monte Sano. Close friends toasted Cecil during the night, and Marie baked her famous coconut cake for the event. Cecil turned 89, and celebrated with Elroy Clark, Parris Dawkins, Joe and Connie Lougheed, Louie and Jane Tippett, among many others. Happy Birthday Cecil!
The 2009 Old Town Hidden Gardens Tour was a fabulous success and the weather turned out perfectly - for the thousands of visitors who walked around Walker Ave., Steele Street, Clinton Ave., and White Street to peek behind the homes to view the beautiful gardens. One home, belonging to Tom and Patti Pruitt on White St., even had two gardens - one in front and one behind, with many of the plants marked. There were delicious refreshments served and each of the 11 gardens were breathtaking and gave many visitors unique ideas for their own gardens.
Recently while feeding the ducks at Big Spring Park, we noticed a group of kids who were throwing rocks at the geese. One child chased one of the geese and it flew into Church street, where it was hit by an SUV. It was the worst sound and though not killed, the bird was badly injured. When we contacted the Mayor’s office they sent people over to help take care of the goose. PLEASE help take care of the birds and geese and ducks at Big Spring, and don’t allow your children to be cruel to any animal.
Have a safe and fun 4th of July with your friends and family, and remember to check on your older neighbors who may need your help during these sweltering summer days.
Jane Barr was the Photo of the Month, the little girl with those beautiful eyes. Jane lives on Monte Sano and knows lots of history of that area. The winner who called with the first correct guess was Pamela Tippett/Henderson, who works for United Fire, Smoke and Water Restoration.
William A. Heimann, Jr. loves the history of this area and thinks there’s no
better place to live than here. His
mother, Catherine Heimann, feels the same way. William is so proud of
his pretty daughter Samantha, who works at Starbucks Coffee on
A very special man passed away
recently. Kenneth Biggs went to
Many women are familiar with the Breast Center at Huntsville Hospital. The Center just earned a perfect score in a FDA inspection in early May, by meeting Mammography Quality Standards set by the FDA. In addition, this is the 10th year that they have earned a perfect score. We’re very proud of them!
Congratulations to that sweet couple in Hazel Green, owners of Ole Dad’s BarBQue there - Rosemary and Bill Leatherwood just celebrated their 32nd wedding anniversary on June 1! Rosemary’s sisters are also having June birthdays - Dot Branch’s day was on June 8, and Lynn Greene’s was June 14!
We will be seeing many more
visitors to the
Curtis and Becky Parcus, owners of Dallas Mill Deli, are brand new parents! Their first child was born just a couple of weeks ago and is a baby girl whom they named Avery Jennings Parcus. We hear that she is alert and absolutely beautiful! Congratulations to Curtis and Becky, your life will never be the same!
It was very interesting to read that ginger capsules, taken several days in advance to a chemo infusion, can really subdue the nausea experienced when people have to undergo chemo treatments for cancer. This breaking news was released recently by the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Ginger has long been known to calm upset stomachs, this new one used a specially formulated gelcap containing concentrated, purified ginger root extract.
Donna Hays, who owns the Furniture Factory, is so proud of her
sweet grandchildren! She was telling us
recently that there are some important birthdays coming up. Will Lanter will be 7 on June 1, and Hays
Lanter will turn 6 on June 3. Their
parents are Rena and Chris Lanter, they all live in
We met a newcomer to
Happy Birthday to that special lady Louise Avery! Among many other activities, Louise does so much volunteer work for CASA and her church, Lathan United Methodist, and absolutely loves her grandchildren! She’s the best.
There are some really beautiful
historic areas near downtown
We were so sorry to hear that Bob Langley had passed away, in late April. He was 89 years old, and was a prisoner of war before he escaped from a German prison camp in 1945. Bob worked at Thiokol for many years. He lived at Redstone Village Retirement Community after his wife Janis’ death and always appreciated the love and support that the Redstone community gave to him and his dog Lilly Belle. We send our deepest condolences to Bob’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He will be missed.
The Historic Lowry House hosted their 2nd Vintage Creations night recently at the home. You arrive with your wine of choice, then be prepared to unleash the hidden artist inside you! A local artist (on this day, it was Connie Lougheed) will display one of her latest creations, then you follow the instructions of the artist in creating your own version of her masterpiece. The more wine, the better the paintings look! All of the paintings have their own personality and may or may not look like the original, but it is definitely a fun night!
Happy Father’s Day to all you great Dads out there, and to those of you who still have your Dads, let them know you love them.
Our winner for the Photo of the Month for March is Darla Oliver, of Madison. The photo of that adorable boy was of Ron Cooper, of In Bloom on Pratt Avenue. Darla remembered when her daughter married 8 years ago with a reception at the Heritage Club, In Bloom took care of all the flowers and they were Gorgeous! Congratulations Darla!
We met a really interesting couple recently. While having breakfast at Dallas Mill Deli, we talked with Phil and Kleone Nelson. They have only been in Huntsville since 1997, but love it here. They said that Huntsville has the most interesting history, they love the stories of our city, and that the people they’ve met here are the best. I have a feeling the Nelson’s will stay here!
For you newcomers, if you haven’t been to the Whistlestop Festival at the Train Depot on Church St., you’ve Got to go! There’s food, entertainment (Charlie Daniels plays Saturday night) and lots of BBQr’s competing for prizes. The dates are May 1 and 2, Friday and Saturday, and tickets range from $15 for one day to $25 for a weekend pass.
Congratulations to Melissa Kay Foley and Ryan Hamilton on their recent wedding. They make the most gorgeous couple, and Melissa is the daughter of proud parents Martha and Michael Bryan of Athens and James Foley of Huntsville. Melissa’s grandmother is Dr. June Foley, whom many people here remember. Ryan’s parents are Kate and Richard Gildersleeve of Connecticutt.
For those of you who have never attended, the Art Strolls downtown are really fun. This year they will be held the 3rd Thursday of each month starting in June. They will be held at Constitution Village just south of the courthouse.
While at LeeAnn’s on Church Street recently, we met a super nice guy. Michael Brazier is an agent for Liberty National Life Insurance Company, and we loved getting to know him.
Tom Moon has been in the papers lately, he was only 17 years old when he joined the Navy. He will be 88 on his next birthday, and has tons of memorabilia regarding his career in the Navy. He was even written up in a newspaper in New York. Wife Annie is very proud of her husband.
We are SO Proud of Huntsville’s Green Team! Under the leadership of Joy McKee, and staffed by some excellent, hard working folks, the Green Team won a very prestigious e-cycling (electronic recycling) award. The recent nationwide cell phone recycling contest sponsored by Sprint had cities over the U.S. vying for 2 $5,000 prizes. One category was winner for city size, and the other was overall # of phones recycled. Huntsville won BOTH awards! The $10K will be spent to create an educational Green Team robot to educate children (and grown-ups) on recycling. In addition, the money raised by collecting and selling the phones to Sprint went to the American Cancer Asso., Relay for Life. Many organizations and individuals came together for this effort. There will soon be a naming contest for the robot, keep tuned in. You can still recycle your cell phones & ink cartridges by turning them into the Green Team, with the money going to buy recycling bins for Big Spring Park, as well as other projects.
One of our local men has become quite a renowned artist! Ken Gentle currently lives in Rome, GA. but has a very unique art talent - you can check it out at www.blacktopfolkart.com.
While at Chop House downtown a few weeks ago we met Mark Sims, who works at AMRDEC as a mathematician and Reliability Engineer. He is a pet lover and is owned by 3 cats and Dylan the dog. Mark is a really great guy and we hope to see him again!
Kathy Ogle works for Dr. DeJarnatte, and told us recently that her middle sister was recognized for great work recently. Diane Jones works as lunch room Manager at Walnut Grove Elementary school in Hazel Green. She was picked as “Support Professional of the Year” for Madison County. Congratulations Diane!
Where else but Huntsville do the drivers come to a complete stop on a very busy road so that ducks & geese can cross the street? That happens often on Church Street, bordering the Eastern side of Big Spring Park. Now that we will be seeing baby ducks and geese walking, please be careful when you’re in that area so you don’t hit anyone!
We have all heard about Taylor Produce and Ayers Farms losing their leases at the Farmers Market on Cook Avenue. They were outbid by others. Not sure about Ayers, but Taylors has been in that same spot for 50 years and have many, many loyal customers. I sure hope the new owners will keep their prices as reasonable as Taylors and Ayers used to.
Late news is Taylors will be relocating near Airport Road and So. Parkway, so keep an eye out for them for the best tomatoes in Huntsville!
Be sure & mark your calendars for May 2 and 3. The Huntsville Pilgrimage Asso. is sponsoring the annual Historic Homes Tour and Cemetery Stroll. 6 beautiful homes will be ready for you to tour from 10 am til 4 on Saturday, May 2. Several gardens will be ready, including the Historic Lowry House and Frank Nola’s home at 601 Franklin. Then on Sunday, May 3, the cemetery will host thousands of Huntsvillians from 2-4:30.
We were so sorry to hear that Nancy Holliman had died recently. She was the author of that great cookbook, “Cooking with Nancy, Plain and Fancy” and was a really sweet lady. Our deepest sympathy to her family, we will certainly miss her.
Chris and Stephanie Waggett’s second child, a son whom they named Christopher Braydon, was born in late March. The first child, a big brother named Will, is not too happy with this new situation at home and will have to get used to it! Very proud grandparents are Liz and Joe Waggett, of Huntsville.
We wanted to let Ron McIntosh of Huntsville know that we are thinking about him and want him to feel better! Jean is his sweet wife who is taking good care of him.
Remember to support our local businesses, and have a wonderful Mother’s Day to all you Moms out there!
Congratulations to Scott Hulgan, of Owens Cross Roads, for being the first correct caller to identify the Photo of the Month for March. That sweet boy was Bobby DeNeefe of Madison, and we had several more correct calls after Scott’s. Scott works as VP and Branch manager of Renasant Bank, and his pretty wife Valerie is a labor and delivery nurse at Huntsville Hospital. They are proud parents of 2 babies - 18 month old daughter Megan, and 4 month old boy Ryan.
Many people have eaten at Dallas Mill Deli on Pratt Avenue, and really like the owner, Curtis Parcus, who remembers everyone’s name! Anyway, Curtis and his gorgeous wife Becky are expecting their first child in late April, and we are so happy for them. With those two as parents, this baby will be a knockout!
It’s hard to believe that Gibson’s BBQ on South Parkway (and Whitesburg Drive) is celebrating it’s 53rd anniversary in business! That’s not an easy accomplishment in these days and times. Anyway, during the entire month of April, if you go to eat there and order a plate lunch or dinner on Monday or Tuesday, you get one of their awesome pieces of pie for free, as their way of saying thanks!
We were very happy to hear that Glenn Watson is running for State Representative. Glenn is one of the most honest men we know, and if he gives you his word, you can count on it. Glenn has a record of long hours and hard work as Huntsville City Councilman for many years. He is (and was) passionate about his concern for his city and just wants to give it his all.
We were very sorry to hear of the death of Jim Yeager, of Huntsville. He was a very active member of the Golden K Kiwanis, and we send our deepest condolences to his family and friends.
It’s still a couple of months away, but be sure and mark your calendars for the Hidden Gardens Tour of Old Town historic district, to be held on Sunday, June 7.
Milton Keith, of St. Petersburg, Fl. died in early March. He leaves Huntsville brothers Sam Keith and Neil Keith, as well as wife Katherine and two daughters. We send our condolences to Milton’s family and friends.
Did you know that Monte Sano was the site of a very rare and old growth of a tree called chittumwood? It is thought to be one of the hardest woods in the world, and possibly was used in the building of the Ark. Keep your eye out for an upcoming story!
Robert “Bob” Brooks was a native of West Virginia and lived in Huntsville for the past 60 years. He was retired from Thiokol Corp., and died recently at 83. He leaves many friends who remember him from the Thiokol days. We send our deepest sympathy to his son, Robert J. II and wife Debbie Brooks, brother Everett Brooks and sister, Gaye Shields.
Many folks know Leroy Cunningham and his pretty wife Betty Jo from their many years of business selling wicker and rattan, but he is now in the bargain furniture business. Stay tuned!
Ruth Ellenburg was a resident at Redstone Village, and was born near Boaz. She died in early March, at the age of 82. She and her husband Lewis had lived in Huntsville since 1953, and loved going to church at Farley Church of Christ. Ruth was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. We send our deepest sympathy to her family and many friends.
Bruce Walker has been conducting walking tours of Old Town, one of Huntsville’s historic districts, for many years. He is doing it again on May 9, and if you haven’t been on one of Bruce’s tours, you are in for a treat. He is a great speaker, and has some really interesting (sometimes amazing) information about the homes & area in Old Town. Mark your calendar to meet in front of 122 Walker Avenue on May 9th.
Happy Birthday Lois Miller!! Her sweet husband Malcolm Miller told us she is celebrating the 6th anniversary of her 39th birthday! Speaking of Malcolm, he is going on the Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. scheduled for Apr. 25. He told me he’s not riding in any wheelchair, but if he has to use one, he’ll put his guide in it and wheel him around!
We were sorry to hear that Dan Turner had died last month, at the young age of 76. Dan played a key role in obtaining funding for I565 in the ‘70’s under Governor George Wallace. He had quite a career in road projects, and was even dispatched to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina to use his EMA background in the rebuilding effort. He leaves wife Dallas Turner, family and many friends who will miss him terribly.
We wanted to wish a happy, happy birthday to our dear friend Cheryl Tribble, who lives in Woodstock, GA. They generally have the same kind of weather we have here and folks in that part of Georgia are thrilled with the warm weather! Cheryl’s so proud of granddaughter Faith Sutherlin, a high schooler who ranks tops in her class.
Brandon Owens is a handsome guy who recently had a March birthday. He is from Huntsville with parents Ken and Diane Owens, but currently lives in Tucson, Az. with wife Susan Trentham-Owens. Happy birthday to you Brandon!
You know, when you think about it, we still have to buy groceries, medicines, clothing, home furnishings, etc. I know many of us have cut back on the larger, higher-priced items. But when you get ready to go out shopping, please remember that our local small businesses are really struggling now, and they could sure use your support!
Instead of spending your hard-earned money at the large, national companies - why not make an effort to go to the smaller, home-owned ones like Big Brother grocery, Chef’s Table, Star Market, Propst, Rebecca’s, Lewters, H. C. Blake, LeeAnn’s Bar & Restaurant, Dallas Mill Deli, Tenders, Furniture Factory, etc.? You still get great value for your money, and you are helping our local folks stay successful!
Have a wonderful Easter and get out and walk! These days are beautiful, before the humidity sinks in. Take a stroll around some of the old neighborhoods. Walk your dog - if you don’t have one, get one!
Congratulations to Pat Martinson for being the first correct caller to identify the Photo of the Month for February. The handsome young man is Don Jennings, of Economy Floor Supports. Pat and his sweet wife Jane are owners of A/C Heating & Cooling. Jane is also an artist and Pat is a retired firefighter (he worked at the fire station from 1971-2002). You are the winner, Pat!
Michael Sylvester, owner of MS Masonry, is sure one proud uncle. His beautiful neice, Jennie Brooke Stender, has a 9th birthday on March 26. She’s a 2nd grader at Westminister Christian Academy, and takes ballet at the North Alabama Dance Center. Her parents are John & Tammy Stender, Michael is Tammy’s brother. Happy Birthday to Jennie!
Marcheta Goodson Worley, of Altavista, died recently at 84. She was the daughter of Roland H. Goodson & Leona Belle Bain Goodson. Marcheta took up folk art painting as a young woman, and her motto was, “If it stands still, paint it!” We send our deepest condolensces to her son, daughter, grandchildren and other friends and family.
They say that your life is a successful one if you touch people along the way, if you impact or change the lives of others. One man who did that was Charles “Chuck” Owens. The people who were lucky to know him will never forget him. He was my Dad, and he died Feb. 14 at the age of 92. He leaves Annelie Owens, his wife of 62 years and my mom, a son Ken Owens, my brother, and Steph Troup, granddaughter, as well as grandson Brandon Owens, of Tucson, Az. We’ll always love you, Dad.
Paul Miller was 89 when he died at the Floyd E. “Tut” Fann Veterans home in Huntsville. Malcolm Miller ws his beloved brother and has written quite a bit about Paul. We send our deepest condolences to Paul’s family and many friends.
We found out something very interesting recently. WLRH Public Radio here in Huntsville offers a Radio Reading Service to those who can no longer read the Huntsville Times, “Old Huntsville.” and other periodicals. Volunteer readers spend each day from 9-10am in reading selected stories to listeners. Many who are unable to read now will find this of much interest, and it is a service that is much needed.
In order to take part in this, a listener needs only to go by the Huntsville Public Library and pick up a special FM receiver, that is free of charge. Scott Passmore is the Volunteer Coordinator for the reading service, and we very much appreciate what he and WLRH are doing for those who can no longer read.
We want to wish a very special birthday to Lisa DeJarnatte, pretty wife of Dr. Ralph DeJarnatte. The doctor always does something special for his wife’s birthday, so we hope this year was no different!
Speaking of important birthdays, Gale Nichols is celebrating the 6th anniversary of her 39th birthday on March 13. We wish her the best birthday!
We talked with a really sweet guy recently. Jim Garner lives on Monte Sano and has some great memories of life on the mountain. We may be reading some stories from him soon!
It was sad to read that Reid Ace Hardware was closing its doors, after being in business on North Parkway since 1962. Many remember Joe Reid and his wife, Mary Gene, who ran the store for many years. Along with Terry’s Pizza, Eunice’s Kitchen and several other landmarks, this one says good-bye as well.
Kathy and Frank Ogle recently celebrated their 39th anniversary. It’s hard to believe because Kathy looks not much older than 39! She works at the office of Dr. Ralph DeJarnatte.
Another March anniversary, of their first year of marriage, was celebrated by Jen & Dave Willie, who live in Nashville, Tn. but have friends here in Huntville. Happy anniversary to you two!
Jerri Smith recently celebrated a birthday. Jerri is the retired lunch room manager at Ed White Middle School.
Susie Bryant’s brother Steve Parton just became a grandfather. Connor Lee Parton is the baby boy of parents Jacob and Olivia Parton. When Connor gets a bit older he will hear many stories of the family’s history.
Mary Grimes, wife of Vic Grimes of the Golden K Kiwanis, passed away in February. We send our deepest sympathy to Vic and their family. Mary was one of those ladies who had a smile and a kind word for everyone.
We met a couple of really interesting guys lately, who have been friends ever since high school. Huntsville High is having an upcoming reunion and Robert Staggs is one of the graduates - he left Huntsville in 1970. Robert’s son is Wes Staggs, here in Huntsville, who owns Realty One.
Harris Sims (Mickey) Moore, Jr. graduated from Huntsville High the same year as Robert and lives in Satellite Beach, Fl. He is originally from Huntsville and his grandfather, Robert A. Moore, was the telephone manager in Huntsville for 46 years, retiring in 1926.
Ray Childers had been a resident at Skilled Nursing in Redstone Village and was born in 1914. He died at the age of 95 very recently, and leaves family and friends who will miss him so much.
Our friend Kathy Cotney emailed me to tell me that her daughter Jessica is a mom again! Jessica and husband Brian Grotewiel live in Missouri and have one daughter, Payton, who is 2 1/2. Kathy and Steve Cotney have another daughter, Tamra who is married to John Holder and they live in Covington, Ga. with daughter Noelle, who is 13.
Carla Stephens Sims wrote to us recently and, at 45, says she remembers many things in Huntsville that others of her age group may remember - like the Super Slide near Parkway City, Jones Farm being filled with cows, Joe Davis as mayor. We look forward to reading Carla’s memories.
Ed Trentham and his sweet wife Ann celebrated Ed’s birthday recently - it was made even more fun because their daughter Susan Trentham-Owens was able to visit from Tucson, Arizona. Happy Birthday to you, Ed.
Have a good March, and remember to watch out for your older neighbors.
I know many of you remember retired Sheriff Joe Patterson, who served several years ago. Well, he was on the ball this month because Joe was the first caller to correctly identify the Photo of the Month in January. The adorable boy was Louie Tippett, owner of United Cleaning Service and the Historic Lowry House. Joe said now that he’s retired he and wife Jane just do what they want to do, and of course he has a long list of daily chores to do. Congratulations!
We were really sorry to hear that Joe Sloan, Sr. had died recently. Joe was a Southern gentleman who loved his family and friends. He was a member of the Golden K Kiwanis and a Navy officer. He leaves son Joe Jr., daughter Belinda, in addition to grand/great grandchildren. He gave back to others all his life. He will be missed.
It was fun spending time with that excellent bartender Britt Crossly recently. Britt works at Chop House on Washington downtown, and in his spare time he works for Hunt Corp Properties. His wife Stephanie is a full time student, and his beautiful young daughter, Brynn, is just 20 months old. Just ask him - he’ll show you a picture of Brynn!
Sam Keith is sure proud of his daughter Leeanna. She lives in New York with her husband Brian Plane and son Marshall and is a published author. But the most exciting news is she just had another baby - a beautiful girl whom they named Anne-Louise Renee Plane. Another set of grandparents who can’t wait to see the baby are Buck Watson and wife Janet - this is the first grand daughter for the gang and do you think they’ll spoil her? Nah.
We were so sorry to hear of the death of John H. Martin, of Huntsville. He was just 82 and a Navy vet, as well as a long-time Golden K Kiwanian. We send our sympathy to wife Doris and their family and friends.
Louis Clark, of Athens, Al. is sure a lucky man - his daughter Kim Green thinks the world of him! Her brother, Tim Clark, had a birthday Feb. 4 and her mother-in-law, Madeliene Green, had a Feb. 1 birthday.
Dr. Virgil M. Howie was a name that thousands of people will remember. He was a Huntsville pediatrician who graduated from Vanderbilt. He was one of the first doctors here to accept black and welfare children into his practice, who couldn’t pay. Because he believed all children deserved love and medical care, he started running independent research afterhours from his office regarding children’s diseases. Dr. Howie died at 81, leaving wife Evelyn and sons Mitch, David, and John; daughters Carol, Helen, Sarah and Tricia. We know the family is so very proud of him.
Many were saddened to learn of the death of Boots Ellett, at only 74. He owned and operated the legendary Boots Restaurant on Parkway near Governors drive for 34 years, starting in 1960. He had the best steak and hamburgers in town. Boots was a kind, funny man who worked really hard. We send our deepest sympathy to wife Joyce, son Boots, Jr., daughter Lynne and the many friends and family he leaves.
We met a really interesting guy lately. Brad Cardwell works for Merrill Lynch, and moved here in 2004. He and wife Allison (a dental hygienist for Dr. Douglas Hammond) are very proud of son Jack, 4, who just started playing basketball at the YMCA. He attends Hampton Cove Christian Academy, and the family enjoys attending Willowbrook Baptist Church each week.
I am so proud of my cousin. His name is Rheinhard Mey, he is a very well-known and loved singer/songwriter who performs and lives in Germany. His aunt is Annelie Owens, of Huntsville. He had a birthday recently and celebrated with family and friends. His concerts throughout the years are consistently sold out. Happy Birthday, Molla!
Our neighbor and friend Dick Maroon was interviewed in the Times recently for his work in providing handmade wooden toys for children for Christmas. Since reading about him, many people have sent donations, supplies and wood to use on this year’s toys.
Dick is a kind, gentle man who just wants to see smiles on the faces of these children who are sick and in Huntsville Hospital, or at DHR. We are so proud of him - he goes to his workshop every day of the year to make these toys, at his own expense, and last year made over 300 toys to hand out. He’s been doing this now for 24 years. We know wife Karen is proud of him too!
We were so sorry to hear that Tim Jose had died, at age 80. Tim was a WWII vet, retired executive from Chrysler Corp., and a member of many civic organizations. We send condolences to wife Rita, and his 3 sons Mitch, Kevin and Kurt, all of Huntsville, as well as daughters Christine, Lisa, Brenda and Tammy.
A rollicking party was held again this year at Sam Keith’s garage, in 5 Points. Some of the guests were Buck & Janet Watson, John & Rebekka McKinley, Jim Sieja, Jimmy Tolen, Jim Caneer, Wyatt and Marilyn Poe, and Tom and Ann Schulman of Athens. Food was great, and the ambiance perfect!
We ate breakfast recently at Edith’s Taste of Home and while there met Lynn & Philip Moore, with daughter Haley who just turned 17 and attends Grissom High School. Talk about a busy couple. Philip is a member of Rocket City Brass, 5 members who play classic, rock and blues all over town and elsewhere. He plays the tuba and teaches private music lessons for 25 years now. Philip also is one of the major organizers of “Tuba Christmas” along with 43 tuba players, which thousands of people enjoy each year.
Lynn’s brother Robbie Robinson just had a birthday Feb. 1. Lynn’s parents are Coach Robinson and wife Odessa who live in Atlanta. Their great nephew Steve Penley is an artist who has his artwork on exhibition in many cities. A great family.
I loved catching up with Meckel Richardson recently at Carrabba’s for lunch. Meckel works there and also at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. He is a sweetheart and one busy man!
Gladys Waggett, 86, died peacefully in her sleep recently. She was dearly loved and cared for by son Joe Waggett, Jr.. We send our deepest sympathy to Joe, his wife Liz and the other family and friends.
That’s it for now - have a great Valentine’s Day!
We had a winner for the December Photo of the Month! Lewis Rasmussen recognized the picture of the little boy as that of Cecil Ashburn, whose road off Bailey Cove is now legendary due to the conflict over Christmas trees. For you newcomers, several years ago people began decorating the wild trees that grow along the roadside before Christmas along Cecil Ashburn Drive, down to the Hampton Cove area. It was all done in secret, and suddenly there were hundreds of decorated trees! Huntsville residents loved it (with a few exceptions) and each year the number of decorated trees grew. It became a problem for the city in regards to cleanup after the holidays. So several groups of citizens volunteered to clean up, but the city asked the residents to stop decorating. Stay tuned - we think it will continue!
John Henegar’s annual Christmas party at Lee Ann’s Bar & Restaurant was packed with people there to watch Tony Mason perform along with a special guest, Jeff Cook of the legendary band “Alabama.” Some of the folks we saw there were Louie & Jane Tippett, Glenn Watson, Jim Vaughn, and Doris Tucker. Marie Hewett was there, Becky & Danny Loggins, Mr. & Mrs. Scott McClain and Robert Patterson. Lynwood Smith and his wife Missy were rocking out to the great music, along with hundreds of others - it was the best party ever!
City Councilman Bill Kling and his pretty wife Tanji were there as well, and it’s always great to catch up with them.
Speaking of Tanji, she is so proud of her beautiful Mom Elizabeth Lyon who will be 81 in February. Elizabeth is a life-long resident of Madison County and raised 4 kids! She’s the best.
I met the sweetest young lady recently at lunch at Weatherly Heights Elementary School. Her name is Isabel Okinedo, and she is a third-grader in Mrs. Beard’s class. I was there having lunch with my granddaughter Hannah Troup, who is also a third-grader in Mrs. Bougher’s class. Anyway, Isabel knows exactly what she wants to do when she gets older, she wants to be a dermatologist. When asked why, she said she wanted to help people with their skin problems, but most of all she wants to follow in the footsteps of her Dad, who is also a doctor. He is Dr. Clement Okinedo, owner of Zoe Medical Care. His wife, Lisa, and Isabel’s mom, works as manager at the office there. Isabel has a sister, Michelle, and brother, Denzel. She was just a delightful young person to speak with, and says that since she has a March 16 birthday, she is so looking forward to spring!
The Veterans Memorial Museum is something everyone should go to visit. It’s located off Airport Road west of Parkway, and is packed with military vehicles and other displays. Chuck Owens (a WWII and Korean vet) recently visited with his great grandson Evan Troup and they were fascinated by the displays.
The day of the Channel 31 Christmas Parade downtown was cold and dreary, but that didn’t keep hundreds of parade-watchers home. The bands were great (Love the A&M band, I could listen to them all day), and one of the highlights was Bill Miller in his 1929 yellow Ford auto!
Cecil and Margaret Ashburn’s grandson Jeremy Farber, son of Jennifer Gillespie, is getting married in the spring and currently lives in Washington DC. Jeremy’s fiance is Michelle Powers, a nutritionist from there.
Pat Keefer and her son Levi will also be going for the wedding which will be held in a historical plantation in the area called Raspberry Plains in Virginia.
Audra Wilson owns Salon Bella on Church St. & has the worst possible day for a birthday. It was on December 27, but we hope it was a fun day for you!
The Winter Wine Event is held annually to benefit the Huntsville Museum of Art. This year on Jan. 29 there will be a wine tasting as well as a Silent Auction with delicious food offered. (starts at 6:30 pm) On Jan. 30 there will be a Wine Dinner and Live Auction starting in the evening. This event is being presented by the Women’s Guild of the Huntsville Museum of Art. For more info call 535-4350 ext. 217.
Happy Birthday to Heather Bzdell. She is the sweet daughter of proud Dad John Bzdell, who owns Marathon Painting.
We keep hearing about people leaving their valuables & purses in their cars, in full sight of anyone looking in. It is too much of a temptation for some people if they see that in view. The smartest thing to do, if you HAVE to leave your purse in your car, is to put it in the trunk or hide it somehow. Also, when you are leaving any store or mall, don’t be afraid to ask a mall representative to escort you to your car if you feel uneasy. If someone seems to be following you to your car, just turn around and go back into the store. Be aware of everything going on around you, including people. Finally, when you do get in your car, immediately lock your doors. Oftentimes crooks will wait for a victim to get in the car, knowing it’s going to be a few minutes before you leave.
As much of this theft involves injury, to say nothing of the mental trauma you’ll go through, it’s just smart to protect yourself. Don’t be an easy target for anyone.
You sure don’t hear “Happy 92nd Birthday” too often, but I’m especially happy to wish my Dad, Chuck Owens, a happy birthday January 15. He and mom, Annelie Owens, have lived at Redstone Village for the past 5 years and really like it there. Happy Birthday, Dad, I’m so very proud of you.
We keep hearing stories about the Historic Lowry House and the spirits that may still be there! The home alarm goes off for no reason at all, glasses come flying off the mantle at the fireplace, faces are seen looking out of the windows. Who knows - there may be a movie in the future about the events going on here!
February 6 is the date for the Divine Performing Arts Chinese Spectacular, which last year was very memorable. It will be held at the Von Braun Civic Center and is well worth the price of a ticket.
Al & Rebecca Temple (owner of Rebecca’s in 5 Points) recently spent time in San Antonio visiting their son Jason and his family. They are very proud of their son, who is in the Navy.
Joyce Russell, of New York Life, certainly has alot of gifts to buy in December! Her daughter Megan Mack had a birthday Dec. 16, while grandson Trenton Dyer-Keefer has a December 19 birthday. Grandson Nathan Dyer-Keefer turned a year older on Dec. 4. Mom and dad to the boys are Wendy and Wyatt Keefer.
Much colder weather is soon coming up, so be sure and keep an eye on your older friends and neighbors.
Congratulations to Miriam Dendy for being the first correct caller to guess last month’s Photo of the Month. The picture featured Huntsville artist Trice Hinds with his adorable sister, Gay Money. Miriam identified both of them! She has been a homemaker all her life, and wants to send a special “hello” to her good friend Min Nash, in High Point, N.C.
We heard from Glenn Koch, Sr. recently. Glenn works for the Huntsville Police Department and has a special request. He said he wants to wish his beautiful wife the happiest 34th wedding anniversary, on December 14th, and to let her know how much he loves her. Paula Koch has been the Floor manager and Membership Coordinator for over 13 years at Valley Hill Country Club, and he is so proud of her. Glenn has been a police officer now for 36 years! I just love a romantic man!
There have been many instances of purse snatching and attacks on women at the malls and their parking lots. This time of year is especially bad for that, just make sure that when you come out of the store you are very aware of who is around you especially as you get near your car. And don’t be embarrassed to ask for someone to walk you to your car if you feel uneasy.
We were really sorry to hear that Alan Jenkin’s father had passed away. William (Bill) Howard Jenkins was only 78 when he died. Bill worked for NASA here for nearly 30 years, was a private pilot for more than 40 years. He was a member of Southside Baptist Church, was an active supporter of The Land Trust of Huntsville, and was a founding member of Outreach, a halfway house for troubled teens. I know his family is so proud of him. We send our deepest sympathy to Alan and his wife Debra, and to Emma Jenkins, Bill’s wife of 53 years, as well as the many friends and family who will miss him so much.
We were very proud of our friend Bill Poole (Bill Poole Real Estate) who was recently named Realtor of the Year for this area, as well as State of Alabama Realtor of the Year! Congratulations, Bill, it is well deserved!
For our newcomers to Huntsville, one of the most beautiful events here is the Spirit of Christmas Past Homes Tour & Luminaries. This year it will take place on Saturday, December 13, from 5-9pm on McClung Ave. in the Twickenham Historic District. In case of rain, it’ll be moved to Sunday, the 14th. Thousands of candles will line every street in the historic districts including Old Town, and it is just breathtaking. Wear comfortable shoes and warm clothing!
Gladys Waggett was the loving wife, mom and grandmother who died November 21 at the age of 86. Her son, Joe Waggett, Jr., cared for her for years to make sure she was always comfortable. We send our deepest condolences to Joe, his wife Liz, their children and grandchildren.
It was great meeting Nancy Lamb recently, of New York Life. She is a sweet lady who works with Mack Vann, agent of NYL Insurance Company, and is really looking forward to Christmas this year!
Dorothy Durham was born and raised in Huntsville but she currently lives in Arab. She is having a birthday in February and is now 86! She has lots of great memories of early days in Huntsville. It was great talking with her!
Rosemary Leatherwood’s dear mother Mary Branche Richardson passed away on November 12, 2008. She is survived by her wonderful husband, Billy Richardson, 5 daughters, 5 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren. Mary was a beautiful person, inside and out, and loved her family so much. She will be greatly missed by the family and friends she leaves behind.
Happy birthday to that sweet boy, Austin Pinkerton, who will be 10 on December 28. Proud mama is Jamie Leatherwood, who has another sweet boy, Chase, who is 8.
With prices going up everyday and all of us trying to eat healthier, the Farmer’s Market is the place to go! The big one on Cook Avenue, just south of Oakwood on No. Parkway, has a good supply of greens, apples, oranges, etc. and just interesting stuff to look at. Check them out - they’re open 7 days a week.
John Henegar is having a December birthday again, and his party at Lee Ann’s Restaurant is legend in these parts! What a great time everyone had last year. He plans to do it again this year, same time, same place.
The new Dog Park off Church Street close to downtown Huntsville is very popular with dogs and owners alike! The dogs get to run and get exercise, while the dog owners get to know each other. On a nice day, the park is very crowded. Now we hear that there will be another dog park built off Drake Avenue, near the Senior Center, on the north side of Drake, around Brahan Spring park. Money is being collected for that purpose now.
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