Teachers remember the bad and the best students

Published 8:28 am Wednesday, November 24, 2021

News from the North

By Kay Wolfe

As usual there’s a lot going in the North.  Tickets are going fast for “White Christmas- The Musical” at the Panola Playhouse. Buy your tickets online for the production at www.panolaplayhouse.com.  

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Also, instead of the Heflin House Holiday Open House fundraiser, Christmas with John Mark Sharpe will be  Dec. 13  at 11 am.  John Mark will be giving us a presentation on flower arranging. See Grace West about ticket information.

As stated in last week’s column, Reggie Milam is helping Anderson Booth redo mother’s flower shop. It’s going to be a great house for someone.  

Reggie is the brother of one of my former students, Shirley Milam Harrell.  She was one of those students that teachers wonder about where they are and what they’re doing with their lives. She was a very sweet student.  

Teachers tend to remember the students who were disruptive, or the really good students. Fast forward about 40 or more years.  I’m teaching a young man named Michael Harrell. You guessed it! He’s Shirley’s son.  

She had known who I was all that school year but didn’t mention it. Michael, aka “Big Daddy” was a good student, great personality, and very handsome. He was always the first choice as an escort for the maids on the homecoming court. 

He works for Brinkef International in Dallas as a Guest Engagement Agent.  

I’m so proud of the man that he has become. Mama Shirley Harrell is saving lives as a frontline responder with Loving Health Care in Batesville. I’m so glad we reconnected.  I had wondered about that “kid” for years. She was right under my nose.

Sardis had three deaths that I know of that really hit home to me. The first was Len Smith.  I went to school with his wife, Donna.  Ann Smith Darby, and Mary McDowell were his sisters.  Ann and I grew up together, and have been dear friends for many years. 

Len was one of the good guys – always so helpful and friendly. He will be sorely missed. 

Calvin Hefley died also. He and his wife, Roberta lived in East Memphis. He was Rick’s age and had a twin, Wilbur Earl. We all grew up together in the Presbyterian Church. 

Then, of course, Mrs. Rachel Anderson left us to be with the Lord.  She had a Celebration of Life service at historic Davis Chapel. It was a lovely service.  The music was beautiful, and the preacher was electric. It makes me sad that these three have gone to be with the Lord, but what better place to be.

The James Gilliam Chapter of the DAR met  Wednesday, Nov. 17, at the Heflin House.  Regent Jennifer Pardoe led the meeting.  A delicious meal was prepared and served by the ladies.  

Johnny Nelson gave a very interesting meeting about the Indian Mounds. He was instrumental in getting our mounds on the Mound Trail.  Future plans include possibly a pavilion, a museum, and restrooms. He commended the cub scouts for all of their hard work. 

H.O.P.E. Mentoring will have their next meeting Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. to pray in front of North Panola High School.  On Dec. 4 we will have a Community Awareness Walk. Let’s get behind this organization that is dedicated to mentoring children from 8 years old to 18. Join the walk with us.

Sardis Community Thanksgiving Service was Sunday, Nov. 21, at Sardis First Baptist Church.  Brother David Laird did the preaching. We all have so much to be thankful for.

The Como Community Club will have their annual Christmas luncheon at the Heflin House on Dec. 1. 

Sardis is looking better as far as our litter and trash problem is concerned. Our code enforcer, Coda Medlin, is working hard.  

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Live simply, laugh often, love much.