Hartselle is a great town
Who would want to live in a place where you rarely hear individuals being described as friendly or sweet or warm? Since moving to Hartselle, I have noticed this phenomenon. How can one describe a neighbor as being the "nice neighbor" when they all are so nice, or the "sweet lady" when they are all sweet? Words like pleasant, warm and friendly certainly can't be used to uniquely describe shopkeepers, law enforcement officers or postal clerks here, as they all are.
In October, my family (my wife, parents and me) moved from Macon, Ga. to Hartselle. This was a return home for us, as all of us are either originally from or have lived many years in North Alabama. Despite having grown up in the general area, we have become amazed by what a truly unique and wonderful community Hartselle is. Even as we were unloading moving vans, the wonderful people of town were already there with open arms. Quite a few neighbors provided food, including a complete breakfast. While the food was being prepared, several of the men in the neighborhood helped in unloading and setting up our new home. The list of people who assisted is far to long to place here, but I would like to especially and publicly thank the Woodruff and the Bean families for everything they have done.
We live in one of the older homes in town, and quite a few people have dropped by to see the inside of our house. We also moved shortly before election day, and folks have called in an attempt to persuade us to vote "no" or "yes", or, on rare occasion, for some other candidate or issue. As a result of the enjoyable chats with these callers, we have learned much of Hartselle and its people. Unlike any other place I have been, here, even political debate is pleasantly handled with dignity and respect.
Walking downtown is a special treat for us. My wife loves antiques and shopping, and I love the old buildings, covered sidewalks and other architectural features. We all enjoy the courtesy of the shopkeepers, and their employees. The four of us love spaghetti, which is prepared especially well at the Main Street Bistro. The cheerfulness and warmth of the employees there was a factor in our initial decision to make Hartselle our home.
My father fell and on Christmas Eve had to go the hospital; thankfully, he is recovering quickly now. The ER was crowded with an unusually high volume of patients while being minimally staffed due to the holidays. Despite this, the service he received was very prompt considering the circumstances. What is more important though, is the quality of the care he received there, and special thanks go to Dr. Benson, Dr. Lovelady, as well as the professional, capable and friendly nurses and technicians who attended to him. Considering that it was a loved one who required medical attention, my wife is a physician, and I have years of experience in medical administration, we are in a pretty unique position to be able to judge the high caliber of care provided at the Hartselle Medical Center.
We can't describe our house as the one on the block with an American flag, because so many on the street have one as well. We can't even distinguish any individual neighbor as nice, friendly or caring, as that would make unique identification impossible. Hartselle may rightfully be known as "The City of Southern Hospitality", but our family already gives it a different moniker: home. We wish to extend our thanks to all of the citizens of this wonderful town who already mean so much to us.
Stephen P. Gordon
Neighbors thank special friends
We moved from West Virginia to Alabama mid 1998. We wanted to be closer to our children in our retirement years. After a long house-hunting trip, we finally found a house in the Hickory Heights subdivision which met our needs. There is always a great deal of anxiety when one moves. Of great concern is how your new neighbors will accept you into their community. Fromt the first day we moved into Hartselle, John and Shirley Sinclair have made an extraordinary effort to make us feel home in "Sweet Home Alabama." John has made minor and major repairs to our house and Shirley has shared sundry plant cuttings with us to help "beautify" our backyard. We ordered sod for our front yard and John and Shirley showed up just as the sod arrived to help us lay it.
Two years ago, I was diagnosed with gastric cancer. It is a rare cancer in the USA and chemotherapy has not been effective in achieving a remission. John and Shirley's efforts to help my wife, Donna, with outside yard work, such as raking leaves, have increased proportionately with the progress of my cancer. They will not accept compensation for their work.
So, this is our way of saying 'thank you' for being the being the best neighbors we've ever had. John and Shirley, thank you for being there in our hour of need.
Chuck and Donna Firpo