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Letter to the Editor: ‘Hartselle has lost one of its finest’  

Dear editor,  

I come from an extended line of truck drivers. Both grandfathers, all of my uncles on both sides of my family, my dad and numerous cousins were truck drivers. I guess one could say I was destined to carry on the legacy.  

One particular uncle drove for five decades. He had very little education, yet he was one of the smartest people I’ve known.  

After he retired from driving, boredom sat in, and he decided to raise hogs. 

One evening, my wife and I were visiting him. I went to the barn, where he was, and I asked him, “What was it that convinced you to retire?” His reply, “When the urge to stop and smell the roses is on your mind all day, every day, you’ll know.”  

I didn’t press him on what he meant, but over the years, I think I might have figured it out. 

When one thinks about roses, typically one visualizes a bush or shrub that bears beautiful flowers. My thinking of his reply has led me to believe that roses might come to us in other forms: watching children/grandchildren play in a pile of leaves, taking walks with your spouse, sitting outside watching the sun set – literally thousands of things that don’t seem significant at the time, yet they impact us without us realizing their importance.  

Roses can also come in the form of friends. 

Ronnie Abercrombie was a rose to his family and to others in the form of friendship. He was true to himself, his family and his friends. I knew from the first time I met him that he was genuine.  

Over the 20 years that I was blessed to know him, he shared many thoughts with me. We had conversations regarding fishing, automobiles, politics, Hartselle in general and family. Those conversations are now locked in my memory, and memories are a gift from God that death cannot destroy. Amen! 

My family wishes to extend our most sincere, heartfelt condolences to Ronnie’s family. Hartselle has lost one of its finest. Like many others, I have lost a friend, but heaven has received a rose. 

 

Mike Dowdy 

Hartselle 

 

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