Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Down Life's Highway


No Record but Good Average

If you live an active, busy life, old age will creep up on you. Life is on a fast track. You are always looking back wondering where the last 10 years went. I've been most fortunate with a good support group and a caring family. As a poor kid during the great depression, I started working the cotton fields with my mother. Those old cotton fields back home is a reference point from those days on. Through the ages, I really never had any down time. I pioneered several businesses. I've done things that were daring, spent many years in publishing. None of that would have been possible without gathering great friends along the way. On the morning of June 5, 2024, my wife Phyl said, "Happy 90th birthday." It was like congratulations. She and I will soon be married 70 years. What made this birthday so important was that it had become a goal. Last year some of the greatest people, friends, support group, helped me celebrate age 89. I felt good, it was a great time. Shortly after my health started heading south with three different trips and stays in the hospital. The worse was COVID. For a long time I've had COPD and was very afraid of COVID. My life was hanging by a string and I really felt it slipping away. After coming that close to the gate, spending Christmas, New Year and anniversary in hospital, with the urging of a young nurse, making 90 became my goal.

Janelle Sehon made the arrangements and a bunch of great friends helped me celebrate the big one. Most importantly my family was there at Robert's. Phyl, our three children Mark, Allen and Karen, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were there. Granddaughter Jenna and husband Robby, drove non-stop 1900 miles from New Hampshire with their young ones Delilah, Willow and Chase. Granddaughter Amber, her three boys Luke, Liam and Rowan along with Mark and Ethel Dunn all flew in from Vero Beach, FL. Grandsons Leland Gros and Collin Gros along with Morgan Shaw helped celebrate. The celebration lasted until the last person flew out Sunday.

I was disappointed that some friends couldn't make it to the gathering due to rain but special thanks to those who did. A few I recall off hand are an 84 year-old guy I've known since he was six years old, "Jiving Gene", his nephews the Judice boys, Larry and Al, Judge John Gothia, Judge Carl and Micaela Thibodeaux, J.W. Dalton, Roy Derry Dunn, Phillip Welch, Sharon Bearden, Eric Peveto, Comm. Chris Sowell, Judge Chad and Windee Jenkins, Dr. Tom Johnson, Comm. Kirk and Christy Roccaforte, Mayor David and Becky Rutledge, Mike Hatton, Capt. Chuck Uzzle, Dan Perrine, George Crawford, David Bailey, Brenda Lund, Judge Hershel Stagner, Ron Sigler, Cole Michalk, Margaret Toal. Alice Cole-Hartsfield and Judge Pat Clark stopped in. I don't have a list to go by so if I missed you I'm truly sorry. (Remember I'm 90 years old.) I'm looking forward to 91.

It's a stretch but I still have a few stories to tell and I pray I will get to tell them, even at the expense of my friends.

Thanks for your friendship.


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