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Recently, when my mom called to tell me of the death of James Mathis Sr. I was saddened and, of course, and very surprised.
I grew up in Gainesville and lived there until I went away to college. It had been some time since I had seen Mr. Mathis because I now live in Macon. However, only weeks ago, he and Mrs. Mathis sent a very special gift to our baby daughter. I will have some marvelous stories to tell her about the fine man and his wife who gave her a treasured gift.
I have some wonderful memories of Mr. Mathis, not only for the stories he could share so freely, but also the support he gave to me as a teenager when I was struggling to get my Eagle Scout project complete. He not only supported me financially, but gave me good advice and encouragement.
Better than I knew at the time, he was well aware of how much attaining the Eagle Scout Award would mean to me in later years. Tragically, I never said to him how much his words of wisdom meant to me. He teased me about being a person of few words and then when I introduced him to make a speech to my senior class at a graduation breakfast, he said the class should be very careful allowing me to say anything because one never knew what might come from my mouth. He had a great sense of humor and knew just how to make my face turn red.
Gainesville has certainly lost a one of a kind man who contributed so much to the community. He was the kind of example that many of the scouts and other young men needed to emulate. By observing what he gave, he led many young people to be aware of the importance of giving back to the world in which we live.
There are just not many men left like him, but because of his influence in the community, Gainesville is a better place and one in which I certainly would like for my daughter to grow up in and become a part of.
Letters shone a light on the crucial times we live in
Re: Letters from Kellie Weeks and Jessie D. Jenkins in the Tuesday paper. I walked out to the road to get my Times and was reading the letters noted above. I know neither one of these writers, but I want to express how much I appreciate these two saying exactly how I feel and believe.
Your paper has given me so much now (and all I need) than I was getting from other newspapers. I will soon be 78 years of age and pray God's will that he will give me more years to live in our North Georgia mountains and that I can continue to enjoy more of his creation.
And I am so thankful for others who are equally concerned about our times of today and can express their feelings so well written as Kellie and Jessie did so.
I'd like to encourage all seniors to listen carefully, speak out, and keep aware of how our government (local, state and especially national) is functioning in these critical times. Let's be an example for our younger generations to take an interest in government affairs today and above all, keep praying.
Thank you for your time and to let these two writers know how much we all should speak out.
Virginia E. (Wilkins) Duncan
Senior Center staff worthy of thanks and praise
I have been going to the Senior Life Center for some time and everyone there has added so much to my life, beginning with the office group, management group, and all who attend there from the front door to the wonderful kitchen group.
My time there is a great joy and pleasure for me. The bus drivers are also wonderful. May God bless each one who has touched my life so richly. My love and best wishes.