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Letter to the Editor

Posted: July 8, 2017 - 9:18pm

Memorial Day is a day to remember those who fought to preserve our freedom. July 4, Independence Day, is a day of celebration for the freedom that has cost so much to preserve.

As we celebrate this July 4th, I want to share with you my granddaddy's column, which was published in the Montgomery Monitor on Sept. 4, 1948, titled "Another Letter To Our Service Men and Women."

"In your anticipated pleasures at once again seeing the old home town, you can perhaps best remember some of the more unsightly features best and we take pleasure in writing you that they have been preserved with yearly accumulations.

If you are not able to see the trickling lines made by your Brown Mule expectorations on the walls, it's because some other spitter, in a moment of thoughtlessness, covered it with his own.

No attempt has been made by our better citizens to destroy evidences of your youthful days spent here. You will not want to play hide and seek among the weeds on vacant lots, but if you did you will be able to find some of the same brush piles that so effectively concealed you when you did play the game.

We are sure that if your memory is good you will find nothing confusing about recognizing every place you knew before you left. There are no new structures, nor fresh painted ones to change the general appearance as you will remember it. About the only improvement that has been made is on the premises about the jail and you will not want to hang around there much anyway. ...

We have the same picture show and also the same churches. We have a Lions Club now, but you need not get disturbed about that - for it is one of the tamest ones in captivity. ...

Perhaps you will miss the enemy disturbances that made your sleeping hours hideous, but prowling hogs and cattle will help some to overcome the silence of a too well satisfied community of sleeping people. If you have been stationed in the jungle or desert, we are sure that the howling of many dogs will supply the noises to which you have been accustomed.

The old swimming hole is dry, but you can get baths in the red water of the Oconee River and then come home and tub off the mud.

We have plenty to eat and as soon as you have established a reputation as a chiseler, you will have no trouble getting your share of it. ...

We want to assure you that we have made no intentional effort to change any of the things that you formerly knew and loved. In some places, returning youngsters will have to become accustomed to brand new conditions brought about by enterprising citizens, but you will be in a position to laugh at their bewilderment when they discover industrial activities planted upon their former playgrounds.

Perhaps, through one source or another, you have heard that this section is developing. Our object in writing these letters is to assure you that we have let none of it change the picture of the old home town that you have carried in your memory through the dangers of mortal combat."

As we celebrate our independence this July 4th, let's not forget all the men and women who have given so much to preserve it.

Bennie Harbin

Martinez

 

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