Thursday, April 19, 2012

'Aunt' Hallie Chatham recovering nicely from broken leg

    I was waiting for some prescriptions to be filled today so I drove down to Phillips for a hamburger. I was lecturing the order clerk about how I wanted my hamburger pressed good and flat and cooked well done and douse with salt, "just like Mrs. Phillips used to do."
    Somebody behind me in line chimed in with a "Mrs. Phillips" comment and it turned out to be Ralph Doxey. He had just taken his great aunt, Hallie Chatham, to the doctor where she got a cast off of her leg which she broke some months ago.
    Hallie Chatham is 97 and in reasonably good health. She's not far from 98.
    Hallie and Lloyd Chatham only lived a block away from me when I was growing up. They didn't want me to call them "Mr. and Mrs." so we settled on Uncle Lloyd and Aunt Hallie. They treated me like royalty. Hallie taught me how to "decoupage," which is admittedly not the world's highest art form. Lloyd loved to show off his fruit trees in the back yard, although most years he was showing off lack-of-fruit trees, as he said the Holly Springs climate simply wasn't suited to peach and pear trees.
    As I got older I stopped invading their privacy. I don't remember when Lloyd died, but throughout my teen years I continued to see Hallie at the First Baptist Church in Holly Springs. In fact, as a young teen or pre-teen I would check out Hardy Boys books from the church library, which she ran and opened for about two hours each Sunday. They were the great, brown Hardy Boy books which were far better than the more modern ones.
    In any event, it was great to see Ralph, who served as assistant scoutmaster for a year when I was a Boy Scout. It was great to see his grandmother, who has been kind to me all my life. Willard Scott is gone from the Today Show, but I'm looking forward to wishing Hallie Chatham a happy 100th birthday.

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