The Times Journal & Russell County News
Friday, Apr. 25, 2014 — RUSSELL SPRINGS & JAMESTOWN, KENTUCKY — russellcounty.net
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Debbie does Discourse
In Aug. 8 Issue
Russell County News
By Debbie Bell, Columnist

My best friend's father is in the E-town hospital fighting for his life. I not only have to be there, but I want to be there. That's what a true friend does. I cannot possibly think of anything to write about this week, so I am submitting a short story that I wrote several years ago. Until I can think again...Forward Ho.

The Tree of Life

The skies opened up and over two feet of snow fell that cold night in 1927 when the little boy was born. Snow covered branches hung from the beautiful oak tree that stood outside the small farm house.

Although sickly at first, soon the boy began to flourish and grow. A loner, he spent a lot of his time with the oak tree. He could sit under its shaded branches reading for hours. On summer nights he would camp out under the tree and watch the squirrels, birds, and other wildlife. The boy would swing so high that he swore he almost touched the sky.

When he was in the second grade he pretended he was Wilbur and Orville Wright. Instead of making a smooth landing he broke his arm in two places.

When the bot was 13 years old he kissed his girlfriend beneath the autumn leaves of the old oak tree. When the young man left for college, he would return home on weekends and sit beneath the tree to ponder life's little mysteries and what his future would hold. When the man was 25 he married his lovely wife on a beautiful summer day. It was an outdoor wedding and it seemed like the old tree beamed down with such pride.

The man and his wife moved away but returned home many times over the years for funerals, reunions, weddings and other family events. It was sad to see the town and how it had changed. Malls took place of playgrounds, homes were torn down and duplexes and condos went up and Main Street downtown was completely a thing of the past. Everything was now self-serve and fast food.

The only constant was the old oak tree whose branches welcomed them like open arms. No matter what path the man took, all roads always led back to the old tree where he found great solace and peace.

Many, many years went by. The old man felt great need to visit the tree once more. He gathered up several of his grandchildren and made the long, tiring trip home. His heart sank as he saw the old tree. Lightning had hit the tree and it looked like the old man felt completely destroyed.

He sank to his knees and wept uncontrollably for hours. All the memories came flooding back as he wept for his dear old friend.

He might have drowned in his own tears, but suddenly he heard his youngest grandchild crying. He leapt to his feet and saw her lying on the ground, several feet away.  As his gnarly old hands reached down to tenderly pick her up,  he saw why the child had fallen. The root of the old tree was sticking up and a new offshoot was starting to grow.

The old man's mouth started to twitch, then he smiled the most beautiful smile and then he began to laugh. He seemed young and childlike as he began to dance about the little tree. The old man spent a happy, glorious day there with the children, laughing, and playing.

I'll never forget the day as long as I live. I didn't understand what it all meant then, but I'm beginning to. My grandfather died five years ago and we buried him where the old oak tree use to stand. When I go home I sit beneath the shade of my oak tree and visit with my beloved grandfather.

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The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
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P.O. Box 190
120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Phone: 270-866-3191
Fax: 270-866-3198
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
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404 Monument Square
Jamestown KY 42629
Phone: 270-343-5700
Publisher:
David Davenport
(publisher@tjrcn.com)
Managing Editor:
Greg Wells
(editor@tjrcn.com)
News & Sports Editor:
Derek Aaron
(sports@tjrcn.com)
Advertising Manager:
Stephanie Smith
(ads@tjrcn.com)
Business Manager:
Kim Haydon
(business@tjrcn.com)
Production Manager:
Renee Daffron
(people@tjrcn.com)
Jamestown Office:
Kim Graham
(rcnoffice@tjrcn.com)
PUBLIC MEETINGS
Members of the public may attend meetings. Boards or agencies may schedule other meetings at special times, but are required to notify the public.
FISCAL COURT: 2nd Monday of month, 6 p.m. in the Courthouse
RUSSELL SPRINGS CITY: 2nd Thursday of month, 6 p.m. in the City Hall Municipal Room
JAMESTOWN CITY: 3rd Thursday of month, 6 p.m. in basement meeting room at City Hall
SCHOOL BOARD: 3rd Monday of month, 6:30 p.m., Board of Education office in Jamestown
LIBRARY BOARD: 2nd Tuesday of month, 5 p.m. at Jamestown Library
AIRPORT BOARD: 1st Tuesday of month, 5 p.m. at Airport
TOURISM COMMISSION: 2nd Wednesday of month, 12:30 p.m. at Tourism Office
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: 3rd Tuesday of month, noon at The Cove restaurant
LOCAL & AREA
NEWS SITES
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Laker Country WJRS
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lakercountry.com/
WKYM-1017 (Monticello)
wkym.com/
Adair Progress (Columbia)
adairprogress.com/
Casey County News (Liberty)
caseynews.net/
Clinton County News (Albany)
clintonnews.net/
Cumberland County News (Burkesville)
burkesville.com/ccn/
Wayne County Outlook (Monticello)
wcoutlook.com/
Somerset
Commonwealth-Journal
somerset-kentucky.com/
Danville
Advocate-Messenger
amnews.com/
Lexington Herald-Leader
kentucky.com/
Louisville Courier-Journal
courier-journal.com/
WKYT-TV, Lexington
wkyt.com/
WBKO-TV, Bowling Green
wbko.com/
USEFUL SITES
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