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JIM - The 71st wedding anniversary of my parents

They were quietly married a in Somerset, then set up housekeeping in a tenant house on Bottom Road in Russell County. Jim remembers today, on their in memory anniversary: "My folks didn't have an easy life, but their love for each other never faltered, never failed. They were married for 52 years and six days, my father passing on July 6, 1997. Less than a year later, Mother quietly, peacefully laid down her burdens in the wee hours of June 25th and crossed the River Jordan. To borrow a line from a great love song written by Terry Smith, I have no doubt my father "came running through the shallow waters, reaching for [her] hand." - JIM
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By JIM

Seventy-one years ago this day -- June 30, 1945 -- Rev. Willie Ray Bradshaw united my parents in marriage. My father, 33, had never before sailed the sea of matrimony, but Mother, 34, had been wed previously, her first husband having passed almost eighteen years earlier.


Both of my parents were very private people, so a few days earlier, they had motored over to Somerset (my father was a native of Pulaski County), obtained a marriage without telling anyone in Russell County, and on the evening of June 30th, with Mrs. Bradshaw and my grandmother serving as witnesses, Rev. Bradshaw spoke the rites to make them as one.

My folks immediately set up housekeeping in the tenant house on Bottom Road, about a mile from downtown Russell Springs, on the farm to where my grandparents and five of their six boys had moved in the early 1930s. Even so, only a handful of very close family members knew they were married. Not until almost two months later did it become widely known, as reported in the August 23, 1945 Russell County News (on the front page above the fold, no less!), the first sentence of the article making reference to "A wedding of much interest and about which many have been making wild guesses..."

Continued the article, "The wedding took place at Jamestown June 30, with Rev. Wm. R. Bradshaw officiating. The couple kept their wedding a secret longer than most people, letting all guess and wonder..."

(I still laugh on occasion at how fast and furiously the gossipy tongues must have wagged throughout July and most of August of that long ago summer.)

My folks didn't have an easy life, but their love for each other never faltered, never failed. They were married for 52 years and six days, my father passing on July 6, 1997. Less than a year later, Mother quietly, peacefully laid down her burdens in the wee hours of June 25th and crossed the River Jordan. To borrow a line from a great love song written by Terry Smith, I have no doubt my father "came running through the shallow waters, reaching for [her] hand."


This story was posted on 2016-06-30 05:44:52
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