Whitesburg KY
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Flooding brings back memories from the 60’s

Southern Ohio

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! As I have been watching the posts of the flooding in those mountains I call home, my heart has ached for everyone who is in the path of those small streams that have become rivers.

Raging water is something that at times cannot be held back, even with the strongest of barriers. I hope and pray for everyone’s safety.

In 1964 my husband and I had two small children. Keith was three years, and Kay was six months. Kay had chicken pox, and I had mumps, and I was very sick.

The flood hit our area and got into our house. We had a little money, but there wasn’t anywhere to find a place, as so many were in the same predicament.

My husband loaded a new television in our 1957 Ford convertible along with a few clothes and our two babies to try to find a temporary place. Like so many others we stored our furniture at the firehouse that had room for people’s belongings. We left a few pieces of furniture, which were lost in the flood as the water was starting to rise too fast to get everything out.

To be honest we looked like the Beverly Hillbillies. We went to my brother-in-law and sister-in-law’s. My sister-in-law wasn’t home at the time, so my brother-in-law called to tell his wife the situation, and then my husband overheard my sister-in-law say she didn’t want that brought in as she didn’t want to get sick.

Against my brother-in-law’s insistence that we come in, as he said that was his damn house, we left in a few minutes.

We came back to Harrison to get a bite to eat. A friend was working there and she asked what was wrong. My husband replied that we were trying to find a place to rent, but she insisted we go to her apartment. Now this family had two small children also, so I refused.

At the end of the conversation, we agreed, that we would stay with her and the family. This has been so many years ago yet comes back in my thoughts.

How family can be so selfish and a friend kind enough to help regardless of the situation? I remained close to my in-laws down through the years, until my husband and I divorced, but the love and respect never returned like before.

My friend and I remained close friends until her untimely death several years ago.

We have the craziest weather with rain, snow, and a little sunshine even coming through as it is raining and snowing.

Our part of Ohio Valley area really can’t complain as so far it has been a mild winter. I must admit I am looking forward to spring, and as far as I am concerned summer can just come on fast.

Once again the Calihan family is hit with illness as Johnny spent a couple of days in the hospital. The doctor released Johnny with pneumonia. The dumbest things happen regarding medical care. Johnny is home and is still very weak.

The Calihans’ daughter, Sue Wagner, is in South Carolina trying to get things in storage as their home was finally sold. Sue is not in the best of health, as she has been on a liver transplant list for quite a long time. Please keep the Calihan family in your prayers. This is such a special and loving family.

Buddy and Bernice Grubb of Jenkins, I hope things are getting a little better for you. The Grubb family was in the middle of remodeling their home when Buddy became ill again. Buddy is very influential in the Veterans Memorial Museum in Whitesburg.

Bernice and Buddy have invited me to stay with them when I venture back to the mountains. Oh how tempting it is to take them up on their offer as well as that of Mike and Marcia Caudill.

As restless as I get at night, I am more comfortable in a motel, and I dearly love staying at The Cavalry Campus. I wish there was a place I could feel safe and park my car, as I really like camping in my car.

I really appreciate the offers of inviting me to share their lovely homes. My niece Sue Hall gets aggravated because I don’t come to stay with her.

Sometimes I have to laugh to myself, to think how dumb I’ve been over the years. I could have traveled different states and never paid a cent for motels. Dover Cornett and his wife lived in Georgia, and used to invite my ex-husband Clayton and me to come.

Ann Calihan and I met Dover Cornett at a reunion at Whitesburg Motel, previously known as the Super 8. That led to several years of corresponding and instant friendship. I am thankful to say I have met so many wonderful people in my lifetime.

Saturday evening I ventured to a music event, The Tillers Second Annual Old Time String Breakers Ball at Southgate House Revival in Newport. The movie Mountain Minor was featured and about 10 bands were featured. Ma Crow & Co. was at the top of my list.

A square dance featured Rabbit Has String Band with extra pickers of Jericho Road Old Time Band along with a couple of musicians I couldn’t recognize. They did a great job playing music.

This is the largest square dance that I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Had I been able to dance, I would have been right in the midst. Thank goodness there was a few chairs for handicapped people to sit.

In the lounge where Ma Crow and several bands performed. It was standing room only. I managed to stand for an hour to listen to Ma & Co., then I got the heck out of there. After the square dance I made my way to the exit, knowing I was missing some really good music.

The Mountain Minor movie has been a sellout everywhere it has been shown. Once again as I sat and watched the movie for the fifth time, I wondered who in the audience had ever seen their parents or grandparents wash clothes on the board, plow a field or hoe corn.

I plainly don’t understand why Appalshop Theater isn’t interested in showing Mountain Minor. For those that would be interested, please contact Appalshop if you are interested in a DVD and type in Mountain Minor and it will give you details.

Sunrise Ridge band has been on the radio at WMMT in Whitesburg, WSGS in Hazard, and a station in Norton, Va. promoting their CD. This is a really good CD, so please contact Shawn Stamper or one of the band members to get a CD. Oh yes, I am getting one or two.

Carcassonne Community

Square dance will resume March 14, depending if the weather permits. Carcassonne Center has activities all through the year.

Campbell’s Branch Community Center has music Friday nights. Please go hungry as they have food before the music.

Hello Les and Pat Wagner and Polly Hasty. I hope to see you again soon.

It is time I brought this to a close as my ankle has been giving me problems for the last week or so. Thanks to Mike Oberst of the Tiller Band for holding my hand to steady me as I walked down the steps at the music event. I met Mike about 12 years ago when he was first learning to play the banjo. Now this young man has grown into a fine man with a great band, and is married and has two children.

Until next time, Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Rd., Harrison, Ohio 45030, email: Bluegrassmama4@aol.com.

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