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Easter Sunday services at the Souder Church of Christ were a wash-out, with the roads completely impassable due to high water in Spring Creek.
E.J. Hampton marked his 51st year in the ministry that day, so he and Faye decided to visit the Ava Church of Christ Sunday morning, where he sat back in a pew and relaxed during the worship service. It was the first time in all those years that E.J. did not preach on his anniversary.
That evening the Hamptons attended Barren Fork and enjoyed seeing old friends there.
The Souder church is planning a series of gospel meetings, beginning this Sunday, May 1. Bob Hampton will preach, with the service Sunday night at 6 p.m. and at 7 p.m. Monday through Wednesday nights.
The Hamptons enjoyed an Easter weekend get-together with several of E.J. siblings. Joining E.J. and Faye and Tom and Brenda Hampton of Brixey were Troy and Kathy Hampton and Kathy’s father, Harry Kline from Wichita, Almeda Wyman from Reuter, and Carma Frazier from Gainesville. Carma’s husband, Kenneth, is recovering from heart surgery and could not attend. They missed their brother, Bob, and wife Marsha Hampton, of Seneca, and sister Imogene and Bobby Grisham of Gainesville. Their time together featured lots of visiting and storytelling and ended with lunch at Hucklebuck’s at Ava on Saturday.
E.J. is the official weatherman for Souder, monitoring rain levels for the USDA. He reported 13.81 inches for this record-breaking rainy spell. In 1960, when they first moved to their farm, Agene Hawkins drilled the Hamptons a new well, and today (Tuesday) is the first time the water has been muddy in all those years.
Here at Almartha, we, too, keep a close watch on the rain gauge. More than 17 inches was emptied in the six-day period. It was ominous to see the creek rising to higher and higher levels, but we are thankful that folks in our neighborhood are sensible about not trying to cross flooded roads. One issue that caused concern on our farm was the lake that completely filled its banks and then spilled over. Thankfully, the dam was strong and held firm.
Mike and Glenda Mashek also were concerned with their dam and were very thankful when the rains subsided Monday evening. Their home faces a beautiful, large lake built many years ago by D.O. Allen. The present dam is the second, after Mr. Allen’s first dam gave way during another period of heavy rain many years ago. He must have learned from his first attempt because this dam has shown no signs of weakness.
Julia Taber received the happy news of the birth of a new great-grandson. William Andrew Gower was born Friday, April 22, to parents Jeffrey and Julie Gower of Springfield. Baby William is also welcomed by three-year-old sister Ella Grace and proud grandparents, Jim and Beth Peters of West Plains. This new little boy shares a name with his great-great-great-grandfather, William Mahan, who lived at Rockbridge and was sheriff of Ozark County in the late 1800s and also served several terms in the Missouri House of Representatives.
The Souder Relay for Life team held a successful bake sale at Walmart in Ava last Saturday, kicking off their fundraising efforts for 2011.
It seems that there are many folks facing serious illness right now. Best wishes to Gilbert Curtis who is recovering from heart bypass surgery, to Athel Jackson, Karen Gardner and Karen McKee who continue to battle cancer following surgery, to Lee Fox as he begins chemotherapy, to Karen Hall hospitalized in Mtn. Home for a spinal fluid leak, to my brother, Kim Ebrite, who has been in Baxter Regional for several days with lung problems, and to 1-year-old Blair Oxley, granddaughter of Theron and Vickie, who was hospitalized over the weekend with an infection and high fever.
Belated happy birthday wishes to Glen Plaster who celebrated a soggy birthday on Easter Sunday.