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A letter from Texas to Champion@getgoin.net asks, “What’s going on with Esther Wrinkles? We haven’t read anything about her for a couple of weeks. We have never been to Champion, but we feel like we know this lady. Please send her our best wishes.” Champions join their distant friends in extending their best thoughts and prayers to Esther who has been having serious health problems of late. Her quilts and pies are legendary and those who have enjoyed the pleasure of her friendship these many years are struggling to find the right words to tell Esther how much she is loved and appreciated—an original, a real genuine Champion.
Another letter to the email box complained that there was no song in the article last week. Sometimes the whole article does not make the editorial cut because of content or most usually because of length. If you think you are missing something look into the archives at www.championnews.us to see the unabridged version. As for the song, last week music lovers were reminded of Roger Miller who died at the young age of 56 back in the 1980’s. He was known for some great songs like, “Dang Me” and “You Can’t Roller-skate in a Buffalo Herd.” The one most favored by some Champions is “Walking in the Sunshine, Sing a Little Sunshine Song.” It goes on to say to put a smile upon your face as if there’s nothing wrong. That sentiment echoes one made often to Champion’s tinkerer- in-chief particularly on his birthday: “If you act like you are having a good time, pretty soon you will forget that you are acting and you will really be having a good time!” Reckon?
More information about the 12-12-12 picture has come from Laine Sutherland. “I read your latest article with interest. Regarding Lester Sutherland being in the Denlow, 12-12-12 photograph, I can authoritatively state that the man standing next to Lola Proctor was not Lester Sutherland. I am attaching a photo of Lester for your comparison. Lester was “sweet” on Lola but he was drafted Aug. 13, 1917 and died December 3, 1917 in boot camp at Camp Funston, Fort Riley, Kansas, of measles and pneumonia. His mother, Neta Arada and his sister, Mary Ethel, traveled to Fort Funston when they received word he was ill. His mother asked him if he recognized her; he answered, “Certainly” and died. He died just 20 minutes after their arrival. Lester was in Battery “C” 342ND Field Artillery, and was quickly promoted to “B” Troop Military Police.” The portrait is of a clear eyed resolute young man, dressed in the fashion of the day with the visage of the serious demeanor of the time. While his exact age is not evident, he has the look of a mature, competent, confident individual of the sort that were bred and raised in Champion during that era. Laine has more pictures to share. Champion! Share your pictures at Champion@getgoin.net or at Champion Items, Rt. 2 Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717. Look at some great ones at www.championnews.us . Check out the extensive collection at The Douglas County Museum and Historical Society on facebook or on East Washington Avenue in Ava on Saturdays from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
There is an old song that goes, “My life’s all trouble. I cannot be happy. When I open my mouth, she sticks in her jaw. I’d rather be sent off to jail or to congress than to spend all my life with my mother-in-law!” This is applicable here only in that Mary Beth Shannon is soon slated to be the Mother of the Bride. She is not to expect such rough treatment from her future son-in-law as the old song suggests, because her brilliant daughter has proven to be level headed and mature in all important matters. On Thursday Mary Beth has a birthday and that will invite another more appropriate song. On Friday Champions can sing that song to their favorite merchant who has the bloom of youth about her yet.
The Skyline VFD Auxiliary had its meeting at Henson’s Grocery and Gas on the Eighth of January (Elvis’s birthday and Rachel Evans, as well). They are getting ready for their annual chili supper. President, Betty Dye, has produced a stunning queen sized quilt for the occasion, which is now on display at the store. It has a chocolate brown lining and the bold geometric pattern is of her own design and superbly executed. It was quilted by the nice folks at Jernigan’s over on the South side of the square in Ava. The work is very nice and the quilt will be a treasure for the winner. The lineup for the entertainment at the chili super is excellent again this year. The Pocket Hollow Band and David Richardson’s Whetstone will be there. The EMT Gang and Calvary Mountain Bluegrass will also perform. The Pride and Joy Cloggers will entertain between bands with a program of precision dancing that is sure to delight. Look for flyers to be going up around the area to get additional details about the event that always comes just in time to cure the late winter doldrums—cabin fever. The next meeting of the Auxiliary will be at 6:30 on Tuesday, February 12th. Anyone in the Skyline Fire District is welcome to attend, to join up, and to participate in the hard work that makes this one of the hallmark happenings in the area. Come down to the Meeting Room at the Historic Emporium over on the North side of the Square in Downtown Champion. February 12th—just two days before Valentines’ Day.
An informed person says that singing causes the brain to release endorphins that help the immune system fight off disease, infection and depression. “They took all the trees, and put em in a tree museum. And they charged the people a dollar and a half to see them. Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you got till it’s gone. They paved paradise, and put up a parking lot.” So the total amalgam of what everyone knew about Dave Miller left everyone surprised in some sweet way. Mercurial he was and he is much missed by many who wish they had the chance to know him more. Adios! Amigo!
Fight the early winter doldrums with a nice cup of Joe and some friendly visiting with colorful locals at Henson’s Downtown G & G on the North Side of the Square on the banks of Old Fox Creek, at the bottom of several hills and the junction of a number of gravel roads and one slick piece of pavement. You’ll be in Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!