Up & Coming Weekly

August 22, 2017

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 5 of 32

AUGUST 23 - 29, 2017 UCW 5 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM We are all heading in the same direction, and we likely share fantasies of writing our own obituar- ies and attending our own funerals. I have heard of people who did, in fact, write their obituaries before the fact, hoping those they left behind would choose to publish it instead of their assessments of the dearly departed. Attending one's own funeral is obviously more problematic. However they come to be, we Southerners have left behind some doozy obits, real laugh-out-loud creations that make us wish we had known the deceased ourselves — or maybe not. And while Southerners are champs at obituary writing, there are some outliers from elsewhere. Here are excerpts from several of my favorites. William "Freddie" McCullough left us four years ago next month. His obit in the Savannah Morn- ing News opened with these words. "e man. e myth. e legend. Men wanted to be him. Women wanted to be with him. ... Freddie loved deep-fried Southern food smothered in cane syrup … Little Debbie cakes, 'Two and a Half Men' and Jim Beam. Not necessarily in that order. He hated vegetables and hypocrites. … Freddie was killed when he rushed into a burning orphanage to save a group of ador- able kids. Or maybe not. We all know he liked to tell stories." Fred- die's obituary was accompanied by a photograph of him in a white cowboy hat and a shirt unbuttoned almost to his waist and 72 more photos available online. According to her obituary in the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Ida Mae Russell Sills was born to unmarried parents. "In the 1930s, it was unthinkable for a child to be born to a single mother. … Her par- ents contracted (sic) Georgia Tann at the Tennessee Children's Home. Georgia, now famous for selling babies, found a couple who was willing to purchase the child." Ida's first marriage "was a three-ring cir- cus, engagement ring, wedding ring and suffering." She married again. "Albert wanted a son, Ida wanted a dog." Albert prevailed, and Lee was born, followed by Denise. "As a professional armchair consultant to the NBA, Ida was nick named Hoop Mama Two. Ball handling and dribbling was (sic) Ida Mae (sic) biggest weakness." Among her survivors is a grand- son, Josh. "Ida regrets not being here to influence his future children, but she will be watching." Antonia W. "Toni" Larroux died in Missouri, and for reasons I do not know, her obituary appeared in e New York Times. As a child, Toni contracted polio, "contributing to her unusually petite ankles and the nickname 'polio legs' given to her by her ex-husband. ... It should not be difficult to imagine the multiple rea- sons for their divorce 35+ years ago. Two children resulted from that marriage. ... Due to multiple, anonymous Mother's Day cards, which arrived each May, the children suspect there were other siblings but that has never been verified." Toni's family requested, "Any gifts in her honor should be made to the Hancock County Library Foundation (to the overdue book fund). Toni's obituary was ac- companied by 28 online photographs. A non-Southern obituary for Bill Eves from Kings- ton, Ontario, holds its own with almost any South- ern obit I have ever read. It begins, "On Saturday … Molson's stock price fell sharply on the news of Bill Eves's passing." My mother would have my hide for this, but it continues about the former school principal. "Perhaps most important to Bill was edu- cating people on the dangers of holding your farts. Sadly, he was unable to attain his lifelong goal of catching his beloved wife Judy 'cutting the cheese' or 'playing the bum trumpet' — which he likened to a mythical rarity like spotting Bigfoot or a unicorn." As per his wishes, a "Praise Bill Party" was held to celebrate his life. And perhaps my all-time favorite was Harry Stamps's obituary, which was written by his loving daughters and appeared in the Gulfport, Missis- sippi, Sun Herald. ey described their father as "a ladies' man, foodie, natty dresser and accom- plished traveler. Harry was locally sourcing his food years before chefs in California starting using cilan- tro and arugula (both of which he hated). ... He had a lifelong love affair with deviled eggs, Lane cakes, boiled peanuts, Vienna (Vi-e-na) sausages on saltines, … and buttermilk served in martini glasses garnished with cornbread." Harry was a member of a bacon of the month club, and "… his signature look every day was this: a plain pocketed T-shirt designed by the fashion house Fruit of the Loom, his black-label elastic waist shorts worn above the navel and sold exclusively at Sam's …" Harry's family asked "in honor of Harry that you write your congressman and ask for the repeal of Day Light Saving Time. Harry wanted everyone to get back on the Lord's Time." Given all this, I may begin work on my obituary today. I am a tad nervous about what the Precious Jewels might say on their own. Grand Exits by MARGARET DICKSON OPINION MARGARET DICKSON, Columnist. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomin- gweekly.com. (910) 484-6200. Bill Eves EVES, Bill - 1937-2014 - On Saturday February the 8th Molson's stock price fell sharply on the news of Bill Eves' passing. Senior executives at Molson called an emergency meeting to brace for the impact of the anticipated drop in sales. As a highly regarded principal for 33 years with the separate school board he created many fond memories for staff, students and families. After his retirement he pursued some of his many hobbies including cooking, carpentry, gardening and sending daily joke emails to family and friends. Perhaps most important to Bill was educating people on the dangers of holding in your farts. Sadly, he was unable to attain his life-long goal of catching his beloved wife Judy "cutting the cheese" or "playing the bum trumpet" -- which he likened to a mythical rarity like spotting Bigfoot or a unicorn. He also mastered the art of swearing while being splattered by grease cooking his famous wings. In fact, he wove tapestry of obscenities that still hangs over the Greater Kingston Area. Before passing Bill forged a 76 year trail of laughter, generosity, compassion, and wisdom. He will be greatly missed by his wife of 50 years Judy, his children Rob (Helen), Tim (Mary-Jo), Angela (Brent), Andrew (Stacey), and his grandchildren Noah, Macy, Teagan, Ella, Claire, Lucy and Will. While his whole family is deeply saddened by Bill's A non-Southern obituary for Bill Eves (above) from Kingston, Ontario, holds its own with almost any Southern obit. Photo credit: Yourlifemoments.ca Don't Be Just Another Face In The Crowd. 910.484.6200 Can help your business get noticed. 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