Panola College Alumni:

Written by Teresa Beasley.

Joining the Helping Hands and Hearts Responding to Hurricane Harvey

The last two weeks of August 2017 will be forever imprinted on the hearts and minds of all Texans, including Panola County citizens. On August 16, a tropical storm swirled onto weather radar. Fifteen days later, the sun broke through the clouds, and people on the Texas Gulf Coast began to comprehend the magnitude of destruction wreaked by Hurricane Harvey.

After intensifying in the Gulf for nine days, Hurricane Harvey made landfall at Port Aransas on Friday, August 25. Instead of dissipating over land, Harvey moved back out over the Gulf, picking up strength, and hit the Houston area hard over that weekend. By Sunday, August 27, the Texas Gulf Coast was inundated by 50 to 65 inches of rainfall. All weekend, volunteers worked alongside Coast Guard, National Guard, law enforcement, fire fighters, and first responders to locate and rescue stranded citizens trapped by the incredible flooding.

Family Traditions:

Written by Shelbye Porter Almeida.

Holidays with Mom

As far back as I can remember, my family has spent Thanksgiving and Christmas at Mom and Pop’s house. My parents, my sister, aunt, uncle, and cousins packed the living room surrounded by mountains of presents. The table was filled from one end to the other with a feast fit for royalty. The holidays with my family are some of my most cherished childhood memories. The years have gone by. and now I can see that same joy in my children’s eyes. I began to wonder how those traditions were formed over the years. My bi-monthly Crossroads article quickly became an opportunity for me to dive into my rich family history.

Chris and Katie Rae Kugler

Written by Kay Hubbard.

A Different Kind of Hurricane Evacuation Ending in a Joyous Birth

Through the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, we watched with amazement these heroic rescues of people trapped in homes and nursing homes by our local friends and neighbors. We saw Panola County pour out their hearts and empty their wallets to offer assistance to evacuees and provide food and other necessities to the evacuees, rescuers, and others affected by the storm.

Making a List and Checking It Twice

Written by Gina Sue Bradley.

Some Gift Ideas from Some Panola County Men

Visiting with a friend recently, I commented how easy it is to find a range of gifts for women. True, we like things that sparkle and lots of shoes, but we also appreciate anything fragrant or thoughtful. However, it seems if you want to surprise a man with something he really wants, the budget must accommodate thousands of dollars in technology or a $40,000 classic muscle car. My friend laughed at that knowingly and said her husband had just asked for a bull dozer!

But maybe I’m being too rash. My husband does love fun dress socks, any tool—no matter the shape or size—or a steak on the grill. Carthage resident and proud grandfather Joe Huff says he would be happy to open up some personalized golf balls! He would also appreciate a new shotgun or a graph for his bass boat.

Becky Eubank and Frances Frasier:

Written by Kay Hubbard.

Sharing Memories of a Precious Gift

Carthage resident Becky Eubank, daughter of retired Northside Christian Center pastor Billy Shoffner and his wife Betty, recently received a very special phone call from her friend Frances Hopkins Frasier, and a subsequent gift from “Mrs. Frances” that is one of the most meaningful of her life. The two ladies share their memories of the times and circumstances surrounding the origins of the very special gift.

Pat Smith and Friends

Written by Kay Hubbard.

Authentic Harvey Superheros

Being a prodigious organizer, a tireless worker, and a strong-willed, determined advocate for people in need during a disaster is nothing new for Carthage resident Pat Smith. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, she housed, fed, and took care of every conceivable need for 30 evacuees for six weeks, some at her church, some at her home, and some at her lakehouse. She also went to Moore, Oklahoma in 2013 to offer assistance after a massive tornado devastated the entire community, as well as to Van, Texas after last year’s destruction there.

James 'Bubba' Hudson and 'Music in Recovery'

Written by Kay Hubbard.

Out of the Rat Race and Into His Calling

Carthage and Panola County have been the homeplace of many amazing musicians through the years, and James “Bubba” Hudson is certainly one of them. Bubba moved with his mother, Mildred Ann, and his seven brothers and sisters to Carthage from Crockett when he was in fifth grade. His father, James Clyde Hudson, had been killed in a freak auto accident when he was only nine months old. “My mother never remarried,” Bubba says, “raising all eight children by herself with very few resources. She worked as a nurse's aide at the hospital in Carthage for many years.”

Panola College Music Department's Christmas in Carthage

Written by Kay Hubbard.

"Let Us Have Music for Christmas!"

Music at Christmas! What would the season possibly be like without it? Countless poets, composers, and writers have spoken eloquently of the connection between this holy season of joy, giving, and celebration, and its beloved music.

For example, “Let us have music for Christmas…Sound the trumpet of joy and rebirth; Let each of us try, with a song in our hearts, to bring peace to men on earth.” - Mildred L. Jarrell

There is a Christmas song upon the air; There is a joy innate within the heart; An inner sense of peace, a holy light illumines life and sets these days apart.” - Edna Greene Hines