Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Proud to Be One of Dr. Whatley's Babies
As hopefully all of you know by now I have great memories of growing up in Reynolds, Ga. As I have said thousands of times to thousands of folks in many different places, I wouldn’t take a million dollars for growing up in Reynolds. And I wouldn’t.
The thing that made Reynolds so special to me during my formative years was the people who lived there. I have thoroughly enjoyed writing about some of those folks in my book and also here on this blog. And I’m not done. Not only do I want others to know about the people who made up this special community but I want my kids and someday my grandkids and their grandkids to know and appreciate the people I knew. My purpose is in a way a selfish one. Maybe when they know them, they will know a little more about me. And in knowing more about me, maybe my kids, grandkids and great grandkids will know more about themselves.
One of those folks I have written about and spoken about I suppose in every speech I have ever given is Dr. Ed Whatley. He was not only my doctor but he was my next door neighbor. There is no doubt he was one of the most respected folks that ever lived in Reynolds. Not only did he work all hours of the night tending to the sick in at least two counties, but he was involved in all aspects of the community. And trust me he was loved and is loved by everyone.
On Friday April 25 at 6PM, Dr. Whatley will be honored in the city park in Reynolds to kick off the Georgia Strawberry Festival. And if there has ever been anybody who should be honored in Reynolds it would be him. Dr. Whatley now lives in an assisted living facility in Rome, GA which is about 3 hours away. He and his family will be coming home for this special occasion. I am looking forward to being there and extremely honored to have been asked to take part in the ceremony on that Friday night.
Dr. Whatley delivered about 2,000 babies during his almost 50 years of service to the people of Reynolds and the surrounding communities. On Saturday of the Strawberry Festival, Dr. Whatley will be the Grand Marshall in the parade and they have asked Dr. Whatley’s babies to walk in the parade with him. In fact they are selling “I’m Dr. Whatley’s Baby” tee shirts.
For those who have Reynolds roots, this would be a good weekend to come to Reynolds. If you are one of Dr. Whatley’s babies, it would be a great weekend to come to Reynolds. Or if you just want to meet a great man who spent his entire life serving other folks, this is your chance.
I am looking forward to being in Reynolds as the people of Reynolds honor a man who gave so much to this community. I am also very proud to be one of Dr. Whatley’s babies.