Wil­born: a true gen­tle­man

The Covington News - - OPINION - TINA LUNSFORD Guest colum­nist

Charles Wil­born, such a gen­tle­men and a man who al­ways had en­cour­ag­ing words!

I moved to New­ton County in 1987 to launch a new busi­ness ven­ture. The Cov­ing­ton Shop­per was formed that year, as were nu­mer­ous friend­ships. Join­ing the Cham­ber of Com­merce was one of our first steps to meet­ing new folks in Cov­ing­ton: to name a few, Dick James, Danny Stone, Bill Hardy, Betty Shaw, Davis Mor­gan, Janet Good­man, and Mr. Charles Wil­born!

Charles al­ways had a smile on his face and reached for your hand to shake. In his slow South­ern drawl, he would say, “HEY, how you do­ing?” Such a pleas­ant per­son to al­ways meet on the streets of Cov­ing­ton!

Our most re­cent meet­ing just hap­pened to be at Dr. Ja­coby’s of­fice on June 26. It was a packed of­fice that af­ter­noon, and there sat Charles. Robert and I im­me­di­ately started chat­ting with him. He told us about his great-grand­son who lived with him, and how he would fix his great-grand­son’s lunch each morn­ing. You could tell he was so proud of his fam­ily.

He was ex­cited about go­ing back to teach this year. He shared recipes, and was giv­ing me some cook­ing tips. He told me how his mama taught him to iron his clothes, which he be­lieved in do­ing right up to his last day.

It just so hap­pened that my brother, Pas­tor Stacey Carver, who lives in Mor- gan County, and his wife, Sophia, were also hav­ing eye ex­ams that day.

I in­tro­duced Stacey and Sophia to Charles, and the sto­ries be­gan! Charles be­gan to tell him about his con­nec­tion with Mor­gan County and nam­ing some of his kin­folk. My brother was very fa­mil­iar with them, so Charles gave him a busi­ness card to share with them, when he next saw his Madi­son cousins.

He quoted sev­eral scrip­tures from the Bi­ble that day, which is al­ways such com­fort, es­pe­cially when you are in a doc­tor’s of­fice.

We laughed so much that day at so many dif­fer­ent sto­ries we each shared. One in­volved a long-run­ning joke be­tween Robert & Charles. One day, at the lo­cal post of­fice, Robert told Charles a story which goes as fol­lows: God was wor­ried about the peo­ple on Earth, so he sent an an­gel down to check on ev­ery­thing. The an­gel went back and told God what he saw. He said, “Half the peo­ple are be­ing good, and the other half are be­ing bad, and the bad peo­ple are try­ing to con­vert the good peo­ple over.”

So God said, “I don’t be­lieve you saw ev­ery­thing right, so I am go­ing to send two an­gels down this time.”

Sure enough, two an­gels came down, and they went back and told God: “It’s just like the first an­gel said. Half the peo­ple are be­ing good, and the other half are be­ing bad, and the bad peo­ple are try­ing to con­vert the good peo­ple over. So God sat back in his big chair and thought for a minute.”

He said, “I am go­ing to re­ward all the good peo­ple on Earth, I am go­ing to send them a let­ter.”

Robert looked at Charles, who was re­ally into this mes­sage, and asked, “Charles, do you know what the let­ter said, and Charles said “NO!”

Robert said, “Charles, you didn’t get one did you?” and he laughed, and laughed, and laughed. So from that point on, ev­ery time Robert saw Charles, he would ask him, “Did you get a let­ter yet?”

Well yes­ter­day, Charles got his let­ter, and I am sure it read: “Wel­come Home, Charles Wil­born. Well done, my good and faith­ful ser­vant.”

We ended our con­ver­sa­tions that day, just a few weeks ago, laugh­ing at an­other true story Charles was telling us, as we were all just about the last peo­ple to leave the of­fice. If we had known that it would be our last time to see, visit, share sto­ries, and laugh with Charles, we would have taken him out to eat, talked and laughed longer.

How­ever, the tim­ing of death is un­known to man, so we should never take for granted that our fam­ily and friends will be here to­mor­row.

So once again, may this be a les­son learned, LOVE IN THE MO­MENT WHILE WE STILL CAN!

sub­mit­ted photo /The Cov­ing­ton News

Among his many con­tri­bu­tions to Cov­ing­ton, Charles Wil­born was also a cloth­ing sales­man on the square in May 1983.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.