This writer had an interesting privilege last week to attend a celebration of the completion of the Helen Keller/Annie Sullivan statue. A reception and ceremony were held at the B.B. Comer Library in Sylacauga.
Almost 200 people of all ages attended the event — which featured comments by Tracey Thomas, the director of the library; Summer Newman Ernest, a board member of the Sylacauga Marble Festival (an event held each April); Rene Higgins, president of the Arts Council (the umbrella organization under which the festival works); Hon. Jim Heigl, mayor of Sylacauga; Dr. Ted Spears, chair of the Marble Festival; Glenn Sisk, CEO of the Coosa Valley Medical Center (on the grounds of which the Keller/ Sullivan statue was created — in a “cage,” in fact); Ron Seybold, coordinator of the Alabama Lions Centennial Celebration; and Glenn Winter, chaplain of the medical center.
The main speech — and a video of the statue’s design and sculpting — was presented by the sculptor Craigger Browne. He noted that he wanted to show the joy of Miss Helen as she was at the well with Miss Annie. Thus — the title of the statue was “The Warmth of Enlightenment.” He stated that he wanted the many children who would visit Ivy Green and see the statue to be able to experience the sensation that Miss Helen felt as the water poured over her hand. Sooo — sculptor Browne said that he created an opening just above the hands of Miss Annie and Miss Helen — in order to allow youngsters to feel the flow of water over their hands (remember-
by Anne Shumaker