Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Big D Plus

A couple of months ago I received a call from Denise Jernigan Ziegler, who was raised in Carthage but has made her career and marriage in Dallas. I coached Denise on summer softball teams (three of my daughters played, so I coached eleven seasons of recreational softball). Later Denise was a student in my Texas and U.S. history classes at Panola College. So when she asked me to speak at a meeting of the Chi Omega Alumnae of Dallas, I was happy to come. My daughter Berri was a Chi Omega member at Texas A&M University-Commerce, and later she was a Chi Omega advisor at TAMUC (and it was pointed out to me at the meeting that I therefore am a Chi O Dad). Berri agreed to attend the meeting with me, and to take photos for this blog.

With Jana Beth Eidson and President Nancy Williams
The meeting was held on Monday evening, October 10, at the Highland Park residence of Jana Beth Eidson. Berri and I arrived a bit early, and we were greeted most cordially by the hostess, by Chapter President Nancy Williams, and by other members. I was pleased to see Connie Manly Dragolich, a former student of mine in an early admission class of Panola College held at Marshall High School in 1981-82. Connie was one of a group of students who arranged a tour for our class of the plantation house near Karnack where Lady Bird Johnson was born. The house is the oldest brick residence in Harrison County, and we were treated to an Old South lunch during our tour.

With former student Connie Manly Dragolich

A crowd of close to 50 women attended the Chi Omega event, and we had a delightful time enjoying refreshments and socializing for half an hour beforehand. My program was about "Sam Houston's Three Wives," and the ladies were quite responsive to Sam's Soap Opera.


With Denise Jernigan Ziegler and her mother, Debbie Jernigan

Being introduced by Denise

I drove to Dallas earlier in the day, because Berri and I wanted to tour the George W. Bush Presidential Museum, which is located only a short drive from the home of Jana Beth Eidson. Neither Berri nor I had ever visited this impressive facility, and we met at the Visitor Parking Lot. The displays were state-of-the-art, and the efforts of the staff on our behalf were most helpful. Berri, whose second major was history, and I spent nearly two hours before closing time, and we thoroughly enjoyed our visit. We had time for dinner before going to the meeting.

Seated in the Oval Office

At the entrance

A few days before traveling to Dallas I addressed a weekly meeting of the Carthage Rotary Club. I was invited by Carson Joines, a longtime mayor of Carthage and a former football player at Panola County Junior College. The Rotarians meet every Friday on the Panola College campus, and it's always a pleasure to participate in one of their lunch sessions. A sizeable crowd included a strong contingent of women - indeed the club president is Cindy Deloney, Carthage Main Street Manager. In my presentation I tried to put a historical perspective on some of the most troublesome political controversies that roil our society today, emphasizing that we don't understand who we are until we know who we were.  

With Carson Joines and President Cindy Deloney


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