|Here is a poem I wrote in dedication to my Mom and Dad, Chester and Alma Starcher, who have both gone home to be with
They always made Christmas so special because being together with their family on holidays was the most important thing to
There's a special place the heart can go,
that seems miles and miles away.
and recalls to mind with tears and joy,
memories of yesterday.
Of Christmas joys in seasons past,
and happy days of old.
and holidays spent with Mom and Dad
oh, too many to be told.
How hard they'd work to deck our home,
with lights so bright and clear.
They shone for miles and lit the night,
and filled folks hearts with cheer.
Mom would wrap the gifts and bake and cook,
it made her happy as could be.
And you'd find my Dad, fast asleep,
right by the Christmas tree.
Oh, to have the time to tell each tale,
would take days and weeks and years.
But within our souls we relive them all,
in fondness and with tears.
But time can't take or steal away,
nor gold a purchase make,
remembrance's that lie locked behind,
our heart's memory gate...Submitted by Eva Mae Chapman
My 10 year old daughter wrote a Christmas story. She told me to tell you that a friend of hers (she wouldn't tell me who) is
not very happy and that she (my daughter) wrote this story for her....Thank you, Thresa Liles
A short story by Niki Liles
I only want one thing for Christmas. I want my family to get along. My brothers and sister fight. Mom and Dad do too.
Sometimes no one talks for hours at a time.
So Santa, I want you too make my family get along.
"Wow!", said Santa, as he read the letter. "This is the only letter that hasn't asked for toys." Santa walked into the kitchen
and showed the letter to Mrs. Claus. As she read the letter her eyes swelled up with tears.
The next morning Santa readied his reindeer and helped his elves load the sleigh. He was ready.
By 11 o'clock he was making his last stop...the Clashes.
He parked the sleigh and jumped down the chimney. He delivered the presents (even if they didn't ask for them). Then he
remembered the letter, so he put his finger on the side of his nose until he felt a funny feeling in his toes and said, "May this
family have the joy of Christmas in their hearts."
The next morning Katrina woke up to smiling faces and "Merry Christmases". As she opened her presents she thought,
"Wow! It really worked." THE END.
On December 1, 1987, Tom became very ill and was admitted to St. Joseph Hospital in Parkersburg. The doctors were very
concerned due to
his history. In 1970 he had underwent open heart surgery at Cleveland Clinic to replace two valves which were damaged due
fever as a child and bacterial endocarditis as an adult. Prior to the surgery Tom had spent eleven weeks in Cleveland, being
experimental drugs (now commonly used, Keflex). So seventeen years later this illness was a mystery. The doctors warned
me that he would
not survive without a miracle. My chore was to tell our two sons, John, 13 and Joey, 6, that the daddy that they adored might
not be home for
Christmas and that Christmas might be delayed for us unless that miracle happened.
On December 16, the doctors gave up all hope and decided to transfer Tom to Cleveland for evaluation. In the middle of a
huge snow storm
with me traveling with Tom in the back of a small truck style, four wheel drive ambulance, two drivers and a paramedic we
headed to Cleveland.
He remained critically ill, although within two hours of arrival, the Clinic doctors diagnosed Tom with adult onset rheumatic
fever, one of
twenty eight cases in the nation.
After a few days, I came home, There was nothing more that I could do for Tom and we both agreed that John and Joey
needed me at home.
As I was driving home that Sunday night, it was miserable, rainy, cold and foggy, Both outside the car and inside my heart
there was a damp
misery. We still did not know if Tom would live, and I practiced all the way home what I would say to the boys. This was not
the time for
happiness and cheer. I watched the twinkling lights on houses as I drove by knowing that our house stood without any
certainly no cheer.
When I picked up the boys at our friend's home, Joey asked if we could put up our Christmas tree. With quiet tears, I tried to
tell him I was
tired, cold, and maybe we could do it after school the next day. He kept insisting that we had to put up a tree. Finally his
brother who was
sensitive to what I was feeling, told him to be quiet and bitterly said "We are not going to have a tree this year, dad is not going
to be with us
and so there won't be any Christmas." At that point we were in the house and I sat in the middle of our hall crying with both
boys on my lap
sobbing. Joey looked up at me and said "Mom, I prayed for daddy to get better, if we put up a tree he will come home to see
it! We have to
have Christmas.!!" So at 8:30 on that cold, rainy, miserable night we set out to find a tree. The only place I knew that had
trees was towards
Arnoldsburg, so we drove there. The first house where we usually bought a tree had none in the yard. I was about to pull
away when the
owner came to the door and told us to try Paul Bush, he had trees. After getting directions we went to see Mr. Bush. It was
9 PM by that time
and I was not any more convinced than before that we would find a tree, but I couldn't say no to Joey or John, who by this
time was showing a
little more enthusiasm.
We stopped at the Bush home but it was dark and I could not see any trees in his yard. Mr. Bush had seen the lights of the
car and came to
the door as I was trying to explain to Joey that we would have to wait. Joey jumped out of the car, ran to Mr. Bush and said
"Mister, my daddy
is very sick, we need a tree so that he can get better and come home." I apologized and told him we would come back on
Monday, but he
looked down at Joey and said " No, this boy needs his tree tonight. We will have to go cut one."
So we went to the field, climbed a mountain, slipping and sliding all the way. At one point my shoe got sucked off in the mud,
but with tears
falling as heavy as the rain we cut the first tree we could hold on to. I don't remember if we paid Mr. Bush for that tree but he
has always been
in our prayers and thoughts at Christmas.
We came home and tried to put the tree in the stand, I had never done this before, so it was the first time we had any fun or
laughed in many
days. John sawed the bottom while Joey and I held the tree. We brought the tree in the house and I thought it was the ugliest
tree I had ever
seen, but I kept those thoughts to myself. We tied it to the wall (it wouldn't stand in the tree stand by itself) and went to bed.
Joey the decorations could wait, it was the tree that was important.
We made arrangements to go to Cleveland on Christmas eve. Santa visited us early, so we loaded up the car with packages
and after picking
up Grandma Justice, we headed North. After getting settled in the hotel close to the hospital, John and I went to see Tom. He
was barely able
to talk due to weakness. While we were there, Joey and his grandma saw red lights landing on the hospital and he was sure it
was Santa. (
Helicopters look a lot like Santa to a six year old).
On December 30, the doctors thought it might do Tom good to come home for a while. They told us he would be weak for a
long time, but the
hospital was depressing for him. So with the help of Pastor Brent And Nancy Franco, John and Roanna Stump and some
great state troopers
in Ohio, Tom came home again, in a snow storm.
Joey was ecstatic, his daddy came home to see the tree. He reminded John and I many times that "prayers and trees do bring
Although Tom only got to stay for two nights before returning to Cleveland, he did get home for "Christmas".
In 1990 he had surgery to replace the valves which had worn out and he continues to do well. He is still a wonderful husband,
loving father, a
strong example to his sons and others of Jesus' love and testimony to the healing power of God through a child's prayer and
faith at Christmas
God Bless you all, have a great Christmas, I know we will...
Just wanted to wish all our Friends and Family a Very Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year. Remember who and
this season is about. Most of all give the best gift of all and it doesn't cost a cent. Give that person whom you meet a SMILE,
just might get one in return. Merry Christmas to All...
The J.P. Morrison Family
TO WV "ALMOST HEAVEN"
AND WHAT IT GAVE TO ALL US SEVEN
The "Powells, The "Houchins" The "Allens"
We all lived there
And how I can still remember my grandparents there
So for all who remain in the hills down there
You're not forgotten by the Buckeyes up here
Things may have changed from way back then
But the memories remain of my next of kin
So Merry Christmas and the Hur Herald too
For you really don't know or have a clue
How many hearts you fill with joy
So many memories with all your stories
God Bless America our beautiful land
And WV will remain my biggest fan
Janet (Powell) Savich, Akron, Ohio