By Bob Weaver 2024

Hur storekeeper Harley Huntington McCoy, who never married, and his family faced many struggles, upon walking to his store in the 1940s and 1950s, I never heard him complain. The store had a 100 year run.

He and his siblngs had a work gene that never slowed down. After graduating from Calhoun County High School in the 1920s as valedictorian, Harley followed his dream to become a doctor at West Virginia University, dropping out after participating in property crimes, likely to raise money for his cash strapped famly. He then returned to Hur to run the families longstanding country store, his dream unfulfilled,

Likely during the coming of the Great Depression, late at night he broke into the adjacent store and post office operated by Lizzie Reynolds. Lizzie woke up to sounds in the downstairs emporium, to call her arch enemy Will Sturm, who operated the third store in the village.

Sturm got his shotgun and walked across the road, catching Harley inside the store and post office. Police were called and he was arrested on burglary charges and breaking into a US Post Office, a federal offense. He was released on bond.

He went to the wealthy Hardman family on Barnes Run, seeking advice. Hardman came up with a plan, sending him down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers to New Orleans to be placed as a worker on a tramp steamer to float around the world, out of sight, out of mind.

Hardman then visited Lizzie Reynolds offering her a sum of money if she would change her story. She did, saying he was really breaking into the building to seek time with the hired girl. It worked.

Harley went on to become a Christian and sang in a Calhoun gospel quartet for many years until his death.