I wish every little boy could …
I wish every little boy could have had a homemade rubber gun, a sling shot, in his backpocket and a rubber innertube to take down to the river. Kids don't spin tops any more, shoot marbles til your knuckles are sore or get down in the dirt and play mumble-peg with your favorite pocketknife.
They say they can Yo-Yo, but I've never seen one of them "Walk the Dog," "Go Around the World" or even "Rock the Baby'' oh, well.
I wish every little boy could have had as much fun as we did without really getting into trouble. We did shoot out some street lights with our BB guns and maybe jump off the Yazoo and Tallahatchie bridges and maybe even soaped a few windows on Halloween.
I must confess I did get a licking when I was a batboy for the Greenwood Dodgers. They had a day game about 2:30 in the afternoon. I had the choice of delivering my Commonwealth papers or going to the ball game.
I don't know what made me throw all those papers in the Yazoo River, but if I had to do it over again, that's one ball game I would miss. I guess that was the worst whipping Uncle Billie (my daddy) ever gave me. Try peddling a bicycle standing up while you deliver 100 newspapers.
I wish every little boy could have a neighborhood like I had, where he could go around and check and see what Gina had for dessert or Grandmother Smith, or Aunt Betsy or Mrs. Gregory (loved her chocolate pie). Speaking of Mrs. Gregory, she had a son named Tommy about ten years older than me. Tommy Gregory married "the girl of my dreams"; her name was "Baby-girl Petty". She was drum majorette of the Greenwood High School Band. I saw her and Tommy a few years ago and she's still as pretty as she was back then.
I wish every little boy could have had teachers like Mrs. Eggleston, Mrs. Tubbs, Mrs. Marion and Mrs. Sally Montgomery. I would have to say Mrs. Montgomery had more influence on my life than anyone except my parents.
I wish every little boy could have three big brothers, like I did. We've lost our oldest brother, Frank Hart, but his memory will live on forever. He touched more lives than anyone I know, other than our heavenly Father and the Reverend Billy Graham (a person he admired greatly).
I love my two brothers. Bobby and Whit more everyday that I live. They all three took very good care of their "little brother." We may have our differences and even arguments, but we always end our meetings and phone calls with, "I Love You."
I wish every little boy when he grows up could find a wife like my better half, Jane. I'll say like Frank Hart said one time; I don't know why Jane loves me and has stayed with me all these years, but you could bet I'm not going to question it.
Our families were a lot alike, and she has three sisters, still living, that I love very much. Jane's mother, we called "Granny," taught her children to love God and be good to your neighbors. They all learned their lessons well.
In closing, I wish every little boy could have a mother and daddy like I had. Mama and Daddy brought us up in a Christian home and taught us the difference in right and wrong.
My lovely wife, Jane, and I have tried to do the same with our four boys.
I only wish I could see Uncle Billie and Aunt Edna one more time, so I could put my arms around them and tell them how much I really loved them.
Eddie Smith, owner of radio station WMOX, 1010 AM, lives in Meridian.