Saturday, May 31, 2008

Five AWONers and three spouses gathered for lunch at the Birmingham home of Ginny and Bill Bugg.  AWON member Phoebe Palmer and her husband Roy drove down from Centre, Alabama, bringing with them Joyce Freeman McKee of Collinsville. Col. Jim Benson, president of Marion Military Academy, drove up from Perry County with his wife, Mary. James White came all the way from Warner-Robbins, Georgia. Several people brought photos of their fathers, and notebooks full of letters and other memorabilia. Conversation around the lunch table turned to our childhoods, and how much we all have in common. We ended the gathering feeling grateful for a group of friends who understand what it is like to grow up without a father.

There was plenty of good non-AWON talk as well. In true Southern tradition, the talk eventually turned to food and cooking. James told how to make excellent hushpuppies by adding a bit of jalapeno pepper, and how to cook rattlesnake meat. Another popular topic was how to make proper Southern cornbread (use coarse meal, very little flour, and do NOT add sugar).

Lois Wohlers of Monroeville (home of Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird) caught bronchitis from a grandchild and was unable to join us.

While we were at the table, we called Ann Mix and all five Awoners had a chance to speak with her and thank her for her part in founding AWON.

Front row, Joyce Freeman McKee, Collinsville; Phoebe Palmer, Centre; Mary Benson, Marion;
Ginny Bugg, Birmingham. Back row, James White, Warner-Robbins, Georgia;
Roy Palmer, Centre; Jim Benson, Marion; Bill Bugg, Birmingham.


Photos and Text submitted by and thanks to Ginny Bugg