A few days ago, I went as a guest of the Alabama Folklife Association with other friends to the installation of Kathryn Tucker Windham to the Alabama Women’s Hall of Fame at Judson College. First of all, what an honor to be there among all those other sons and daughters of Alabama.
In fact, when there was a little technical glitch at the very beginning of the event, Dr. David Potts, the President at Judson, got up and did this impromptu about what does this (stellar) woman have to do with this (also stellar woman) with this (you guessed it) woman and it must have gone on for three or four minutes, rattling off astrophysicists with CEOs and back and forth and back and forth and of course what did they all have in common? Judson. Which I think probably made us all wish we had been daughters of Judson.
But what we were all happy to have been was connected in some way with the great Kathryn Tucker Windham. I have a few little stories (my favorite being once when she introduced herself to me and I explained sweetly that ohmygosh, it’s so sweet you would do that when every second grader in Alabama knows who you are). No one that’s ever graced the cover of any checkout aisle magazine has mattered one whit to me: KTW was/is my kind of celebrity.
We took Shug to meet her when he was a baby, in 2008.
We all laughed when Norton Dill got up and spoke about doing a documentary on her, and how frankly hilarious and touching her funeral was. It was so emotional when Dilcy and Ben, her children, came up to unveil her memorial plaque for the Hall of Fame. And next, when we all sang Alabama together, you know me. I cried.
Although I do have to break and take a moment here and mention that in middle school, when we all sang Alabama at every school assembly, we only did the first verse and it never dawned on me that in the second verse the lyrics go ‘Goodlier than the land that Moses climbed lone Nebo’s Mount to see…’.
(Alabama is even better than when Moses went atop Mount Nebo to see the Land of Israel?)
Reminded me of how the last thing said at my wedding was a pronouncement of marriage according to the Laws of Moses and the State of Alabama. Which sounded funny.
One last little treat: the luncheon, served on Judson’s own Staffordshire:
Loved being there with ‘my people’ — seeing friends from all over the state and making new ones — and I don’t want to ever miss another AWHoF installation.
I’m in the middle of filling out the form to nominate someone for next time: Miss Alice. Yes, yes, yes.