When Trace Adkins visited the Neshoba County Fair this summer, he was touring the United States filming ten segments of a TV show entitled "Great American Heroes."

At the Fair, he recognized Sandi Lewis, Site Coordinator of Christian Women's Job Corps, Jay Stokes of Break-a-Way Outdoors, and Courtney Kemp representing Deep Water Horizon Survivor Family members, as "Great American Heroes" in our area.

The show will be shown for the first time tonight, Wednesday, Nov. 21, at seven o'clock on TV Channel Great American Country (GAC).

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Shirley Cowan came all the way from North Carolina to attend something of which her friend, Janice Payne, was not in charge.

This one slipped up on Janice, our Alderman-at-Large, who has the reputation, among those who know her best, as being a very much in-charge person.

When Uhl asked Janice to attend an anniversary party at The Depot for one of his co-workers, Saturday, Oct. 27, Janice did the proper thing and shopped for the perfect anniversary card.

As Janice and Uhl entered The Depot, the old building shook and rumbled with shouts of "Happy Birthday, Janice!"

Did you ever think Janice would lose her composure!

Her pastor at Trinity Baptist Church, Mike Carr, who was attending with his wife, Donna, said he had never heard anyone scream quite so loudly!

The party, which was a complete surprise to Janice, had been "railroaded" by her children, Paul, Cindy, Baileigh and Landry Payne, and her sister, Doris Smith Vowell, and Carl.

The depot was packed, not with passengers waiting to board "The Midnight Train to Georgia" or "The Chattanooga Choo Choo," but with kinfolk from Mississippi, Louisiana, North Carolina, Georgia, Arkansas and South Carolina.

A very special guest was Janice and Doris' sole surviving aunt, 87-year-old Martha Saxon Smith, who came all the way from Greenville, S.C. to attend Janice's party.

Other family members in attendance were Janice's nieces, Reinette Foster and Clint of Natchitoches, La., Jan and Kenny Hillman of Philadelphia, and her nephew, Brad Hillman and Conner and Hallie of Madison. Sisters-in-law Yvonne (Harold) Smith, Jo Walters and Bobby, Weegie Coker, Rhonda Thomas and Yvonne Cheatham, and brother-in-law Hoyt Payne and Margie, all from Philadelphia.

Cousins included Lynn Smith Brown of Anderson, S.C., Bobby McDaniel and Carlotta, and Abby Jim Payne of Philadelphia, Phillip Williams and Mary, and Donald Williams and Katherine of Kosciusko, Shirley Faulkner and Dempsey of Columbus, Jerry Spires and Joyce of Clinton, Sam Winstead and Rosie of Little, Rock, Ark., and Pam Wilcher of Carthage.

Also attending from Trinity Baptist Church were Minister of Youth, Jason Calvin, Hailey, Avery and Audrey, and Minister of Music, Kinsey Goldman. Extended family members included Lee and Shirley Cowan of Statesville, N.C., Terry Cowan Johnston of Jefferson, Ga. and Leann Cowan of Gastonia, N.C.

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Janice and Uhl Payne, along with Allen Payne, formerly of Philadelphia who now lives in New York, were in Gastonia, N.C. in June 2012 to attend the three-day extravaganza in celebration of Lee and Shirley Cowan's 50th wedding anniversary.

From all accounts, it was a knock-out of a celebration, and it could not have happened to a nicer couple!

Now if someone will just celebrate an anniversary so that Janice can use the anniversary card she bought for Uhl's co-worker.

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The M&M Club (Mature and Modern) met at First Methodist Church for their monthly potluck luncheon Tuesday, Nov. 6.

Debbie Woodrick Hall, Director of Community Relations at North Mississippi State Hospital in Tupelo, was the speaker.

She spoke on suicide in adults. Debbie is the daughter of the Rev. Lavelle and Pat Woodrick.

In attendance at the meeting were Pat and Lavelle, June Mitchell, Bobbie Holley, Ann Baughman, Lesia Boswell, Shelley King, Dot Petty, Brenda Matthews, Babs Kirkland, and Dot McNeil.

Also, Virginia and Max West, Betty Mooney, Velma Ruth Knad, Sara Hutchison, Irma Young, Don Wroble, Fred Britton, Judy Wolverton Palmer, Arline Wolverton, Glenda Green, Janice Williamson, Betty Prince and Patt Fiedler.

Patt, Director of Music, will present a Christmas musical at the Dec. 4 meeting of M&M.

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Bill Yates drove Sara Hutchison to Geiger, Ala. recently where they attended homecoming at First Methodist Church.

This was Sara's husband's family church and she still has relatives there.

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And now we join Dr. Bill Molpus on his most recent medical mission to El Salvador.

His lessons in geography are so much more interesting to me than when I was in school.

As Bill teaches, "El Salvador is in Central America, located south of Guatemala, west of Honduras, and right on the Pacific Ocean.

A beautiful country with tree-covered mountains and lush jungles.

After the three-hour church service (in Spanish!) and my struggle to stay awake, we drove into the country side to a beautiful lake situated in an extinct volcano where we had lunch.

An afternoon of rest turned into a four-hour session of packing medications for the pharmacy.

When we did get back to the hotel, I noticed unusual laminated instructions on the bedside table---What To Do In Case of An Earthquake!

We had no earthquake problems while we were there, but a few days after we left, there was a 7.4 earthquake in Guatemala, not far from where we worked.

Our hotel is in the prosperous capitol city San Salvador.

Driving through the business section, I noticed an interesting site.

In front of almost every business, stood one or two security guards with their finger on the trigger of their pistol-grip shotguns.

In the residential section, all the homes had walls around them with razor wire coiled on top, many with security guards with shotguns.

At each of our mission sites, there were guards inside and outside.

For two days I worked with a guard just a few feet from my chair.

When I asked why so many guards, "gangs" was the answer.

There were thirty five folks in our mission group, six of them had worked with me before.

It is a blessing to get to work with folks from all around the world and join together to do God's work.

El Salvador is my last mission for this year.

As I look back over the missions of 2012---Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Panama, Uganda, South Africa, Dominican Republic and El Salvador---I realize how blessed I am to have witnessed, time and time again, the Supernatural workings of the Holy Spirit.

This has been a good year!"

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And as we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving tomorrow, we give thanks for men and women like Bill who give so freely of their time and resources to do God's work all over the world, called by Jesus Christ Himself, and God the Father who raised Him from the dead.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we pray for this great country in which we live, that America will remain one nation under God.