The Idle American

Long distance, information ...

Posted

Early in the 66-year marriage of Dr. and Mrs. Seale T. Cutbirth, she was named “Mrs. Texas.” At his memorial service recently in Brownwood, the 88-year-old physician was remembered for contributions to his community, church and family.

Leaning on common sense, deep Christian faith and unending energy, the family physician/surgeon did what had to be done. Typical days began before the rising of the sun, ending long after it surrendered to darkness.

More than once--when time was of the essence--he performed neurosurgery while consulting with specialists in major medical centers by telephone, sometimes when the surgery was in progress....

*****

This beloved doctor served for 35 years, even making house calls. He was team physician for Brownwood High School football teams, and still found time for numerous other contributions to schools, church and community. A 50-year deacon in First Baptist Church, he loved the outdoors, and always looked forward to annual Wyoming trips for hunting, fishing and camping.

He and wife Betty Sue had four children. She and three children survive, as do nine granddaughters and 10 great-grandchildren.

Most men would shrink at the prospect of being the husband of “Mrs. Texas.” Not Dr. Seale T. Cutbirth. He was “Mr. Greatness” to all who knew him….

*****

On another topic, finally, there’s good news from Austin. That’s where Richard Overton lives on the street named for him, Richard Overton Ave. At age 111, he is America’s oldest military veteran. They recently checked him into an Austin hotel for several days while some organizations “spiffed up” the house he built more than 70 years ago.

Truth to tell, they remodeled it, bought all new appliances and--perhaps most important--installed the home’s first-ever central heating/cooling system.

Kudos to those who made it happen, namely Meals on Wheels of Central Texas, the Home Depot Foundation, the City of Austin and Honor Flight. The World War II vet has survived two bouts with pneumonia this year, so maybe his updated home will help him to stay well. (Reducing his “light-ups” of a dozen cigars daily could help, too. It’s too late, however, to say smoking might shorten his life.)…

*****

Speaking of kudos, how about the clapping of hands for Dale Gore, Howard Payne University class of 1955. Now 83, he has attended EVERY homecoming, 1951-2016. A bout with Parkinson’s Disease caused him to be a “no show” this year. It would have been his 67th homecoming. LaVerne, his wife of 63 years, made the trip from Grand Prairie to Brownwood to keep the family tradition alive.

A close second in the HPU homecoming longevity “competition” is Ralph McCalmont of Oklahoma City, OK. He was a freshman in 1953, and attended each annual event from 1955-2015. He’s 82 now, and, recently sold his Bonanza airplane, effectively ending 60 years of flying.

Most years, he has flown himself to the celebration, his major objective to check annually on fence posts he set at the college farm during his student years. “They’re still standing strong, but I’m not,” McCalmont laughed, claiming he misses seeing old friends and sharing even older stories. One alum said college is “a place where ivy creeps around on the outside and teachers creep around on the inside.”…

*****

Upon returning home, I listened to a phone message left by my 105-year-old Uncle Mort. He posed a question, and then ended it with a “laugher” about his new neighbor.

“Nephew, I’ve been hearing more than I want to about all the National Football League problems. Seems to me like most of ‘em are self-inflicted, and here’s my question: If the league implodes, will Jerry Jones still figure out some kind of way to conduct the 2018 draft at AT&T Stadium?”

Mort is pretty sure his neighbor may have a hearing problem. The newcomer says his doctor thinks his “psychic nerve” is acting up….

*****

Comments