by Jane Godfrey Membership Department
Not once did either of them pull out their smart phones to receive and respond to a text message. Traditional, comfortable, kind, gentle and loving are words that come to mind as I reflect on my visit with Earl and Jean Jackson. In this crazy world of distraction, forcing one’s own agenda, selfishness, lack of respect for others and greed; the two of them are wonderfully, refreshingly the opposite.
My assignment was to interview Earl but I quickly realized I couldn’t very well do this without including Jean because ‘they just go together like peas and carrots’ (Forrest Gump movie quote).
Growing up in southern Indiana in the 30s, Earl and his twin brother, Irvin farmed and learned carpentry work from their father. Earl recalled the hard work and many weeks of bailing hay and cutting firewood. As a young man, carpentry was a skill that allowed him to earn a living as he built houses and worked for various companies in the area. He has used his skills to improve his own places of residence with help from friend and fellow church member, Thurman Spray.
Earl was an order clerk at Belknap Hardware for 20 years not realizing his future wife worked for the same company. He was also the custodian at our church for several years.
In the meantime, Jean McNaughton and her family moved to New Albany when she was 16. She recalls living across the street from Jeannie Ritz (Bob Ritz’s sister). Jean worked for Belknap Hardware for 37 years as a bookkeeper. She started attending Central Christian Church.
Earl and Jean both grew up attending Methodist churches with their families. Both were engaged to someone else for a period of time before they were introduced to each other by mutual friends: Merwyn and Connie Fisher of Pekin, Indiana. After breaking off a 5-year engagement that was not leading to a promising future, Earl was eager to meet Jean. They were married on June 25, 1966 at Central Christian Church by Reverend Ralph Saunders.
Earl and Jean have no children of their own but helped raise her brother’s 3 children who lived next door. Jean laughingly recalls the children checking the dinner menu at both homes before deciding where they wanted to show up for dinner.
Earl enjoys shopping at yard sales for a good bargain. About 18 years ago, he recalls picking up an old-fashioned ladies bonnet at a yard sale that might be useful in a play that our church was getting ready for. He took the bonnet to church and tried it on for fun. Just then the new pastor at the time, Randy Miles saw him. Earl knew he had made a good first impression wearing the bonnet. (Jean was laughing as Earl shared this story.)
Earl and Jean moved to River Crossing retirement apartments in Charlestown in 2012. They enjoy the friendships they have made there. Earl is known by some of their neighbors for telling tall tales. He has fun seeing the look on their faces when they aren’t sure if what he says is true or not.
The two of them play pool and bingo, sometimes winning cash. Earl likes to work jigsaw puzzles; many of which are framed and on display in the hallways. Jean and Earl attend church services in the gathering area of their apartment complex but still think of Central Christian Church as their home church.
by Jane Godfrey Membership Department
by Linda Aldridge, Chair Performing Arts Ministry
The Performing Arts Ministry is hard at work again. We are proud to announce the cast for our next production – Neil Simon’s “God’s Favorite.”
Joe ………………….. JOHN TEMPLETON
Ben……………………. ADAM ALDRIDGE Morris………………….. DAVID TARTER
Sarah …………. BRITTANNI ALDRIDGE
Rose ………………….ERICA BURKHEAD
The role of Sidney is yet to be determined.
The director will be Bob Meyer; Stage Manager, Laura Bryant with Linda Aldridge as Producer. There will be familiar faces and new ones gracing the Performing Arts Ministry stage.
Show dates are as follows:
September 19 & 20 at 7:30 p.m.
September 21 at 2:00 p.m.
September 26 at 7:30 p.m.
September 27 at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm
Make plans now to attend. Keep your eyes open for more fun things from your Performing Arts Ministry.
Bring your lawn chairs and join us on Saturday, August 9 from 2 – 4 pm for an Ice Cream Social. Vanilla & Chocolate Ice Cream will be served, along with all the toppings. Tea, lemonade and water will be provided along with Root Beer for those wanting to make a Root Beer Float!
Weather permitting, the event will take place on the church lawn. In case of rain or extreme heat, the event will be moved indoors to our Activities & Programs Center.
There will be a Puppet Ministry show at 2:30 pm. This is a FREE event sponsored by the Fellowship Department. If you plan to attend, please sign up in the Gathering Area so the Fellowship Department can plan accordingly.