Thursday, August 11, 2004
Get well wishes extended to May Alice Booker
Frances Fitts of Dallas, Texas, was the visitor of Dorothy Warren over the weekend.
Walker and Heather Cupp and children, Lexi and Cade, were Saturday night guests of Becky Cupp.
May Alice Booker is a patient at Baptist Hospital in Oxford. Well wishes for a speedy recovery.
Ki and Nancy Jones and children, Mary Neely and Jake, returned from a recent trip to Ft. Morgan, Ala. Jack and Michelle Hagins joined the group after spending a couple of days in Gulfport.
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Fond memories of a good friend
A fond memory lies in the hearts of all football alumni from Holly Springs, when they remember Nat Brooks, their friend, mentor, counselor, first aid man, and line coach. He also had an understanding and sympathic ear for all sorts of their trouble, whether it be with a girlfriend or with a fumbled ball on the three yard line. He had his own famous rubbing compound for the sore muscles of his athletes, which he called The Nat Brooks Rub. Nats gentle hands rubbed kinks out of three generations of aching backs. He was born in Marshall County at a time when Marshall County was 70 percent black.
Nobody knows exactly when he was born, not even Nat, just as nobody knew exactly his exact title with the athletic department. He first was a friend to the team in 1909 or 1910. Some of the players with that first team were Fred Tyson, Howard Jones, Jesse Owen, Roderick McDermott, and Leroy Boatwright. Nat could give a history of every player from 1909 until he died. Nat took off time to be in World War I.
Once during the Depression, there was no money for football sweaters, so Nat went around town and asked for donations from businessmen and got the sweaters, including one for himself. Another time, Nat raked up $90 for a special bus to carry the players to a district game. He often drove his boys to dances and other social affairs to be sure they arrived home safely.
He worked for awhile away from here as the Rubber of the heavyweight boxer W. L. Stribling, who fought along with Max Schnelling, Jack Dempsey, and Gene Tunney, but Nat would come home in the football season to be with his team. Money didnt tempt him; it wasnt about money. It was about love for his boys and their love for him. He was everybodys best friend. He worked around locally, mostly at Sam Coopwoods store.
In appreciation, on several occasions, dollar bills were given to Nat. They stretched from one goal post to the other. Once the team went to another town to play a game on Friday night. Before the game the coach received word from the opposing team that Nat Brooks couldnt sit on the bench; he would have to stay on the bus. So the team got back on the bus and came home without playing the game.
In life theres nothing like a good friend. Nat Brooks was a good friend for over sixty years to all the Holly Springs High School athletes. He had more friends than anybody I ever heard of. The players loved him so, that when he died they wanted to bury him at the north end of the football field, but, of course, he wasnt. He was buried in Colonel Walters lot at the cemetery. In 1976, his funeral was held in the school auditorium because no other place was large enough.
This is a story about love. It was a priviledge to be his friend. The devotion that Nats friends had for him was a once in a lifetime thing, a beautiful memory to last forever.
Of course, the story didnt get picked up by the national newspapers. It wasnt about controversy. It was about love.
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