Thursday, November 9, 2006
It was a dreary day weather-wise Wednesday of last week.
There was a steady mist. It still appeared foggy at 11 a.m. The temperature was dropping as the noon hour approached.
A large crowd gathered in a wooded, undeveloped area of Holly Springs behind Save-A-Lot and just southeast of the Marshall Academy campus. Their vehicles blocked one another in on the small, unpaved, seldom traveled path.
Many guests were shivering. All were smiling. The weather was secondary; this was actually a very bright, uplifting day.
The shovels were out. Ground was broken for the new Alliance HealthCare Complex.
It was said several times - “This is a great day for Marshall County.”
Our county is growing. It’s on the verge of greater growth.
Two key ingredients that must go into growth and success are healthcare and education. That, too, was said often Wednesday by elected officials and others.
This groundbreaking was monumental. It was huge. It’s about the present, but more importantly, it’s about the future. It’s about looking ahead, establishing a solid foundation for many years to come.
Thanks to the hard work and untiring efforts of many, headlined by Dr. Kenneth Williams, a new clinic, new hospital, new health and fitness center and more are officially in the works.
Dr. Williams called it a “glorious, happy day.”
Meetings have also been initiated in recent months that focus on the future of education in our county and the probable need for new schools, particularly in the northwest portion of our county.
I know most of you understand the great need for great healthcare right here at home. We might not have time to travel 30 miles. It can be a matter of life and death.
A few years back, not long after moving to Holly Springs, I wrote a column about the tremendous care I received during a brief stay at Alliance HealthCare System. I passed out at home. My wife took me to the emergency room, and I was later admitted and spent the night. Thank goodness, it proved to be nothing serious.
I’ve been in small towns that lost their hospitals. It wasn’t good. Those communities were suddenly hurting.
We’re blessed. Our community has received a shot in the arm with last week’s groundbreaking. Our hospital is building and expanding, making a strong commitment to the people of this county.
I didn’t have room in the news story this week for all the comments during the recent groundbreaking. All were fitting and meaningful in marking the importance of this occasion.
Here are a few more.
“To all who have helped with this project, thanks,” said Holly Springs Mayor Andre’ DeBerry. “You have a great vision for healthcare in this community and its tremendous economic impact on this community.”
Rep. Tommy Woods called it “a banner day” and a “special time.”
“This is the result of a lot of people’s hard work,” said Bill Renick, executive director of the Marshall County Industrial Development Authority.
Byhalia Mayor Scooter Dempsey praised the efforts of all those “who kept pulling” to make the huge project a reality.
“God bless all that is happening here,” Dempsey said.
More groundbreakings are yet to come in our county. New homes and businesses are under construction.
“This is only the beginning of many great things in Marshall County,” Renick said.
Last Wednesday from 11 a.m. to noon was definitely one of those “Kodak moments,” as Rep. Kelvin Buck stated, and it helps bring into focus the many positive things that are happening right here at home.
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