You were there to encouragement me to do what I thought was the impossible. You never let up till the impossible was done. You gave me inspiration every time I talked with you and told me if we only but trust God our lives would be so much better. I listened with my heart and kept on writing my stories that you loved so to read and I did the same with you. Your memories were my memories as well.
When you gave me a copy of your book “A Bunch Of Wiregrass” I couldn't wait to read it. It gave me so much enjoyment to read in your own words your childhood memories that you wrote so profound and so real and I still read it today and always find something that I missed. Although you were raised in a different part of the country than me in South Georgia called Wiregrass Country you always said our childhood was the same only the mountains separated us.
You helped to instill in me the Faith I needed to continue to full fill my dreams of writing. You often told me that my words would be fodder for others to read and not to hold back. I remember you saying many times, “Susie you need to continue writing the way you talk and from your heart.” I couldn't for the life of me understand why anyone would ever want to read the words of an old country girl . But I remember you saying many times, “write it down and don't leave anything out.” I'm happy to say I'm still writing it down and wish you could have stuck around a little longer to finish writing your stories as well.
We cherished our time with you and Cathy when you helped me put my book together and published it for me. You'll never know how much enjoyment it brought to my husband and I when we made those visits to you and Cathy's home. The time spent was never enough and only made us both yearn for more. But we made the most of it while we all could. Cathy was always full of laughter and fun and we absolutely loved those fruit pies she stuck in a sack for us to take home.
As our health deteriorated so did yours and circumstances beyond our control prevented us all from having even more time together. But we sure did enjoy those phone calls and just hearing your voice made our day. Your Faith always amazed me and you always said, “we're not gonna live in these old sickly, fleshly bodies forever.” And those famous words when we started to hang up the phone, I'll never forget, 'If we don't see each other again Susie we'll see each other in Heaven.”
Well, you've finally made it my old friend and I know you're pain free and having the best time of your life while waiting for us to come. I also know you're still writing your life stories down just like before and everyone there is cheering you on. You're up there in that beautiful Wiregrass of your childhood memories that you longed to run through so long.
We're all gonna miss you and your sweet, inspiring words will sustain us till we see you again old friend and we're waiting patiently to join you. Till then enjoy your loved ones and friends that you haven't seen in so long and when I get there I want to read more of your stories and I'll have plenty for you as well.
© Susie Swanson, 2018
In Memory of my good friend and publisher Wayne Newton. April 23, 1937—April 18 2018