Tuesday, August 10, 2010

May God bless Terry Thornton

My friend, Terry Thornton, died yesterday. I never met him in person, but I felt like he was a close cousin. He certainly was a "brother in genea-blogging" and I enjoyed his writing immensely. Especially the stories from the Hill Country. His life experiences as a child and as an adult were completely different from mine, and by sharing his stories he opened my world view a bit more. In addition to his Hill Country of Monroe County blog (and successor blogs), Terry started The Graveyard Rabbit blogging community and contributed many articles and stories to genealogy carnivals and footnoteMaven's Shades of the Departed online magazine.

For a beautiful tribute, a picture of Terry and a poem, please see footnoteMaven's post R.I.P Father Rabbit on The Graveyard Rabbit blog.

There has been some discussion recently about using genealogy and family history blogging to tell family stories and local stories so that generations to come can learn from them and share them with their families. Terry's blog posts, newspaper articles and work with the Itawamba Historical Society and all of the cemeteries in northeastern Mississippi will, hopefully, live on in the genealogy cyber-world. It might behoove one or more of the local societies in Mississippi to create a Terry Thornton story archive and put it on their shelves and distribute it to interested repositories.

Linda and I almost had a chance to visit with Terry and Betty (he called her "Sweetie" - I completely understand!) last summer at the time of the FGS Conference in Little Rock. Unfortunately, they both had health issues at that time and we had to change our plans. I was really looking forward to sitting on the porch, listening to stories, walking down the lanes in the evening, and enjoying the company of Terry and Betty.

I sincerely hope that the Geneabloggers group can create some sort of event or remembrance in order to honor Terry appropriately.

Rest in peace, my friend, and may God bless your family with fond memories, many humorous stories about you, and a legacy of education, story-telling and writing.


Anonymous said...

Randy, I could not agree with you more. You have expressed my thoughts only much more eloquently. A beautiful tribute to a very special man. Thank you.

footnoteMaven said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
footnoteMaven said...

A lovely tribute, Randy. It is so hard to believe that Terry has put down his pen.

We are very fortunate to have his stories, how he could tell them. I hope his local historical society does something with them and all his columns.

How we will miss him.


DearMYRTLE said...

A great tribute to a wonderfully talented Terry Thornton. thanks for sharing.

Deborah said...

Thank you for sharing this, Randy. Terry will be greatly missed. What a magnificently talented man.