Hoover, Ala. – The story is everywhere. Alabama National Guardsman Rashad Wilson Billingsley came to 12 year old Molly Davis’s aid when she was shot in the back at Riverchase Galleria in Hoover on November 22nd. Rashad has been hailed a hero and rightly so. What led to that moment took positive influences in Rashad’s life to make it happen. Let’s look at one very important figure in Rashad’s life.
Rashad’s uncle, SSG Willie Dunn, served in the Alabama National Guard for 22 years. During that time, SSG Dunn served in the Persian Gulf War in Iraq. His entire life, Rashad witnessed firsthand his uncle’s service to his state and country and it instilled a desire to serve himself.
After high school, like his uncle, Rashad joined the Alabama National Guard. During basic training, his Uncle Willie was fighting lung cancer. Before he could see his nephew graduate from basic training, Willie passed away. Although, his Uncle Willie had passed on, his memory and legacy continued on through Rashad.
On November 22nd, part of SSG Willie Dunn was on the floor with 12 year old Molly Davis working to save her life. The powerful positive influence of SSG Willie Dunn in the life of his nephew, was clear on that night. Willie Dunn was also a preacher and referring to that night at the Galleria and his life to this day, Rashad said, “Without God, I wouldn’t be here today. I want to give him all the credit.” It appears that his uncle’s impact was extended far beyond Rashad’s desire to join the military.
We all have an Uncle Willie, someone who has influenced us in a way that leads us to make a difference in the lives of others. We simply have to follow that path and allow their legacy to help move us forward.
While we continue to thank Rashad for his actions that night, we thank SSG Willie Dunn as well. Uncle Willie’s legacy lives on.
Athens, Ala. – Since the 52nd Annual Tennessee Valley Fiddlers Convention was taking place this weekend, I thought I would do a special show. Joining me on the program were Bluegrass & Country Music Hall of Fame artist Ricky Skaggs and Bradley Walker. During The Mary Faye Headrick Good Deed Segment, Christy Langley joined me. Christy’s grandson, Rylyn James Haywood, has CDH and is currently at Children’s of Alabama. Listen to my interviews below.
Rogersville, Ala. – NASCAR legend Bobby Allison will be at Joe Wheeler State Park on Thursday, October 11th at 6:30p. Named one of NASCAR’s 50 greatest drivers, he was the 1983 Winston Cup champion and won the Daytona 500 three times in 1978, 1982, and 1988. Tickets are available through eventbrite and the Rogersville Chamber of Commerce. Listen below.
Athens, Ala. – Imagine a crisp fall weekend spent listening to stories of adventure and excitement…a place where memories and magic are captured and spun into tales that make you laugh and cry. Hear stories that tell of a time that used to be. Glimpse into the past and live the imaginary. Learn more about your parents, your children, yourself. Discover all this and more at the 12th Annual Athens Storytelling Festival.
Stories will be told on the courthouse square in Athens, Alabama within close proximity of an eclectic mix of shops offering a wide variety of antiques, gifts, gourmet foods, clothing and hardware. The courthouse square boasts several warm and inviting restaurants, and food vendors will be present for good old-fashioned festival fare.
Join in the fun by purchasing your tickets today at AthensStorytellingFestival.com. The Mark White Show is a proud sponsor of this year’s event. Listen to the new radio ad from The Mark White Show below.
Dodge City, Ala. – The fall season is upon us and at J. Calvert Farms, that means pumpkins and gourds! J. Calvert Farms has become a sponsor of The Mark White Show to help get the word out about all that they have to offer this season. With over 30 varieties of pumpkins, including gourds, you’ll find just what you’re looking for. J. Calvert Farms is a u-pick farm on Fridays and Saturdays by making reservations for your family or group. School groups are also welcome. The Calvert’s would personally like to welcome you to their farm located just 3 miles south of Dodge City on Hwy 69 and Exit 299 off I-65. Give them a call at 256-636-2752. Listen to their new ad below as we get ready for pumpkin season at the farm!
This week on The Mark White Show, we’ll be focusing on heroin addiction. Joining me will be Danny Molloy with Addiction Prevention Coalition, Leslie Reagan Plaia, M.Ed., LPC with Recovery Resource Center, & Patty Carter Sykstus with Not One More Alabama. We’ll be discussing resources that are available from these three organization in our state as well as the upcoming End Heroin HSV Walk! taking place on August 18th in Huntsville. During The Mary Faye Headrick Good Deed Segment, I will be talking to Sandy Russell Hicks about her successful recovery from drug addiction and how she is now trying to help others on their journey to recovery.
Birmingham, Ala. – Eric Martin, a registered forester, has been buying and managing timberland for over 35 years. For over 25 years, Southern Timber Resources, Inc. has been purchasing standing timber and helping small timberland owners manage their properties. Services include forest inventories, timber sales, hunting leases, site preparations, and reforestation. The decision to remain primarily active in timber procurement has enabled the company to keep current with an ever changing forest products market. Although we have been key participants in the acquisition of thousands of acres in one purchase, the founding purpose to help small landowners and investors continues to be our focus and niche in the market. The company is based in Birmingham, Alabama and is also located in Little Rock, Arkansas. Having known the Martin family all of my life, I can attest to the trustworthiness and the conscientious individual Eric Martin is. Attention to detail is important to him in his forestry work. If you would like a free appraisal on your timber, you can give Eric a call at (205) 527-6785. Check out Southern Timber Resources website. I’m excited to have Southern Timber Resources as a new sponsor of The Mark White Show. You will be hearing more about them and their work soon! Listen to their new ad below and remember Eric offers free appraisals!
Murfreesboro, Tenn. – Wilson and Julie Adams, owners of Courageous Living Books just announced their new sponsorship of The Mark White Show. Courageous Living Books is an adult Bible study book business which seeks to inform, encourage and build faith. You can take a look at what they have to offer by going to Courageous Living Books. You can also follow Courageous Living Books on Facebook. Take a listen to their new ads below that are currently running on The Mark White Show.
This week, The Mark White Show takes an ocean theme. I will be talking to Fabien Cousteau, the grandson of Jacques Cousteau, John Jackson of Hartselle, Dr. Ken Heck of the Daulphin Island Sea Lab, and Joel Holt who preaches in Puerto Rico.