Letter to the Editor

Don't wait to see your favorites

It's a shame Merle Haggard couldn't fulfill his date for the SEMO District Fair. I wanted to tell your readers that they missed an experience. I've known Merle Haggard since I was 10 years old, although I've never met him. I can remember being in love with that voice.

Merle has lived a hard life for a man who is only 71. He missed sure death by 24 hours by not escaping Folsom Prison with a friend who was on death row. Merle made it out the right way by serving time, and he wrote a song about his friend called "Sing Me Back Home." I can only imagine what he thinks when he sings that song.

Few people know that Merle made a gospel album three years ago. I had it played at my father's funeral. I had a whole generation of wannabe cool kids asking me who was singing. I explained that their grandpa loved that album because he was raised poor too.

Mel Tillis has a story of his own. He grew up when stuttering wasn't accepted. The ridicule he faced as a child was unbelievable. But he found that if he sang the words, he didn't stutter. What a voice he's been blessed with.

These two men exemplify prevailing over adversity.

The moral: Don't wait to see someone in concert if it can be avoided and it's someone you always wanted to see. You never know when the stage of life they stand on may dim.