Greetings again, dear friends, in the New Year, which is still in swaddling clothes.
For this once I am grateful to my old enemy, Procrastination, for maneuvering, as usual, to have me leave the writing of this column until Saturday morning. For in this morning's mail comes a letter from Saltsburg that impels a prompt answer, both personally and through the column. In my last letter to you I mentioned, with sorrow, that one of my Nowrytown pupils had slipped down hill - and that I wished I could reach him. Since Lloyd Heasley's name was in the Saltsburg news fairly recently, he naturally came to the conclusion that I was referring to him. I hasten to assure him and all of you that he is not the one. When I read about his being stricken blind, you may be sure that my heart went out to him, especially because of my own father's and dear Mother Taylor's blindness. But I could not imagine a Heasley slipping downhill. I am sure that I have Lloyd's permission to share a portion of his brave letter, written in his own hand, with the aid of a cardboard strip to guide his lines and spacing. I am going to frame that letter and hang it in my room, as a constant spur - and rebuke - when I get to feeling sorry for myself. And I'll be proud to show it to others.
Standing back of every triumphant soul, whether it be an Abe Lincoln, John Wesley, David Livingstone, or one of our Christian industrialists, there is always an inspiring mother, who never loses sight of the eternal things. So it is with Lloyd Heasley's mother. The day Lloyd completely lost his sight his mother said, "Don't worry, Lloyd; you will have your mind's eye, and you will probably be able to see more through it than you ever did with your eyes." He adds, "This I find to be true." The doctors still have hopes of restoring his sight. "In fact," he writes, "the past two weeks I have been able to detect the change when the lights are on at night. Car lights at night send sharp pains through my eyes, as though they were becoming sensitive to light." Let us pray that his sight be restored, if only for the sake of his loyal wife, Millicent, and the three young children. God bless the Lions' Club for their fine gesture a little over a month ago. Here is "Courage Incorporated" in Lloyd's closing sentence: "Will close,..., with another reminder that I haven't slipped down hill; just backed up a little for a new start."
Because it would be a sort of desecration for me to write anything to follow that classic of courage, I want simply to subscribe as another humble booster to Lloyd Heasley's magnificent climb uphill.
Florence B. Taylor
Next - 1/26/50 - A PEN PICTURE OF SALTSBURG (continued) by J.C. Moore
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