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Golden Heirs learn a little about blacksmithing

VALLEY — THE GOLDEN HEIRS of First Baptist Church Shawmut met Tuesday, April 10  in the Family Life Center. Mrs. Billie Jean Clem welcomed everyone. Terry Landreth opened the meeting with prayer after which the group sang their theme song.  Liz Landreth read the minutes of the previous meeting.  Nita Abney reported their annual picnic would be held May 8th with Sheriff Sid Lockhart preparing a meal of fish and all the trimmings. 

Nita introduced the guest speaker, Marvin Gardner and his wife, Beverly. Marvin gave an interesting program on blacksmithing as he has been a blacksmith for over 40 years. He started out using it as a hobby to release stress from being a school teacher.  His children entered his sculptures in a contest at the local fair, without his knowing it and insisted that he take them to the fair and there he saw a first place blue ribbon on one of his pieces. He quit teaching and started blacksmithing. He said he had put shoes on one horse and that was enough and after  working in Hollywood making special effects for movies for 15 years he decided that he had had enough of that as well.

Marvin is from Arizona but moved to Georgia where he met and married Beverly. They travel around bringing history to life with their “Rust and Flame Forge”. They set up at fairs and make small horseshoes that can be used for key chains or necklaces. The audience helps him turn the blower to get the right temperature to make the iron workable. While they are ‘helping’ him, he tells a story about the forge and how it has affected lives over the years. Some of the kids are very memorable especially after  he hears their story from Beverly who would tell him what they or their parents had shared with her. He tells each child that helps him make their horseshoe that they are not apprentices but are his friend. That has impacted lives because some children don’t make friends easily and some may not have any friends at all, so they are proud to call him their friend. He tells them the horseshoes are like them in that no two are exactly alike.   

Ronnie Carter dismissed the meeting with prayer and the blessing on the abundant food.

Attending were: Sallie Breedlove, Billie Jean Clem, Chuck Anderson, Shirley Bills, Nita Abney, Tony Myers, Billy Tolbert, Hilda Hunt, Jeff Myers, Dot Williams, Sandra Meadows, James Myers, Jody Colley, Carolyn Oliver, Norman and Lois Passmore, Pattie Dyess, Curtis Moore, Hermon and Cheryl Myers, Terry and Liz Landreth, Bobby Tolbert, Ronnie Carter and  the guest couple, Marvin and Beverly Gardner.