Delight in the law of the Lord (Part One)

Brenda Cannon HenleyBy Brenda Cannon Henley
It is time for me to tell a story or to give an account, to brag (in a Godly manner), or to share some not so new and recent blessings. As some of you are aware, I will be relocating to Largo on the Gulf in Florida this Friday. Many things led to this big change and all the responsibilities that go along with such a move. The main catalyst for the decision was impending right knee replacement and repair and the recuperation period that will follow.

My family thinks I should be where the majority of them are. God forbid, they are beginning to act like I am 76 or something morbid like that. Ha! Actually, I have just figured out what I really want to do. Remember that Grandma Moses was 80 when she first learned to paint and discovered she had the talent to do it. There is a long line of elders that did great things that affect us all. So, don’t mark us down for the count.

The best things in life happened to me in Texas. I had a remarkable career in the newspaper world and climbed to the top of the ladder when I was honored to receive the First Place Award for Investigative Journalism (in the nation) presented by the National Newspaper Association with 4,700 member newspapers involved. That total included uncounted writers and reporters that worked for those 4,700 newspapers.

The series I won for was some of my best work on Consensual Teenage Sex in Texas and the aftermath when a teen (boy or girl) is sentenced to life as a registered sex offender. I interviewed 53 families and sat at kitchen tables, on living room sofas, and in front and back yards, holding hands and hugging grieving parents getting their stories.

I had the full support of the staff of The Examiner for which I worked. It was a happy night when my boss (he hates that term) and I walked up on the big stage in Oklahoma City and brought the big one home to that scrappy little newspaper in Southeast Texas.

Other stories I will never forget is Walter Bell, the Grandfather of Texas famed Death Row. I earned federal clearance and spent 13 hours on Death Row interviewing Walter and learning it was impossible for him to have committed the crime for which he was charged and punished for 37 years when I met him.

Crystal Rawls Spurlock and I did the legwork, got him five new trials and saw Walter transferred to Rusk State Hospital and off the Row. He is happy there, graduated from school, and now helps to train incoming inmates. I married in a dress, shoes, hose, and jewelry Walter and his mom, Bessie, bought me.

There are so many others that make up my patchwork quilt of memories. This is more difficult than I thought.

(I will continue my life musings next week).

[2-11-2019]

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One Response to “Delight in the law of the Lord (Part One)”

  1. Melba says:

    I’m looking forward to the next installment. Why don’t you write a book?

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