Lincoln County’s very own angels
On a beautiful, starry evening in early December, Verdict Ridge Country Club hosted the East Lincoln Goodfellows. It was a sparkling affair; the Goodfellows decked in their Christmas finery, the club in full regalia complete with trimmed tree and folks greeting others with high enthusiasm.
This was to be a special evening – our 30th consecutive year of fine food, fellowship and entertainment. While this is fun and heart-warming, the true mission has always been to raise money for needs within our community. Before we go shopping for our own families, we set aside money ($125 per couple) for the welfare of our community.
Special guests included Bill and Emily Furr, who saw a need and formed a foundation in 1982 which has been helping the less fortunate in our area ever since.
It’s amazing what good things can happen when good people join with a good idea. Over the years the foundation has contributed to causes such as the East Lincoln Christian Ministry, Hospice, Habitat for Humanity, East Lincoln park project, library furnishings, playground equipment and the angel funds at our local schools.
The Angels Among Us
Written by Diana Gleasner, read by Doug Mayes, award-winning newscaster retired from WBTV, at this year’s Goodfellows dinner.
Tonight you are an angel. A real, live angel.
You earned your beautiful wings, covered with star dust and sprinkled with hope. Each year the Goodfellows gather to share the wealth by giving. It is giving with dignity and love in the spirit of the season.
Flash back to Bill Furr’s birthday 30 years ago. Some friends had gathered to celebrate. Bill suggested that, instead of cards and gifts, why not pass the hat for those less fortunate. He had been to a Goodfellows meeting in Charlotte and was impressed with the charitable work it was doing. The money in the hat added up to a paltry sum, but Bill was gratified that his friends wanted to be included.
Over the years, Goodfellows found reasons to expand its collecting and distributing money to help those in need. The Angel fund is one fine example of how Goodfellows works on a local level.
An elementary school principal told us about a single mother of three who came to his office in tears. She had come to take her children out of school. The rent was due, there was no food in the house. Nobody to turn to. The principal calmed the mother down. He dipped into the Angel fund to fill this emergency need and made contacts for the family with other local charitable groups – some of them partially funded by the Goodfellows.
This money does not have to be accounted for. There are no forms to fill out. We trust our teachers and staff who are on the front lines every day, who see the burden of economic misery in the faces around them.
Were it not for Bill and Emily Furr, we would not be here tonight.
Thank you Bill and Emily, Lincoln County’s very own angels.
We are limited to approximately 140 guests at Verdict Ridge, so if you would like to join this warm-hearted group next year, we suggest you contact Bobbie Black, at 704-483-3246, or Vickie Gilleland, at 704-483-2577, and ask to be put on the reservation list for next year.
Next year? Yes, you read it correctly. This notice is especially for those type-A personalities who have already filled in all the family birthdays on their 2013 calendar and for those who want to know where they would like to be the first Friday in December 2013. If you’re lucky, you will be joining the loyal and friendly gathering at Verdict Ridge for a fine dinner and a memorable evening as we present generous donations to worthy charities in our area.