14 Aug Success with Stallings
“Do the right thing,” is still ringing in Rogersville’s ears as a reminder of the touching speech delivered by Coach Gene Stallings at the Rogersville Chamber of Commerce Fall Fundraiser. Thursday, August 3 was a day this town would not soon forget, when the former Alabama and Texas A&M football coach took the stage of the Florence-Lauderdale Coliseum and spoke to a sold-out floor audience about life’s challenges, its blessings and the importance of living a humble and hardworking lifestyle.
Recovering from a stroke, Stallings has lost vision in one eye. Still, he never complained through his visit to the Shoals. During his speech, he made mention that if anybody ever had reason to complain, it was his son, John Mark Stallings. Johnny Stallings grew up with Down Syndrome, and died at age 46 proclaiming the words, “Daddy, I fine. I fine.” Stallings’s son became his prime motivator in life and biggest blessing. Among Stallings’s lessons were: “Do the right thing,” “Let a bygone be a bygone,” “Never settle for minimal work ethic,” and “Results matter.” Stallings mirrored the event’s purpose, expressing the need to promote the town’s economy and preserve the spirit of tradition Rogersville holds dear.
Stallings left no dry eye in the house as he closed the evening with the regarded poem, “The Dash,” by Linda Ellis (1996). “The Dash” draws a visual of a person who has died, and on his tombstone are the dates which his life began and ended. The poem goes on to talk about the importance of the dash between the dates. “For that dash represents all the time that they spent alive on earth. And now only those who loved them know what that little line is worth. For it matters not, how much we own, the cars…the house…the cash. What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.”
Co-sponsored by the Town of Rogersville and 29 other businesses and organizations, this fundraiser generated monies for business development, and supplied a generous donation to the John Mark Stallings Foundation. The Chamber will allocate the proceeds to benefit its members next year via fresh marketing materials, stronger business recruitment initiatives and more prestigious events to come.
The Rogersville Chamber of Commerce would like to thank its sponsors for their contribution to this fantastic evening and commitment to our growing town:
University of North Alabama Athletics Department; Listerhill Credit Union; Northwest Shoals Community College; PFI Group, Northlake Storage and Village Interiors; CGS Homes and Alabama Real Estate Solutions; North Alabama Bone & Joint Clinic; Joe Wheeler State Park; Pettus Plumbing & Piping; Citizens Bank & Trust; Sam Newton Insurance Agency; Rogersville Family Care; Community Health; Hardees & 102.7 KISS FM; Greer Construction; Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association; 92.3 WSHF “Real Country”; NACCO Aerospace; Rogersville Eye Clinic; Bank Independent; Masoner State Farm Insurance Agency; QuickMart; Athens-Limestone Hospital; Big Steve’s; Regions Bank; Sheriff Rick Singleton; Adams Auto Body; Bama Tax Service; and Peak Performance Physical Therapy.
We look forward to seeing you next year!