60/20 Tour: Old Friends, Perseverance and Ditching High School

October 26, 2019

Mississippi Senior Services

A meaningful visit awaits us in Tupelo, Mississippi.  About 15 years ago, Alan Brown from Mississippi Senior Services invited me here to present this new thing called It’s Never 2 Late to their EDs.  As is the case with so many visits along the way, the sales call turned into a sale,  the sale turned into a good experience and as the years go by, the vendor relationship turned into a friendship. That’s certainly the case with both Alan and Steve. These guys are the salt of the earth!

So, it was cool to get out to their community and experience all kinds of energy from residents throughout the continuum.  And hanging out in Elvis’s birthplace is always a good thing!  The cruise and crooners were a kick – three sets of rides with three residents each,  and these folks were eclectic.   Roller coaster aficionados, friends of Elvis, retired ministers – they ran the gamut!  An inspirational story comes out of nowhere as Alvin,  one of the residents, clamors into the front seat on our second trip.  I start driving and notice he isn’t talking a whole lot.  I’m always trying to find who is the most talkative of the folks in the car and usually, they wind up in the front seat.  One of the other riders clues me in:  Alvin has some struggles communicating.  Why is that?  He had a stroke two weeks ago!  Once I heard that we worked through his speech issues. He has this huge gregarious smile and with a little coaxing, he was able to get his points across.  What an inspiration. The people on the trip are gifts that just keep on giving!

Our third run gets a bit raucous.  Joyce takes over, regaling us with stories of Elvis,  getting caught sneaking out the window in science class to meet a boyfriend who was waiting in the getaway car, and a life full of frolic and escapades.

Thanks, Alan,  for believing in us so many years ago. You and Steve have fought the good fight for so many years, changing the lives of thousands and thousands of people along the way. It’s an honor to have been along for the ride.