Tag Archives | Death

The Greg Sidden Story: Humbled With Confidence

The fluorescent lights hum overhead. Their dull buzz increases the vague fog creating a sense of dreaming. Has he been here for two minutes, two hours, or two days? He doesn’t know the reality of the furious work going on around him. The work to save his life. Now on his back, he can make out a number of men standing around him. They speak English, but use language he does not understand. They read charts and look at monitors […]

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The Ham Family Christmas Tradition

  A number of years ago, our family started a Christmas tradition. Around the 22nd or 23rd of December, we’d load up Paw-Paw’s Yukon as if it were Santa’s sleigh, don Santa caps and reindeer antlers, and we’d bombard friends with carols and Christmas Vacation quotes. By the end of the night, we’d be reduced to an off-key version of “Mele Kelikimaka” and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas.” After a few years, friends and family began expecting our craziness. Two staples in […]

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The Hardest Blog Post I’ve Ever Written

My grandfather, Mendel Ham, grew up on a farm in rural South Carolina. Although racial inequality was rampant, I’ve been told that one of his best friends was an African-American farm hand. And that pretty much sums up my grandfather. The stares and jeers of others weren’t strong enough to break his spirit. Throughout my childhood, Paw Paw, was a figure of strength in my life. He was my rock. I didn’t know him as a young man, but I try to envision him approaching my […]

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Five Words That Changed My Life

I was thirty-two. My wife and I had grown accustomed to a new definition of marriage, one layered with the responsibilities of raising three boys. The fact that they were all under the age of three just added to the adventure. I was a young professional, focused on building my insurance agency in my hometown of Wilmington, North Carolina. What happened next changed everything. One morning, I was overcome with a longing to write, as if a story from somewhere […]

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What Otis Redding Taught Me About Vision

What do you know about Otis Redding?  Otis Redding (Wiki link) was one of the most influential soul singers of the 1960’s, a black artist emerging in a very challenging time in our country’s history.  He tragically died in a plane crash at 26 years old, just as his star was beginning to shine.  Only a six months earlier, he had closed the Monterey Pop Festival, sharing the stage with acts such as Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and The Who. […]

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