Couple’s example created lasting legacy

Published 2:17 pm Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Imagine dropping your children off at school, dashing over to Regions Bank to make a deposit, going to the post office to buy stamps and then having your morning workout at the gym. After 45 minutes of cardio, you might get your car serviced and then get your nails done before making that daily trip to Publix.

Every day many of us race back and forth over land that has belonged to Kent Dairy Farm since l929. When third-generation owner Roy Kent moved his family to Alabaster there was no electricity to his property, but he paid to have a private line run from the lime plant across the back pasture and into the barn. Originally more than 700 acres of land was in Kent ownership.

Doug Kent was a tackle on the very first Thompson High School football team. When he was a junior he and a few of his friends watched the bus from the Indian Springs area pull in. The players were checking out the new girls. Doug pointed to one of the girls and declared that she was the girl he would marry. He was a junior, she a sophomore. The year was l935 when Doug and Nina Winslett became sweethearts. When he went off to East Central Jr. College in Decatur, Miss. to play football, Nina stayed behind to finish high school. He eventually came home and married his true love in August l940. He was 2l and she was 20. They had two children, a daughter Joy and their son Mike.

When I first met Doug and Nina it was through our church, Elliottsville Cumberland Presbyterian. Sunday School, Bible studies, intergenerational meetings, hayrides (the Kent’s furnishing the wagon and hay), Angel trees, youth groups such as PYF have all been attended and nurtured by the Kent’s. Both Kent’s have served as elders in their church many times. Nina still hosts the Luda Johnson Circle of the CPW in her lovely home on Fulton Springs Road.

People from far and wide have known and loved Doug and Nina Kent. For many, many years they attended all the THS football games and the Elliottsville softball games.

Service, reliability, honesty, integrity, compassion — these are trademarks of a well- lived life. Can you imagine what Alabaster could be if we all possessed those attributes? Doug Kent passed away July 8, 2003 shortly after he and Nina had moved into their new home and the Publix Project was still under construction. Shortly before he got sick I was visiting and asked him how he always managed to attend practically every thing at church — dairy farmers have some terrible hours — and he looked me straight in the face and said, “It’s very simple really. I made God a promise and I don’t intend to break it.”