A jam-packed year, but even more to come

When I looked back through all the front pages of this newspaper from 2010 to put together our Year in Review edition, I was blown away by how much actually happened — and how much of it I had already forgotten about.

Even though 2010 went by quickly — too quickly — it was a jam-packed year for Shelby County. There were many positive moments, such as when the city of Pelham came together to show the real meaning of community by paying off the Davis family mortgage. After the Davis family lost their beloved husband and father, Pelham Police officer Philip Davis, it must have been a great comfort to have the city show such amazing support.

For the second time in Alabama’s history, a Shelby County son was elected governor. Dr. Robert Bentley, a Columbiana native, pulled off a stunning win by campaigning on ethics reform, creating new jobs and keeping government small.

The University of Montevallo brought a big addition to Shelby County by naming John W. Stewart III as the school’s 15th president. Stewart has already made it clear he has big plans for the UM community.

Unfortunately, there were also many, many losses for the Shelby County community. We lost Montevallo High School assistant football coach Keith Adair and former Calera High School head football coach Mac Thompson, both of whom contributed mightily to our local high schools and their athletic programs.

We lost former Shelby County Sheriff Buddy Glasgow, well-known Red Cross volunteer Cel Etheredge, Earl Baker of Old Baker Farm and Montevallo City Council Member Greg Pendleton, all of whom made a strong impact through public service and are a part of our county’s history.

We also lost too many of our young. Some lost their lives in the war in Afghanistan, such as Hoover resident Lance Cpl. Thomas E. Rivers and Army Pfc. Andrew L. Hand, son of Spain Park High School assistant football coach Kenneth Hand.

Others lost their lives in tragic accidents, such as Brynleigh Welch, 9, Amber Parks, 14, and Nathan Dunn, 16, all of whom died in vehicle wrecks. We know their families still ache with pain over their losses, and we can only lift them up in prayer.

As eventful a year as 2010 was, I expect even more to happen in 2011. I have lived in Shelby County since May 2008, and the past two and a half years have gone by in a flash. I’m used to it now, and I know there will be many surprises in store, many good days but a few sad days ahead for us in Shelby County.

I’m just glad I’m here at the Reporter to see it all happen.

Amy Jones is the Associate Editor of the Shelby County Reporter. She can be reached at 669-3131 ext. 30 or by e-mail at amy.jones@shelbycountyreporter.com.