Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Passing of a Legend

The most shocking news reached my ears today. I learned that Mr. Wayne Hanson has passed away.

Mr. Hanson was a literal folk legend. I grew up in Clay, Alabama, and out there Mr. Hanson was a celebrity. He was so synonymous with Clay that he was nicknamed the Mayor. While I never knew him personally, I always felt as if I genuinely had some connection with the man.

He lived in this tiny old house on the corner of Old Springville Road. The house was small, but had a certain charm and mystique about it. I used to always wonder what was inside that house, what did Mr. Hanson own that he did for entertainment. I even once, when I was young, thought he had a Batcave or something beneath the house. Though not only was Mr. Hanson a genuine legend, he was also a gifted artist. He would very often paint murals and signs and place them on the side of the road by his house.

It saddens me to think that he is gone. Never again will I ever see him mowing his yard, nor walking to the Piggly Wiggly, nor will I ever see a new painting. He was one man that I mean this most sincerely that will be genuinely missed by all who live in Clay. May he rest in peace.

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