We never know where the road of life will lead us, but for Patty Meagher, a 1981 graduate of Macon County High School, it brought her to Charlotte Day’s home in Sycamore Valley, when the hometown girl returned home to Macon County for the first time in thirty years.
A former MCHS cheerleader and the daughter of the late Moline and Paul Meagher, Patty left Lafayette after receiving a full scholarship to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, thus building a life hundreds of miles away from rural Middle Tennessee and all her friends. Patty was busy and the days soon turned into years, as she lost track of time, while fate took her life in another direction.
But, faced with the challenge of battling cancer for the second time, Patty’s heart drew her back to Macon County for a visit, where her memories at first seemed like seeds scattered in the wind, until she reached Lafayette and the woman who spent 28 years in the banking business, soon remembered every little detail, just like pennies from Heaven.
I traveled down Sycamore Valley Road to Charlotte Day’s lovely home one day last week, to speak with Patty, and sitting on the front porch, tears filled my eyes, as I was drawn to the tranquil presence of this lovely valley.
As most of my readers may recall, I’ve always thought that God lived in Sycamore Valley, where the air seems fresher, the scenery breath taking and the Lord’s grace echoes through the hills and dales. I find peace in the valley and Patty and I bonded as she spoke of the town and the people that we share a mutual love for, as the whispering breeze surrounded us with peaceful songs. “It isn’t the place you live,” said Patty, “it’s the people. I didn’t realize how many things I missed about living in Macon County, until I came home and re-connected with all my old friends.”
After living in Las Vegas for thirty years, where they only receive about two inches of rain a year, Patty said she drawn to the lush fields and forests, as she spotted a fluffy dandelion in the grass. Intrigued, I watched her sweet face as she spoke of her love of life, and despite her illness, I witnessed no self-pity whatsoever, which was a comforting sign of Patty’s loving spirit. First diagnosed with cancer in July of 2009, Patty has ups and downs, and even though she is presently taking oral chemo, Charlotte says her dear friend wakes up every morning with a smile on her face.
“Everything is so wonderful after returning home after all these years,” Patty said, “and it almost seems like a dream.” Patty says she know that God is leading her on a journey in her fight against cancer, but she just calls this a rocky patch in her life. The former cheerleader also has a big support system in Las Vegas, along with her 18-year-old son, Ronnie White, a straight A student, who also received a full scholarship to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
“Everyone here has been so nice during my visit,” Patty said, “and I am still overwhelmed at the generosity and love of southern people. I think I can beat this disease, because I’m a fighter. I’ve been up against this beast before and I know if anyone can kick this again, I can." “I stop to watch the little things now, and I am delighted to see people’s smiles, not their tears. I’m not going to bring anyone down because of my illness.”
Each day Patty tries to focus on one thing, looking for something simple, to propel her into a place of awe, to be impressed by the great and profound detail in creation.
“I want to mention some of my friends who recently attended a bon fire in my honor including: Charlotte & Troy Day, Kendra Johnson, Trena Wooten, Gay Evetts, Woody Cutrell, Celia Massey, Joyce Ragland, Bobby Beasley, Heather Gregory, Cindy Bilbrey, Jaton Fowler, Loran White, Kim Wilmore, Teresa & Eric Fleming, Lisa Boyd Nickerson & Bill, Kara Day Davis, Kay Harris, Chris Dyer, Denise Krantz, Carla Smith, Jacqueline Massengille, Angie & Willie Ray, Debbie Goad, and Jeff & Michelle Wix.
Patty has a BS degree with a major in Finance & Business with emphasis in Accounting. She now owns her own business in Las Vegas, Paper Inc. Coupon Shop, where she teaches people how to save money, using coupons.
Reaching into the depths of my heart and soul, I was astounded by Patty’s amazing spirit and I wish her the best that life has to offer. Her and the Lord make quite a team, and I know He is there to pull her through.
“God bless you Patty.”