Erica Jones has owned her own business for going on four years. She’s 24 and is happy she made the decision to purchase Heavenly Hair Designs, located at 111 East Alabama St., from the former owner. Everything is going well, she said. She has her regular customers as well as many who are first-time customers.

Ruth Cheatwood worked at a number of jobs until she was hired as an administrative support assistant at the Wildlife and Fresh Water Fisheries office on Alabama 21 between Jacksonville and Piedmont in 2005. Her supervisor is Capt. Jim Kirkland.

Cathy Hulsey was working at Jacksonville State University when she met her husband, Travis. She worked in the business office with Carolyn Andrews and Jennifer Craven in 1985. At that time, Travis was working for a local CPA accounting firm that was auditing JSU. They were introduced near her work station.

Sandy Phillips of is a member of a sorority that no longer exists. She worked as a telephone operator in Oregon, Ill., for a number of years. She remembers sitting and facing a switchboard that held 12 sets of cords. She had to know which cord went where so she wouldn’t unplug someone. Operators used one cord to answer the phone with and other to dial out. She used the eraser end of her pencil to dial numbers on a rotary device.

Shirley Roden didn’t see any reason to finish Hazelwood High School when she could marry the love of her life, William Thornton. She left in the 11th grade and they were married. Shirley lost him to breast cancer 20 years later.

When Carolyn Nance began working at Walmart in 1983 she was also a substitute teacher for Calhoun County Schools. Although she was married, had two children of her own and a job, she found time to tutor a child during her eighth grade year after her father was severely burned and she was nee…

Tabitha Royal has a saying that she repeats to herself often. She wants to share it in hopes that others will always remember it and practice it: “Let us enjoy this beautiful life together by bringing a smile to every face that meets ours.”

A few months ago, a group of sports enthusiasts and health minded folks discussed playing pickleball at the Civic Center. Everyone was eager to begin playing, so it didn’t take long to pick a day to do so. Pam Jones was one of those who liked the idea and is now a regular member of that group.

Emily Ginn likes to read, fish with her husband, cook and keep up with Alabama football. This year has been different for Emily and her husband, Scott. Their lifestyle has changed somewhat, and they couldn’t be happier.

When Dahlia Glass speaks with passion, it always includes the word family. Growing up with two brothers and two sisters the holidays were about family gatherings, cooking good food, talking, and lots of laughter.

“Christmas in Winter Haven, Fla., is typically spent in T-shirts and flip flops,” she said.

A meeting of two teenagers at the Allison Theater on North Center in Piedmont in the 1950s has produced a family of 12, so far. Doug Rosser of Piedmont set his eyes on Janice Anderson one night and never looked back. They’ve been married 58 years.

At one time, Cidney Parker never thought cooking would be involved in helping her earn a living. She had always liked to cook and learned a lot about it from her late grandmother, Helen Green. Helen didn’t just make Cidney watch; she let her get involved in actually preparing the food.

Cindy Wilson has fond memories of watching her mother, Phyllis Mitchell, and her grandmother, Margaret Mallows, cook. She learned a lot from both women as they prepared meals. Her grandmother has just turned 90, and her grandfather, George Mallows, is 92.

Dana Bonds worked at a local bank and credit union before she landed what she believes is the perfect job.  For the past 27 years, she’s worked at Jacksonville State University. Because she works in accounts payable, she’s responsible for paying JSU’s bills, including the power bill and trav…

Dana Thrash feels fortunate that her job brought her to Piedmont. She’s an outdoors person and is happy that her new home has an abundance of outdoor activities. She and her family can now do a lot of kayaking on Terrapin Creek in the summer and enjoy 4-wheeling and camping.

Spring Garden born and bred Shane Kirk has had several jobs. He graduated from Spring Garden High in 1990 and almost immediately went to work at Springs Industries, where he operated an automated machine. He stayed there 11 years, then worked in production at Honda for two years. His third and current job is with Superior Gas, where he is a service technician. He’s been there 15 years. This, Kirk said, is his favorite.

Doris Vaughn married a man she’d had a crush on since seventh grade. She and Robert Bullard graduated from Lyerly (Ga.) High School together. Shortly afterward, Robert decided he wanted to join the Navy. His family told him they would look after Doris. He decided not to wait. He married her on Feb. 24, 1951, in the Lyerly Methodist parsonage, before he went into the Navy.

Brenda Angel spent years in a classroom and later in an office advising students at Oxford High School. She started out teaching English and later counseled seniors.  She loved working at Oxford and assisting students in making college and career choices. She said she had some sharp students and enjoy keeping up with many of them.

Mary Maddox believes that God has blessed her with a gift – the talent and ability to become a teacher. Mary was born and reared in Spring Garden, attended school there for 12 years and, after getting her bachelor’s and master’s from Jacksonville State University, returned to teach second grade for 38 years.

If anyone knows how a child of a teacher feels, it’s Tomya Hancock. She grew up in a home where both parents taught. Thomas O and Martha (Johnson) Wilson, worked at Saks Elementary. Her mother was the librarian, and her father taught sixth grade English. She has lots of empathy for such chil…

Becoming a secretary was the career Judy Anderson pursued beginning in her teen years. It’s what her mother did. Her mother, Juanita Scott, worked at Superior Gas in Piedmont for over 40 years. After graduating from Piedmont High to assist in achieving her career goal, Judy attended Judson College in Marion, where she received a bachelor’s in secretarial science.

Betty Davenport learned to sew and quilt from two women she looked up to -- her mother and her former mother-in-law. Both women, according to Betty, were good teachers who were patient with her. The three of them would gather on a regular basis with other women to quilt.

Josephine “Jo” Holcomb Pike was one of seven children born to Essie and Dewey Holcomb. She was taught at an early age to share, work and play. She feels these early beginnings gave her the inspiration and initiative to continue sharing and helping others.