Growing up halfway between Martinsville and Monrovia in the Wilbur area has caused Autumn Hodge to have a slightly different perspective on life today. Her backyard was several acres just down the road from her grandparent’s house. She spent a great deal of her time out of doors, engaged in sports like softball or basketball, or helping in Grandma Wilma Hodge’s garden. With little, if any, cell or internet service at home, she is less tethered to her cell phone or computer than most peo-ple, and she likes it that way. In fact, she says she often has to calm visiting friends telling them they will survive not having cell service for a while.
Her fondest memories of home and family are in the garden and kitchen with Grandma, making jelly, chicken pot pie, and baking up pies, cakes and other goodies. They would start in the garden picking produce that, depending on the season, could range from strawberries, blue- or blackberries, cucumbers, tomatoes or green beans to apples from the trees. She learned to sort, snap, chop, strain, mash, cook, and can the foods into good old Mason jars. They’d cool and be stored in the cellar ready to feed the family all year long. But before that happened, the “extras” would be fashioned into pies and other pastries to eat right away.
The February enrollment figures for Mooresville Consolidated School Corporation made a big impression on Superintendent Randy Taylor. That’s because enrollment increased over the number of students from the beginning of the school year. Taylor said, “We have more students moving into the community. The indication is that we are being noticed and people are moving into our community seeing the strengths in academics, athletics, and performing arts.”
At the conclusion of this school year, Taylor will be celebrating 45 years in education and he is excited and enthusiastic about what is happening in the schools today and the part he wants to play in it. After 13 years as an instructor and coach in Martinsville, Taylor made the decision to become an administrator. “I felt a need to get into the side of education where decisions were being made as to what was best for students and also for the community, because they run hand-in-hand. To have a good community, you have to have a strong school system.”
Every parent dreams of a life filled with potential and purpose for their children. That desire is no different for parents of children diagnosed with cerebral palsy (CP) and thanks to the Jackson Center in Mooresville, the potential for those with CP is brighter. Jackson Center is one of a handful of Conductive Education centers in the nation; started and operated as a 501c3 non-profit organization by the DePoy family in Mooresville.
In January 2001, Lara and Spencer DePoy welcomed their first child, Jackson, into the world. Lara had just finished a Master’s degree at University of Indianapolis in occupational therapy and was set to begin a new job. The joy of new beginnings and life was quickly replaced with concern and fear as Jackson struggled to live. Within six months, Jackson became one of the 2.5 children in every thousand live births diagnosed with CP, which is a broad diagnosis for brain damage that occurs before, during, or after birth. The prognosis for people diagnosed with CP, according to Lara, is often very cloudy and uncertain. The DePoys, like other families in the same situation, were thrown into an uncertain world with lots of unknowns and little information, support, and most of all, hope.
After more than thirty years at the helm of the Costin Funeral Chapel, Kenny and Debbie Costin agree that there’s always a greater plan and patience will bear it out. “We aren’t supposed to worry about it,” Kenny said, “we are to pray and have faith that God has a plan.”
The Morgan County natives weren’t always so sure. When he graduated from Eminence High School, Kenny went first to Purdue to study accounting, and then had designs on playing basketball for a small college in Florida. When that did not happen, he began testing with the Navy to go into the nuclear energy field. While in that process, his brother, David, who was a licensed director at Carlisle Funeral Services in Mooresville, asked him to fill in and help with services there. “I worked there for about a week and then,” Kenny said, “because I needed a job, I asked for one, and Mr. Carlisle took me on.”
It was about that time that Kenny went to the dentist and met Debbie. “He’s not shy,” Debbie said. “He called the dentist and asked if I was dating anyone.” When he was told Debbie had just had a bad break up, he took to heart the dentist’s wish for “good luck” and sent her flowers and they became a couple.
2018 is a very big milestone for United Way of Central Indiana, of which the Morgan County United Way Area South is a part. The organization will be celebrating 100 years of service in Central Indiana. It was 1918 when the movement came to Indianapolis in the form of a “War Chest” that was placed on the steps of Monument Circle. The War Chest campaign raised $3 million that was then donated to charities such as Boys and Girls Clubs of Indianapolis, Catholic Charities Indianapolis, Children’s Bureau, Inc., Early Learning Indiana, Boy Scouts of America, Families First, Girl Scouts of America, The Salvation Army and the YMCA of Greater Indianapolis.
The United Way movement actually began 133 years ago in Denver, Colorado, when a woman, a priest, a rabbi, and two ministers combined efforts to address extreme poverty. They realized that the only way to make the most impact was to unite and seek donations to one organization that would then distribute funds to organizations directly touching those in need.
One of the most exciting things about being a small business owner, according to many who are, is that you never know what lies ahead every morning when you rise to shine. Opportunity and challenges are around every corner, just like new faces. And, as Frank Ocean said, “We met for a reason, either you’re a blessing or a lesson.”
For chiropractors Dr. Ryan Dailey and Dr. Joshua Healy, a chance meeting at a Mooresville Chamber of Commerce gathering four or five years ago illustrates the point. Was it happenstance that these two met, or was it fate, destiny? Whichever way you look at it, today they consider it a blessing.
Their first meeting happened around the time that Dr. Dailey had just joined Dr. Kirkling in his chiropractic practice in Mooresville. Dr. Dailey and his wife, Katie, relocated from Terre Haute and had just welcomed their second child, Grace, as little sister to Audri. His professional plan was clear, as Dr. Kirkling moved toward retirement, Dr. Dailey would build his practice. The idea was to provide a seamless transition of continuing care for all the patients until June, 2017 when Dr. Kirkling would retire completely and Dr. Dailey would take over the practice.