In over 35 years of poultry processing, I had the wonderful privilege of working with many outstanding people, One of these outstanding people was Marshall Payne. His leadership abilities and organizational skills enabled him to standout in any assignment. After leaving the Gold Kist Athens operation, he moved into the plant manager position in Sanford, North Carolina. His management skills and abilities quickly moved the operation into a top Gold Kist producer. Marshall was diagnosed with cancer in mid-1999 and passed away in early 2000. He was taken far too early.
This gag photo was taken of Marshall with George Binick and myself at the Southeastern Poultry and Egg Show in Atlanta in 1985. The Reagan cardboard standup was a popular feature during the show. Marshall always displayed a remarkable sense of humor and a positive attitude as he moved on with his very successful poultry career.
There probably isn't enough space on the website to go into the attributes and contributions from Herman Boswell to his many friends, co-workers and later, his customers ~ after he began his sales career with Cantrell Machine. Herman served as my Maintenance Manager in Athens. He was the straw that stirred the drink. The best of the best at what he did. Herman passed away in early 1994. He left a history of success and a list of friends that would fill the largest phone book in the world. He was my friend. I will forever miss him.
If ever there was a fine person in this world, it was Ben Adams. He reeked of enthusiasiam and personality. Ben wasn't what you would call a preacher, but when he started his strong oratory and message, this fact mattered very little.. He was a regular featured speaker at the annual Gold Kist Perfect-Attendance Banquet. He often sang in the most beautiful voice the most beautiful gospel songs. Ben passed away in the late 90's. He will never be forgotten as a wonderful agent of goodness and decency in the world today.
Willie Meadows was one of a kind. He was the most dedicated associate I have ever worked with when it came to doing what had to be done to get the job done. He set the example that in spite of incredible odds against you in life, you can persevere. Upon his being diagnosed with lung cancer, Willie continued to come to work every day and keep an attitude of "If it be God's will." He worked a full shift the day before he passed in 1988. His strong work ethnic became an example to all of us that knew him and worked with him. On this day, Willie Meadow's is probably God's best handy man in his heavenly home.
Alfred "Blackie" Moore was a good friend. He served as an Gold Kist Athens Sales Manager for over 40 years. I guess everyone in the poultry industry knew Blackie Moore. He was an inspiration to everyone in his later years as health problems came into the picture. He continued to come in every day and meet his many company obligations. He was a battler and always had a smile or amusing adventure to share with anyone who had the time to listen.
what can I say about Frank Perdue. He was the most amazing person I ever worked with ~ or I guess you can say ~ worked for. My memories will always be of the hardest working 69 year old man I ever saw. My times at Perdue were the high-lites of my poultry career. Meeting and knowing Frank Perdue will always be a high-lite of my life. Mr. Perdue passed away in 2004.
Monroe Bennett was not just my uncle ~ He was my best friend. We grew up together and experienced many of the hardships of our youth as a tandem. He was instrumental in helping me to develop a strong positive attitude as I moved forward with my life. Monroe was a collector of about everything collectable. He collected thousands of comic books, movie books, little knick-knacks, and other small memorabilia as the years went by. He was of strong Christian faith and attended church every Sunday as his health permitted. Rest in peace, Uncle Monroe ~ I love you !
Above Monroe punches in just as he did for over 20 years with Gold Kist Athens. In the lower photo he enjoys the company of Gold kist supervisor Michael Nations at a 1989 Gold Kist Fun-day event.
I can go on and on with the loss of fabulous, outstanding and committed people that are no longer with us. USDA Regional Supervisor Ollie Dodgen, USDA Graders John Adams and John Wood; Supervisors Eleanor Wilhite, Grover Howard, Carroll Milligan, S.L Jackson, Arthur Webb, John Heard, and others. All contributed to the life of the Chicken Plant Manager and will forever be an integral part of my life. I will always cherish these memories of these wonderful times spent working with these outstanding individuals..