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It's more than a vote

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By Becca Owsley

 

By BECCA OWSLEY bowsley@thenewsenterprise.com

Election Day carries a special meaning for me. No matter how big the election or if I’m partial to a particular candidate the day makes me feel excited inside and gives me a special connection to an important figure in my life.

My grandfather, David Owsley, was a public servant for most of his adult life until his death 21 years ago. At the time of his death he was Hardin Circuit Clerk but many remember him from his days as Sheriff of Hardin County.

I can remember the stories he would tell and continue to hear stories from people whose lives he touched.

When people hear my last name and ask if I am related to him I am proud to say, “Yes, he was my grandfather.” Then the stories they have of him roll off their tongues as they are eager to share their memories.

He was an Andy Griffith- type sheriff who would rather talk someone out of a situation than use his gun. He ran races during an election without slinging mud and always came out a better man for it.

The buzz I get on Election Day seems to stem back to him. I can remember when I was a little girl taking a hand full of cards to school to hand out the kids in my class because I was proud to tell them what my grandfather was running for.

I remember riding in a parade with him knowing I was not only sitting next to a grandfather I loved but the pride I felt for his service.

He was one of those people who was not into politics for gain or approval but to serve. He was truly a great man.

When I step into the voting precinct and go to cast my vote, still to this day I think of him, his patriotism and his service. After I have cast my ballot and hit the button that secures my selection, I find my self smiling. I wear my “I voted” sticker with pride and think of him.

I carry the burden of his memory each Election Day and an overwhelming responsibility to vote, for civic responsibly and to honor his memory.

The same will be true this election day. I will go to the polls and think about him. I sometimes wonder what else he might have run for or if he would have been content to retire out of political life.

Regardless, his memory is a formidable one and his passion for politics has filtered down through the generations of his family. No matter which side of the aisle they support, I know one thing, he would always encourage them to vote. And so we do.

 

Becca Owsley can be reached at (270) 505-1741 or at bowsley@thenewsenterprise.com.