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A Poetic Tribute
William "Bill" Hudgens
Gee!  Can you remember the importance of 1951?
That was the year the Indiana Hoosiers won!

However, more important to us --that was the year
we got our Bill.
We had no idea that Mr. Clements' shoes he could so capably fill.

If you weren't in Lepanto then to see the man,
You wouldn't know that to us he was greater than
Gene Hackman.

Alexander Pope penned profound couplets long ago.
One couplet fits Bill Hudgens - just perfectly so--

"Tis education forms the common mind;
Just as the twig is bent, the tree's inclined."

Now, sit back; hold up, and listen to me!
There's none greater than Bill Hudgens - you'll see

Soon after Bill arrived in our beloved Lepanto,
He was busy about his business - going to and fro.

Coming from a family of nine to work in Lepanto,
He knew how to pick up the reins to make our labs and journalism go.

He was interested in all our school and community affairs.
He could even pull stuck kindergartners from their chairs.

No problem was too big or too small
For him to tackle or to answer a call.

With the passing of many, many years,
We still remember how Bill helped us conquer our fears.

His life has been filled with doing good deeds.
He quietly stepped up to provide our various needs.

We learned to appreciate fully all of his analytical skills
He walked us through the valleys, and with us climbed the
educational hills.

The subjects that he taught gave us knowledge galore.
His love and devotion gave us much, much more.

Each Sunday we knew that he would be at the front of the church where all could see.

He rendered such melodious music on the old organ stool
That the kids today would call it "Sweet" and "Cool."

He instilled in each of us a desire to learn and taught
A good work ethic so that a living we could earn

He made us have the urgency to "hitch our wagon to a star."
His "come alive" teaching created in us ambition enough to go far.

As our mentor, he enthusiastically lived what he taught--
His responsibility, faith, and confidence we caught.

Now, we look at him with considerable awe.
We can find nowhere any kind of flaw.

All of us are not exceptionally fit and trim,
While he is simply overflowing with vigor and vim.

Did he in the chemistry lab concoct a "Fountain of Youth?"
Will he now reveal his formula and tell us the truth?

Did he travel to St. Augustine to visit Ponce de Leon's pool
And bring enough water to "seed" his own creation at school?

Memories of the excellent teacher are without end.
To each of us, Bill Hudgens became a lifetime friend.

We long for those good times to stay and never depart
But one thing for sure Bill Hudgens will remain in our heart.

Willie Whitney, Manila, Arkansas
"If We Only Have Love" performed
Ginger Haydon/Ginger's Piano Place