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Issues still the same

Thirty five years ago, in 1981, one of the top stories in The Brewton Standard was about the finding of two large marijuana fields in the county.

Investigators found two fields of marijuana growing near the small community of Bradley. Four thousand pounds were confiscated and valued at $800,000. Four persons were arrested and charged in the investigations. A Covington County investigator said that it was, up until that time, the largest marijuana field in Alabama.

The plants were taken to the landfill and burned. Of those charged, one was caught in a soybean field nearby and two were tracked with bloodhounds, while the other escaped temporarily when the trackers were attacked by a swarm of hornets.

Even the editorial in the paper was about the marijuana bust. As the editor pointed out, it was a shame to have the bust associated with the Bradley community as it was not connected with people in the area. Also the editorial pointed out that those who are mixed up in drugs don’t have to look like a drug lord from South America and driving a fancy car. Most of the time, they are those who are least suspected.

Over the past 35 years, I hope that message has gotten through to the public. I also hope that people realize drugs affect  everyone. Above all, it can happen to anyone, so we are all in this together.

In other news, East Brewton citizens were given the opportunity to vote as to whether taxes were to be raised from five mills to 12.

A few citizens of Brewton were in the line of some high winds that swept in and did some damage to a few places, including Brewton Elementary School.

A campaign began to raise money to buy a “Jaws of Life” for the Escambia County Rescue Squad.

I don’t know if this was the first in the area, but “Jaws” has proven itself to be a lifesaver over the years. It would be hard to guess just how many people have been saved by the equipment.

For many years Peggy Brackin wrote many columns for the newspaper with good household tips, and recipes for good food. I ran across one of her columns in July 1981 that caught my attention.

She wrote that it was the season for figs to be ripe and one of the favorite things to do with them was to make preserves.

Oh, that brought me back to some fond memories. One of my jobs when I was little was to pick figs to “put up” for the coming winter. We had a couple of fig trees, but the best time I had was at my cousins’ when my Aunt Erma would give us a bucket and tell us to go pick. I won’t say that my cousin was lazy, but she had to be reminded often that the figs had to be picked; they wouldn’t just fall in the bucket.

And of course, many of those figs never made it to the bucket. I know that I absolutely love figs and would love to get my hands on some today. Yum.

Now here was a surprise for me. According to an article in the newspaper, a few businessmen were planning on building a theme park at Nokomis. The theme was to be country music. Now what happened? I don’t remember ever seeing a theme park in Nokomis.

The other item that caught my eye was the upcoming royal wedding to take place in London on July 29. Prince of Wales, Charles, and Diana Spencer were to wed and it was the big news for weeks.