Happy 75th Birthday William Holmes

On Sunday I was blessed to be able to attend two events that added to the quality of my life.  I started off the day with Shawn at a 480 East concert.  It was one of the last events of the 2017 Berks Jazz Festival.  It was a beautiful day in Reading, PA.  The day before I had participated in the Philly Spring Clean Up for the 7th time.  Steve Ferguson and I helped to pick up 25 bags of trash just from the intersection of 15th Street between Washington Avenue and Alter Street.  It was an area that had been long neglected.  That Saturday night, Shawn and I went to Appleby's and enjoyed a leisurely dinner together.  Thank God for the Blessing in my life.

We had missed the Berks Jazz Festival for about three years.  Financially tough times dictated a belt tightening that precluded many events that we were used to.  This made me appreciate my life long friendships even more.  William Holmes counts among those Friends.  When I worked at the Redevelopment Authority, some of the Homeys would go to Champions to blow off some steam.  We started off innocently and with a small group.Themainstays showed up Sunday night.  Anthony McIntosh, aka The Chairman, made sure that we all received our invitations.  Andy Donald, Clarence Jordan, Murray Spencer, David Thomas, David Stubbs and Caswel Curtis were there in force on Sunday night.  We were also accompanied by our wives.  We missed Tim Roundtree and Derek Green.  It was a great Sunday.

Bill is on the right.  Tony Mac is on the left.

Bill Holmes has serious South Philly roots.  He was born in 1942 in South Philly.  He graduated from Barratt Middle School which is right across the street from my house.  He had a stellar athletic career and was also know as Windy for his speed.  We have been to numerous parties at his place in Wyncote.  He is a cook and one of his claims to fame are the numerous years that his collard greens have been featured in Philly Men are Cooking.  His wife Betty is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.  We have also partied at Tony Mac's house, McMenamins, the Mill Creek Tavern, my house on Wigard Avenue, Julius' house, Lou and Choo's and Scotty's. We have attended the funerals of some of our members Mother's and Sister's.  We are a tight group that will go to the end together.

I met Bill when I was working at the Office of Housing.  I gravitated to his office because I loved his jazz collection.  I borrowed numerous CD's and cultivated my love of jazz since then.  His home is a collection of his numerous travels.  I love his books from various nations and the pictures that they include.  He said very little on Sunday as is his style.  Tony Mac and Dave Thomas presented citations from the Commonwealth and the City.  He has lived an impeccable life.  I wish him many returns of the day, 

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