Never yesterday’s news

The Dad once told me about a cold day in April when he was leaving Bluefield. It was 1981 – the day after his father Stubby’s funeral. He pulled the car into a gas station to fill up before driving his family back 400 miles back to Cincinnati, and he came face-to-face with his pop. Stubby’s photo glanced up at him from the trash can. It was his obituary on the front page of the Bluefield Daily Telegraph.

He said grief came over him in that moment. It brought it home that Stubby was literally and figuratively yesterday’s news. A family lost its patriarch. A town lost a significant champion.  But sons lost their father. A wife lost her partner. Co-workers lost a friend.

Unfortunately, the grief is back. We recently lost The Dad. Like many deaths, it was a long time coming but too sudden, too soon. The Dad loved to tell stories about the sports scene he grew up in. He loved reminiscing about the neighborhood baseball games in which he played while living on Pen Mar. He was devoted to the 1959 Bluefield Beavers Football State Champs until the very end. He put West Virginia Mountaineers stickers on anything that wouldn’t move.

Even though we don’t have The Dad anymore doesn’t mean his stories are done being told, or our stories here are over. Even though the newsprint has long been recycled, the memories are old and dusty, and those we have loved may have gone on, we still have their stories to tell.

And Dad, I’ll miss you.

Love, Melissa


  1. kim

    Was your grandmother a teacher at Central Junior high school? I had Mrs Currence as a teacher in junior high. I have always wondered whatever had happened to her. I would love to see some pictures of her from the 70’s. She was a delicate petite older woman with black glasses and hair, way back then. I liked her, she was a good teacher.

    • Melissa

      Hi Kim – yes, that was my grandmother. She retired in the mid-80s. She passed in 2012. She loved teaching. I’ll see if I can post some photos. Thanks! ~Melissa

  2. Pingback: Stubby in the New York Times | The Stubby Currence Project
  3. Pingback: Thanks, Dad | Melissa Currence
  4. lovetta

    Melissa —you have done a wonderful job with this project—I am Lovetta Currence –we live opposite your Grandfather’s house in Bluefield. My husband is Butch— his brother Kiffie would like your telephone number–he has a lot to contribute to your project. Thanks, keep up the good work.

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