Remembering Rev. J. Loyd Edwards Jr.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Rev. J. Loyd Edwards Jr.
Rev. J. Loyd Edwards Jr.

Though it has been a few weeks since the Chattanooga community lost a community leader, civil rights icon, and simply a man of God, for me, I simply lost a friend. I’ve known of Reverend Edwards all my life; he eulogized three of my aunts and has been connected with my family through my older siblings.  

Many know of his tireless work through the Mary Walker Foundation and other organizations. But that’s not how I came to know this wise, magnificent man. Long before I answered the call in ministry, I remember speaking for a black history program. And for the most part I was prepared and had all my facts together. I remember closing with an arousing applause. As the congregation proceeded to congratulate me on my message, an old gray-haired man in his eighties, realizing this was my first time speaking, approached me and said young man you did an awesome job. Words any young man wants to hear from an elder. As I began to smile with my chest stuck out he suddenly said to me, “But you said one thing that wasn’t exactly correct.” He had listened to a 45 minute speech and heard the one thing that was not historically true.  

As I accepted the criticism, I recognized his way of correcting me without tearing me down. I suddenly realized that the wisdom I was about to learn from this wise man was far greater than the embarrassment of misquoting history. I can tell you after that day I made sure that every quote that came out of my mouth was historically correct. Yes study and show thyself approved. Do not be responsible for leading anyone astray.

After that day Rev and I saw each other many more times over the years. We always seemed to show up at the same venues. And I was the wiser man for it because I learned how to let him talk, and I simply listened. So many of our young people are missing that wisdom that can only be transferred from listening to one who has come through the struggle, from one who has stood on the battleground and fought for justice. I cherish my moments with Rev because with each visit I gained knowledge that can never be taken away from me.  

I can recall him saying, “If my people would just pick up a book, a magazine or any publication and read it. There is so much knowledge between the lines, both good and bad. But if you can’t read it you want know the difference.”  

RIP Rev! Message was received.

Retired Fire Captain
Ken Harden               

Kudzu Incursion On Scenic Highway

I don't know if I am the only Lookout Mountain resident to notice that Scenic Highway is about to be one and a half lanes. Kudzu is encroaching over the guard rail and onto the road. In many places you can no longer tell where the road ends and the guard rail begins. A number of new and older drivers don't need to be guessing about where the road ends. Tommy Dickinson (click for more)

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. There is no word limit, but if your article is too long you may lose your reader. Please focus more on issues than personal attacks. (click for more)

Bradley, 24, Charged In Death Of Boy, 3; Child Had Numerous Injuries After Left With Boyfriend; Mother Was In Workhouse

Justin Dale Bradley has been charged with criminal homicide in the death of a three-year-old child, who was rushed to the hospital on Wednesday and later died. Police said Dakota James Arndt had numerous injuries over his body. Authorities said Bradley, 24, is the boyfriend of the child's mother, Brianna Kwekel, who was in the Workhouse at the time. Ms. Kwekel was serving 48 ... (click for more)

Helen Burns Sharp Asks Recovery Of Legal Fees In Successful Black Creek TIF Lawsuit

Helen Burns Sharp, citizen activist who sued to try to stop a $9 million Black Creek Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and won, is seeking to have her legal expenses paid by the city and the developers. Ms. Sharp said in a court filing that her legal bills to attorney John Konvalinka are $74,427 thus far. Chancellor Frank Brown ruled in favor of Ms. Sharp, saying the Sunshine ... (click for more)

Worley-Powered Vols Clobber Utah State, 38-7, In Opener

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee, trying to snap out of the doldrums of four consecutive losing seasons, started its 2014 campaign in fine fashion Sunday night before a season opening sellout crowd of 102,445 that endured a heavy rain story 30 minutes prior to kickoff. And senior quarterback Justin Worley, who missed the final four games in 2013 after undergoing thumb surgery, was ... (click for more)

Lookouts Reach Southern League Northern Division Playoffs With Doubleheader Win Over Smokies

The Chattanooga Lookouts are now playoff bound after sweeping a double-header against the Tennessee Smokies  to clinch the Southern League North Division for the second half of the season. The first game of the double-header was backed by a masterful gem of a game thrown by the starter for the Lookouts, Steve Smith (W, 3-2). Smith dominated the Smokies' lineup from top ... (click for more)