The Many Lessons I Learned From Helen McDonald Exum

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Helen McDonald Exum was my friend and mentor. As I think of her passing I can only imagine the celebration that is happening in heaven as the news of her arrival is being told. I am sure that there is a party that not only has she organized but that there is not a detail that has been left to chance. I am sure that it is the grandest of events, for you see, she has been planing it all of her life.

Helen was the best friend that any of us could ever have. She was not just caring, she genuinely cared. There was never just a note or phone call she was present. By this I mean she loved her friends enough to hold their hand, feed not only their bodies but their souls as well as telling us when and how to pick ourselves up and "make something happen." 

She was a great listener. She was kind and generous. She was easily able to see the beauty and goodness of those around her. She always made people feel special.  She taught me enthusiasm as when I would call to chat with her she would proclaim "oh let's plan a party!"  I often compared her to Auntie Mame because she did see life as a party and we should rejoice and celebrate each other and celebrate each day.

Helen taught me many lessons. One of the most profound was the "quick prayer." This is a prayer that can be said upon entering a room full of strangers and praying that everyone be receptive and opened to one another. It is a prayer that is said when being seated by a person on a plane and asking to be able to communicate on a friendly basis. It is a prayer to say when walking to a podium before speaking to a group, it is a prayer to be said when you are about to have a disagreement with someone and it is a prayer to be said when your teenage child walks into the room to ask for help in communicating with them.

She taught me many reasons to offer up a "quick prayer".   Helen also taught me that life sometimes can be overwhelmingly tough but that those are the times that mold you into becoming a stronger and wiser person. She taught me to always see the joy and humor in the most simple of events. I am fortunate that I had the opportunity to learn from Helen.

Helen and Mr. Roy McDonald gave me the amazing gift of believing in me. The two of them encouraged me and convinced me that because they believed in me that others would believe in me too.  They gave me confidence to reach for the dreams that I had for "sick children".  Helen was a friend that would hug me in times of trouble and celebrate with me in life's triumphs.

I cherish the times that I had with Helen. I loved her and I look forward to the day when I meet her again and I can only imagine that she will greet me with her ever-present smile and twinkle in her eyes and say "Oh Judy, I am glad you are here I have planned the most fun adventure that you have ever had."  Until then, my friend.........................

Judy Bellenfant


The Hillary Connection With Trump And Univision

So all the mainstream media had a segment on Donald Trump kicking Jorge Ramos of Univision out of his press conference yesterday.  Amazingly (well maybe not) none of them mentioned that Ramos' daughter, Paola, is director of Latin Outreach for Hillary Clinton's campaign.   Ramos is no more a journalist than Rush Limbaugh, who at least has never claimed to be one.  He ... (click for more)

Anchor Babies And The 14th Amendment - And Response (2)

First of all, lets set the record straight.  The Supreme Court has never, never ruled or granted citizenship to children born in the U.S. to illegal aliens- period.  The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1868, and did not address the issue of illegal immigrants at all because at that time there were no illegal immigrants, and the issue of violation ... (click for more)

DA Pinkston Asks City Police To Investigate Fatal Shooting By County Deputies Of Man They Chased Into The City Limits

District Attorney General Neal Pinkston has asked Chattanooga Police to investigate a fatal shooting involving Hamilton County deputies who chased a suspect from Old Lee Highway to Pine Marr Drive inside the city limits. At Pine Mar, the suspect crashed and shots were fired resulting in the suspect’s death.  DA Pinkston said he would have no further comment. Pine ... (click for more)

DISH And Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. Finalizing Long-Term Deal; Stations To Be Restored

DISH Network L.L.C. and Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. have reached an agreement in principle that will form the basis of a long-term retransmission consent agreement for carriage of Sinclair’s local channels in 79 markets nationwide. Restoration of Sinclair signals to DISH’s system is underway. “We are grateful for the FCC’s work on behalf of consumers to actively broker ... (click for more)

Vols Feel It's Almost Football Time In Tennessee

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – After weeks of preseason training and kickoff in Nashville now just 10 days away, the Tennessee players and coaches are just as excited as their followers for the 2015 season to begin. The sweltering heat of early August has lowered to a late-summer simmer at Haslam Field, signaling that fall is on the horizon and it is almost Football Time In Tennessee. ... (click for more)

CCS Edges Soddy Daisy, 2-1, in Soccer

 A pair of second half goals scored by freshmen Addie Henry and Kate Dirske led Chattanooga Christian to a 2-1 win against visiting Soddy Daisy Tuesday in a girls high school soccer match. The Trojans (2-1) took a 1-0 lead in the 36th minute on a free kick from 25 yards out by Kaylee Markum whose shot hit the far post and went in the goal. Annie Reynolds had given ... (click for more)