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Emergency trip to Howard Clinic rivaled scenes in Thunder Road
But his uncle Titus "Tite" Jessie, got him there after Dr. Loy sent the writer, then five years old, there in a life-and-death-situation: a ruptured appendix. The trip was by way of the old Highway 80, then considered the crookedest road out of Columbia. But the highly skilled driver got him to Glasgow, at speeds of 80, 90, even 100 miles an hour. Saying, at one point, 'I'll get him there and he'll be alright, but that ol' Dr. Howard had better have his knife sharp, cause I'll get him there." The story was in black and white, but he remembers vividly he'd set a medical record in these parts: Dr. Howard declared him the youngest person he'd ever heard of with this condition
By Billy Joe Fudge
In 1956 at the age of 5, I was operated on by Dr. Howard at his clinic for a ruptured appendix. Dr. Loy sent me down there in a life and death situation. My Uncle Titus (Tite) Jessie took me to Glasgow by way of old Highway 80 in a scene that would have rivaled, if not surpassed, the action in the movie, Thunder Road.
I was one sick little boy but I can still remember that night trip that will be forever etched in black and white on the memory banks of my mind.
Can remember talk of 80, 90, and 100 miles per hour
I remember the talk in the car of 80, 90 and a 100 miles per hour. I can still remember the roar of the engine and the rocking back and forth as we sped West on Highway 80. I can still hear my mother admonishing Uncle Tite about driving too fast while in the same breath urging him to hurry, to please hurry. I can still remember Uncle Tite's calming voice which boomed out time and again, "I'll get him there and he'll be alright but that ol' Dr. Howard had better have his knife sharp, cause I'll get him there."
Professionalism one would expect from a Greyhound Bus Driver
That was the type professionalism you would expect from a Greyhound Bus driver, especially one of the caliber of Titus Jessie. A Greyhound Bus driver was a high calling in those days and still is in my mind's eye.
At any rate, when we arrived the scene continued in black and white but mostly a blur of white as they wheeled me into that most modern Operating Room of it's day.
Remembers his dad fainting dead out in the hall from the smell of ether
I remember my dad fainting dead out in the hall from the smell of ether which permeated the entire structure, it seemed.
We found out later that my dad, Ordell Fudge, who was one of the strongest willed men I've ever known, could just drive by a hospital where ether was in use and get all weak-kneed and loosy-goosy, as they say.
Well, I can still remember the uncertainty and I suppose what would be considered fear as they strapped that mask on my face and encouraged me to breath and to not hold my breath.
Then the picture was in color as Dr. Howard declared he would be alright
And then, sometime later, I can see in color as Dr. Howard stood over my bed with the declaration that I would be alright.
I remember his wonderment at my appendicitis at 5 years old being the youngest he had heard of at the time.
Dr. Howard would and has always held a place of very high esteem and respect in our household and in fact all of The Great Wooded South.
As an aside to this story, a couple of weeks later my very best friend, Daryl Fletcher, who was only 4 years old had his appendix removed by Dr. Howard. This prompted the question during a check up by Dr. Howard, "Whata you all got in the water up there at Sparksville?"
Comments re photo 58666 Metcalfe Historical Marker Dr CC Howard
This story was posted on 2015-01-25 21:32:49
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