Doctors' influence still evident today

Published 9:35 am Wednesday, March 3, 2010

By By Lowell McGill
Back in 1970 the entire nation was introduced to the problems of dyslexia.
This is a learning disorder “that manifests itself as a difficulty with reading, spelling and in some cases mathematics. It is separate and distinct from reading difficulties resulting from non-neurological deficiencies” according to the Wikipedia Web site.
Dr. Harold Wilson was recognized by county medical organizations for his outstanding work in this field.
He conducted numerous lectures to help everyone get a better understanding about this unique disorder. He worked with related dyslexia groups in identifying and treating grammar school and high school students.
Wilson was quoted as saying that dyslexia affects between 5 percent and 17 percent of the U.S. population. Today countless parents credit Dr. Wilson for his timely efforts treating and identifying dyslexia in local and area children.
He and Dr. Bancroft Cooper came to Atmore in 1957 to set up practice. The two worked together for a number of years. Dr. Cooper later left Atmore, but Dr. Wilson still practices here. In fact, he has served Atmore for more than 50 years, longer than any other doctor here.
In other news from 1970, Army Warrant Officer Jerry Hatfield received a military citation for meritorious flights while serving on duty in Vietnam. The son of Mr. and Mrs. B.W. Hatfield, he was a graduate of Escambia County High School.
A former ECHS and University of Alabama graduate received exceptional military honors. Cpt. Joseph Nall was recognized for heroic rescue efforts by his Global Aerospace units.
He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Leo Nall and brother to Webb Nall, prominent Atmore businessman, councilman and civic leader.
Sarah Murph was named feature editor of the “Livingston Life,” college newspaper. The ECHS and Jeff Davis grad was studying elementary education at Livingston University at the time.
Deborah Louise Drew, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Drew, took top class honors during WAVE training at Great Lakes, Ill. Naval Training Center.
Kay McLeod and Charles Bailey were named honor vocational education students at ECHS. H.R. McKissack was director of the vocational education department.
Wilmer Baker received specialist in education honors at the New Orleans Baptist Theology University. Rev Baker is now recognized as a prominent minister and professor.
Jack Dennis was named manager at Vanity Fair here after having served for several years in that same capacity in Bayou La Batre.
Atmore had some outstanding youth baseball teams that year. Minor League coaches and managers were: Bears-William Jordan, Floyd Adams and Clayton Jordan; Wildcats-Rayford and Tommy Kirby; Wasps-Howard Gohagen and Jackie Sims; Colts-Cecil Ellis and Butch White and Lions-Bully Brooks and Lowell McGill(who’s that)?
Next week, I will list Major League and Babe Ruth League managers.
Now let’s take a quick look at some current news.
Have you noticed the “pro gambling slant” local TV stations, Internet sites and daily newspapers have taken? I get the impression that all these pro gambling groups will have a difficult time in the fall election.
These groups want private firms to build casinos and compete against Poarch Creek.
Yet these same news outlets look to Wind Creek for advertising revenue.
Why would the media take a stance like this when it only hurts our local Creek operation? If I were the Creeks, I would carefully monitor the media and pull back advertising when unfavorable stories unfold. I personally do not want to see Wind Creek injured by these new stories because we depend on this operation for jobs.
The folks at the Dothan gambling establishment have become readily identified with a handful of country entertainers.
These show people have invested in that venue and their faces are becoming common place in TV ads calling for a statewide vote on gambling this fall.
One unidentified state radio announcer said recently their positions may come back to haunt them in the long run.
I get a kick out of a song recorded by one of those investors. I am not sure of his full name, but he recorded a song called “Swanging.”
Apparently that song writer was not aware there is no such word and needs a 101 course in English. Most of those entertainers are not from our state, anyway.
It is still puzzling who ran that “Impeach Riley” sky banner ad at the University of Alabama-Texas Championship football game.
Politicians had better be sure of the “pulse” of Alabama voters if this is, indeed, brought to a statewide vote.
These pro gambling organizations are using themes like “so many people out of work, shame on you Gov. Riley for treating us like this,” and other themes to prey on your sympathy.
Again, I get the impression that some of our media does put a “pro gambling” theme into their stories, particularly their headlines.
I apologize for a short column this week but some medical tests have me running behind schedule.
There will be more stories next week. You can count on it.
Lowell McGill is a historical columnist for The Atmore Advance. He can be reached at

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