A Good Man Gone Home Memories of Harold Timmons

There are no flags flying at half mast over the courthouse; don’t expect any streets or bridges to be named in his honor, but Darlington has lost one of it’s finest and longest citizens, Harold Timmons has gone home!

Bill Shepard

Bill Shepard

There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Man goeth to his everlasting home and mourners go about the streets” – Ecclesiastes 12:5.
It happens everyday somewhere, and it happened in Darlington when Harold Timmons left for that other world early on Sunday morning, July 19, 2015.

I will claim the honor of having known Harold Timmons longer than any person living today! Ours was an acquaintance and friendship that began when Harold’s father, W.C. Timmons, owned and operated a grocery store on Philip Street, near the village where I grew up as a boy. The year was in the mid 30’s of the past century. I was a young teenager, still in school at St. John’s in Darlington. Harold’s father had given me my first real job, that of helping in the store on weekends. Harold’s father was a great influence on me in my early life.

I grew up and Harold did also. Our paths led in different directions, and long years passed when we didn’t hear anything about each other. While still living in Florida, I heard from Harold and he invited me to stop by his office on my next visit to Darlington. I did! And what a visit we had! We shared memories, filled in the blanks with happenings in his family and mine. We had years of catching up to do. Space and time will not permit me to write it all. We parted that day with a promise to stay in touch. In the years that followed, each time I visited Darlington, I made certain to visit with Harold. My wife, sister, daughter, and her husband were always along. They would sit and visit with Harold and me share our memories of persons, places, and events out of our yesteryears. Our last time together happened rather recently; we had our usual visit and went out for lunch. Another good time was had, reminiscing and sharing time together. None could know that this would be our last time together.
“How swiftly on the heels of laughter, gallop the sounds of sorrow!”

The news came. Harold was hospitalized, and in serious condition. I called my friend and it was so good to hear him say my name, as only Harold could, “Bill Shepard!” He was too weak to say more. We prayed for Harold’s healing, but God had other plans.

Lines from a song out of yesteryear have been chasing through my mind:

“Where are my friends that I knew yesterday?
They have gone home!
They left me one by one, as their day’s work was done.
Gone, they have gone home.”
Thanks for the memories, old friend

Note: My sincerest condolences and prayers are for all the family as they move on into the future without Harold.

Mr. Shepard is a native of Darlington, S.C., and a current resident of Piedmont, S.C. and author of “Mill Town Boy” and “Bruised”. He has been sharing his tales of growing up in Darlington for decades, and we are delighted to share them each week.

Author: Duane Childers

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