“This story never fails to bring tears to my eyes every time I tell it,” Jean Schuck said from her Rutherfordton home last week.
She spent 13 years as a volunteer ambulance worker during a time she and her husband lived in New Jersey.
They picked up a woman having a heart attack who she knew from church. The woman took her hand and said, “I’m so glad it’s you.”
There are people in the world who don’t understand volunteerism. Jean Schuck does. “It’s the great feeling you get when you help somebody.”
But people who don’t understand volunteerism, think everything has to be done for personal gain. They believe anybody who doesn’t understand that might end up being a sucker or a loser.
There are two kinds of selfish people in the world. There are those who believe everything has to be for personal gain and those who selfishly believe that unselfishness, charity, generosity build a world where everybody takes care of everybody and nobody ends up as a sucker or a loser.
Schuck is very proud of her four children including her daughter, Janet Bosgra, who works for Rutherford County and is preparing to retire. Her beautiful, well-appointed home is in the Rutherford Towne neighborhood and it speaks a life well-lived. She and I first met when her volunteer spirit landed her as a greeter in Rutherford Regional Medical Center and I was there to visit a patient.
But our most recent contact happened as she read last week’s column about Moon Pies and RC Colas in Alabama hardware stores. She was born “10 miles from the nearest town” in Morgan County, Alabama.
“I like to say I came from a cotton patch in Alabama to greeting 600 people walking into a ballroom in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City,” she said. The greeting chore had to do with her husband serving on the board of the state’s electrical association.
That trip from that cotton patch to The Big Apple included a stint in Nashville where she heard Alonzo and Oscar sing “Gimme an RC Cola and a Moon Pie and sing Maple on the hill.” The wonderful song can be found on Youtube.
That connection to RC and Moon Pies inspired her to contact me about last week’s column where a group of Alabama natives affirmed you sure can buy RC’s and Moon Pies in Alabama hardware stores.
In addition to volunteering with the ambulance service and the hospital, she has also been a Girl Scout leader.
She grew up in both the Methodist and Baptist churches and attended a Dutch Reformed Church while married to her late husband.
After her husband’s death, she returned to the United Methodist Church and is crazy about the Rev. In-Yong Lee, the pastor at Rutherfordton’s First UMC.
RC Colas and Moon Pies, America’s Original Marshmallow Sandwich, may have brought the two of us together for a visit, but I wouldn’t take nothing for that story about the woman in the ambulance. After all, most of us can pass a lifetime without somebody taking our hand and saying, “I’m glad it’s you.”