Memorial for a Son of Green Hill

“But you won’t be back,
They’re all dressin’ in black,
Drinkin’ sweet tea in styrofoam cups.”
– Jason Isbell

Today’s post isn’t about this son of Maplesville.

It’s the story of a life, though, that I want to share with you.

Right about this time a couple years back, I shared on social media this piece “Bedtime Stories for Catherine,” written by Wright Thompson of ESPN.com’s E-Ticket.

It’s the story of the life and legacy of Matthew Conley, a young Marine and a son of Green Hill, a tiny speck on the map of Lauderdale County, Alabama. (Click the image to read Matthew’s story.) 

I first learned about Matthew nearly ten years ago listening to Reg’s Coffee House while driving home one Sunday afternoon after going to visit Daddy.

One of the most poignant and haunting songs that, to this day, I have ever heard came up in Reg’s playlist…”Dress Blues” by Jason Isbell, another son of Green Hill.

He wrote the song as a tribute to his schoolmate.

I hope you will take the time to both read Wright Thompson’s article and watch Jason Isbell’s performance of “Dress Blues.”

Both are the story of a life ended much, much too soon.

Steve Latham – May 27, 2017

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