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Big Stu & Aunt Gizzard

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson
The Truth Network Radio
November 25, 2022 7:00 pm

Big Stu & Aunt Gizzard

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson

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November 25, 2022 7:00 pm

A visit with Big Stu on the front porch with His sister, Aunt Gizzard(Mary Lee)


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Thank you for listening and for choosing the Truth Project Network. I've been teaching, regular teaching for 40 years and then substituting to make my number of years in the classroom 63 years. I love the children. I taught 5th grade, 10 year olds, and they taught me a lot also. You also have been playing that instrument, the organ, maybe a little piano in that Unity Church up there in Ararat, Virginia.

On Unity Church Road, is that right? How long? I started playing that when I was very young, around 10 years old. I wasn't about 9 or 10 years old.

I played, well they had an organ and then they had the piano, like you said. What was this guy over here like growing up? Your baby brother? He's not such a baby brother anymore, but what was he like growing up?

What did you call him and what was it like chasing him around? Well, my baby brother and my sister and I loved, especially the baby brother, and she told my mama, why can't we have a baby in our family? Cousin Gladys and them, they keep having babies in their family and we don't have a baby. And so, Stuart, little Stuart, came along shortly after that. So Lucy, Lucy was crazy over Stu, and so I was too, but she was older than I and she had to take care of him more. I got to swing him to sleep on the front porch, whatever mother would say, take him and swing him to sleep while others were working in the field.

But he's always been a good boy and a faithful brother and I'm proud of him and I love him very much. What's this business about you guys hiding the switches so mama and daddy couldn't get to them and give them a whipping? Well, the switches we had were hard to hide because it was so long and big.

And you'd have to sort of push them up under a bed or behind the door or something like that. But Stu didn't get many switches, he was a good boy. Well, so you are Aunt Mary Lee, you're also famously called, you picked up a nickname early on, and we also call you Aunt Gizzard. Whenever I've been in California all over the world and when I say, hey, there's my awesome Aunt Gizzard, people are like, Aunt what?

Why do they call her that? So tell us, please, for all ages, how did you get that name? In the country we raised our own chickens.

And most of the Sundays we would have the preacher from our church and his family to come to our house after the preaching service to eat. I was the baby. And to keep me quiet, I would sit in a high chair by my dad, and they would give me the chicken gizzard to know to keep me quiet. So they started calling me Giz. Oh, wow.

What about that? Well, dad, what's it like to sit on the front porch of your house here and have your your awesome older sister Aunt Mary Lee here to visit? It's a wonderful experience. I just thank the Lord that he's given us the blessing of long life. And then looking back, the Lord's hand was in our lives all the way through. And that's a sheer blessing from God. Faithful is he who has called you, who also will do it.

So we're learning, we're learning, we're learning to trust God more and more, because he never breaks a promise. Well, I just cut a piece of something really good in there. She didn't come empty handed. Apparently, her and Cousin Ann brought you what is that cake is just absolutely delicious. And it tastes like a real cake, nothing fluffy or artificial in there. It's really a cake cake. It's applesauce cake with very little sugar as English walnuts. It's just a wonderful thing as it's a great cake.

My my sister Lucy used to make this often. And it's about the healthiest cake you could ever eat. And it's very delicious. Just a little bit warm with a little bit ice cream on it.

It is extremely delicious. Hey, Dad, talk a little bit about Aunt Mary Lee's impact on your life just briefly. She's sitting right here. You guys are visiting.

I'm kind of interrupting your conversation. But talk about how she has been a blessing and impact in your life. Well, you are today. What are you today because of this dear saintly lady's influence? Well, she always had a great influence on me, going to school, going to Sunday school. When I was a tiny kid, two years old, she would read to me. She loved to read to me.

And I would I really love that. And she read all the, you know, the Dick and Jane books, the little books and that's kind of taught me to read. And then later on, I got to know I got to know her children. And they've always been a blessing, particularly Ann and Harriet and Brady. And and I've and children are just a great blessing, a lot as well as children of the other kids.

So Brady's boy and hear the story of him. So anyway, and now Ann's Ann's kids are raising up their own generation, really, really being taught about the word of God and taught the word of God and taught to love Jesus at a very age, very bright kids. And Matthew, Ann's son, just has wonderful wife and kids. And they've renovated a farmhouse. They actually live near Midway here in Winston-Salem. So it's just so great that they're growing up and they're training their kids to love God. That's that's a blessing.

Okay. And Elizabeth and Greg and standing over here is Cousin Ann, who is just a dear saint. And now Cousin Ann, just like Aunt Gizzard was a awesome big sister to Pops, you've been kind of like a big sister. All of us Epperson Young is Karen sitting right here.

I'm here, Christy, Catherine. And now you have grandkids of your own. What's it like to see those two characters, sister and brother on the porch there hanging out? What goes through your mind and what are what are some things that especially significant about the the influence that they've had on each other on your life? Well, I think that one has to always remember that God is in control. And so in his awesome judgment, the Lord has put me into a family with wonderful leaders who have led me through my life and also wonderful cousins who I've enjoyed very much. And so he's always he's always provided for us all. And he's always got us all. It's his word. We have to listen and we have to be careful for all the God shots that we want to see in the world, because every day one comes just had to watch for it.

Amen. Well, Karen, you're you're you've hung out a lot with Aunt Gizzard. She went to her and Aunt Lucy went to Hawaii with us. Remember that?

They went to Greece with us all over the world. We used to take Aunt Gizzard and Aunt Lucy, Dad's older sisters who have been amazing. What are your thoughts and what's your about Aunt Gizzard?

Maybe you have a question for real quick as we wrap up. Well, I can sum it in one word blessing. She is a blessing to everyone she meets. She is always helping people, taking food to people, taking care of animals, trying to encourage people to read the Bible and pray. And she just her work ethic is amazing. She works and works and works. She has her whole life. People would ask for Lula to send to help them because she was such an amazing worker. Even as a young child, she would do more work than most grown women do in a whole week in one day as a little 10 year old or even an eight year old. So she has always had this beautiful quality of serving people, helping and very unselfish person. So I am just so thankful to God that he gave her to me to be my beloved aunt.

And she is one of my heroes. Well, Aunt Gizzard, what do you say to people out there listening who may have never met you? I mean, you've played the organ in a church, taught science school, you've taught substitute or taught for longer than a lot of people have been alive. I want to talk a little bit about Stu. He hadn't started to school. Well, it was time to go to school.

He was six years old. And my mother got him a pair of new clothes, overalls and new shoes and shirt. Well, from the country we used our cousin's hand-me-downs clothes or our brother's, whatever we could use.

It was hand-me-down, secondhand. I put Stu's new clothes on him to let him see how we would look and walk around through the house. It was time to go to bed. And I said, Watson, we called him Watson, Watson, you have to take your clothes off and to go to bed.

He started crying and he cried and cried. I said, well, we'll just sneak. We slept on the Toronto bed in the hall, close to my ma and pa. So I just put him in the bed with his new shoes and his pants and his clothes on. So he slept in them all night and then got ready for the bus the next morning to catch the bus to go to Blue Ridge school. And I was real proud of Watson.

Lucy was the one that helped a lot to take care of Watson and she was so crazy about him too. And everywhere we went, we walked because we didn't have a car. We rode on a mule or wagon or buggy or something like that. And so to church, we would walk. And if we went some distance from home, then we'd ride on a wagon.

So our life was strictly country. And that was our means of transportation. And on the wagon, everybody had a job. Ralph's job I remember was to always know how to draw the brakes on the wagon when it was going downhill.

That was one of his biggest jobs. I could talk with you all day about our growing up and what it was like. It was a little different back then. You had Ralph, the oldest, then you had Arnold, and then you had Uncle Roy, the farmer. And then you had Aunt Lucy, your older sister. All four of those are in heaven and you and Dad are still holding fort down here on earth, right?

Yes, and I had plenty of brothers and my sister to tell me what to do and how to do and what to wear. Because I was, you was a baby and I was next to him as the baby and I was pretty spoiled, they said. And your dad and mom, Harry and Lulu, that was quite a family there in the Harry house up there. He was ten years older than my mother and my mother was going with his brother Emmett. So she was courting Emmett and they were on a wagon and they rode by our house, the family house at the time, and she said, who is that sitting on that porch? And Emmett said, why that's Harry. Harry's my brother. And so she met Harry and then she later married Harry. So that's the way she met Harry was through Harry's brother Emmett. It was a large family in the Grandma, Grandpa Epperson family of boys and girls.

We got a lot of height from that side of the family, didn't we? She was a nurse. Grandma Epperson was a nurse and even after she had all that big family, she adopted, she raised the grandson. At some point in there someone, I believe an older brother named Ralph, brought a radio kit back from college and started a radio station.

And you have seen a lot of Eppersons get involved in radio, Christian radio, with a lot of impact over the years. What was it like to see all that going on? I had my sister to help tell me what to do, but then she got married early and left home.

Then I had, they're just with my brothers and they'd tell me how I was supposed to act and do. And then when we started college, I got a scholarship to go to Radford College, which I went for one year. And then Arnold, my brother that was in the service, he got, he was released from the Army and back to college at John Brown University in Arkansas. And Ralph, my oldest brother, was a student at John Brown University, Sullivan Springs, Arkansas. And he worked at the KOA radio station for his work on the campus because you had to do three hours work a day for the college.

So I transferred from Radford College with a scholarship to play basketball at John Brown University in Sullivan Springs, Arkansas. So now I was out there in that college with my two older brothers, Arnold and Ralph. And Arnold would say to me, he'd been in the Army, World War II, he'd been in the Army and he said, Giz, I'll tell you something, whenever I get my check, I'm going to take you downtown and we're going to get us some ice cream. So that was a big treat for the month. Every time he got his Army check because he was wounded in World War II, then we were students together and some of our classes were together at John Brown University.

And we'd go downtown and we'd eat some ice cream whenever he got his check from the Army. So I was pretty close to my brothers. You sure were and you were a great impact on all of them. And Gizzard, we've got to wrap up this little interview here, but I was going to ask you what, when you think about your grandkids, you think about all the impact, the family, all the nephews? I think I have the greatest family in the world. And I just love them all. I love my brothers and sisters and my nieces and my nephews and my grandchildren. I just love everybody.

We are such a happy family and the Lord has blessed us so much. And growing up together and working together and I worked at the radio station with Ralph quite a bit. Lucy worked at the radio station, R worked at the radio station, Roy, we all took a part in that. And Ralph was the one having it built.

And my dad helped with the construction with the wood to help build the radio station. What would your challenge be to this next generation? We haven't been able to get out and talk to a lot of people because of everything going on, but what would you say to this next generation?

What words would you give them of encouragement? Well, in anything that I do, I try to put the Lord first. I try to read the Bible frequently. I think that if you're Christian, and you are being led by the Lord, that you'll have a happy life.

That you'll have a real good, long, happy life. I read my Bible. I've read the Bible through several times, and I still have a big letter, big print Bible now that I read. I think you should read the Bible and study it. Study the word and be a Christian.

And I think that will help you a lot in a happy life. Well, they still have the family Bible in the family, in the original family farmhouse there, the Harry House, in there at Virginia. We read it at Christmas time still, don't we? Yes, yes. Yes, it was read at Christmas time this year.

Wow. Yeah, that's the greatest thing to do, I think, is to read the Bible. And then if you watch out now, Cousin Ann, Karen, and Gizzard will take to the piano, the organ, and she'll start playing from the hymnal, and we'll start singing, right? And then she makes me sing the bass part every time. Every time she pulls me in.

Pulls me into that bass part. And Gizzard, you do it all the time. Now let us have a little talk with Jesus. Let us tell him all about our troubles. He will hear our fancies cry, and he will answer by and by. And if you hear a little pop wheel turning, you will know a little fire is burning.

You will have a little talk with Jesus. Makes it right. Makes it right. She's recording for you. She always makes me do that bass part.

I don't care if I've got laryngitis, she pulls me up on that. And Gizzard on the organ for, now how many years have you played the organ, Ann Gizzard, at that church? I started when I was about nine years old, and I'm 92. Oh my soul. So that was 19, that was like 18, 25 or something, you started?

No? Goodness gracious, that's going back, going back. 1939. 1939, and she's still playing, and she still can play, she can hang with anybody, and then she also has been teaching school, and they still call her, she goes in there, and she's a tough one. Still get called to come to substitute, I've taught 40 years regular teaching in the classroom, and then enough to make 66 years that I've been in the classroom now. Unbelievable. I love the classroom and I love the children.

Yes. I've taught some of the great, well let's see, I traced one, four generations, and I've traced several of the generations that I've taught at Franklin School and Manneri City School, taught some in Virginia. Love the classroom.

Wow. Aunt Gizzard, Aunt Mary Lee, awesome to visit with you, and thank you for your blessing in my life, and all of my brothers, sisters, my kids, you got, you know, just so many have been touched. Nieces and nephews, brothers and sisters, and we appreciate you and your heart for God and how you've always just been so gracious and so. I think that the Bible in our family has brought a lot of success, and I would encourage everybody to read and study and follow the Bible.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-26 18:01:59 / 2022-11-26 18:09:53 / 8

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