Jingle Bells to Waynesville

Reader Chrismas Memory
By Debby Knapik and Libby Abernathy | Dec 14, 2012
Photo by: Killian family photo In this vintage family photo, Jessie Killian is pictured with her daughters, Debby Knapik and Libby Abernathy.

Growing up in Haywood County in the late 1950s was a good thing. That’s when kids were kids and life was safe. Mom raised my sister Libby and I alone, until she died at 32.

One of our most vivid memories is our trips to Waynesville at Christmas, we lived in Clyde. On the old courthouse lawn still stands the evergreen tree that had so many lights. Mom would let us dance and play under it, simple joy.

The decorations up town, where so many times we went under them, went from pole-to-pole crisscrossing with bells, huge bells, in the middle. The grapevine lights don’t even compare to the beauty.

Then as we would leave off to the curb-open air market for an all day sucker. As we left our fun trip we always stopped at Woosley Heights, Mom admired the blue lights.

My friend Sally lives there still and remembers those lights long ago. We still have those blue lights; you’ll find some in my home and in my sister’s home in Cherryville.

As for me, I wish children had the simple joy like we did. Oh there were always toys but just like baby Jesus (He had a perfect mom), ours was a close second.  this is written in loving memory of Jessie Killian.


Debby Knapik

Libby Abernathy