EAC pauses to remember two friends

Published 9:46 pm Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Chilton County community and the family of volunteers at the Chilton Emergency Assistance Center lost two very dear friends this year in Elem Hill and Don Finlayson Sr.

Yesterday, the Emergency Assistance Center Board presented resolutions to the family members of each, in appreciation of their time spent helping the people of Chilton County.

“This was something daddy really enjoyed. He talked about it a lot,” said Finlayson’s son, Donny Finlayson Jr. “This was an organization he truly cared about.”

Hill’s wife, Elizabeth Hill, said her husband’s dedication to the center continued even after he became ill.

“He always watched the calendar and time so he could attend [meetings] when he was able,” she said.

Finlayson’s wife, Earl Finlayson, was on hand for the presentation, as were members and officers on the organization’s board. Among these were Clanton Mayor Billy Joe Driver, who was a close personal friend to both men.

Driver knew Finlayson as a “coffee buddy” every morning at City Hall and a “cheerful and supportive friend.”

“He is greatly missed and will be impossible to replace, as he was such a dedicated friend and citizen,” Driver said. “His 12 years of service to the City of Clanton included serving on the Utility Board, Planning Commission, Zoning Board of Adjustment and the Personnel Board.”

He added that Finlayson’s commitment to the county’s youth was reflected in his service as a teacher and coach as well as the many years of volunteer service he gave to Dixie Youth Baseball.

Similarly, Hill is remembered as a man who was dedicated to both youngsters and adults, said Emergency Assistance Center Board member James Hill.

“His ways and ideals could be seen in all his works, and his goal was to succeed,” he said. “With young people he met and worked with them on a level that was comfortable to all. He could discuss and solve problems, and each kept their level of maturity, thus keeping a line of respect with the young people.”

Hill utilized his capacity as a Clanton City Council member to support the Emergency Assistance Center. This was one of many ways he exhibited his genuine love for the community.

“Elem had a goal to see improvement in his community and not just getting by,” James Hill continued. “These attitudes led him to reach his goals and brought him complete satisfaction.”

Both men filled important leadership roles through various committees on the center’s board, as the resolutions stated.