March 25, 2017

The Quartet

By Louis J. Sharp

Memory, precious memories, are one of mankind’s greatest treasures. We love the hymn, “Precious Memories.” It is a meaningful song. Please allow me to share a few memories with you.

Speaking at my sister’s memorial service, I recalled that as children, growing up in our parents’ home, our father formed a singing quartet with the four older children, two boys and two girls. Juanita sang soprano, Virginia the alto, Harold sang bass, and I, the tenor. Our Daddy was the long-time song leader for the church in Little Rock. He led at the original meeting house at 10th and Valmar; then at 12th and Thayer, when the congregation met there. As we moved to 4th and State Street, Daddy was still leading singing. This was the location of the well known Hardeman-Bogard Debate in 1938. Daddy was still song leader when the new building was erected at 6th and Izard streets in the early fifties.

We grew up in a singing family. Daddy taught us a great deal about singing. He had been a musician in his younger years, played cornet and french horn in a school band, and was an excellent singer. He had a natural pitch and frowned on the use of a pitch pipe or tuning fork. Although he didn’t make an issue of it, he simply did not like them himself.

He had us singing at different programs at the old Missouri-Pacific Depot. He worked for the American Railway Express Agency, having started his work with Wells-Fargo. We also sang just for entertainment. Being without radio or TV (still undeveloped), we sang for our own pleasure. We grew up singing. The first of our quartet to leave us was Juanita (1986). Our lead singer departed. The next was Harold, our bass (1987). Every quartet needs a good bass! The most recent to depart is Virginia, a strong alto. And how she could sing her part. As I stated to the audience, only the tenor remains. We know not when our quartet will be reunited, but we believe that day will surely come. My mother and daddy departed many years ago. Now, three of our quartet also have answered death’s call. By reason of time, we too must leave this old world.

Heaven is made more precious, our desire and longing for it greater. One day, with the ransomed of all ages, we’ll meet around the throne of God, singing his praises with the redeemed of all ages! Won’t It Be Wonderful There?

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