Tuesday, June 28, 2011
The Banana Winds is now docked in her new homeport of Paducah, KY, and the Captain and crew are busy getting her ready to sail again. Judging by the smell of the air, there are many adventures yet to be had.
You might be asking yourself, “Why does Paducah sound familiar?”
Or, maybe not.
For one thing, your humble Captain grew up in Paducah.
Okay, so I haven't made it famous... yet!
The city is also home to:
-Author Irvin S. Cobb
-John Scopes, of the famous Scopes Monkey Trial
-Alben Barkley, vice president under President Harry S Truman
-Saxaphonist Boots Randolph
-Professional Baseball players Phil Roof (California Angels 1965), Steve Finley (Angels 2005) and Terry Shumpert. (I went to high school with the latter two.)
-Contemporary Christian recording artist Steven Curtis Chapman
-Rumer Willis, daughter of Bruce Willis and Demi Moore (born while Bruce was making the film “In Country” here.)
Vernon Carver Rudolph, founder of Krispy Kreme, developed his famous donut recipe here. (Yet Paducah still doesn’t have a Krispy Kreme Donut Shop.)
But the city’s most famous and interesting resident is Charles “Speedy” Atkins. Speedy died in 1928 in a fishing accident. His body was taken to Hammock’s Funeral Home for a pauper’s burial. The funeral director experimented with the body, using a new embalming fluid he developed, which literally petrified Speedy’s body. The body was then put on display at the funeral home.
Wait, the story gets better. In the Great Flood of 1937, the funeral home – and Speedy – washed away in the flood waters. Speedy was later returned to the Hammocks as a flood victim!
He was finally laid to rest in 1994, but not before traveling across the country to make appearances on several television shows.
Didn’t I say there were adventures yet to be had?!?
So climb aboard, fair travelers! There be lots of pillagin’ and plunderin’ to be done!