Letters From Leton: A Good Cry

Sometimes in life what we need is a good cry.

Breakup with your first love in high school? A good cry is needed. Lose a favorite aunt or uncle? A good cry often accompanies the smiles and memories.

Often a good cry is in a special place – your bedroom at home, that beautiful overlook of the valley. A safe place – a comfortable place to let out your woes.

In the past, I have traveled to Marion for a good cry at the Crying Tree.

The Tree is where a five year old girl, Sallie Adams, often cried in the 1840’s after being purchased as a slave and separated from her family. She went to the tree to cry and console herself for the family she would never see again.

William Fields speaking at The Crying TreaIn 2019, Sallie’s Crying Tree, along with the Carnegie High School (a high school established for black students during the early 1930s) and the Mount Pleasant Church (a Methodist church founded by African Americans during the Reconstruction era), were officially dedicated as historical markers by the Virginia Department of Historic Resources. My brother in spirit, William Fields (in the picture), is a major part of continuing the story and legacy.

At the dedication, William told the crowd that “[Sallie] didn’t have it easy, but she didn’t give up, and she inspired a lot of people.”

Black or white, man or woman, a native of Appalachia or a come here who fell in love with the mountains – we must remember those before us who have faced much worse than us.

When they could have easily turned away from life and given up, they persevered and passed along their the legacy of family, learning, and hope!

So – think of something sentimental this weekend, and experience a good cry. It will remind you of how good it is to be alive.

– Leton

“Letters From Leton” is a blog series comprised of the weekly updates that Leton Harding – President, Chairman, and CEO of Powell Valley National Bank, shares with the Bank’s team members. These newsletters are full of uplifting anecdotes and intriguing insights that are applicable beyond the Bank, so we want to share them with you.