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Honoring a father

Posted: July 18, 2013 2:22 p.m.
Updated: July 19, 2013 5:00 a.m.

Please accept my heartfelt thanks and gratitude to all parties responsible for the placement of the Leaders Legacy bench in honor of my late father, Mr. James L. Anderson Sr. I was not able to be there due to an illness of long standing and an inability to travel. I have missed Camden and family members terribly and, again, state that I would have been with you as you honored my Dad.

Second, my Dad was a good and decent man who did his best to treat all men and women with respect, fairness and honesty as a man and as a public servant during his terms as city councilman, mayor and many other offices held with dignity and kindness. His love for his family, this city in its beloved South Carolina and his church were boundless and an integral part of his life. As he was devoted to public service, I am reminded of the following words, captured in a prayer to St. Thomas More, family man, humanist, scholar and devout Christian, martyred many years ago -- truly a man for all seasons:

“Pray that for the glory of God and in the pursuit of justice, I may be trustworthy in all confidences, able in argument, loyal to clients, keen in study, accurate in analysis, honest with all, courteous with adversaries, and ever attendant to conscience. Sit with me and my desk, and listen with me to all client’s tales. Read with me in library, and stand beside me so that today I shall not in order to win a point, lose my soul. Pray that my family may find in your friendship and courage, cheerfulness and charity, diligence in duty, courage in adversity, patience in pain, their good servant but God’s first.”

Finally, the placement of the bench in such a beautiful place of repose, in front of the old Camden library where I spent so many happy hours as a boy and young man, is indeed a wonderful gesture, not only to my Dad, but to my mother, Mrs. Helen M. Anderson, who also devoted much of her time to the library and archives. A bench there is a place for rest and thought in a beautiful setting dear to my heart. My Dad often quoted to me the final words of MG Stonewall Jackson: “Let us cross over the river and rest in the shade of the trees.” I would like to think of my parents sitting there on that bench in spirit in a place they dearly loved.

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