Letter to the Editor

Your view: Good deed noted

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I'm one of those people that believe 90 percent of people are truly good. Out of that 90 percent there are those who go above and beyond being truly good to out of this world good. Unfortunately we hear more about the other 10 percent. Well Sikeston, Missouri you have some out of this world good people and I want you to hear about them.

Wednesday, July 6th my daughter and I were traveling from Marion, Illinois, to our home in Oklahoma. About 15 miles east of Sikeston my car started overheating. By the time I got to the first stoplight in Sikeston my temp gauge was off the chart. I pulled into the Wal-Mart lube and tire area.

Gary and Larry took the time to come out and take a look at my car. They did not have the materials or tools to work on my car. They called Bates Radiator Shop for me, pushed my car into the garage, filled it with water, gave me instructions to Bates, (Would not accept a tip) and we took off to Bates. It was almost 6 p.m. by the time we pulled into their shop.

While I do believe in the goodness of people I am not naive. At this point I knew that my daughter and I were ultimately stuck in your town and were at the mercy of whatever these mechanics chose to tell me.

They could have easily told me, "Hole in the radiator, cost hundreds of dollars to fix, better get a room and stay a few days." Instead I received the opportunity to meet a family of the most honest, generous, and hard working men anyone could ever hope to meet. (Including the youngest who was diligently working on his bicycle along with the help of his brother.)

To make a long story short, Mr. Bates went out of his way to replace my hose, charged me less than I know what his work was worth, and then did not want to accept the extra money I gave him (I had to put the money in his shirt pocket and jump in my car so he wouldn't give it back.)

While Mr. Bates (the father) was working on my car, Mr. Bates (the grandfather) and the two younger Mr. Bates visited with my daughter and I. Now the significance of this is they ALL made us feel comfortable about being there. Even though I'm sure they were tired from a long, hot day of work and the fact it was well past closing time.

I told the Bates family I didn't know how much business I could send them from Oklahoma but I was sure going to tell everyone I can about them. And I have certainly done that. As well as Gary and Larry.

So Sikeston, Missouri if I were going to be stranded in any town in the U.S.A., if these men are indicative of your people, I can't think of a better place to be stuck.

Thank you so much!

Karen Moore

Muskogee, OK

Also many thanks to Kathy at the Chamber of Commerce, Jeremy at Dexter Barbecue and Joanie at Suzie's Bakery.