By Kristin Finney
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Whether it was spending time at Crossroads or playing football at Greenville High School, Tom Ray Kelley’s memories of Madison County are extensive. While Kelley no longer lives in Madison County, he continues to hold fond memories of the county that he was raised in.
Kelley came to Madison County in 1939. He entered the first grade in 1942 and attended Greenville Elementary School. He then went to Greenville High School where he played football and basketball. He was also a member of the FFA and 4-H clubs. Many of Kelley’s memories of Madison County are focused in Greenville. He recalls hanging out at the Crossroads Restaurant when he was in school. He also remembers Cooks Sawmill.
While most children nowadays spend their time playing video games or watching TV, Kelley’s childhood was not so easy. Kelley grew up on a dairy farm and twice a day, seven days a week he would milk and tend to the cows. For fun, Kelley and his friends would do something outside. Sometimes they would go fishing or hunting. They would go squirrel or coon hunting during their free time.
After graduation, Kelley worked several companies. He was a service manager for Ford Company as well as Cantey Motor Company. He also built for Ken Johnson for 22 years. Then in 1970, Kelley was saved and decided to dedicate his life to the Lord. Kelley has preached for New Macedonia, Mount Olive on Hwy 53 and in Georgia as well.
Kelley and his wife Sandy, have been married since 1960. They have three daughters, two granddaughters, one grandson, one great granddaughter and two step-grandsons.
Anyone interested in being interviewed for this article can call 973-4141 and make an appointment with Kristin Finney, or may drop by Greene Publishing, Inc. any day before noon. Those interviewed must have lived in Madison for a large portion of their life, and be able to recall a few things that have changed since that time.