Wallace’s tribute to feature music, photos and memories

Published 5:07 pm Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sherri Brackin of Mobile only knew Mary Wallace for a few years. But into those years she packed enough memories for a lifetime.

Brackin, who is organizing the Hank Williams Fan Club’s special memorial tribute for Wallace set for Saturday, April 10 at the G-Ana Theatre, is working to bring together many of her own and other’s recollections, anecdotes and snapshots.

“I want to make this the most memorable tribute to Mary, one that anyone who attends will never forget,” Brackin said.

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That means putting together CDs and DVDs of photos and video footage featuring Mary, co-founder of the Hank Williams International Fan Club, at her best: promoting all things Hank and having a whale of a time doing it.

“We’ll have a big screen TV up front in the theater and show a video of Mary at the Hank Festival’s fan club show between the bands’ sets. And I hope to have a CD of photos of Mary at different events – Octoberfest, concerts at the senior center, at the Hank Festival, and more – playing continuously as the bands play,” Brackin said.

Mary’s other loves will also be recalled at the tribute.

“She really liked to take photos and she had lots of nature pictures hanging on the wall behind her desk at the center,” Brackin said. “That was something we had in common, a love for taking photos of sunsets, flowers, birds and other nature scenes. So I’m taking her photos and my photos and blending them together for a slide show with an appropriate song. And the song ‘Christmas in Heaven” will feature photos of Mary from the Christmas parades in Georgiana and McKenzie last year and the open house.”

The April 10 tribute will also feature musical performances by George Hamilton IV, The Burning Bushes, Back Creek, Slim Pickin’s Traditional Country Band, Jeff Whitlow and the Old Barn Band with guest Colon Leatherwood, along with special guest appearances by former Drifting Cowboy Braxton Shuffert and Robert McLaughlin of Hank Williams Tours.

Several individuals will share their personal memories and stories about Wallace.

“It’s been so hard going on without her. But I still feel as if she is with me as I work on getting all this together; it’s like she’d sitting there on my shoulder, guiding me along,” Brackin said with a smile.

The celebration of Wallace is slated to kick off at 1 p.m. at the downtown theater and go “until.”

Brackin wants to remind everyone it is, indeed, a celebration.

“Some of it will be sad, of course; there will be some tears. But there will also be a lot of laughter and funny stories shared. Mary had that love of life and such an upbeat attitude and we want to celebrate that,” Brackin said.