Not your normal Halloween Story

During a trip to Little Learners by three Rhea County High School football players, the subject of ghosts came up.(Photo:LeahO-Neill)

Three Rhea County Football Players Play on Different Field

October 2018

Dayton, TN– I have a not so normal Halloween story for you. I was recently at Little Learners in Dayton, TN.  I was taking photos of three of our junior football players who gave up a day of their fall break to play with the kids at the pre-school.  Those three wonderful players were Mason Jolly (#36), Tommy Newman (#34), and Destin Shelfer (#16).

I thought it was wonderful to see these boys take the time to play, laugh, and be heroes to the children. When asked why they thought to come out and play with the kids, Newman explained it very simply; “football is only part of who we are as players. We know many kids look up to us, and we remember what it was like to watch our favorite player win or lose on Friday and still take the time to say say “hey” to us when we were little.

“We are also still kids at heart, so being able to play on a play ground in the swings and run around for fun is as much for us as it is for the little ones.”

Jolly and Shelfer agreed and all three ran off to go play with the children.  I am always amazed with our Eagles, but never so much as in that moment.   I am sure you are wondering how this has anything to do with Halloween.

While I was taking pictures of the boys and children, one of the teachers Mrs. Lorriane told me that Destin’s great grandfather once owned and lived in the house that is used for the pre-school.  He was very well known and an amazing fisherman.  So I was told and Destin is taking after him. This is were the story takes a fun turn.

As it turns out, he passed away in the house over thirty years ago, and some people over the years have claimed to see him standing in the window on the top floor. Mrs. Lorriane said she had never seen or heard anything as did all the teachers, and no other worldly shenanigans have ever taken place according to the teachers, but what an interesting story. One can never tell what fun tale we can learn when we stop and listen.

God Bless,

Leah O’Neill

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Leah is a local store owner who specializes in ceramics, recycled metal, face painting, and photography. She can be found at local events and at her store, Paint the Town Pottery and Gifts, one of MainStreet Dayton's featured shops.


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