It’s hard to overestimate the importance of organizations in Hank Williams home state of Alabama in preserving and promoting his artistic legend and preserving his memory for centuries to come.
With this in mind, it came as a shocking loss to many to learn over the holidays that Mary Wallace the President of the Hank Williams Fan Club based in Georgiana had died in a tragic accident. Wallace was also one of the chief organizers and a founder of the of Hank Williams Festival which is held annually in Georgiana and was a member of the Board of Directors of the Hank Williams Museum and Boyhood Home.
John Wise will take over as President of the Fan Club.
Courtesy of Robert Ackerman’s Newsletter here is the sincere, heartfelt statement from John Wise.
It is with heavy heart that I write this letter. Our beloved President, Mary Wallace was accidentally killed in her home December 21st, 2009. Everyone I know in the Hank Willliams Fan Club and around the world has lost a great leader and friend. There is no doubt Mary will be missed. She made a huge impact on Butler County, Alabama, Georgiana and the world. As a friend and Vice President of the Hank Williams International Fan Club, I saw her in action many times. There was no more dedicated person to her community and the fan club which she helped organized. Upon her death, as Vice-President, I had to move up to the President’s chair. I know how Harry Truman felt when President Roosevelt died. How can I fill the shoes of Mary Wallace? Well I’ll tell you that no one alive that I know can do it; especially me. She can never be replaced. But the fact is, we must go on. That is what I think Mary wanted. As a matter of fact, I am sure of it. I assure you that myself, officers and board members will give it our best. We must not fail and we will not fail. I ask for your prayers and support as I lead this club forward. I will be available to any club member or non-member. Feel free to contact me at 678-752-9589, or e-mail “email@example.com”. My home address is John R. Wise, 122 Woody Road Jackson, GA 30233. In closing I want to wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I hope to see you all at the festival in Georgiana, Alabama the 2nd weekend in June 2010.
Here is the Greenville Advocate Newspaper account of Mary Wallace’s passing.