Rabbit

If you didn’t know Raymond Farrer you missed one of the smartest, most sincere, and funniest men who ever lived. He was the county tax collector, an elected job, and he was always elected. Being a tax collector is not always the most popular job, but he was honest and everyone trusted him completely. He was a rather quiet person with a quick. dry sense of humor. To me, everything he said was humorous.

He was small in stature and frail but always wore a smile that seemed to say, “Hello,” even before a greeting was exchanged.

One windy day as I crossed over highway 85 from Seawright’s Drugstore to the Courthouse, I met him just standing on the edge of the walkway on the Courthouse side facing Seawright’s. The wind was blowing something fierce. I spoke to him and asked how he was doing. He said, “ I’m fine, I’m just thinking on how to get over to Seawright’s. I figure that if I aim at K.W.’s that should take me right to the front door.” K.W. McElwaney’s store was up the street on the other side and since the wind was blowing from the north he was giving himself some windage.

During this time men’s “sharkskin” pants were very popular. They were silky and hard to keep on a hanger. They would slide right off. He told me, “I got me some sharkskin pants. Every night I hang them on a chair, but I have to go to the lower end of the house the next morning to get them.”

When he passed away, His wife Gertrude became the county’s tax collector and held that job for many years. Before that she had been a seventh grade school teacher. She was teaching when I went through school, although she was never my teacher. She was in her nineties when she passed away. Boots Ashworth, the school system’s Visiting Teacher for many, many years lived with Mrs. Farrer and watched out for her in her later years.

Mrs. Farrer owned a piece of property on North Jeff Davis. A subdivision is now being developed there called “Farrer Woods”. The main road in the subdivision is called “Rabbit’s Run.” Many knew Mr. Farrer as “Rabbit.”