To The Hannibal Courier-Post:

As February is Black History Month, I would like to pay tribute to Art Allison, a black Wal-mart employee who passed away recently. As long as I remember, Art worked there in the Lawn and Garden Center. He was always so friendly and helpful with a quick smile and the answer to any of my questions regarding the plants, flowers, etc. I did not know until I read his obituary of his very interesting former life, especially his life in Hawaii and as a musician.

My last conversation with Art was at Wal-mart shortly before Christmas when he was busy arranging a display of poinsettias. It was then I reminded him that he and I had shared a friendship with a wonderful lady years before when he was her neighbor. She was a retired nurse, lived alone and had no relatives here in Hannibal. She told me many times how good Art was to her and had certainly made her latter years of life more comfortable. It was also at this time that I asked him if he was ever going to retire. His answer was, “No, I don’t plant to – I’m just going to keep on working.” But now he is gone.

Thank you Art for being the kind and helpful person you were. You will be greatly missed – especially this Spring in the Garden Center.

Mary-Frances Quinlin

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