Archived Story

Our friend is gone

Published 1:34pm Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Dear Editor,

Hartselle lost one of its best friends this past week when Bro. Mack Gardner was taken from us. I had only known Bro. Mack for 10 years, but ever since the first time I met him, he was an instant friend. Mack always had a big smile on his face and a friendly word for everyone he came in contact with. If you had an issue with the way your car was repaired, if you would see Mack, it would be resolved to your satisfaction. Mack required his employees to treat his customers the way they expected to be treated, with respect and understanding. Mack always had time to stop and talk with you. He was a very knowledgeable man, but he was willing to learn new things.

Bro. Mack loved his country and respected the veterans of his community. He recently purchased an old Army vehicle, which he had planned to restore to its original color. He was going to display it for all veterans to see. He told me he was going to make it as a tribute to all veterans but especially to those who had given their lives for our country. He would get real emotional whenever we would talk about all the conflicts and wars that our veterans had fought in. He would say, “You and the other vets did this for me, so that I could stay here and open my own business”.

Bro. Mack loved his employees. He was not a slave driver, but he expected an honest day’s work for an honest salary. As long as you did your job and did it right, he never complained. I personally never heard him say a harsh word to anyone. He hated to think that he had hurt someone’s feelings. Bro Mack was not adverse to getting dirty if it was necessary. He would get down and get sweaty with the best of them.

Tom loved Bro. Mack with all his heart. Bro. Mack took Tom under his wings after Tom’s mom passed away and kept him there until Bro. Mack passed away. They had a bond that was and still is unbreakable. All Bro. Mack had to say was he needed help and Tom was right there with him. Bro. Mack was a great influence on Tom and his life. Tom respected everything that Bro. Mack stood for. If Bro. Mack hurt, Tom hurt. Bro. Mack always treated Tom with the upmost respect. He would tell everyone that Tom was his righthand man, and that he couldn’t do without Tom at his shop. When I would pick Tom up in the afternoon, if Bro. Mack was around he would always come out and speak to me. Before he would leave he had several things he always said, “Thanks for talking with me… I appreciate you brother….and last but not least…I love you.” He always stood and waved as we would pull of and holler, “I love you Bro. Tom.” Bro. Mack will be missed by all, but especially by this family. He has done many things for us, but the main thing he did was give our brother, Tom, confidence, a reason to carry on, and respect. He picked Tom up when others put him down. Bro. Mack showed Tom that he was someone special. We will never forget the things he did and neither will Tom. Bro. Mack may be gone from our sight, but he will forever be in our hearts and our memories. To know Bro. Mack was to love Bro. Mack. It just couldn’t be helped.

He is singing with the angels now, and his work on earth is done. God called him home sooner than we expected, but God is still in control.

We love you Bro. Mack.

Doug Cain


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