David C.B. Mills page 7
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Removing the old bell fittings at St. Mark's Church, Philadelphia, 1998.
In the UK after retirement.
Jonathan Byler wrote on 12/19/05:
My mother, Janet Washbon, had been part of the original change
group at Saint Martin's before she moved to Madison, Wisconsin in 1986.
Some time around the fall of 1990, as a young boy of 13, I Joined up
with the ringers myself. Having heard and loved the Bells for most of
my childhood, I was immediately taken with these "Giants" who were
capable of ringing enormous bells with such apparent ease. I was
especially taken with this one strange, but kindly man who never wore
shoes. The Ringers in general and David in particular were always very
gracious with their time and knowledge. David even indulged my love of
all things mechanical and made me his assistant steeple keeper that
year, teaching me about ropes and sallys and all the rest. Sadly I
moved to Wisconsin in the summer of 1992, and lost touch with both
change ringing and more importantly with the change ringers.
The privilege of having known such a wonderful person as David was not
lost to me at the time, nor is it now. He and others I met in the
tower at Saint Martin's left an indelible mark on my life. I was
impressed by and shared his general enjoyment of learning and life.
Whether he was helping me to bind the end of a bell rope, or helping me
afford a burger (and a sip of his Bass) at Rosebud's after practice
when my meager allowance would not suffice, he impressed upon me and
reinforced many valuable lessons. It makes me happy to know that so
many people were touched by the life of this very special man. If I
didn't work in the welding shop for the Art Department here at Auburn
University, I think I would walk around barefoot all day today in his