Musings from the Hill, July 30, 2015
I would like to add a few personal comments to the excellent newspaper article concerning the recent death of truly missed Tom Russell. He had great influence upon art at Baker University and our surrounding community. My daughter, artist and teacher, Tricia Spencer, called to say that Tom had helped her over a “rough spot” and re-established her faith in her art. He said it is not uncommon for artists to hit a rough spot and he suggested ways to cope and continue to believe in your ability to follow your heart’s desire and become a truly good artist and teacher
Tim's counseling apparently took root. Tricia is truly grateful for his help. She just finished painting a large mural in the town of Torreon, Mexico, which depict endangered birds of Mexico. Her master's degree is in ecological design.
A former neighbor of my hilltop days above State Lake, Joan Olmstead, was driving from her home, the last house on Signal Oak Road, formerly the summer abode of Bishop Quale of Baker University. The Hirds (her parents) moved from their farm above State Lake to this more accessible farm location. The last time State Lake was drained, a small stone bridge still in perfect condition was revealed. It connected to a long drive to their former farm above State Lake. Years ago I cut a small bouquet of daffodils still blooming in their former front door yard. I presented them to Mildrid Hird. She was so happy to receive them that she cried.
Joan discovered Ralph Earles cutting the grass and “tidying up” the overlook at Signal Oak, which was one of Tom’s favorite painting locations. Thank you, Ralph, and many others for your help in keeping alive our historical and bucolic site. The importance of maintaining our unusual forested acreage and the beauty surrounding us is also supported by the Sante Fe Trail Historical Society. Maintaining our historical sites is also of supreme importance. Our area played a large part in the development of our great country. Those who wish to display confederate flags should keep in mind we are now a united country.