In this message from April Smith Patterson, the daughter of Honest Abe’s founders, Doug and Janie Smith, April shares one of her special memories of her late father and her mother, who along with April and her brother, Shane, operate Honest Abe and the other companies developed and owned by Doug, Janie and their children.

March 31, 2023, would’ve been Mom & Dads 50th wedding anniversary. In thinking back they accomplished so much together and affected so many lives through the jobs they provided. They showed us a wonderful example of Christians and what a successful marriage looked like. They stayed together in sickness and in health and for richer or poorer. What a beautiful example they were together, and I’m so proud to be the daughter of such a blessed couple. 💕

We miss Dad everyday.

I have to share something he said to me before he passed away.

We got to meet Dolly Parton years ago, and on the way I’ll never forget him asking me a question.

“Sis, who do you think is more successful, Dolly or your mama?” And of course I said, “Dolly,” and his reply was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard him say.

It was, “Well sis I believe your mama is and will always be more successful than Dolly, because she had you and your brother, and there couldn’t be anyone more successful to me than that.”

As I sit here crying as I share that story, I know now, and agree more than ever, my mama is more successful than the most publicly well-known star in the world, and I couldn’t be prouder to be her daughter. What a precious memory I’ll treasure. And while he didn’t get to meet three of the six of his grandchildren, I know he’d be so proud of them and the growing family they started all those years ago. ❤️

Dolly was always my favorite country music singer, and we always went to Dollywood as a family. I remember recording something for WSM years ago, and they asked me if I could meet any star who would it be, and I said, “Dolly.”
To have the opportunity to meet her was phenomenal and to get to bring one guest thrilled me. I picked my Daddy.

I’ve always admired her love for the Lord and humble beginnings. I’ll never forget telling her, “We sell you mulch for Dollywood,” when I first met her. She was so cute and said, “Well good honey!”

I also appreciate what she’s done with forming the Imagination Library and proudly serve as a board member for the Clay County Imagination Library.


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