It isn’t just that she was the driving force in putting together and getting out 209 issues of this newspaper – although she did.

It wasn’t just the endless litany of office tasks – filing, faxing, scanning, billing – she always took care of, usually with a cheery “Don’t worry, I’ve got it” issuing forth.

It couldn’t be the great sense of humor, adventurous spirit, warm-hearted kindness and the endless amounts of joy and laughter we shared with her … well, yes, we suppose that could be it.

When you work with someone as long as we’ve had the pleasure of working with Hilary Telson, you get to know them fairly well.

They become a part of your daily routine, constant fixtures in your day-to-day life – people you don’t realize mean as much as they do until the day they aren’t there.

We look in the empty office where our friend and colleague spent most of her days, usually with her friend Roo the Newsdog curled up near her feet – and we’re saddened they aren’t here with us like they always used to be.

Hilary’s husband Chris and his new job took them to Florida, and though we try not to begrudge them their new happiness, it made things a bit harder back here at the home office without her here to help guide us along.

Hilary, thank you for the long hours of service and for being willing to put up with working with folks like us (especially Cliff – we’ve never been quite sure of him, either).

You always managed to make this paper look polished and professional; always managed to do your job efficiently and well; and handled any problems that came your way with a quiet grace and dignity.

We have no doubt you will soon be snapped up by some business down where you live now, if they have any sense whatsoever.

We feel blessed you came into our lives, and we will always treasure the wonderful memories we have of you and made with you.

You will always be a member of our family, and you are welcome back any time you come here.

You may have always complained that you were “the outsider” here, the only one of us that wasn’t really truly born and raised here.

Darling, we hate to break it to you, but you’ve slowly become one of us, and we hope wherever you and Chris go in your journey through life, you’ll know that Opelika will still be here.

Y’all are Opelikans now, always and forever, so act like somebody.

You’ve left a rather large hole in our hearts, young lady. We love you, and will miss you.


The Opelika Observer Editorial Board