Words by Jenny Lynn Davis | Images by Justin Hunter
In a heartwarming show of solidarity and support, community members recently came together at Jasper’s Crawfish Warehouse for a special event in honor of Debbie Kimbrell, a beloved local business owner facing a challenging health battle.
Kimbrell has been a fixture in Walker County since May 1998, when she took ownership of Handley’s Western Wear and Shoe Repair. Over the years, she has not only provided quality products and services but has also woven herself into the fabric of the community.
However, life recently threw a curveball at her in the form of a brain mass, suspected to be a schwannoma, located in the right cerebellopontine angle of her brain. She is currently undergoing radiation treatment to combat the mass. The event held on August 22 served as an opportunity to raise funds for offsetting costs generated by the treatment and care.
The event, organized by Kimbrell’s close friend Connie Lively, was a resounding success, demonstrating the strength of community bonds in times of adversity. It took place during Crawfish Warehouse’s regular bike night and was expanded to include live music and activities like 50/50 drawings, basket raffles, and door prizes.
Lively expressed her gratitude for the overwhelming community response: “It was a very successful night. The outpouring of support from the whole community, not just Walker County but surrounding counties, made it a huge success. The community has really come together in support of her, and I can’t think of anyone more deserving. From ball teams to rodeos and anything in between, Debbie takes care of her community, and it’s nice to see the community give back to her.”
The event also received support from the community, including Redline Leather and Cycleworks in Hanceville, which organized the bike show and generously donated their proceeds to the fundraiser. The Walker County Shriners also lent a helping hand, showcasing the community’s spirit of unity.
Visibly moved by the support she received, Kimbrell said, “I’m just overwhelmed with all of the people. I’ve always tried to take care of folks, and now they’re taking care of me, and that’s a blessing.” With tears in her eyes, she added, “It’s okay to cry, but I’m good, and God’s got this.” WL