Letter – Proud to live in Smithfield

Published 6:02 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Editor, The Smithfield Times:

Life in a small town has a unique quality. This past week Thomas Darden, the “Ham Man” from Darden Country Store, passed. Over 600 townspeople went to Little’s Funeral Home to pay their respects to the Darden family. I was only one of that 600.

The outpouring of love from our small town for the Darden family makes me proud to call Smithfield my home. What a wonderful, supporting town we have the privilege to be a part of.

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Again and again I see this community pull together for families in grief and help our town in numerous ways. The Rotary, Ruritan and Kiwanis clubs, and my personal “Angel Quilters” group, just to name a few nonprofit organizations, continuously support our local town and neighboring communities.

The real cherry on top for community support would be 9,000 volunteer hours to run the three festivals from Smithfield VA Events. Over 300 participants per event sign up to make these events successful. It takes a village!

I am so thankful in 1960 (at the age of 5) my grandparents came to Smithfield and built a

“little cottage” overlooking the James River. That country dirt road we traveled to see them is now paved over with asphalt and the town I call home is growing by leaps and bounds. Nevertheless, I am so blessed to be a part of this ”ham town” and refer to Smithfield, VA, as my home.


Julie Hopkins