Sunshine to Sunflowers
story by michael prochaska
photos by jesse walker
"You’re just a Southern Belle/who fell down a wishing well,” sings Connecticut native Corey Durkin. “You got time to give/You’re more than a silhouette/sleeping in a hospital bed/And I don’t know anything about you, but I want to.”
Durkin was invited by Wes Holt to perform Saturday at the Sunflower Farm Festival in a benefit for Aimee Copeland, a young woman from Snellville who contracted a rare flesh-eating bacteria. Morgan County residents and long-time Sunflower Farm visitors purchased $1 sunflowers that lined the fence around the festival with the proceeds to help pay for Copeland’s medical bills.
Durkin said he was recording in a studio in New York City when Aimee’s father, Andy Copeland posted a Facebook status about his daughter.
“I just got hit really hard by this wave of emotion from this father who is watching his daughter go through this horrible thing and is powerless to help her,” Durkin told audience members before singing “Southern Belle,” a song he wrote for Copeland that took him only two-and-a-half hours to write.
Sunflower patrons came this weekend with a magnanimous heart. About $1,300 was collected during the Cruise for the Cure Golf Cart Parade, in which participants decorated their golf carts in honor of someone battling cancer or a lost loved one. The Helen West Miller family donated $853.
Patrons were, of course, able to cool off from the record breaking heat with homemade ice cream and lemonade, two of many treats offered during an exciting weekend full of activities and sunflower picking.
Printed in the July 5, 2012 edition