The owner hadn't seen his Bible in years, but thanks to a resident who wanted to find the rightful owner the sacred book has been returned.
In what could be considered no less than a Christmas miracle, a Bible was reunited with its owner after the Progress ran an article reporting it had been found on the side of the road.
The Bible was turned over to the Progress by a woman who had the same last name as the one printed on its front cover – “William Paul Stanfield.” A motorist found the Dake’s Annotated Reference Bible in the Pleasant Hill area and gave it to Donna Stanfield’s husband, owner of Jasper TV & Appliance, in April. Mrs. Stanfield, who is not related to William Paul Stanfield, found it on a bookshelf in her living room last month while she was cleaning and
approached the newspaper in hopes of finding the owner.
“I don’t know if someone put it on their car hood and it fell off or what,” Mrs. Stanfield told us, “but a lot of people have an interest in their family Bibles. Maybe someone will know who it belongs to.”
Five days after the article ran on the Church Page in the Dec. 6 edition, Tia Stanfield, daughter of William Paul Stanfield, came to the office to retrieve the Bible for her dad. Her mother had seen the article. She told us the last time a member of her family saw it was three years ago when her mom brought it to her sister to read in jail. Tia said her dad does live in Pickens County but not in the Pleasant Hill area.
“I’m not sure how it got there,” she said.
Tia has fond memories of her family’s bi-weekly Bible studies with that very book, and recalled how her dad (who goes by “Butch”) highlighted some of the verses. A local preacher, Jack Dupree, gave Butch the Bible over 40 years ago when he was a teenager.
“There were six of us brothers and sisters,” she said. “We didn’t go to a church, but every Wednesday and Sunday we’d get together at home and use it.”
When she returned the Bible to her dad he was in shock. That same night Tia, her dad, and her four kids - 15, 13, 11 and five years old - returned to old family traditions with a new generation.
“He couldn’t believe it,” she said. “He actually hadn’t seen it for 10 years because he left it with my mom when they got divorced, and mom’s the one who brought it to my sister three years ago. He said it’s just weird because it’s been so long since he’s seen it. It’s like a sign or something. Last night me and him and the kids read out of it. It’s really neat. He hasn't had it since the divorce and really wants to thank whoever found it."