New Good Hope bridge dedicated to Glenda Sapp Doss

The Doss family poses in front of the new bridge sign (Sara Gladney for The Cullman Tribune)

GOOD HOPE, Ala. – On Wednesday, the new Glenda Sapp Doss Bridge on Doss Road in Good Hope was dedicated to Jack Doss’ late wife. The old bridge, in the same location, was a narrow, dangerous, one-lane bridge and did not have guard rails. The bridge was on Jack Doss’ property who gave the strip of land to the city of Good Hope for the creation of the new bridge.

The bridge was built in partnership with Cullman County. Mayor Jerry Bartlett says, “We just built another bridge on the main road which is Doss Bridge also and it was from a grant. This, with conjunction with the county that helped us with our equipment, helped us with manpower, helped us with dump trucks, at cost. So, we ended up building this one without a grant and the council paid for it out of pocket and saved a whole lot of money. We got a lot for our money.”

Jack Doss welcomed everyone to the event and introduced pastor James Fields to give the invocation.

Susan Eller and Eric Phillips of the Good Hope Town Council and City Planner Corey Harbison were present at the dedication. Harbison recognized some of the officials present—Cullman County Commissioner Kerry Watson, Chairman Jeff Clemons and Sheriff Matt Gentry.

Harbison said about the bridge, “I think this is going to be an asset for Good Hope for years to come and I do think it could potentially save lives because the old bridge was dangerous.”

Jack Doss thanked Bobby Childers who worked on the bridge with his crew. He also thanked Todd Anderson who was in charge of printing the memorial signs and building the frames. Jack also thanked Mayor Bartlett and Corey Harbison, saying, “They are dedicated to the work and that’s what we need more of.”

Jack introduced his family, and his grandson Isaac presented a special reading:

“You can shed tears because they are gone, or you can smile because they lived.

You can close your eyes and pray they will come back, or you can open your eyes and see all that they left for you.

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see them, or you can be full of the love you shared.

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday, or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.

You can remember only that they are gone, or you can cherish their memory and let it live on.

You can cry and close your mind and feel empty, or you can do what they would want:

Smile, open your heart, love, and go on.”

Jack said, “This is not about Jack Doss. It’s not about the Doss family. It’s about one person and two entities. That one person is Glenda Doss. The two entities are the city of Good Hope and its staff and the Cullman County and its staff, and I’m pleased and I’m in love with all of you.”

“Miss Glenda Doss Sapp was born May 18, 1939. She grew up in Baileyton, AL; went to High School at Fairview. I met her in 1956. We got married in 1959. We finished Auburn together in 1961.”

“Miss Glenda was an educator. She taught in the Cullman County system for about 23-and-a-half years. She was an accomplished musician; she played the piano, she played the accordion, and as Bobby Bowden said, ‘and it’s not Bobby Bowden that coached football, she could sing like a mockingbird.’” 

He continued, “Mother loved her family, she loved everybody. One of the most famous things she was known for was her chicken and dumplings. Before everybody moved in here, there weren’t many homes in Good Hope community, she hand-delivered a bowl of chicken dumplings to them. The thing I love most about this woman, she was a born-again Christian by the grace of God, through the blood of Jesus Christ. She wasn’t a religious woman; she was a God/ Jesus loving woman.”

Jack’s neighbors Jimmy and Shelby Knight spoke, as well as Jack’s brother Chris Doss and pastor Perry Knight.

Shelby said about her friend Glenda, “It was just amazing, what a good, sweet woman you had to deal with. I think that if we all took that kind of picture and put it before us and thought about Glenda Doss and said, ‘well I’d kinda like to be like that,’ that would be a wonderful, wonderful thing. She was a genuine person.”

Pastor Perry Knight said, “The establishment of this bridge was and is timely and proper and surely meets a need. Glenda Doss was no stranger to the idea of making a connection. She would be both humbled and proud to have such a tribute become a visible and useful part of her legacy.”

(Sara Gladney for The Cullman Tribune)

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