With all that has been said in response to Roanoke Times columnist Dan Casey’s gratuitously unkind column about the Texas Tavern, one fact has not been mentioned. The Bullington family has always been known for their unfailing kindness.
As “Official Physician for the Texas Tavern” for the 30 years I was in practice I could not possibly recall the number of times Jim called me to see one of their employees. The stories were always the same. He had failed to show up for work and, after searching the market hangouts and flophouses or the city jail, he had been found in “poor shape.” More often than not, it was simply a needed “drying out,” but a number eventually developed serious illnesses. Jim, my friend since childhood, was always there to take them back to work when they were able. Never once did I see anything other than concern for someone who was in need of help.
My impression of the TT is this: It’s not about the food; it’s about 80 years of helping men who were on hard times. We could use a few more like Jim and his family.
– J. Hayden Hollingsworth, MD, Roanoke, VA