Thanksgiving decoration
November 24, 2021

You can practically smell the turkey, pumpkin pie and stuffing already! With Thanksgiving set for tomorrow many households are already busily prepping their dinners and anticipating the annual feast.

While the dinner is certainly a focal point of the holiday, Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks. It is no secret that the past year and a half has been challenging. However, throughout each challenge, we still have much to be thankful for. From giving thanks, to past memories and traditions, our OVB community bankers shared what this holiday means to them.

OVB President and Chief Operating Officer Larry Miller described his favorite Thanksgiving tradition as going rabbit hunting in the morning followed by a big turkey dinner in the evening. In addition, he noted that his family caps off the holiday by decorating their Christmas tree the next day. Miller also said he was very thankful this year.

“I am thankful for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, as well as my home and work family,” he said.

Linda Stanley, OVB bank card representative, described the past year as being quite difficult for her family. From various illnesses and multiple surgeries, Stanley said that her family has been through the ringer. However, she also described how blessed she is that her siblings made it through each challenge.

“This Thanksgiving we have so much to be thankful for – that all eight of us siblings are still here in spite of everything,” she said. “I am thankful for God’s saving grace and love. Everyone tells us that God must not be finished with the Stanley’s life story because chapter after chapter is still being written!”

Barbara Patrick, OVB assistant vice president, BSA Officer, described her faith and family as reasons to be thankful this year.

“First, I am thankful for my salvation through Jesus Christ. I am also thankful for family, especially the memories of gathering with my husband’s family – a very loud crowd – to share a Thanksgiving meal. With family being older or no longer living locally, I miss those special gatherings with our family,” Patrick said.

Bryna Butler, OVB senior vice president, corporate communications, shared a past Thanksgiving tradition as being particularly meaningful.

“One of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions is that on the night before Thanksgiving, my mother and I volunteer at the Our House Tavern Museum. We put on our pilgrim caps and pioneer dresses and help out with guests who come to see the museum before the Gallipolis in Lights lighting in the park. For the special night, the museum is decorated using items that would have been available during the holidays when the inn was originally open in 1819. It is filled with things like real evergreen branches, berries, brass figurines, candles and there is a real Christmas tree. It looks amazing,” Butler said. “I love that so many residents bring their out-of-town guests for Thanksgiving to show off this hidden treasure. The museum is truly a special place in our community. The Our House won’t be open (tonight) due to the pandemic, but I can’t wait to get back to this important tradition next year. Anyone that would like to see it should definitely check it out during the museum’s regular hours.”

Amanda Diehl, OVB Call Center representative, described her favorite Thanksgiving memory as one that later turned into a tradition.

“My favorite Thanksgiving memory turning into a tradition is when I started hosting Thanksgiving at my house. After my cousin passed away from brain cancer in October 2016, I knew my aunt would have a difficult time with the holiday. I invited her, my uncles and my parents to come to my house,” Diehl said. “I absolutely loved hosting at my house and my aunt was so very grateful that I made what could have been a very difficult holiday experience into a wonderful holiday experience for them. We have continued this tradition since that year!”

Kyla Carpenter, OVB vice president, marketing, attributed her faith, family and friends as being part of her biggest blessings.

“In this season of my life, I am thankful for more things than I can possibly list. However, I’m happy to share a few of my highest blessings. I am thankful for a loving family who are all healthy and happy. I’m thankful to have my mom still beside me at 91. I’m thankful for a good job with a company that respects me and cares about its employees and community. I’m thankful for loving and faithful friends that sustain me through all life’s ups and downs. Above all, I am thankful for and humbled by the love and saving grace of my Lord and Savior,” Carpenter said. “May we all focus more on our many blessings than our few trials. Happy Thanksgiving!”

Christine Griffith, OVB customer support representative, described a past Thanksgiving as one of her favorite holiday memories.

“When I was younger my cousins and I would spend the night at my grandma’s house on Thanksgiving night so we could go Black Friday shopping the next morning. One year my cousins had an idea to go and get ice cream, but instead of going to Dairy Queen they decided to go to Walmart. It was so busy that my cousin had me hold her shirt the whole way through the store. It is safe to say my cousins and I regretted that decision,” Griffith said. “We did get our ice cream though so it was worth it!”

Daniel Roush, OVB vice president and senior compliance officer, said that Thanksgiving tends to often fall on his birthday. Whether it be the day of, the day before or day after, Roush described many years as being a Thanksgiving filled birthday.

“I don’t like much attention on my birthday, so I am fine sharing it with Thanksgiving. One of the first years my birthday was on Thanksgiving I didn’t get a cake, but I did get to blow out candles on a pumpkin pie. That Thanksgiving always sticks out for me,” he said.

Haley Stapleton, OVB account service representative, also said that birthdays were a common theme with her family Thanksgiving celebrations.

“Every Thanksgiving we have dinner with the whole family. We play games, do crafts and just have fun together. There are quite a few of us with birthdays so its also a huge birthday party for all of us,” she said.

Stapleton added that last year her family was in quarantine and unable to gather. She also described the past year as presenting many health issues for her loved ones, which has reminded her just how thankful she is to spend time with family every opportunity she gets.

“I am most thankful that I am able to spend the holidays with my loved ones. This year is so special to me, not just because of these things, but because we are a tight-knit family and family time is one of the most important things in life,” she said.

Our community bankers hope that all of you have memories and traditions as well as many things to give thanks to this year. From all of us at OVB, Happy Thanksgiving!


photo of a brick, tower-like structure

Community First Checking

The best checking account around for small businesses and organizations.