As the Amissville Full Gospel Church congregation began arriving at a recent Sunday morning service, sister Jane Pittman, Pastor Jimbo Pittman’s wife, suddenly collapsed while making her way across the parking lot. Her heart stopped, and within seconds of her fall — miraculously — a gentleman in a white pickup truck, driving along Viewtown Road, seeing her collapse, pulled up and applied CPR. The congregation knows not the identity of this man who showed up seemingly out of nowhere.
Pastor Pittman tells that doctors relayed, without the immediate CPR applied within those crucial initial minutes, sister Jane would have suffered brain damage. Whomever you are kind sir, mystery man in the white pickup truck, thank you from the bottom of a many a grateful heart for your noble deed.
While she remains hospitalized, her condition has greatly improved. Pastor Pittman, along with family and friends, stay close by her side. The skill of fine physicians and the power of prayer continue to heal her heart.
On the subject of prayer, a well known advocate of its power was the Rev. Billy Graham, recently brought into the presence of his maker. As a tribute to him, Rappahannock resident Elliot Matheny, a gifted opera singer, performed “How Great Thou Art” before an appreciative audience of the Ladies Lunch Bunch; a group of local women who meet monthly at various venues within the county.
The ladies enjoyed a performance not only by Elliot, but also by Matthew Brooks. They sang a medley of songs ranging from spirituals, “Shall we Gather by the River,” “Ride on King Jesus,” to ballads such as “Oh Danny Boy” and the ever popular “If Ever I Should Leave You,” (Camelot), “Beautiful Dreamer” and a rousing rendition of Puccini’s “Nessun Dorma.” Little 5-year-old Anne Genho of Eldon Farms, in attendance with her mom Lynnie, beamed as Matt and Elliot sang “Puff the Magic Dragon” along with a chorus of 35 enthusiastic women.
Matthew is a Heldentenor, a term used to describe a tenor with a powerful voice capable of singing heroic roles such as works by Wagner and Strauss. It is a rare voice type that pushes the tenor into gruelling dramatic territory and embodies the strength and virility needed for some of the most punishing roles in the operatic repertoire.
He is a former Castleton young artist and has been a Rappahannock resident since 2015. Matthew has performed in many locales including San Francisco, New York, Washington, D.C., Hawaii and Oklahoma. He is currently auditioning for Young Artist Programs.
Elliot is also a former Castleton young artist. He was described by Metropolitan Arts Reviews as having “a powerful, manly stage presence, as well as a profound quality to his voice” (as ‘Ford’ in Verdi’s “Falstaff”). Elliot is a dramatic full lyric coloratura baritone, a term used to describe a voice with the beauty and charm of a lyric baritone, but with dramatic depth, blazing fast agility, and piercing penetrating power. Elliot became a resident of Rappahannock County in 2015, and since then has performed leading baritone roles in 13 operatic productions, and numerous concerts in the mid-Atlantic.
Both Elliot and Matt are available for private and public functions, concerts, all manner of engagements as well as at local inns and restaurants. They are available to perform together or individually, with or without instrumental accompaniment, and Matt can be reached at email@example.com and Elliot at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SAVE THE DATE: Saturday, May 12th, is Food Pantry Day and as in the past the morning will feature the ever popular pet parade, with a scrumptious dinner fundraiser to be held at John Anderson’s beautiful Jessamine Farm. More details to follow in the coming weeks.