Ford County by John Grisham

Description : Ford County
Blood Drive

By the time the news of Bailey's accident spread through the rule settlement of Box Hill, there were several versions of how it happened. Someone from the constructionpany called his mother reported that he had been injured when some scaffolding collapsed at a building site in downtown Memphis, that he was undergoing surgery, was stable, and was expected to survive. His mother, an invalid, weighed over 400 pounds and was known to be excitable, missed some of the facts as she began to scream and carry on. She called friends and neighbors, and with each replaying of the tragic news various details were altered and enlarged. She neglected to write down the phone number of the person from thepany, so there was no one to call to verify our discount the rumors that were multiplying by the minute.

One of Bailey's coworkers, another boy from Ford County, called his girlfriend in Box Hill and gave an account that varied somewhat: Bailey had been run over by a bulldozer, which was next to the scaffolding, and he was practically dead. The surgeons were working on him, but things were grim.

Then an administrator from a hospital in Memphis called Bailey's home, asked to speak to his mother, and was told that she was laid up in bed, too upset to talk, and unable toe to the phone. The neighbor who answered the phone pumped the administrator for details, but didn't get much. Something collapsed at a construction site, maybe a ditch in which the young man was working, or some such variation. Yes, he was in surgery, and hospital needed basic information.

Bailey's mother's small brick home quickly became a busy place. Visitors had begun arriving by late afternoon: friends, relatives, and several pastors from the tiny churches scattered around Box Hill. The women gathered in the kitchen and den and gossipped nonstop on the...
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