Phyllis Belt of Macon recently took a stroll down memory lane. On Jan. 14, she attended the Inaugural Ball of Missouri Governor Jay Nixon.
It has been over half a century since Phyllis first attended the ball with her husband, the late Ronald Belt. Ronald served in the Missouri House of Representatives for 16 years, from 1959 to 1974.
This time, Phyllis was escorted down the grand staircase in the Missouri Capitol by her nephew, Nathan B. Walker of Kirskville. Nate is the newly elected representative for Missouri, District 3.
“It was quite an honor to be asked by Nate,” said Phyllis. “The last time he served in the legislature, he took his mom.”
Nate previously served two terms as state representative from 1981 to 1985 for the old District 12 which covered Macon, Shelby and parts of Linn and Knox counties.
He is the son of the late Wendell and Azalea Walker of Anabel.
“When I was a young I got to spend time with my Uncle Ronald in Jefferson City,” said Nate. “Visiting him helped to lead me to be interested in politics.”
“My Aunt Phyllis is such a gracious and special woman,” said Nate. “I was so honored to have her as my escort the night of the inauguration.”
The day was filled with many activities and special moments for Phyllis. She was accompanied to Jefferson City by her son, Drew Belt and wife Becky along with daughter, Susan McCarty and husband Kerry.
“We did not arrive in time to attend the actual inauguration,” said Phyllis. “Drew is a county commissioner for Macon County and Kerry is a county commissioner for Shelby County and both had meetings that morning so we didn’t get away until mid-afternoon.”
“We were met at the capitol by Samantha Hall,” said Phyllis. “She is such a nice young lady, she took good care of us.”
Samantha is serving as Nate’s full-time intern from Truman State University. She is a 2009 graduate of Macon R-I High School and the daughter of Shane and Vicki Hall.
“Samantha is doing an outstanding job,” said Nate.
Before the ball began there were many receptions and open houses hosted by the other representatives to attend.
“I got to meet Governor Nixon and his wife, Lt. Governor Peter Kinder, Speaker of the House Tim Jones, 6th District Representative Tim Remole and many other state officials and their families,” said Phyllis. “A big thrill for me was meeting Representative Craig Redmon, he is the son of a deceased former classmate of mine.”
Page 2 of 2 - Another highlight was being introduced by Mike Kelly, the voice of the Missouri Tigers, before they descended down the grand staircase to the ball.
“When I looked down that long staircase I said a little prayer,” said Phyllis. “Please God, don’t let me fall.”