Interesting is Interested

Each time we drive out interstate-10 to Ft Davis, we pass the turnoff sign for a little town named Iraan.

It is a rural burg on the banks of the Pecos river, and not a middle eastern country.

In fact it is pronounced Ira-ANN. I seem to remember it is named for the ranch owners who founded the town on their land, Ira and Ann Yates.

It is small, less than 2,000 population, but mighty, in its citizenry.

My connection with Iraan was back in the ‘70s when I traded a family of patients in their annual migration back and forth between there and Caldwell with their family physician, Dr. Ed Franks.

He was one of those west Texas solo practicioners who deserve sainthood for their contribution to the medical care of medically underserved areas.

If you’ve never been to that part of the globe you may have a difficult time imagining the loneliness and shortage of resources that he had to deal with in the early part of the 20th century.

Yet through all of that he maintained a glorious sense of humor, possible it was that very thing that enabled his survival in his mission to deliver health care to such a desolate outpost.

Some of us actually love that open, dry, desert country, and he was one of them.

He also loved the tough spirited people that he cared for day in and day out.

He was once asked how he coped with it all. His answer was a classic.

“I see my job as keeping a truce between the people and their environment !”

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