COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - This week's "Be There" shows us how one family turned a Columbus tragedy into a history lesson. When the Bibb Mill burned more than a year ago, one family from Shaw High School took a trip to the remains to snap pictures, and talk about what the mill meant to the city several years ago.
After the Bibb Mill fire in 2008, Eric Van Bibber planned a day trip for his daughter to learn about the building and practice her camera skills, "I thought it would be a good time to take Charlie to get a little photography in and see what was left of it and talk about it."
The family's relatives once worked in the mill, and that gave the two a chance to talk about the what the mill meant to Columbus. Charlie Van Bibber is a sophomore at Shaw High School and said she enjoyed the trip with her dad, "He told me the history of Bibb City and the mill and how it burnt down. And we hung out, which is something we rarely get to do."
While walking around the mill and taking pictures, they both learned something about the site.
"I think she had a greater appreciation for the size. We didn't realize it was that big and some of the pictures show how large the elevator shafts were," Eric told News Leader Nine.
Charlie added, "I had family that worked in the mill and I didn't know that. And he taught me about cameras since I'm into photography."
Eric Van Bibber say no matter where you take your children for a lesson, the most important part is the time you spend with them, "Sometimes the moments come and go and they may never be there again, so if you can take those few moments, or in this case a few hours, out of the day to share that one thing with them then they can carry it on into the next."