By Ben Kleppinger
11:18 AM EST, November 14, 2012
Editor's note: The book signing at Kentucky Soaps and Such is scheduled for Saturday, not Friday as the story originally stated.
STANFORD — More than two decades after the last name Greer became infamous in Lincoln County, a descendant from the previously violence-torn family is sharing her story of redemption and healing.
Yvette Maher, a Lincoln County native and an associate pastor at a Colorado church, has written an autobiographical book — "My Hair and God's Mercies … New Every Morning" — published by Focus on The Family.
Maher is visiting her home county Friday Saturday for a book-signing at Kentucky Soaps and Such in downtown Stanford.
Before she worked with Focus on the Family or served as a pastor, Maher grew up as Yvette Greer in Lincoln County.
"Greer was a great name in Lincoln County," she said. "Greer stood for hard-working, trustworthy — that was just a great name."
Maher said even though many people never leave Lincoln County, she was one of the few who moved away, choosing Colorado as her new home in 1985.
"I had to go somewhere and breathe," she said. "And there's nowhere better to breathe than Colorado."
In Colorado, Maher met and married her husband and began a 20-year career with Focus on the Family.
But five years after Maher left Lincoln County, on May 10, 1990, something went very wrong.
Maher's uncle, Shannon Greer, shot and killed his estranged wife, Glenda, while she was at work at Waynesburg Elementary. He then turned the same gun on himself and committed suicide.
"It was horrific at every level," Maher said. "It left a scar on Lincoln County. It left a scar on Waynesburg."
Unfortunately for Maher and her family, that was only the first of several tragedies that would blight the Greer name.
"That was the rattling of our family and … the slippery slope of what more was to come," Maher said.
Some years later, in the mid 90s, Maher's father, former Lincoln County magistrate Sharon Greer, was charged with murdering a Eubank man by shooting him multiple times with a shotgun.
The charges against Sharon Greer were reduced to manslaughter and he spent 10 years in prison before being released. But two years after his release, he wound up shooting a woman and then shooting himself.
"I was told to get on a plane and get home now," Maher recalls. "I hopped on a plane in Denver and brought a black dress, expecting to attend his funeral."
But despite destroying one side of his face with a gunshot, Maher's father survived and is now imprisoned for life plus 10 years in the state prison in La Grange.
Despite everything that has happened, Maher said she still talks with her father on the phone every Sunday.
Maher said her book focuses on the good endings God has provided to tragic stories in her life.
"It's a fabulous story of redemption and overcoming," she said. "Life deals you a whole lot of lemons but you can overcome."
SO YOU KNOW
Yvette Maher and two other authors — Rona Roberts and Roland D. Mullins — will be at Kentucky Soaps and Such in downtown Stanford Friday Saturday to sign copies of their books. The book signing begins around 11 a.m.