Holy Tornado

To see the soul of your comrade listen carefully to his music.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


My Paternal grandparents met and married in 1904 in a little town nearby. Grandfather and his father-in-law built this little house there.
Four of Waldo and Lucy's children were born here, including their youngest, Kenny, who was my father.

In the front of the house, they planted two small elm trees. One for him and one for her.
They took good care of them over the years and the trees thrived as did their five children.
Waldo and Lucy planted a nice orchard and had big gardens every year. Grandma would can everything she could get her hands on to feed her family. She was a tiny lady under five foot and never weighed over a hundred pounds. Waldo was tall, about six foot and very slender. They made quite a pair.

As the years passed, Waldo became tired of being tied down and left his family. He went on to marry eight more times. Lucy did not marry again but worked hard to provide for her family.

Grandma was a very social lady and loved to go visiting, but she never drove a car, (just horses in her younger years) so she depended on family for transportation.
She smoked butt end Camel's or Lucky Strikes, (sometimes a corncob pipe), had her coffee loaded with sugar and cream, enjoyed a cold beer and on occassion a shot or two of something with more of a kick. She could out cuss any logger and was as strong as an ox. She could be as sweet and cuddly as a kitten and as terrifying as a grizzly bear.
I had a LOT of respect for this little lady.

When they were in their seventies, Waldo began to visit Lucy frequently. He was no longer married and no doubt lonely. Lucy had a nice little house and still kept a small garden and many flowers.
She and Waldo became an 'item.' He drove her everywhere. I never saw one without the other and wondered if they were getting back together after all those years, but would never have asked.

On Lucy's last day she asked Waldo to take her to see each of her children.
So off they went, and spent the whole day enjoying the company of their family. Waldo took her home late in the afternoon then left to run an errand. When he returned he found her on the floor. She had passed away from a stroke.

Grandfather was lost a lost soul after Lucy passed away. He visited his children and grandchildren but he was not a happy man.
It is so sad that he didn't learn until it was too late how much his first wife actually meant to him. He died about ten years later and is buried beside Lucy. He won't be leaving her again.
And the two Elms still stand tall and proud in front of the little homestead where Waldo and Lucy lived and loved and where they parted, for a time.

(note: My granddaughter, on the right, and I are in front of the Elm's which are still standing today at one hundred two years old)
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