Monday, January 12, 2015

Week two of the Genealogy Do-Over - Memorial Service for Uncle Howard

One of the goals for week two is to interview family. I spent the weekend in Walnut Creek, California attending the memorial for my Uncle Howard who recently passed away at age 95.

It was a seven hour drive but I was able to spend two nights with my Aunt Anne and cousins Stuart and Bill. I haven't seen them in years so it was a chance to catch up.

My Aunt Anne is 91 years old and her memory is not quite as good as it used to be. She is reeling from the death of her husband after 67 years but still holding on.
Aunt Anne and Uncle Howard at the Grand Canyon, many years ago. 

I didn't interview her because it was neither the time nor the place but she had some things she wanted to share. One of them was how wonderful the bread was that my grandma used to make. She also shared that my grandfather liked a nip or two from his bottle of alcohol. These two things are new to me because as a child, I wouldn't have noticed.

She told me that my mother talked too much. She said my dad was mean. While I don't agree, I can see where she got those opinions. I will take what she had to say for what it is because she knew them on a different level.

The memorial was held in a restaurant in Downtown Walnut Creek. My cousin Patty and her husband, Adam, organized the gathering.  Adam created a beautiful and touching video that had all of us in tears and laughter. It was truly a celebration of a long and interesting life.

While I didn't do a family interview, I learned more than I expected. Sometimes it is best to just sit back and listen.


  1. You were wise to sit back and listen. You probably learned more than if you had asked direct questions. My, but your uncle lived a long life and his wife, too. Bless her heart. It's hard to imagine losing your partner of 67 years. I had to laugh at her saying your mother talked to much. Makes me wonder what will be said about me when I'm gone. Probably something like, "she was so nosey and bossy". LOL!!! Keep up the good work! I'm following your journey with interest, as I continue to research my 4th Generation of Georgia Ancestors.
    Sue at Tracks Of My Georgia Ancestors

  2. How great to get these insights. She may not have meant "mean" as in cruel, but possibly "mean" as in over-thrifty. If she told stories to support these opinions, you ought to write those down somewhere.