Thursday, May 17, 2012

Uncle Delbert's Stories

You know how it goes: you lose direct contact with a couple of relatives over time. People have busy lives and move all over the place and it's hard to keep up. Their name comes up in conversations and you hear news of them and their extended family but direct contact is kinda' missing. You might feel like you're in touch but you really aren't.

And so it was with my Uncle Delbert, my Dad's brother and one of Grandma's six kids. He's 91 and I always get news about him and his son Kevin but I just didn't think to pick up the phone and call him. Until just last week. I asked myself: What am I waiting for??!!

Well, first off I had to explain to him who I was!! He got me confused with my sister, which I realized when he asked about my 3 kids. Oh crap, it's been so long that I'm off his family radar! But then we got that situated and on to memories. Actually I was prompted to call him because Mom had seen him at Cousin Cynthia's Cinco de Mayo party Derby Fest... so many drinks, so little time;)

Anywho, Uncle Delbert remembered that Mom is the family genealogist and archivist and asked for copies of old photos she might have, "and whatever else you have on the history of the family." Now you don't have to ask Mom twice for stuff like that! She told me about it and was wondering how to get the pictures to Uncle Delbert and I piped up and said, "I'll do it!"

Next thing I know I have a stack of picture album pages done up in Word weighing in at 40 pages, along with a chart and ancestor report, the former almost 30 pages and the later almost 40 pages. I'm thinking that if I send this to Uncle Delbert and a strong winds blows up he'll never make heads or tails out of it! So off to the local UPS store to see what they could do for me in the way of binding it all together.

It was beautiful, if I do say so my own self:) There was the entire known history of the family in one document.

Uncle Delbert phoned me when he got it and said that he'd been looking at it for the last three hours straight. The next day he called Mom and Mom told me that it was the first time he'd ever called her in the entire time they've known each other! "How did you do this?" he wanted to know. He was blasted away by Mom's research prowess. He knew Mom all those years but never stopped to inquire about her genealogical research. But he will now!!

And I'll be calling Uncle Delbert to listen and write down his stories. I have two really good ones already!

Mom and Uncle Delbert, June 1942

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