Archive for January, 2011

There were several deaths that occurred within my extended and distant family in 2010.  People I knew and loved really well and others that I had never met but had been important to one of my parents.

Daniel J. Dalton
Danny was my cousin by marriage. I was not quite four when he and my first cousin married and honored me by having me serve as their flower girl.  Most of my life, Danny always made me feel as if we were blood relatives. He was so kind and gentle – that was just who he was.  Before their own child was born, he and my cousin would have me over for the weekend.  My cousin lost the love of her life, their daughter lost her devoted dad, the whole family lost a cherished family member and friend, and the grandkids lost their beloved Poppy on June 27, 2010.

Marie E. (Amore) Quirk
My Aunt Marie (whom I’ve posted about before) turned 101 on May 21.  Four months later she passed away – on September 3.  She was my dad’s older sister and the third child and second girl born to my grandparents.  Marie was born in Roscoe, Coshocton County, Ohio and after high school she went to the Salvation Army College in New York.  Marie married and had a daughter.  Many years later she married again.  Her entire life was devoted to her family, the Salvation Army and the Lord.  As a child, I always looked forward to seeing Aunt Marie – whether it was at a reunion, a visit to our house, or when we visited her in Philadelphia.  She entertained the little ones with puppet shows.  The last time I saw her, I was about 10 but as an adult when I began my journey into family history, she was the first person I re-connected with and who sent me quite a bit of information.  For a short time she would call and talk to me or use her computer class to email me.  I truly treasured such a special woman. 

Norma I. (Henderson) Shackelford
Norma was my cousin by marriage.  She married my first cousin’s son.  I hadn’t seen her since I was about 7 or 8 but when my cousin (her husband) and I began corresponding about 10 years ago, he would always keep me in the loop as to what she was up to.  After my Aunt Marie passed away, I was doing a google search for their address and ran across Norma’s obituary.  I was very saddened to hear of her death.

Evelyn Joan (Korns) Amore
Joan was the wife of my first cousin once removed.  I only knew her through email correspondence.  She passed away on December 27 and left behind five children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Loretta Jean (Jennings) Ruble
She was my 2nd cousin once removed and someone I had never met. She was born in Coshocton. She married her husband, Dale, in Kentucky in 1947 and died on May 18.

May they all be remembered by their closest friends, family members and loved ones.


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Photographed by Gene Amore, 1966. Original: slide; Digital scan held by Wendy Littrell

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Unfortunately today’s date has absolutely no significance for any of my ancestors or family members!  My next step was to check to see if I received a piece of genealogical information via email on this date – nada!  So I went straight to the “On This Day” website! 

Some pertinent genealogy information:

On January 4, 1896 Utah became the 45th State.  For those still living in a cave somewhere, Utah is the headquarters of the Church of Latter Day Saints and the largest Family History Center in the United States. Many genealogists and others just trying to find ancestral information make a pilgrimage to Salt Lake City and the FHC.

January 4, 1974 was the day that President Nixon refused to hand over to the Senate Watergate Committee tape recordings and other documents.  This event played a big part in my life because I remember watching the hearings on television most of the summer and was at church camp listening on radio the night in August when the President resigned from office.

Anyone else have an extraordinary event that happened On This Day?

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With the brand new year, I will try to keep this blog updated a bit more often. Today marks the beginning of a new column – if not daily – then weekly or monthly – called “On This Day.” I will list some genealogical facts – births, deaths, anniversaries – of those in my family history file.  I wanted to start yesterday – so for argument’s sake – we’ll just pretend it’s January 2nd.

On This Day – January 2nd – in 1940 my brother was born.  He weighed over 10 lbs according to the story my mom told me. She went into labor on New Year’s Eve 1939 and told me she was delirious due to the pain. When she realized he’d been born, she thought he was a New Year’s baby – then realized she’d been out of it for 2 days.

Mom had turned 18 a little over 3 months before Jim was born.  Doesn’t she look so young? 

Due to my dad’s military service (and being stationed in Japan twice in the 1950s), my brother learned to fly an airplane, became interested in photography, participated in the Explorer Scouts overseas, and graduated from an American School in Japan.  He later became very active in the Overseas Brats and attended several reunions.  My brother became a member of the Eagles and played “Santa Claus” for children at Christmas Events.  He loved to dress up for Halloween and on one ocassion, dressed as a vampire and had a “coffin” built for an Eagles Halloween party.  He scared many people that night when they would all check to see if that was a “real” person in the coffin and at the right time, he would raise up and scare them!

My brother was 21 by the time I was born and had been married 9 months.  As I got older, he was more than just an older brother to me.  He became somewhat of a father figure – as my dad and I rarely saw each other due to the physical geographical distance between us.  My brother was the one who took me to my first rock concert – to make sure nothing happened to me.  He was my “date” for one of my school dances.  He chaperoned my first boy-girl party (and got so bored he ended up spending the rest of the evening talking with my mom upstairs in the living room).  He was thrilled when he got to hold my kids.  He would call me “Sis”.  He made me laugh.  He and his wife blessed me with another nephew.  Then 10 years ago, after an undiscovered illness, he became very sick.  It was discovered that he had pancreatic cancer. After the first chemo treatment, he faded very fast.  I got to see him the week before he passed away and can only hope that he knew I was there. 

I especially miss my brother on holidays and birthdays – still waiting for that phone call and hear him say “Hi Sis!”

January 2nd for me will always mean Jim’s birthday.

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