My mother was born in 1901. She was brought up in a family of eight children and they lived on a farm. She adopted me when she was 49 and she had led a whole other life by then. This picture of her was taken shortly after she and her husband and little girl arrived in Arizona. Her husband had learned he had tuberculosis and so they moved from Indiana out to the desert.
She left her whole family and off they went, not knowing anyone, but he had been told that the weather would be good for him. He died later during the first year they got there. She became a widow at 25 with a five year old child. They headed back for Indiana and the depression was kicking in with gusto. She took care of her little girl by working in a shoe polish factory. They lived in a small apartment and were at church whenever the doors were open.
Her daughter, Helen Dee, grew into a very pretty teenager, but was a sickly girl. At fifteen she was diagnosed with TB and passed away at seventeen. My mother had a deep faith and when many women would have fallen apart, she turned to the Lord and continued on. She married my daddy around 1942. He was a widower with two children and she helped raise them. They both grew up and married and in late 1950 they stated the proceedings to adopt me.
I had a sweet life until my daddy got sick in 1958 and was diagnosed with colon cancer. My mother took care of him and worked part time at a small department store . He died in 1960 and neither of us cried at the funeral. He had suffered so much that it was a relief. My mother was very emotional and I cry at commercials, but that two year battle left us drained and I suppose, cried out. My mother had taken care of two sick husbands and her daughter and she told me she never wanted to marry again. She didn't, although there were men that wanted to pursue her. She was a feisty and fun woman. I miss her and there's not a day that goes by that I don't wish I could talk to her. I know she would be crazy about my granddaughter, Avery.
My mother was strong and didn't complain. She had plenty she could have complained about,but always told me she felt blessed. I thank God she adopted me and gave me so much love. She worked hard cleaning houses after my daddy died and we had to give up our car so we always had to ride the bus or walk. She was so good about telling me stories about the old days. When she died I felt like my world went into slow motion. It was the biggest loss I had ever had. I am so thankful that I have the hope that I will see her someday on the other side. She loved the Lord and was so warm and tender. She was so patient and as I look back I see why. She had learned so much through the fire. She was such a special person and I thank God for her.