Two blogs have made me think back today. Mary of FrankandMary and the indubitable Jimmy.
I was 12 years old and had never seen a television, although I had heard of them. Friend Ray Sides told me that we could watch a Television (long before it was shortened to TV) if I wanted to. ‘Has a cat got a climbing gear’, I asked. (meaning yes, in 1951).
I got my bike and we rode to the Fire station. I had never seen a fire truck up close, much less go in a fire station. We did. Yep they had a spotted dog. As a boy I was so overwhelmed at how friendly the firemen were. They allowed us to sit on the floor for 30 minutes and watch Howdy Doody.
(Buffalo Bob & Howdy Doody)
AWAY FROM THIS Entry for a minute>>
Just now, Sherry tells me that one of the nicest men I have ever met, John Wood, has died. He was a celebrated Fire Chief in Miami. We met John in Eustis, Florida. We were looking for a regular church to attend, John was an usher. I told him we were just shopping around. He said ‘Great, that means you will be back’. And we did come back. We grew to love John and Patty, such an unassuming man.
Someone told me he had retired as a fire chief in Miami. When I mentioned that he said, “Jack, that isn’t such a big deal, there are xx number of Chiefs in Miami.”
But I knew it was a big deal. I am wishing fair winds and following seas to John good friend. What a GUY!
Back to this entry:
As a kid, I could not believe how good those guys were to us (I always related John to these guys, he was the same way, a Prince among men. We had to leave after Howdy, but who cared? The news was coming on.
John dying has changed my thought patterns. I had a few more to high light, but for right now let me tell you about a guy I met in Biloxi. This also centered around church, you will get the idea that my earlier life was centered on church.
Some of you are familiar with Fred Brannen, who graciously comments here on the log. Fred was in the Coast Guard I was in the Air Force. Three things brought us together, first we were both ‘trailer trash’. Well not really, because at that time (1958 time frame) trailers were logical. We lived in the same trailer park for awhile. Second we actually worked within a 100 yards of each other on Point Cadet. He at a CG Loran Station, I at the USAF Crash boats as a radio operator. Third we attended the same church.
(I snagged this picture from Fred Alton’s page, Fred Frances and their first daughter Frankie)
Orders separated us from Fred and Frances. We had a few days contact over the next few years after that, and usually sent Christmas cards. But it was over 50 years before we really made contact again. Fred and Frances became dedicated Missionaries to Guyana and then to Africa. Eventually Fred was recognized and became an official within our denomination. I, on the other hand, followed too many paths to mention. Fred and Frances have always stood out as ‘Nice Folk’ to have known.
(Fred & Frances now, The smiles are the same but Fred has lost his hair on TOP!)
I could go on but I have over extended my word count. I will get to what Mary reminded me of tomorrow.
The song, Auld Lang Syne, is sung at the stroke of midnight in almost every English-speaking country in the world to bring in the new year.
Car of the day:
This looks sorta like a 1957 Caddy convertible.