Share a special moment from George's life.


Shared by G Lee McKay on March 22, 2019

As a young boy, I loved to do things with my dad.  He spent a lot of time at work, so I looked forward to the times he would take me with him on Sundays so I could help clean the store, straighten out the stock, and do miscellaneous little chores in exchange for a chocolate milkshake or soda.  

One weekend, he decided to take off from work to go fishing in Rock Creek.  I was all in, despite the fact that I was sick with a fever and sore throat.   Rustled up out of bed before the sun came until a a very chilly morning, I remember taking the ride there, feeling miserable.

Once we arrived, my father tried fishing but had little luck with with gear.  I stood off to the side, bundled up but cold, and just wanting it to all be over.   Across the rocks, I observed other men fishing and continuously pulling fish up out of the water.  My father watched, too, and decided he had to take a different approach.

We headed back home, where I went to bed.  My father caucused with a neighbor and together they headed back out to Rock Creek with empty laundry baskets in the back of our station wagon.    At the right spot, they dredged the baskets in the water, and pulled out a full basket of fish, which were heaved into the back of the car.  They repeated this until the car was full, and they them headed for home.

For the rest of the day, my Dad and Mom and the neighbors worked furiously to clean the fish, pounds and pounds and pounds of boney herring.  They stuff a good lot of them in a freezer and gave much away to neighbors.

It seemed like a significant part of the next year, we had herring for dinner every night.  Herring for breakfast.  Herring for snacks.  Herring for dessert.  Finally, we could not take it anymore, and took the rest of the frozen fish to the local Catholic convent and gave the bounty to the nuns.

I have not eaten much fish since then

Women Get the Right to Drive

Shared by G Lee McKay on March 22, 2019

Mom was a stay at home mom during our younger years.   She did housework and read stories to us, prepared dinner, and sometimes walked down to the local market,. etc.  In part she was a stay at home mom, because we only had one car.   But it was also because she did not drive.

On November 22, 1963, it all changed when President Kennedy was assassinated.  This was a shock to the nation.   And it was a big shock to my father as well.  His thinking was that if the President of the United States could be shot, everyone was at risk for such a tragedy.   Dad had been robbed at gunpoint in the store where he worked multiple times, and he feared what might happen to our family if one of those drug woozy robbers pulled the trigger on him.

That weekend, my father began teaching my mother to drive.  Later in life, after he became disabled, she became his chauffeur.  He loved his role as front seat driver, and became quite skilled at pointing his finger, directing her where to go.   He was so instrumental in her getting from point A to Be that late in life that after her co-pilot became bedridden, we took away her keys.

Sweetie Pie

Shared by G Lee McKay on March 22, 2019

Station wagons were made for families like ours.  The car allowed 5 kids and an occasional dog to be stuffed inside with two parents in the front.  We were taken here and there to visit grandparents, go shopping or camping or wherever.   There was room for us all to be together and to spread out at the same time.

Quite often, on our return home from one of these outings, the sing song chant among the kids would begin softly and slowly, before rising to an annoying crescendo.  Very annoying. And that was the point.   "Sweetie pie, sweetie pie, sweetie pie!" we exclaimed.  And that only meant one thing: stop at the local Tastee Freeze for ice cream or we will get louder.

It usually worked.

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