During the winter, I came up with a set of questions that I wanted to ask my Grandparents and mailed them with SASEs…I thought it would let me learn more about their “past lives” but also give them something to do during the cold months. After getting back my Grandmama’s responses, I sent out modified questions to other family members – my Mama, Aunt & Uncle and their families. I hope to be able to put everything together in a book, but we’ll see. My regret is not thinking about this before my Granddaddy Clapp died – maybe I’ll still send out the questions to my Uncles and see what happens!
On this Memorial Day weekend, I thought it would be fitting to share some of my Grandmama’s answers with you:
Q: What personality traits do you think you’ve passed on/hoped you’ve passed on to your children?
A: I consulted Alan [my Uncle] about this question. His answer was that I taught him to be calm as possible when he was angry or upset about something – not rant and rave buy be cool about it. I hadn’t realized that trait had made such an impression. When the children were youngsters, I would read Bible stories and listen to their prayers but realized that church attendance and participation in youth activities would further their desires to lead good Christian lives. Therefore, we went to church and did take part.
[This portion wasn’t an answer to any question, but Grandmama included it in the letter she sent back with everything.]
Mother was a pianist or organist in every church our family joined during my time at home. And – Daddy had a beautiful baritone voice. He sang on WFIW Hopkinsville radio in the early years – That song “My Blue Heaven” he would sing and change the words to say “Just Susie and me and our babies three” – He sang “O Holy Night” and “The Holy City” as specials at church and I remember being so proud of him.
Q: What is a personality trait you think you received from your mother? Your father?
A: Mother was very positive in her belief that there were plenty of good words to use in conversation without resorting to swear or vulgar ones – Guess that rubbed off on me – Daddy was always on time. He would tell us that you should never wait to the last second to do something and if you have an appointment, get there a few minutes early – I’ve always tried to do that.
Q: More about personality traits she’s passed on…
A: I have always loved the U.S. and have tried to show that patriotism by voting every time the polls open and showing interest in politics. We live in a great country and I believe our children are aware of that. Lastly, family is important and I believe our children and grandchildren know we would always stand with them in any way we can.
[This is more information she included in the letter.]
Daddy was in the Navy during WWI – went oversees to Europe – and remarked that returning home on the Leviathan, cooks ran out of food and all they had those last few days home was cheese! He said it took him a while to desire anymore of the stuff – My brother Jimmy was with 5th Marines and received a Purple Heart for wounds received when they landed on Okinawa on Easter Sunday – Claude served during the Korean War in the Navy. Guy was in the 3rd Army Headquarters with Patton across France into Germany – has 5 battle stars. My service in the WAVES was a highlight in my life, too. I was not in harm’s way like the men were but we did release the sailors to sea duty – My brother Karl was in the Coast Guard and served in the Gulf of Mexico and he told of submarines they destroyed. Not much was ever told on the news about that. The islands of Puerto Rico, etc. were where that happened.
On this Memorial Day, I am proud of my family that served and thankful and appreciative of those currently serving!