A Mississippi girl who read Shakespeare aloud down back of the pasture. Left home to attend the Pittsburgh Academy of Art. Marriage*, baby, divorce. Decided when living in New York that the best place for a single mom to raise a kid would be a small Southern city.
Fire Island, NY, 1968
First Greenville, then Spartanburg. In Spartanburg during the mid-'50s she had a talk-radio program on WJAN. Later wrote ad copy for the Aug W. Smith Company back when the store sat near the top of Spartanburg County's food chain. Sometime in the early '60s she moved over to the Belk-Hudson Company and wrote copy for them until 1970.
During her tenure in Spartanburg she painted a few signs, designed and had constructed what was possibly the largest billboard to date in that part of the world, emceed a number of fashion shows, and did a lot of other things to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table.
After I left the nest, at some point she realized she was free to pick up her life where she left off, and she sure enough did. Or tried. Only got as far as Charlotte before she wound up back in Mississippi, that place she started from 35 years earlier.
*Yep, life has footnotes and this is one of hers.
My father. As he was, impossibly young and already a seasoned combat veteran of the fabled 8th Air Force.
First time I met him, I was thirteen. There was a lot to admire about the guy. Intelligent, certifiably brave -- and women found him fascinating. Pretty women. He was a big man with a two-fisted, kick-bottom approach to life, but women felt comfortable with him. Pretty women. Did I mention that? Lots of them.
Never at rest, a man in motion.
My English family