Years ago, I sat down and asked my grandma a whole bunch of questions, and recorded the answers. I'm finally getting around to sharing it with you. If you are anything like me, you've heard a lot of stories, but they got so complicated I wasn't sure I understood them right. This is my attempt to understand the life of my wonderful grandmother. Enjoy!
Part 1: (speaking about her mother)
She could remember every telephone number, every address clear from when she was a child and I couldn't even tell you what my telephone number was before this home. As soon as anything's over, I forget it.
When and where were you born?
I was born in St. Louis, Missourri in 1926. I remember going back and forth because all my mother's family was back in Missourri and we travelled back and forth all the time (from California).
I went to Catholic school in the first and second grade...All my schooling was in California
What is your first memory of your parents? Do you remember your dad at all?
Oh yeah. My dad, I guess they were divorced--I don't know just when. It was when I was real tiny, but they always remained friends. I saw my dad off and on.
What was his name? Larry--Lawrence Frank Zimmer.
You wanted to name my dad after your dad?
Yeah, I thought I would, except your Aunt Mina named her boy Larry, so I never did name one Larry, because we already had a Larry. But I remember my dad coming quite often.
Didn't he live in Missourri?
No. He was in California. He was a cab driver. They got divorced when I was real young. My mother packed up me, put me in a stroller, and she and her girlfriend hitchhiked with me in a stroller all the way to California when I was real young.
I don't know why, just to get to California. And then, apparently, she moved back to St. Louis and met her second husband, who was Daddy Mack. McMillan was his name. Clyde McMillan--met him. I had asthma and I guess she was told the asthma was too hard...Anyway she and Daddy Mack moved to California for me and I guess I was 2 or 3 or o4. I don't know. But apparently he couldn't find a job and he didn't like it or something or rather, so I guess she had to make a choice between him and me because he was her one true love, I understand. But anyway, he went back to St. Louis and she stayed in California. So anyway, that was the end of their marriage.
Did they stay friends?
Oh yes. She stayed friends with every one of them. When I went back when I was a teenagers, he came to visit. Oh yes, they stayed friends all of their life. He remarried. She even wrote--well she wrote to everybody, bue she even wrote and stayed food friends with his family and everything. They kept in youch more or less.
Was he like a father to you?
No, not that I remember very much, because I was so very young. I don't remember him very much. I was on 2, 3, 4 years old.
Did she get married again after that?
Then she had a boyfriend for most of my young years. His name was Ray ____________. She never married, but that was my dad for many years.
Was he a good guy?
Yes. He was an alcoholic. I remember they used to have quite a few fights, but he was good to me, and they were together for years and years and then I met him again after I was married. I can't remember where, but I remember meeting him again after I was married. He said, "I remember when I used to change you diapers," No. He didn't really say that cause I was older--5? Anyway, he was around most of the time when I was a young girl.
But she didn't ever get married again?
Yeah. Oh yeah. When I was in junior high school she married Bill Gordon-during my junior high school years. He was a quiet, moody man. We didn't talk much. He used to mostly sit and play solitaire if I remember right. He was a cab driver also. He was during my junior high years. He wasn't around much--he was either driving or sitting, but there were no problems he was just there. And then, after I got married, well, she divorced Bill, and he died, but right after I got married...almost immediately, she married Merrill Wise.
Was that in California?
Yeah, they're all in California. She married Merrill Wise and she was married to him for a few years. He ran off with some young girl and that was the end of her marriages. That was enough. She never got married again.
**** My grandma wanted me to add this comment: I must add that my MOM was a wonderful loving person. .Ask anyone who knew her!!! She always put me first thruout her life... She was always there for me... She had a hard life but with a smile.....She was truly giving, caring & loving...XXX***