Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Wedding Picture From Long Ago

These are my maternal grandparents, Kathleen and Raymond Coakley, on their wedding day in 1914. There was a huge difference in their age; she was much older. Her final wish before she died was to not have her age in her obituary. The family complied. so I won't spill the beans here either.

She was the old maid school teacher in a small town in Minnesota; he was the town catch. I love her hat; it's worthy of wearing to a royal wedding. I don't remember her as very stylish, but I do remember her wonderful, simple home cooking. She loved chocolate and thought meat was bad for you.

She stood 4 ft. 10 inches tall; he was well over 6 feet. Together they weathered the birth of four children (one, a son, died at birth), the Great Depression, World War II and the death of their only son in that war. Life was not easy for them. She was a devout Catholic; he went along.

They were my favorites and they knew it; in their eyes I could do nothing wrong. I remember riding my bike to their house to tell them about my life. They would sit in rapt attention to whatever I said. I loved it. In college they brought me cranberry juice and raspberry jam plus $5 on occasional Sunday when they visited.

My grandfather outlived his wife, all of his children and even his children's spouses. He was a good man. I loved them both very much.  

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