whatever is on my mind….

one of my heroes….

Heroes come in all shapes, sizes and genders and one of the most important and influential people in my life was my fraternal grandmother, Memaw.   I spent a lot of time at Memaw and Papaw’s house growing up.  She taught me many things on many subjects but the one that stands out most is that all knowledge in valuable and never a waste of time, no matter how trivial.  She was short and plump and happy!  She could always find something positive no matter the situation.

I remember, we got our first television when I was in third grade and every Thursday night Memaw and Pawpaw would drive out to our house to watch Ozzie and Harriet, The Real McCoys, Bonanza and then the local news.  It wasn’t too long before they got a television at their house and that is when I learned that there was something to watch after the news.

Every time I spent the night at their house, Papaw would go to bed after the news and that is when the fun started.  Memaw would go to the kitchen fix us a snack, there was always something good to eat in her fridge, then we would turn off all the lamps so as not to disturb Papaw and settle down to watch the late movie.  I am talking really old movies now, but since Memaw had never went to theaters much she was seeing them for the first time too.  We watched everything, war movies, mysteries, romance, comedy, there weren’t any ratings back then and Memaw never told me to close my eyes because there was nothing in them that was going to warp my young mind.  I don’t remember the all the titles but I loved them all.   Tyrone Power, Bogie, Loretta Young, Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Audie Murphy, Jimmy Stewart, Clark Gable, Bing Crosby,  John Wayne, and so many more whose names escape me right now.  We would always watch the last thing on the air after the movie which was the Blue Angels and a mans voice reciting this poem….

High Flight

by John Gillespie Magee, Jr.


Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
of sun-split clouds, – and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of-wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,
I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air….
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue
I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark nor even eagle flew-
And, while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

I h

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After the poem there was Old Glory waving in the breeze and the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, which Memaw and I always recited aloud with our hands over our heart.  I think this is when I became a dreamer and developed a deep feeling of patriotism and love for my country……then we would go to bed and I would go to sleep dreaming that I was the heroine…..





  1. Only one word came to mind after reading and viewing the video, MAGNIFICANT, FOH. Thanx so much for the reminder and glimpse into the past. Wow.

    • I always got chills and still do over anything patriotic. Glad you enjoyed!

  2. FOH,

    Great job on this article! You just made more memories rush into my mind that I had forgotten so long ago about hanging out my Papa and Granny as a youngster; great days. Of course one thing I’ve never forgotten and still experience to this day is the warm, proud feeling I get every time I hear our national anthem. To this day; my eyes still water up every time I hear that great song (unless someone stupid has picked a RAP crapper to sing it!). I also remember so well watching the TV stations shut down for the night seeing our beautiful flag blowing in the breeze. It is such a shame that our nation has gotten to the point where it is OK to burn our flag and hardly anyone 10-15 years younger than me even knows the words to our national anthem. In reflection; I think I was born about 50 years to late FOH…

    • I think I was also born too late Dave. Glad it brought back good memories for you!

  3. Lura, I loved reading this…. you were so lucky because you got to see our precious grandparents so much. I would come once a year in July or August and those memories are still the most precious to me. What amazing people they were. They lived simple beautiufl lives that at the time were so fasinating to me and in retrospect still are.
    Nothing ever tasted as good as it did as when Memaw cooked it. Nobody could give you a tighter hug than Papaw.
    There were three kids that loved that house on the hill south of Hedley but it wasn’t the house it was the sweet and loving Grandparents that were so happy to see us when we drove up that lane. And love us they did, knowing that all I wanted to do was throw rocks at the hogs and drag quilts out on the grass in evenings.
    Love reading your memories sweetie!

    • I really was so lucky to have Memaw and Papaw so close. Their home was my home too. Memaw taught me how to fry chicken and I still have her old steel skillet and it still fries the best chicken. She taught me how to listen for the chicken to tell me when it was time to turn it and it really does! I alway looked so forward to when you and Greg would come because I had someone to share all my favorite haunts with and the quilts out on the grass is such a sweet memory! Do you remember the old well house with the storage tank on top and the ledge that you could sit on hidden by the trees? I would sit up there and read for hours. I so wish that I had recorded Memaw telling the stories of her childhood. We have a few tapes audio tapes of our Christmases and just hearing her voice is so sweet. Of course she didn’t talk much around the tape recorder.

      I wish that we could have bought the farm just to preserve the house and barn. They are in really bad shape now and it makes me sad because I spent so much of my childhood there and loving every minute. If I can be just half the grandmother to my grand kids as she was to me that would be an accomplishment! Whatever happened at Memaw’s house stayed at Memaw’s house!

      Glad you enjoyed the memories!

  4. That poem always makes me cry 🙂

    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful memory! I wish they still played that at the end of transmission, but everything is now 24 hours…

    • I know Y, I wish a lot of things were more like they were when I was a kid….glad it brought back a good memory for you.

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