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Two Older Women- April 10, 2008

    We all have heart-warming family stories. My “mission” is to encourage our people in Huerfano County to record family stories and memories– by tape recording, videotaping, writing, or even compiling Christmas and family letters.  Skilled writing is not a “must” for writing family/local history.  Your community, historical societies, schools, children, and grandchildren need your stories, in your unique style.

    Greta and I roam the streets of Walsenburg and La Veta speaking to residents      seeking out the right place and time for new writing groups and classes.  We welcome your help/suggestions.

    I have experienced life in Walsenburg for eight years; this is my home.  I offer a heartfelt piece with you now.  Please share yours, for we are one in life and love.

 Love Story

    My big brother David and his wife Doreen celebrated their third anniversary this month, or 18th year of marriage, or, taking a leap of faith, 58th year of basic commitment.  For 40 years this commitment sat comfortably on the back burner of life. 

    In 1950 David Russell Croft and Doreen Irene Needham wed. 15 years later, after birthing 3 bouncing baby boys, they divorced.  In spring 2005, they re-married.  Their cake read, “Best Wishes, Mom and Dad.”  Their great-grandchild took wedding-ring responsibility.

    During their 40-year sabbatical, Doreen married and buried two husbands. David married twice and cared for a third companion for eight years until her death. Both caregivers at heart, they helped their spouses as best they could– with moments of both glory and despair.

    When David heard Doreen had married a well-to-do gentleman (her third husband), he responded, “At last Doreen has what she deserves.”  They continued to see one another at their children’s events, and Doreen continued to enjoy our family reunions.

    Then as Doreen settled her third husband′s estate, David voiced gratitude for the kindness of his good friend and companion at the memorial service.  Two near graduates of this world met on new terms.  Doreen and David′s adult kids and grandkids watched with awe and delight.  My rough and tumble brother courted elegantly.  His wife-to-be demurely blushed, smiled knowingly, as a mature still-growing relationship emerged created by desire, wisdom, and the Almighty Himself.  They now both have “what they deserve!”

    I teased, “You are big-time caregivers; who will do the caregiving now?” “I’m in pretty good shape!” Dave proclaimed.  In reality, they care for one another.  Rich in church-life, combining kitchen, catering, custodial, administrative, and carpentry/repair skill, they support their individual beliefs.  Dave, a 60+ year volunteer fireman, enjoys social/ fundraising activities with his present wife just as he did with his bride over 50 years ago.  Extensive lawn surrounds their home, and the gentle roads nearby are perfect for their two mile walk each morning. Twin recliners, remote close at hand, assist them in keeping up with world events and naps.  Like thousands, they feverishly compete during Wheel of Fortune and take heart at the good deeds of Oprah, et al.

    Like other octogenarians their roads burn with doctor appointments, and when a good nurse is needed Doreen’s education on the home front and David’s education at hospital employment and at home serve them well.

    No matter how the years are calculated, congratulations, David and Doreen.  You are loved.

    So many love stories – so little time.  Let’s boogie good Huerfano people!  It’s time for you to write/record your stories.  Greta and I can help.