Train Wrecks 2000

cousins are This will be the last entry about the stories from the 2000 cookbook.  Mark has suggested, and I totally agree, that it would be a great idea to start planning another reunion.  And maybe even another cookbook with new memories from the newer generation.  Plus, I would love to meet some of the cousins we have who are related from Papa’s side of the family.  I know one of them — Vicky Connor.  So if any Blandfords in the West Louisville area are related to her, you are related to the rest of us also.  I’m going to start putting some random photos on here tonight, because I’m running out of the older ones that have been destroyed over the many years since the 1920’s to the ’40’s.  So look closely, some of you could find yourselves going international tonight.

Vird Vird’s family.  Marie Blandford  Ward recalls:  Bernard (Elzie) used to walk in his sleep when he was younger.  One of the houses the family lived in had upstairs and downstairs porches.  One of the upstairs porches had a banister, one didn’t.  Off the porch without a banister was a little storage room. It was here that Mother kept her laundry until it was time to wash it.  One night when Bernard was around 13, he got up in his sleep.  Without knowing it, he walked onto the upstairs porch without a banister, and into the storage room.   There he put on a pair of Joe’s pants and went back to bed.  He had no idea what he had done until the next morning when he woke up in bed wearing Joe’s dirty pants!JoeMaude Joe and Maude’s wedding picture.  Can’t find one of Elzie (aka: Bernard)

Leo's familyI was hoping this photo would be larger, but Doug is in there–the oldest.  Doug Blandford recalls:  Daddy was a very opinionated about certain things.  For example, he felt very strongly that Muhammad Ali was a no-good draft dodger, regardless of how good a boxer he was.  Once Daddy woke up in the middle of a dream in which he was pummeling Ali.  He must have been flailing away (shadow boxing) when he connected with Ali’s jaw, but in actuality it was the bedroom wall he connected with!

armyleo My brothers and I learned to love and play the game of baseball from Daddy.  He would take us out to the field and throw and catch and hit flies until we all dropped.  But Daddy couldn’t throw very far or for very long at a time because he says he hurt his shoulder while playing ball in the Army, but he never talked about the war (WWII) and his participation in it.  Daddy was a machine-gunner in the infantry and marched with his unit across Germany and saw a lot of action.  But that is all I know about his experience there because he wouldn’t talk about the war, ever.  I kind of suspect that he really had a bad shoulder because of the constant recoil of the gun, but he led us to believe he threw his shoulder out playing ball.  Either way, I wish Daddy was still here so that I could tell him how proud I was of him.

Note to Doug:  the story I heard all my life was that your Dad was the only survivor of two different units.  By the time he was re-assigned to the third unit they had marched on Berlin, and taken the city, so most of his unit survived that time.  Mom told me this when I was a teenager, and I was asking why your Dad wasn’t a cook also, since he had the great recipe for the barbecue sauce.  Since the sauce recipe came courtesy of your Mom’s side of the family, and your Dad didn’t cook yet, he was assigned to the gunnery unit.  A real hero, among all the rest of heroes from that era.  I hope that helps after all these years.

Leo, Doug & PatAren’t you guys cute?  Fr. Ray Goetz recalls:  Uncle Leo had the best line of all.  Some of them can even be printed.  I believe it was Tony that he called a “Big long slim slick sycamore sapling.”  You might need to check the accuracy though. (Don’t have to, I remember it well).  When something was just too astonishing for words he would exclaim “well garden seed!”  We had a beautiful mild cow named Beautina, but we called her “Beauty” for short.  Because she had a pair of magnificent horns, Leo called her “Double Ugly”.  He was never very fond of her I think.

Those are all the stories in the book.  There are a lot more I can only half remember from so many years ago.  Tomorrow I will post the photos I have salvaged, so you can see the “way back whens” and some of the more modern ones.  Oh, how I love my family.