Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Two Anniversaries and a 140th Birthday, June 2, 2010

I smile because 
you are my brother. 
I laugh because 
there's nothing you can do about it!

Hello Shepard Family and Friends,

Happy Anniversary TODAY to my brother Gary and his wife Cindy Shepard of Oak Harbor, Washington. 31 years ago they were married in a small garden wedding at our home in Los Alamitos, California.

They are spending their anniver- sary today communi- cating their love and affection by phone across 2200 miles and about 7 states of separation. Cindy is at home in Washington state, working today and awaiting word of the birth of her first Ggrandchild in Georgia. Gary is in Weatherford, Texas with his kids and grandkids, celebrating the High School graduation of his granddaughter Mandi Aquiningoc yesterday, June 1 (not today, as "my sources" mistakenly reported last week).

Best wishes to Gary and Cindy! The first picture I am including today was taken on the occasion of their wedding ceremony so many years ago, and shows a young P.K. with security blanket in hand, admonishing the young couple regarding the seriousness of their wedding vows. (Where do these kids learn these things?)

The second picture I am including shows Gary and Cindy after their wedding ceremony, the handsome young couple showing no ill effects of the aforementioned admonishment. These days Gary enjoys the retired life on Whidbey Island in Western Washington, while Cindy works for a meat packing plant in nearby Mount Vernon.

Remembering the Birthday of JBD. Today is also the 140th anniversary of the birthday of James Brooks Davis, Gary's Ggrandfather. JBD was born in 1870 in Spencer, Indiana, where in 1896 he married Caroline Spear, and where their 7 children were born. 

In the early years of the 20th century he moved his young family to Oklahoma and settled in Beaver County in the panhandle, where some of their family live to this day. That move was just the beginning of the westward migration of some of their descendants. Their oldest daughter Bura Davis and her husband Will Shepard eventually settled in San Diego, California in 1940, where they lived virtually the rest of their lives. (See the picture of Will and Bura Shepard in San Diego in the 1950s.)

Will and Bura's 95th. Speaking of Bura Davis, it was on this day 95 years ago -- on her father JBD's 45th birthday -- that she chose to marry William Shepard in Beaver County, Oklahoma. They both were from farming families and belonged to the South Flat Church of Christ, where they met. You can see their wedding picture on the front page of this blog, the right hand column.

In 1975, the year before he died, Will Shepard said this in a recording in which he talked about Bura and about their wedding day:
She was quite a Sunday School girl. I had just come into the church myself in December [1914]. My dad had come in a little earlier than that. He was on his death bed with cancer and wanted to see me become a Christian before he died. So I did. I was running around with her [Bura] at that time.

I had my first model T car. [To get married] we had to go to another sod house where the preacher lived. It was a real wet spring and water was standing everywhere. We didn't have highways. Just old roads. I didn't think we could make it by taking the regular road so we went around on the higher country and ran into a lake and got stuck. And there we sat, on what became her brother-in-law's Father's property.

We sat there in that car in the mud hole nearly all day. Finally an old gentleman who lived there came and took off nearly everything he had on except his pants and waded in. He pulled us with his team of horses trying to get us out. Finally we got out. I imagine it was about 3 or 4 o'clock.

The preacher then tied the knot and we went home the way we should have when we went out to see him. He must have done a good job tying the knot because it is still tight.
Got a Father's Day Pic? I will be compiling an online photo presentation for Father's Day in a couple of weeks and invite you to send me your favorite picture of your father and you. I would like to have pictures of as many of our family's fathers and their children as possible.
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