Monday, August 16, 2010

Those Crazy Family Mysteries -- Part II

I think I needed a few days off to get a second wind with all this wacky family stuff.  It's all very interesting from far away, but it's a bit weird when it's the folks who tucked you in at night.  You know?  Anyway, here are the rest of the skeletons, fresh from the closet...

Mystery #4
My Grandparents Did WHAT?

See these people over there?  They were my heart.  They spoiled me rotten (I was their only grandchild), and doted on me.  Grandpa was from Kansas.  He fought in WWII, spent some time in the military after that, and then became a bearing salesman.  Exciting, no?  Grandma was a California girl who worked as a secretary.  They lived in southern California when I was little, and always had (except for a couple of years in Arizona).

Imagine my surprise when, in digging through my parents' papers, I found a letter to my mother from a DEA (yep, that's the Drug Enforcement Agency) agent.  It was a long, handwritten thing discussing in detail a piece of art that they had talked about, complete with picture.  Weird.  Weirder?  Also enclosed was my grandparents' marriage certificate.  From Bogota.  Colombia.  Wait, what?  My grandparents got married in the drug capital of the world?  What the heck were they doing there?  Why does a DEA agent have their marriage certificate?  A quick search of the 'net tells me he's still around.  An answer might be just an email away.  So why is it so scary to send it?  I will, though.  Really.

Mystery #5
Grandpa's Car Accident

When I was 8, my grandpa (the guy who used to climb up on the roof on Christmas Eve, horseshoes in hand, to clop around so that I could hear reindeer hooves), was killed in a car accident.  Mom said he was coming home from work and his car veered off an overpass.  He died in the hospital about a week later from complications related to his injuries.  Sad. 

Back to my parents' office... I found Grandpa's death certificate.  It said his car hit a tree.  No mention of an overpass, and no explanation.  Why the discrepancy?  And how did this happen in Orange County in the middle of the afternoon?  With no witnesses?  I'm not sure there's any way to solve this one, but maybe the DEA guy will be able to shed some light.  Maybe Grandpa was some sort of bearing-selling super hero in disguise.  It'd be nicer than thinking his life got cut short for no reason at all.

That's pretty much the extent of it.  At least as far as I know now.  I'm sure there will be at least a few more that pop up as I dig into all of this.  Here's hoping they're neither as weird or as scary as some of these. 

For the moment, I'm going to pick up my knitting for a while.  I'm a little bit obsessed with having some good progress with Mr. Right's sweater to report for this week's Work In Progress Wednesday.  No, I'm not competitive at all, why do you ask?


  1. I hope you're getting to enjoy some of the trek back through your family history too - not just uncovering mysteries that seem to be sad or stressful to you. :) I love digging back into the old records and books...though I've uncovered what seems to be a slightly unsavory part of my great-great grandfather's life (and I'm a little scared to tell the rest of my family, lol). It's such a thrill to finally find answers!

  2. Great blog. Your family mysteries are really interesting.