great grandpa Harley

Did you have one of those grandparents or great-grandparents that you wish you had known? You know, family talk about them and they sound so cool....or people say "you know, you remind me a lot of so-n-so".

I shouldn't complain. I was fortunate to know all of my grandparents fairly well, and four of my great-grandparents. But I wish I had known my great grandpa Harley. He sounded pretty cool-not to mention his name conjures up images of a black leather jacket renegade on a chopper.

They weren't rich by any means. And he didn't live to be all that old. But the family that knew him, who could relay stories to me, said that he was the biggest-kind-hearted guy around. His wife was grumpy-we called her granner grump-but Grandpa Harley was said to always take the grandkids for a walk up town to get an ice cream cone....mostly to get away from granner I suppose.

They were poor dirt farmers with Harley subsidizing the family farm with driving a fuel truck for the Gafill Oil Company. I think it was Harley who started the family tradition of wearing bib overalls that my grandfather proudly continued literally to his grave-a tradition I may pick up. It was also Harley who started the annual family fishing vacations to Tomahawk, Wisconsin.

I've never really aspired to be someone famous....although I would love to be able to tell stories like Garrison Keillor. What I hope is my legacy is simply someone who makes others think "geesh-he sounded like an interesting & kind old bird-wish I could've known him".


vanilla said…
Do I have any ancestors I wish I had known? Well, I have a couple I wish I could ask, "What were you thinking?"

GGrandpa Harley does seem to have been a cool guy.
hoosier reborn said…
I have a feeling that's what my descendants are going to be wanting to ask. lol.
Lisa P said…
I had a Great-grandpa RO. It didn't stand for anything, so heaven forbid anyone put punctuation in those letters. He was a disciplined farmer, who trained his cows not to mess in the barn. I picture him doing everything emphatically--from work to play.

My great-uncle Gaile was soft-spoken and much older than my Grandpa. He didn't get married until he was 42, and then he married a widow who had a son. Apparently, the rest of the family nicknamed his wife Uncle Thelma because she was quite a character. I really wish I could've met Gaile, but with Thelma, I might have been satisfied with just being a fly on the wall.
hoosier reborn said…
Lisa-I have a crazy AUNT Thelma-how funny is that?

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