Thursday, April 21, 2011

Kevin’s Hurdles “A Better Story”

This story starts a couple years back.  Maybe fifty years back.  I remember Mom and Dad coming home.  They must have been gone.  They had there coats on.  There were a few people in the house and I was laying on the floor watching Gunsmoke.  I turn around and see everyone standing in the kitchen.  Not much exciting going on there, back to Gunsmoke.  I always wore my cowboy hat when Gunsmoke was on.

A few years later I remember Mom talking with someone about Matson.  I leaned my right ear closer to the kitchen table thinking maybe my grandad was coming for a visit.  Nothing better in life that watching my grandad do the dishes.  He smoked Chesterfield’s that did not have a filter on them.  He never took that cigarette out of his mouth the whole time he was doing dishes.  The ash would get longer, longer, longer, and finally it would drop on the clean dishes.  I don’t need to spell out the words that followed.  Better than TV.  But, they were not talking about grandad, they were talking about a little boy, born with a full head of red hair and how his intestines had not formed properly.  At eleven pounds and ten ounces you would think he would have all the right parts?  Mom continues the explanation.  They had operated on him but the little guy just wasn’t destined for this world.

Fast forward 49 years and big brother has hit another hurdle.  I had a first name, a last name, parents names, age, but I could not find my littler brother.  As you do your research, you are going to run into hurdles.  Aunts and Uncles didn’t even know about the little guy much less where he could be buried.  I am planning a trip that will take me right past Los Angeles.  Where do I start?  I printed out a list of every cemetery in Los Angeles County.  We lived in Wilmington a the time so I got google earth on one computer and mapquest on the other.  I started closest to Wilmington and worked my way out.

Some cemeteries have a list of those people buried on the grounds.  Others do not.  I searched everything I could on line.  Then I started calling.  I can not believe how fantastic each person was that answered the phone.  They were all so helpful.  I eliminated the first two cemeteries with one phone call to each.  Three of the cemeteries would have to research there records and call me back.  They each called me back, but no little brother.  I put calls into two more cemeteries and then I got a call from back from one.  “What was your brothers name?”  Matson.  “I’m so sorry, but we don’t have him here.”  “What was your Dad’s name?”  “We have a contract with your Dad for about that same time but the name is Matthew not Matson” That is him, I can not believe it, his middle name started with an M and his other grandad’s name was Matthew.  They must have messed up the names????  Would it be okay if I came down to see?

“Please come”

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