Some years ago, Congress passed a resolution introduced by Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah designating the month of October for National Family History Month.
“By searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family” – Senator Hatch
We all have unique family histories. Lately with the assistance of DNA testing it has been really fascinating to discover our genetic roots. DNA testing cannot tell the fascinating stories though – ones that have been passed from generation to generation.
I just wanted to take a moment to briefly share my family history and a few pictures of those that are part of my own personal story.
My mother, Anita, was born to Mario (1906-1953) and Mary (1909-2002) in a small town in Pennsylvania, USA. My grandparents were married in Pennsylvania in January 1930.
My grandfather, Mario, was born in Italy to Augustus and Anita 🇮🇹 and came over to the US as a young man. Some say he stowed away on a boat to get here. Others say he “joined” the US Navy as a teenager and when it was discovered he was underage he was quickly discharged. He did, however, join the US Navy legitimately eventually when he fought in the Pacific in WWII. I am proud to say that my grandfather was a member of an elite group of heroes, “The Greatest Generation.”
My grandmother, Mary, was born in Pennsylvania to Italian and Austrian immigrant parents, Giuseppe (Joseph) and Barbara. My great-Grandmother passed away in 1916 due to complications of contracting tuberculous (no cures for it in 1916) and my grandmother was devastated over the loss of her mother at such an early age – she was barely 6 years old when she lost her mother.
My grandparents met in a speak easy. It’s so neat to say that!! During the days of prohibition my grandparents rebelled and met in a place that was of questionable character. Such a fascinating story. They fell in love and quickly married and eventually had 4 children (3 girls and one boy).
My mother had an idyllic childhood growing up in a small town and cherishes the memories of her childhood.
Her family moved to Arlington, Virginia in the early 1950’s where she finished high school and then met my father soon after.
My mom retired from the US Federal Government in 1996 after working under several administrations and supporting several Secretaries of Defense.
My father, Roger, was born in a small town in Vermont USA. He was born to George (1909-2000) and Geraldine (1911-1992).
My grandparents come from generations of Vermonters.
My grandfather was born to Homer and Sarah. He lost his father due to complications of pneumonia before his first birthday. He was very close to his mother throughout their life together.
My grandparents married in 1930 and had a wonderful life together raising 7 children (one daughter passed away in infancy).
My grandma and grandpa were hard workers and retired from Goodyear Tire Company. They lived simply and modestly but did acquire a property on Lake Champlain where we experienced many warm and loving childhood memories of Summer.
My father has so many fun stories of growing up in a large family. All boys with one sister. He was extra close to his younger sister and they spent a lot of time fishing.
My dad joined the US Army in the mid 1950’s and was a medic. He then met my mother at a square dance on a local Army base in Arlington, Virginia and they were married in August 1957.
He then joined the Metropolitian Police Department in Washington, DC and served as an honorable police officer until retiring in 1980.
I had an older brother (Allen) and sister (Donna) and we grew up in Arlington, Virginia. As a child, I had aspirations of moving to Los Angeles – where my brother had relocated – and becoming an actress. When my brother passed away tragically in 1990, my life took me on another path and I had my beloved son, Charlie, and a few years later I was blessed again with my beloved Trevor.
Charlie is now married to our lovely daughter in law, Alice.
I was immensely blessed to marry my love, Jim, in 2007. I’m incredibly proud of my husband who served his country for 24 years as an officer in the US Marine Corps.
Family histories are complex and interesting, aren’t they? Thank you for allowing me to share just a tiny bit of mine. I would love to know your stories! Where are you from? Did you have a fun grandma and grandpa? Did they like to cook? You know I am all about old recipes 😉
I am so honored to be a part of these two (below). My mom and my daddy. Thank you to my parents for a lifetime full of love – I cherish you both and I love you.