Thoughts and assorted philosophical musing about: Family, Friends, Fun, Hobbies, & other everyday things.
My continuing efforts to serve as a First Sergeant (Top) in the Army of God.
My latest interest is in Letterboxing.

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Moms in my Life

Hazel "Dixie" Joyce Underwood Bunce Galt
14 September 1916 - 17 August 1995

Mom was born in White Cloud Michigan as Hazel Joyce (Underwood) Bunce to a then unwed teenage mother and a much older father, neither of whom I ever knew. Although her parents became married and had additional children she had a very unsettled, rocky and difficult childhood. While she was still at an early age her father died. Then her mother left her with relatives who passed her around among several families. This existence, basically as an orphan, resulted in her enduring many trials and burdens. These hardships did not prevent her from developing a truly sweet and gentile nature. She never complained about this period in her life and it was not until reaching adulthood that we were permitted to know the most rudimentary facts about here childhood. The details were not learned until we were ourselves middle aged.

Mom worked several jobs as we were growing up in order to help make ends meet. Eventually she retired from Boeing where she had been the lead worker in an aircraft wiring assembly unit. At some point in her working life she was labeled "Dixie" to avoid name confusion with others. She liked that moniker and was often called that by friends throughout her later life. It has been many years since she passed away. I still miss her wit, wisdom, council, understanding, and love.

Life brings us many joys and celebrations, but also some heartaches and disappointment along the way. We go through a period of mourning when someone close passes away, then we pick ourselves up and move on. I am old enough that I have seen many friends and loved ones go; however, I find that the one death that I have never fully recovered from is that of my mother. Losing your mother leaves a void that nothing else can ever fill, a broken link and special bond that can never be repaired or replaced. Someday we will hold each other again!!"

Donna Marie Weed Galt
September 1941 - Living

While in the Army on active duty I received an assignment to the city of Asmara in what was then a province of Ethiopia, which has since become the independent country of Eritrea. Having been away from home, living a bachelors life, for about seven years I was beginning to fell the urge to settle down. The problem was that there was a very small selection of women to consider settling down with. There were rather obvious inherent problems with trying to court the teen-aged dependent children and/or wives of other military personnel. Due to language barriers and vastly different customs and life styles the option of pursuing a relationship with a local national women seemed to be both difficult and unappealing to me. Fortunately the secretary at the base dependents school was the wife of my immediate supervisor. Ever the matchmaker she informed me that a single young women would be arriving shortly to join their staff for the new school year. With no further encouragement needed a plot was rapidly developed to invite her and I to dinner simultaneously. Dinner resulted in a date, then we became frequent companions, which quickly evolved into mutual infatuation. In July of 1966 after a whirlwind 10 month romance, our relationship culminated in an exchange of marriage vows. Donna and I returned to the USA the Christmas after we had married. I was on my way to Vietnam so we returned to Columbus, OH where she had been born in her family's home and most of her kin still resided.

During the subsequent years Donna has proven to be a loving companion and a superior: lover, helpmate, homemaker, encourager, nursemaid, cook, teacher, counselor, world traveler, and follower of God. Somewhere along the way she managed to be the conscientious, caring, and nurturing mother of our four children. I really would not know how to go on in life without her constant care and assistance. Then there is her penchant for forgiving me my faults, weaknesses, and failures. Wow did I pick a winner!!

Opal "Bam Bam" Jane Wright Weed
5 September 1916 - 6 May 2000

It was only upon our return to Columbus that I meet my wife's family and parents. Frankly we had been so wrapped up in each other that neither of us had thought to provide more than the sketchiest information about our new spouses to our respective families.

My mother-in-law was know by all of her grandchildren as Bam Bam. Eventually the use of this pet name spread to be used by many who knew her by no other name. She was born Opal Jane Wright in Columbus Ohio shortly after her family moved there from Kentucky.

I soon discovered that my new mother was a jovial, witty, and fun loving individual. She seldom passed on an opportunity to astonish anyone present with some joke, prank, or amusing remark. But she also had a serious side which, when coupled with her talent for humor, allowed her to make her opinions clearly know while seldom being unduly offensive. No one knew how to party better than she did. In her later years she came to love the lord. Although her conversion changed her behavior it did not alter her demeanor. She worked hard at letting everyone know of her love for Christ in the same lighthearted manner. Wherever we happened to be stationed in the world Bam came for extended visits with us on several occasions. She was not at all obtrusive, just one of the family pitching in and helping out with anything that needed doing. Contrary to the stereotypical mother-in-law it was always a pleasure to have her around. I soon came to love her nearly as much as my natural birth mother.

Ellisa Robin Galt Kobylak
August 1979 - Living

After two sons we decided that our family was large enough. About eight years later our circumstances had changed some resulting in our reevaluating that decision. Shortly afterward we learned that Donna was expecting. We were approaching forty which caused the doctors to recommend what were at that time relatively new procedures, including both an amniocentesis and an ultrasound. When the tests came back we were pleased to learn that we could anticipate the arrival of a healthy young girl. Searching for a name we eventually settled upon tagging her with slightly modified versions of the first names of her grandfathers, Ellis Weed and Robin Galt. She was born in Fitchburg, MA as the base hospital at our last army assignment (Ft. Devens, MA) did not provide Maternity care. A few months later I retired and we returned to Ohio.

We felt very blessed that she was a compliant and loving baby. Whatever suited us was fine with her. She seldom cried and was agreeable to being held or laying in her crib. Growing up her disposition changed very little. Seldom confrontational she usually stuck to the rules. As a teen she preferred to conceal her occasional flirtations with the forbidden, a tactic which she probably learned from her older brothers. What I liked best was that she daddy's girl. As she approached adulthood she became increasingly reliant on her mother instead of me for help and support. She and Donna are still "best friends" who often chat several times a day.

We sent her off to collage at the University of Toledo. The first day there she met Matthew Kobylak, the man who would eventually become her husband. Fearing that he would be called to active duty Matt and Ellisa were wed shortly after the 9-11 terrorist attack. She did complete her college curriculum obtaining a BA, but she never returned home. Matt's family is from the Toledo area and the couple elected to stay there initially, but later moved to a home north of Detroit for better work opportunities. The are now the proud parents of two delightful young men. Payton, the eldest of these two, is very bright and although somewhat independent he is usually quite agreeable. Payton's younger Maxwell is much more  strong willed, adventurous and very creative in fact several of his antics became worldwide internet (see the "blue dog") sensations after Ellisa posted them on her blog.

Ellisa has proven to be an understanding, capable, and caring mother who is frequently reexamining how she is handling her responsibilities as a parent. Her boy's are very fortunate to have the benefits and privileges of her being their loving and committed mother.

This year Ellisa accepted a full time job at the school which Patton attends. Although she enjoys teaching the school children and like most couples today they need the extra income which she provides, she still has doubts and misgivings as whether of not her working will prove best for the children. We are confident that she will chose to follow The Lords will and the leading of her heart.