I learned a lesson from a piece of tin

Published 12:47 pm Monday, February 20, 2023

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Like many of you from our generation, Rose Ann and I were raised by good and caring parents.  Parents cared for you and gave their children the things in life that they did not have growing up. They sacrificed much to provide for their children.

Our dads had just returned home from World War II and most of our parents had suffered through the Great Depression.  They would pick up a penny because they knew that 100 pennies would make a dollar. They worked hard to provide things that they never had growing up.  Fathers worked all day long and our mothers worked harder at home. Mothers prepared meals, washed clothes and took us to the doctor whatever our fathers could not do. The family unit was strong.

Cars and homes were never locked and parents did not have to worry about their children.  We could play outside and rode our bikes all over town and parents never worried.  The “silent code” was never cracked.  Children went to school where teachers were the most respected people in our community.  They never were afraid of parents coming to school, rather, a phone call home would result in more severe punishment than at school.

We never heard our parents argue though they had to have disagreements. My mom and dad later told me that they never went to bed arguing.  The only time my dad laid a hand on me was at the farm.  I had just come up to my dad, it must have been 98 degrees and I was dressed like a preppy in my madras shirt and was sitting on the top rail of the fence.  My dad asked me to help him get a sow in that he was chasing with a piece of tin.  My answer to him was that I had too much education for that.  He hit me with that piece tin so hard that it knocked me off the fence! Guess I helped after that!

These were fond memories that we had and so much more.  They provided us with so much that we should and would be appreciative.  Young people of today, please treat your parents with respect because you will be without them as you raise your family.  You will learn to appreciate the lessons they taught you.  They were once your age and the lessons they learned were never forgotten. Listen to their stories, because like my Cousin Bunk told me once, any story worth telling twice is worth listening to.

They were the best of times with the best of friends and in the best of places, Washington, N.C.!  The Original Washington!