Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Uncle, Uncle - I have seven

Uncle, Uncle - do I have uncles? I certainly do. I will introduce each of them and share a couple of special remembrances of each of them. I can't name a favourite as honestly, I can't say one is a favourite over the others.

Ladies first -- so I will start with my mother's brothers. She had two brothers - Everett and Ross.

Everett was the first boy in the family. He married a Manitoulin Island girl and they moved to Southern Ontario -- living in Owen Sound, Collingwood and Kitchener. Our family visited them regularly. My nephew looks very much like his great uncle. When I was doing my practice work at the Kitchener Public Library, I stayed with them.

Ross was born next. He lived all his life on the Manitoulin. He had a dairy farm and was the AI technician so he was well known as he travelled to different farms. He was also good at calling square dances and he loved to tell jokes.

Now my dad had five brothers. Clarence was the eldest boy. Clarence was employed at the Empire Stove that later became Moffats. The company was taken over by Graham Bell Enameling for a brief period, and it was with this firm that he moved to Streetsville, Ontario. Clarence had a beautiful tenor voice and often sang solos.

Next came Wilf. Wilf was a butcher and worked for my dad in his supermarkets. Wilf had a great bass voice and he too sang solos.

After my dad came Cliff. Cliff is the only one still living. Cliff worked in the produce department and I worked alongside him during my high school years.

Next came Emmanuel Kenneth (known by the family as Manny). Manny worked in the Insurance field for many years and he moved away from this area. He returned to this area and worked in Trust companies.

One special remembrance of Manny happened in January 1982. We were headed out on a trip the same day he was so, he travelled to Toronto with us. We were headed to Antigua. After a wonderful trip, we were ready to head home. We left the airport hotel on the Sunday morning and headed north. At Orangeville, the road was closed. What should we do? Let's go across to Highway 6 and try coming home that way.

We arrived in Durham. Manny was sitting in the front seat with my dad. We stopped for a few minutes. Sure, we can see well enough to continue. We didn't get far out of town, when we were stopped. The road was closed. We were told to follow a car back to town where they would find all the stranded people places to stay for the night. We lucked out and were able to stay with friends. Uncle Manny got to experience this adventure with us.

The youngest was Bill. He lived in Owen Sound but he didn't work for my dad. He had a great sense of humour. He was a bread man for many years and worked later as a school custodian and was well loved by the teachers and students.

So that is my short introduction to each of my special uncles. (This does not include my uncles by marriage. - perhaps, I will introduce them to you some day.)

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