MEMOIRS AND HISTORY

OF THE

LUDVIK AND HLOUCAL

FAMILIES


 

As the oldest surviving member of the Ludvik and Hloucal families, I, Gladys Ludvik Hardie, have taken it upon myself to record in writing the history of these two families.

Information was obtained through research from records, stories handed down and other incidences as best remembered, to be preserved for posterity.
 

# # # #

April 1990


 

I, Gladys Ruth Ludvik Hardie, was born on May 10, l920 on Avers Avenue, in Chicago, Illinois. I was the first child of Edward James Ludvik and Mary Josephine (nee Hloucal). One other daughter, Mary Edna, was also born to this union at the same address as above on July 23, 1923.

My earliest recollection of my childhood is that it was a happy one. Our home had a lot of love and caring by my parents.
 

OUR HOUSE


 

I was born at home with a doctor in attendance. We lived in the upstairs flat of my paternal grandparent's house in Chicago until I was three years old. In 1923 my Dad bought a lot and a half at 2624 S. Highland Avenue in Berwyn, Illinois, a western suburb of Chicago. Here he built a six room stucco house on one side of the lot leaving the remaining half lot for a future driveway. Later a garage was built at the back of the driveway. Our house had a full basement and a full unfinished attic which was only used for storage.

At the back of the house was a large yard where Dad and Mother planted a small garden and had a strawberry patch and flower beds.

In later years Dad took joy in making a rock garden with a small fish pond in this back yard area. He labored long at making a windmill out of stainless steel plates, but never got it to work very successfully.

My sister and I shared a bedroom and the spare bedroom was, for a while, rented out to a bachelor friend of Dad's who minded his own business and was no bother to the family. Later Mother's two sisters, my Aunt Tillie and Aunt Rose, boarded at our house for a couple of years.

Mother did the cooking, washing and ironing for the family, and sewed most of the clothes for herself and us girls. I learned all of these skills from her.

The house was heated by a coal-burning furnace in the basement which supplied heat to the hot water radiators on the main floor.

When we first moved into our new house, the electricity had not yet been turned on so we had to do with candles and kerosene lamps for a couple of weeks.

Mary was just eight weeks old when we moved into the new house. Having no better place for her, Mother bedded the baby down in a wicker clothes basket.

Mother had a large iron stove in the kitchen which was operated by gas. It had a gas oven, three burners on one side, and a warming oven on the top.

To keep food cold, we had an ice box and when I was old enough it was my job to 8° to the ice house about four blocks away and buy a block of ice. I carried it home in a coaster wagon that had a terrible, perpetual squeak which was an embarrassment to me. A refrigerator was purchased in 1938 when Dad inherited a little money from his Mother's estate upon her passing.

Since my Dad was a veteran of World War I, he received a soldier's bonus around 1930 or '31, and with that money he hired a brick layer contractor and had the house brick veneered which made a big improvement. At this same time the wooden front porch and stairs were taken down and a cement porch and stairs were built in their place.

Highland Avenue at that time was not paved and Mother rescued several trucks out of the mud when they got stuck by lending them some planks to put under their wheels. After a few years when the street was paved, we felt very grand to have such a convenience.
 

OUR CAR


 

At around 1928 or '29 Dad bought a 1916 Dodge touring car. We were one of very few families in the neighborhood to own a car and Sunday afternoon rides were much enjoyed. Often we would invite one of our little girl friends along.

An interesting story to tell about riding out in the country is about a time when Dad casually mentioned that he wasn't sure where the road we were on would lead to. Little Mary in the back seat began to cry and said, "We're lost and I left my new shoes at home." Visions of never seeing them again were in her head. Our getting home again was not her concern, but she was one to worry and carried that trait all her life.
 

CHILDHOOD


 

We children played with dolls and made clothes for them out of scraps of material and also enjoyed paper cut-out dolls. Quite a few children about my age lived in the neighborhood so we had many friends. Our best friends were Anna Blaha, Mildred and Lillie Kucera, Elinore Klobucar and Bessie Nusek. (Anna passed away quite a few years ago, but I still keep in contact with the other four.) We played hide and seek, tag, red rover, and other games in the street which at that time was very sparsely travelled and safe to play in. Jumping rope, jacks and roller skating were also favorites of ours.

Allow me here to interject a story about my roller skating days. I was invited to a little girl's birthday party one day but the day before the party I was playing tag on roller skates with a playmate and tripped and fell. Every part of me that stuck out from my torso, knees, elbows, chin, and the palms of my hands were skinned raw and bleeding as I slid on the sidewalk. But Mother cleaned me up, patched me where she could, curled my hair and I went to the birthday party in spite of looking like raw hamburger.

Sometimes I got into fusses with some of the boys in the neighborhood, but Mary always came to my rescue and did my fighting for me. She was a feisty little girl and the boys were afraid of her. A boy once pushed me into a barberry bush which was full of thorns and Mary hauled off and socked the boy a good one and he went home crying.

My sister and I shared many happy childhood times together, and many funny stories could be told which bring back memories, but would be too numerous to relate in these memoirs. I will only highlight some that come to mind at this writing.

One night after we were in bed for the night and supposed to already be asleep, we found something very funny to giggle about and continued talking and laughing much to the annoyance of our Dad. He called out to us to stop and in our jovial mood and hilarity Mary called back to him something like "We are sound asleep, Bud". To call Dad by such a name was a very great 'no no' and instead of quieting down we giggled all the more with our pillows over our heads to muffle the sound. We were very much afraid that Dad would punish us, but he didn't much to our relief.

Next door to Dad's hardware store was a shop that made and sold window shades and blinds of different kinds. The extra brackets, grommets, ropes and other things they used to make shades were discarded and thrown on a pile next to the store in an empty lot. Mary and I used to like to dig in this pile and see what treasures we could find among this stuff. While poking through it one day we found about 45 cents worth of small change. In those days this was big money to two little girls and we were in seventh heaven.

On my way home from the ice house where I was sent to get a block of ice for the ice box, my squeaky coaster wagon broke down. The handle which was attached to the front axle lost the screw it was fastened with and the front wheels came off. I didn't know what to do so since it wasn't too far from my Dad's store I left the wagon ice and all and ran to get help from my Aunt Tillie who worked in the store. She came to my rescue and somehow put the wagon together again enough to get me home with it.

When Mary was still a baby, not even a year old, an older neighbor girl named Martha Fejt wanted to take Mary for a ride in the stroller. I went along and we walked up to the end of our block but Martha didn't know how to get the stroller down the curb and she let it down front first. This caused it to tip over and the baby rolled out. Martha became frightened and ran home leaving stroller, baby and me there by ourselves (I was only about four years old). Someone came to our rescue and got us all home safely but Mother never let that girl take Mary for a ride again. (Sixteen years later Martha's mother helped my mother prepare the food for my wedding reception.)

We took piano lessons from our Aunt Emma Pokorny for awhile and had to walk a long way to her house every Saturday morning. On our way home we would stop at Grandma Ludvik's and often have lunch with her and Aunt Annie. At one particular time we were served cream of tomato soup and Mary ate it with no complaints although she would never eat it at home. I didn't say anything until we got home and then told Mother who was surprised. Mary forgot that she thought she didn't like it and had eaten it ever since.

There was a small park about six blocks from home where we children used to like to go to play. They had a playground with swings, slides and other apparatus there and sometimes we took our dolls along and sat under the trees in the shade and played with them there.

On the Fourth of July we used to walk up to where the Burlington Railroad tracks were on a kind of levee several block from our home. Here was an open field where the American Legion displayed fireworks in the evening. It was a good place to sit and get a good view to watch the celebration and we looked forward to that every year.

Another funny incident happened one winter. We had a snow storm which left a lot of snow on the sidewalks. My Dad shovelled it off making huge piles along the front walk. I was trying to sweep the snow with a push broom to clear the walk down to the pavement, but a neighbor kid named Frank Lhotka was walking on top of the pile kicking the snow back onto the walk where I had already swept. This made me mad so I swiped him right across the face with my wet broom. When he grew up he became a doctor and a prominent citizen of Berwyn.

In our neighborhood there was a woman who we did not know but she was of a tall stature and a rumor was started among our playmates that she should be feared. Apparently she had a job somewhere and walked along our street on her way home at a set time in the late afternoon each day. As soon as the Stall lady", as we called her, was spotted coming down the street we would all hide and tell each other spooky stories about her that were entirely unfounded but it made for a good game with us.

There was also a man who had only one arm who delivered handbills to each home on our block. He was also the innocent victim of our imagination and we would run and hide from him too. One time when we all were hiding under the open stairway of the house across the street from ours, he saw us and peeked in on us and scared us as we really had ourselves believing that he was to be feared.
 

VACATIONS


 

During my adolescence and teen years our family would usually take two separate one-week vacations each year visiting my Mother's and Dad's relatives. We would spend one of the vacations at Mother's parents' house in Mosinee, Wisconsin. Visiting my Grandma and Grandpa Hloucal were always times to look forward to. The smell of the papermill town of Mosinee has stayed with me all my life, and we always had good times there. One summer my Uncle Bill took us on a tour of the paper mill and we were each given samples of colored paper at the tour's end.

Usually the other vacation was spent at my Dad's sister Mayme's farm in Iowa. Aunt Mayme and Uncle Joe's farm was always different from our city life and we had two cousins there to play with. My cousin Violet, who was just a year younger than I, was permitted to drive a car at the age of 14 as it was her only means of transportation to school in the town of Traer. During the summer when she was only 14 her parents gave permission for her to take my sister and me for a ride through the country-side. We found that the car was getting very low on gas, so the three of us counted out our money and found that we had just enough to buy one gallon of gas and three bottles of pop. This much gas would get us back to the farm where my uncle kept a drum of gas for his tractor and could fill the car's tank. We did a lot of giggling over this.

When I was about 12 years old my parents decided that rather than take a trip during Dad's vacation we would stay home and go to some of the interesting places around Chicago. I remember going to the Chicago Stock Yards, Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium. At the stock yards we were shown how they slaughter cows, calves and pigs and how the meat is cut into pieces which were then skipped to meat markets. The museum and aquarium were also of great interest as it was my first visit to these places.
 

SCHOOL DAYS


 

I started school at the age of six in the first grade at Jan Amos Komensky Grammar School and went all the way through the eighth grade in the same school. After eighth grade we had a regular graduation with a ceremony for parents and friends. Our diplomas were handed to us by the school superintendent who was a very important man in our eyes. Then I was off to J. Sterling Morton High School for the next four years. Here I took a business course and graduated with my class of 1,044 students in June, 1938.

In the summer between my junior and senior years in high school I worked for a man who was a cemetery lot broker. I answered the phone, did some typing, and researched the newspapers for possible potential clients. His office was in his home and I would come in the morning and stay until someone in the family came home from work in the late afternoon. My wages were S7.00 plus lunch for a fiveday week. The office was close enough to my home and I had no bus fare to pay as I walked to and from work, so the wages I got were all profit.

After graduating from high school, in the fall of that year, I went to the Felt and Tarrant Comptometer school in the Merchandise Mart in Chicago. This was about a four-month course and I was taught to operate a Comptometer, a calculator used in billing and accounting.
 

WORK


 

In the spring of 1939 I worked at the Chicago Mail Order House (which is now Aldens) as a billing clerk processing invoices. Here I used my training as a comptometer operator. This was a temporary job through the busy Easter season. I worked there again at Christmas. My next job was for Hart Schaffner and Marx, manufacturers of men's clothing. Again here I was a comptometer operator but since it was also seasonal I stayed only about three months and then got a permanent job with Ace Hardware Company in their downtown Chicago offices on Michigan Avenue.
 

CHURCH


 

As early as I can remember my Mother took us to church with her. Trumball Avenue Baptist Church was where Mother first took my sister and me. Since it was a long distance from our home in Berwyn, after moving to the suburbs we attended the 58th Avenue Baptist Church in Cicero. Services here, except Sunday School, were for the most part in the Czech language, and although Mary and I could understand conversational Czech to some degree, the preaching went way beyond our comprehension. Therefore when I was about 15 or 16 years old we asked Mother to change churches and go to the Cicero Bible Church where there was a youth group, choir, Sunday School and other activities that we could participate in.

However, it was at the old Bohemian church during a week of evangelistic services where the sermons were delivered in both Czech and English that I realized my need of accepting Jesus Christ as my personal Savior. I was 13 years old at this time and have been ever grateful for that little church.

While living on Frederick Road I attended and joined Sugar Grove Bible ChurcE which was in the little community of Frederick only about two miles from home. While I lived on Nordale Avenue in Dayton I started going to the Community Bible Church near Tipp City as the result of a split in the Sugar Grove Church. Since moving to Denver I attend the Fellowship Bible Church in Edgewater.
 

MY MARRIAGE


 

At the Cicero Bible Church I met Howard Robert Hardie. We began dating in June 1938. Christmas of the next year I got an engagement ring from him, and on July 6, 1940 we were married.

The wedding was in the Cicero Bible Church and the reception at my parent's home. Approximately 40 guests attended the reception at a sit down dinner prepared by my Mother and a neighbor lady (the mother of Martha Fejt who dumped baby Mary out of the stroller). Winfield Johnson, a very good friend of both Howard and I, acted a Master of Ceremonies.

It was a moderately small wedding with three attendants. My sister Mary was my Maid of Honor; my cousin Violet and Howard's sister Wilma were my bridesmaids. I wore the traditional wedding gown and veil and my flowers were a bouquet of white gladiolas. Mary wore pink and the other two girls were in yellow.

Howard's Best Man was his friend Harry Lawrence and the two ushers were his friends Jimmy Van der List and Ray Hanson.

Our marriage lasted for 27 years and was dissolved in divorce in 1967.

Three children are the products of this union:
 

Howard worked for Felt and Tarrant Manufacturing Company when we married and then at the Chicago Steel Mills in South Chicago as a typing clerk. His wages at Felt and Tarrant were but a mere $15.00 a week while mine at Ace Hardware were $19.50. At the steel mills he earned $25.00 per week which at that time was considered not too bad for office work. However, he could see no potential advancement there so applied for a job as an airport control tower operator with the Federal government and received an appointment to start at this job as a trainee in Indianapolis, Indiana.

After our wedding, we honeymooned for one week at Eagle River, Wisconsin, where we rented a cottage on the lake from friends at church.

After coming home we lived with my Uncle Jim Fritz on Wisconsin Avenue in Berwyn where we rented a room and had kitchen privileges. This proved to be unsatisfactory and we stayed only about one month.

Then we moved in with Howard's parents at 468 Shenstone Road, Riverside, Illinois and lived there about a year. It was while living here our first child was born.

A third floor flat was found on West 26th Street in Chicago which was our next place of residence and here we lived for about 11 months.

It was from here that we moved to 262 S. LaSalle Street in Indianapolis when Howard got his job as airport control tower operator. After two years the Federal government turned the control tower over to the city so Howard was sent to the Dayton, Ohio Municipal Airport located near Vandalia, Ohio.

This now was 1944, a year I would like to forget. My Mother was sick as her cancer for which she had a double mastectomy three years before returned and affected most of her upper body. In May of that year she took to her bed and I was called to my parent's home in Berwyn. I took one year old Merle with me on the train leaving Harlan with Howard. I was at my parent's home about a week before returning to Indianapolis as Mother seemed to rally some. Then in June or July I had to make another trip up to Berwyn as Mother's condition was failing, but she rallied once more so I didn't stay there long. In late August 1 again was called so made another trip to Berwyn. However, Howard had already gone to his new post in Vandalia and was looking for a place for us to move into. He found a four room cement block cottage at 26 1/2 E. National Road. The government arranged to move us at their convenience which was while I was in Berwyn, so a neighbor lady let the movers into our home and they packed our things and moved us all while I was gone. Once more leaving my Mother's side I took the train directly to Dayton, Ohio, and to our new home around the first week of September.

A week or so later Howard got his draft greetings from the President of the United States calling him to report for military duty on September 22. Not knowing anyone in this strange new town and to be left alone there with just my two little boys was quite an experience. Then on October 7th I again got a call from my Dad saying that Mother's condition was very bad, so once more I packed my bag and clothes for the boys and took the night train to Chicago. Since this was during the war, getting a seat on the train was only by chance and on this trip I only had one single seat with two little boys on my lap plus a suitcase and diaper bag for the baby, etc. to take care of. The train was full of military people and a kind soldier who sat across the aisle from me took compassion on me in my situation and took Harlan to sit on his lap. He bought Harlan an orange drink and Harlan threw up all over him. The soldier boy didn't seem upset by this and cleaned up the mess and continued to care for Harlan and entertain him. We arrived in Chicago the morning of October 8 and Mother passed away late that night around 11 o'clock.

As my sister had nursed Mother through all her illness and was in a very run down condition bordering on a nervous breakdown, we sent her away to our uncle's farm in Iowa to rest up. I then stayed with Dad about six weeks and was able to visit Howard at Great Lakes Naval Station where he was in Boot Camp before I returned to Vandalia. After Boot Camp he was sent to North Island near San Diego, California for a couple of weeks and then spent the rest of his military service in Litchfield Park, Arizona near Phoenix. Here he was assigned to the control tower because of his previous experience.

On October 20, 1945 our little girl was born and we named her Donna Lynn. Howard was still in Arizona at the time of her birth but was granted a leave to come home for a couple of weeks as soon as he got word of her birth. He then was given a discharge as a third child merited him enough points to return to civilian life and he got home just before Thanksgiving Day.

From the cottage we moved to a metropolitan housing project near the airport on the outskirts of Vandalia where we rented a three bedroom apartment for our growing family at 30 Bellanca Road. We lived there for seven years. We bought two acres of land in Butler Township at 10089 Frederick Road (it had a Clayton address for a short time before it was rezoned to the Vandalia post office). The land was purchased in 1950 but was not built on until 1954 when a ranch style house was constructed made of Indiana limestone. We purchased a house plan and Howard spent many hours at a drafting table redesigning the plan to suit our needs. The house was located in the center of the two acres with a large front yard, and an orchard of apple, peach and plum trees was planted at the back of the lot. We also planted a large garden and raised most of our vegetables which were canned and stored on shelves in the basement. The house had three bedrooms, a large kitchen, dining room and living room and a bath and a half on the main floor. A basement with furnace, laundry facilities and an unfinished recreation room were downstairs. The living room had a 48 inch fireplace also made of Indiana limestone and in the recreation area a brick fireplace was constructed.

In 1957 an addition of breezeway and two car garage were built which added greater value to the house and property. Howard and I with the help of the children (as much as they were able) started the construction of this house but the job was found to be too great to attempt to do ourselves, so a contractor was hired and the house was built in a much shorter length of time than what we would have been able to accomplish.

It was from here that our children each left home and the house was sold after our divorce in 1967.

After the house was sold, I moved into a small apartment at 1426 John Glen Road, Apt. D, Dayton, Ohio. While Merle was in Diet Nam, his wife, Marlene, and their little girl, Melinda, and I took another larger apartment at 3559 Stanford Place in Dayton so we could share expenses and lived there for two years. After Merle returned from the Army his little family moved out and I rented another apartment at 607 Nordale Avenue, #5, in Dayton where I stayed for IS years.

In 1959 I got a job in sales at Lerner Shops in downtown Dayton. My intention at that time was to work through the summer only and earn enough money to buy carpeting and a few pieces of furniture for our home. Instead I stayed on and worked there for five years. I was at first clerking in the sports wear department and then was a cashier and for about two years the assistant to the head cashier.

After five years of working with the public I decided to look for something else and got hired at Parker Advertising Company as receptionist. For about 11 years I manned the front desk and then was transferred to the media department where I was Assistant Media Director until my retirement from PAC at the end of the year of 1985, having spent 21 1/2 years in the advertising field.

During the early months of 1986 Donna urged me to leave Dayton and move in with her and her boys in Denver, Colorado. This was a big move for me but after thinking it over I decided to do it. So I had a yard sale together with my sister and sold a lot of extra household items that I did not want to take along to Denver. I spent the remaining time packing my belongings, engaged Wheaton Van Lines moving company and on May 29th everything was loaded on the van and was delivered in Denver on June 4th. Now my address was 4311 Gray Street, Denver, Colorado. In June of 1988 we moved to a duplex at 6910 West 25th Place in Lakewood, Colorado after Donna sold her big house on Gray Street.

After moving to Denver I looked for a church where I could worship and found the Fellowship Bible Church in Edgewater, a nearby town. Here I have met many friends and became active in the church Sunday School, Church Council, Women's Fellowship and Vacation Bible School. I joined the church on January 25, 1987.
 

MY CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN


 

Each of our three children were born in a different sates Harlan Ralph was born in the West Suburban Hospital in Oak Park, Illinois on April 15, 1941. He weighed 8 pounds 9 ounces at birth and had very dark hair. He started school at age six at the Vandalia Elementary School in first grade, no kindergarten being in the Butler Township school system at that time. He was a good student and enjoyed school and learning all his life.

In 1959 he graduated from Butler High School in Vandalia and that fall attended Humbolt Transportation Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His interest every since he was a very little boy was in trains, and here at Humbolt he learned much about the railroad industry. After his course here was over, he got a job with the Illinois Central Railroad in Chicago where he worked in the yards tagging freight cars and worked here for about four years. During this time he was drafted into the Army and sent to Ft. Knox, Kentucky for basic training. He was sent to Seoul, Korea where he served in a personnel office for two years. Here he made many friends of the Korean people and took a small class of Korean teenagers to teach them conversational English. This he enjoyed very much and became very fond of these girls.

After his discharge from the Army he returned to Chicago where he again worked for the Illinois Central Railroad for a time but missed the friends he made in Korea and went back to live there for about two years. Here he met Cho Moon Ja and they were married on April 8, 1968. A little daughter was born to them on December 10, 1968 and they named her Sharon Christine. She was nine months old when they came to the United States. Harlan went to school in Dayton, Ohio where he learned computer programming and soon got a job with Reynolds+Reynolds Company, printers of business forms. He is still working there where he has been for 21 years. He received several promotions and is now in management in the communications department and has much to do with the maintenance and installations of computers.

The year after moving to Dayton, Harlan and Moon Ja were blessed with a son whom they named Hayden Randal and who was born on July 13, 1970.

Sharon is a talented artist and went to the Columbus (Ohio) College of Art and Design for two years on a scholarship. She was an A student at Wayne High School in Huber Heights where she was a member of the National Honor Society.

Hayden Randal also graduated from Wayne High School and upon graduating joined the Army. He took his basic training at Ft. McClellan, Alabama and then was sent to West Germany for the remainder of his military time.

Merle Bryan was our second child. He was born at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana on June 2, 1943. He had a lot of dark brown hair which became very coarse and unmanageable as he grew older. He was a big baby, his birth weight being 9 pounds 2 ounces. He was one year old when we moved to Vandalia, Ohio. When he was five years old a Mother's Club was formed in our town and they offered a pre-school and kindergarten so we enrolled Merle in the kindergarten. He then started first grade at age six at Vandalia Elementary. Seventh, eighth and ninth grades were at the Junior High and then Merle went to Butler High School but did not graduate as he quit school after his junior year and the following fall got married. He was not interested in learning from books but was more mechanical minded. He finished his G.E.D. several years later while in the Army.

He and Marlene Forsythe were married in November 1960. A little boy was born to them on May 22, 1961 but died the next day as he was prematurely born at barely six months and weighed only 2 pounds 12 ounces. They named him Milo Bryan. This was a grievous loss as they looked forward to his birth. The following year on November 23, 1962 their daughter Melinda Fay was born.

Merle, Marlene and Melinda lived in several different homes in Englewood, Ohio, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Dayton, Ohio. They moved to Charlotte to seek better employment than could be found in Ohio at that time and it was while living here that Merle was drafted into the Army and took his basic training at Ft. Benning, Georgia and then advanced artillery training at Ft. McClellan, Alabama before being sent into active duty in Viet Nam. Here he was promoted to Sergeant and after Viet Nam was stationed in Hawaii where he was in a mobile unit. Marlene and Melinda were able to join him there where they all lived for about one year.

While Merle was overseas Marlene and Melinda and I moved in together in an apartment on Stanford Avenue in Dayton. Some time after his discharge from the Army and coming back stateside their marriage ended in divorce. Melinda remained with her mother but Merle had visitation rights and saw her often.

Merle married for a second time to Ruby McGlothyn in 1973. For about seven years he drove an 18 wheeler semi truck for the CRST Company but became dissatisfied with being on the road so much so found a job as mechanic for U-Haul. He was at this job for several years and then went back to the job he had previously with Beau Townsend Ford Garage in Vandalia, Ohio, where he is a mechanic.

Melinda was married to Norman Edwin Armstrong on September 18, 1981, the same year that she graduated from West Milton High School. They moved to Tampa, Florida and after working for Marshall Stores for a number of years as Manager, Melinda resigned from that position and is now studying to be a paralegal. They have a little boy, Bryan Tyler, who was born to them on November 19, 1985.

Donna Lynn was our third child, born on October 20, 1945 at Stouder Memorial Hospital in Troy, Ohio. She weighed 8 pounds 5 ounces and also had dark hair at birth which lightened and was almost blond when she was about two years old but again turned dark as she grew older.

Donna was a good student and learned to read simple words before she went to school. She started school a month before her sixth birthday in the Vandalia Elementary school and in the sixth grade was transferred to the Stonequarry school where she only went for one year. After Junior High and High School at Butler she graduated in 1963 and then got a job with the E.F. MacDonald Stamp Company in Dayton for one year. She then went to Southwest Texas State College in San Marcos, Texas from September 1964 to August 1965 where she majored in home economics.

Upon arriving back home in Dayton, Ohio she again worked at E.F. MacDonald Stamp Co. from August 1965 until her marriage on May 28, 1966 to Russell Alfred Hedden, Jr.

Two sons were born to them, Russell Alfred III on March 10, 1970, and Robert Andrew on October 17, 1972.

Donna worked for the University of Dayton Research Institute in the research labs at Wright Patterson Air Force Base from September 1966 to March 1970.

Donna and Russ lived in several apartments in the Dayton area and then bought a home in Beavercreek, Ohio. After a few years they sold this house and took off for the West and settled in Colorado Springs. Here they owned and operated a small cafe and sandwich shop and started a business of making and selling various sandwiches on a commercial.level. Because of poor management and disappointing business deals the operation was dissolved ending in bankruptcy.

Their next move was to Boulder, Colorado where Donna obtained a secretarial position at the University of Colorado.

This marriage ended in divorce after about 10 years. A couple of years later Donna married Larry Halepeska and moved with him and her two boys to Los Angeles, California, but only stayed there for a few months. This was an unhappy marriage so Donna moved herself and the two boys to Ohio where she found an apartment in Vandalia. Later she bought a mobile home which she had moved to a mobile home park in Fairborn, Ohio. It was during this period that she obtained a divorce from Halepeska after living in Ohio for a year abiding by Ohio laws and took back the name of Hedden.

She once more heard the call of the West so sold the house trailer and moved herself and the two boys to Denver. She is employed by the University of Colorado at Denver and is staff assistant to the dean in the College of Engineering.

Russell Alfred III, better known as Rusty, graduated from Jefferson High School in 1988 and attends the University of Colorado at Boulder where he is studying for a degree in aerospace engineering. He is attending college on a Air Force ROTC scholarship and after graduation will serve four years active duty with the Air Force.

Robert Andrew, or Robbie as he is better known, attends Jefferson High School and at this writing is in his junior year. His interest is in athletics and mainly basketball.

Part 2


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August 25, 1998   e-mail to Harlan Hardie