The first memories of my Grandfather were as a 4 year old child. I
recall his head of snow white hair and a bushy mustache that felt so
soft to the touch.

My name for him was Gram-Pap. I guess I could not pronounce
Grandpa properly so Gram-Pap he would remain. I loved this tall but
gentle man and often nestled within his arms as he sat in his favorite
chair next to his radio. He loved music and one of his favorite songs
was "Slow Poke" He taught me the words and we sang it together.

He worked for the Pennsylvania Railroad by profession as did his
three sons. He always planted a large garden every year to help
supply food for the family. Times were very hard in the middle
40's and every square inch that was not needed had something
growing in it.

My Grandparents rented a house and shared it with a set of Aunts
and Uncles. Money was exceedingly scarce then and folks doubled
up in every way possible just to survive. I never recall of my
Gram-Pap ever grumbling or complaining about anything even as I
grew up a little. He worked diligently at whatever he found to do
and never missed a day without finding time to play with me.

As I grew toward school age, he taught me how to play quiet games
such as Tic, Tac, Toe. and he whittled pieces of wood to make small
toys for me. As a special gift on my 5th birthday, he made a wooden
wagon out of pieces of old planks that someone had thrown away. He
fashioned a long stick like handle with a little wooden dowel
threaded through the long wooden handle.

He often walked around the tiny town where we lived & took scraps
that were thrown out or he would barter things for something he
wanted or needed. One day he found four old rusted wheels that
had belonged on a baby carriage and he asked if he might have
them. They became the wheels for my wagon.

When I was given that wagon as a gift for my birthday, I thought
that was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. There was no paint
on the wood and no rubber on the wheels, just metal wheels that had
been cleaned and shined with some kind of oil.

I played with that wagon until I could no longer fit in it. I hauled
dolls in it and pretended it was a fancy car or I loaded fallen leaves
in it to be taken to a barrel for burning in the fall. I never realized
how many ways a little girl could use a wagon even if it didn't
steer very well.

My Gram-Pap always took time to listen to the babblings of his only
Grandchild and many times I would go inside from playing on the
front porch to find a big black book in his hands. He told me it was
called a Bible and that it told stories about Jesus. I didn't know
who this Jesus was but I heard my Gram-Pap talk to him a lot. I
don't ever remember of sitting down to eat without being told to
lower my head as Gram-Pap said thanks to Jesus for our food.

One Sunday morning when I was ten years old my Dad received word
that my Gram-Pap had died. I didn't fully understand death but my
Dad said we would never see him again and that he went to live with
Jesus in heaven. I never felt so lost and alone in my young life.

I recall of going to his grave site with my folks and they would put
flowers there but that never eased my longing for the man that
loved me so deeply and unconditionally.

As I became a teen-ager and would entertain some of my Step-Moms
little nieces and nephews, I would pull them all around the little
streets that made up our little village. This kept them occupied and
it made me be able to continue to use and enjoy my little hand made
wagon that was so lovingly made for me so very long ago.

When I married I left the little wagon behind and I know it is long
gone now...however, I often wish I could have kept it and used it as
an ornamental antique and placed pots of flowers in it to add color
as well as happiness to my memory. Someday, when Jesus calls me
home, I will get to see my Gram-Pap again. In his obituary that I
found many years ago, it said his favorite past time was reading his
Bible. WHAT A LEGACY !!!

Ann Marie Fisher
© June 16, 2008

2 Timothy 3:16

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for
doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness




The top image is a picture of Ann and her beloved Grandpa....Thank you Ann!

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