It was in the early 1900's, and my grandmother was not yet in her teens then. Her brother, Lionel, was a healthy, strong, determined young man. He worked hard on the farm. He went to school. But that day, there was something other than work or school that had his attention. An air show was coming to town! An air show! Something new, something different, something thrilling!
This new invention held his curiosity, and he wanted more than anything to see in person these flying machines. Could he go, could he go? Please, please, please?
His mother only said "No". She didn't trust these new machines.
"No." What a disappointment that must have been for Lionel.
Unfortunately, he did not obey his mother that day. The lure of seeing something spectacular was too strong. Instead, he chose to go with his friends to the air show. I can imagine his excitement as he walked, possibly skipped, to the field.
What happened that day? The pilot made a mistake, and the airplane swerved into the crowd. Lionel was killed.
Of course, that wasn't the only memory she had of Lionel. But it was this story of a strong, healthy, young man being struck down so senselessly that shocked us. Almost more moving was the way that Grandma wiped a tear from her eyes when she told it.
My grandmother has now passed on. She is buried in that same cemetery, along with her husband, her parents, her grandparents, and her brother. And we remember and tell the stories, not only of Lionel, but of all our loved ones that have passed on before us.
These stories are our heritage.
The rose pictured is the Austin rose, 'Heritage'. It is fragrant, almost thornless, and grows to 6 ft tall and 4 ft wide, in zones 5 through 10.
A lovely tribute to Lionel and a nostalgic glimpse of your heritage. If the story is passed on from generation to generation then Lionel's memory will live on.ReplyDelete
So true. We can only hope that our own stories will be told for generations.Delete
I think in my next garden, I will plant some Heritage roses...need to make a darker courtyard wall:-) That is off the chart.ReplyDelete
So is your heritage and that terrible account. I admire those who can trace back their lineage more, since I'm the child of immigrants. They even have very little. But the richness lies in "what was it like where they were from, back then..."...what tipped them over the edge to come to the US (NY), what were their gardens like. The last always in front of my mind! (also nice to find their towns on the internet...amazing, only been to mom's home town, but they're online!)
You have a rich heritage in all those stories, and I hope one day you'll be able to visit some of the places your ancestors came from. That would bring all those stories to life. What their gardens were like... now, that's an interesting topic!Delete
What a good story of that terrible accident and to combine your heritage with the rose Heritage, marvelous. I have this rose in my garden but she does not do so well, may be she is on the wrong place, I don't know.ReplyDelete
My Heritage rose has become so large, I'm going to have to either treat it like a climber, or prune it very hard. Haven't quite decided yet which. This rose doesn't bloom as much as some of the others, but I do love walking by it and smelling its sweet fragrance.Delete
My ancestors haven't stayed in the same area for two generations in a row for the last 300 years, and a part of me envies the sense of rootedness and heritage families like yours have. (Another part is wondering where to move next.) Lionel's story is such a sad one -- what a senseless loss of life. My former boss always said that grief is about broken dreams, and a lot of dreams broke when that young man died. You and your rose honor that heritage beautifully.ReplyDelete
How fun to have a family that has moved around so much. I bet it is so interesting to trace back your family history. I agree with you about the broken dreams. It's like a story that stops in the middle, leaving one to wonder about its ending.Delete
Such a sad story, and beautifully written. Heritage is such a lovely rose, your photo's captivate it's beauty.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Karen. Heritage is a very delicate looking rose. It has that quality of long ago.Delete
What a touching story on such a day of remembrance of other planes that someone took astray on purpose. Thanks for sharing this with us.ReplyDelete
It's hard to make sense of deaths that are shocking, untimely, and yes - senseless. Perhaps the deep feeling of loss that out entire country has for those attacks is why I've been feeling a bit low lately - and why I felt like writing this post. In the end, all we have are our stories.Delete
What a memorable and tragic story Holley, one that generations will tell long after. It was all about decision and choice. The rose is a tall, stately beauty.ReplyDelete
I think this story is remembered so well in my family because it is so shocking. I think you are right, it will be told for many more generations.Delete
It must have been so much harder for her to know that she told him not to go, but he did anyways.ReplyDelete
How very sad, and tragic.
Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams
I have often thought about how she must have felt, but I hadn't thought about her feelings about telling him not to go. She must have wondered why he disobeyed her, and yet, it was just something he wanted to see so very badly.Delete
Thank you for sharing this story. It took my breath away. I think it would be comforting knowing that your family members were all buried at the same cemetery. Your story reminded me to be thankful for this day.ReplyDelete
You are right - it is almost a comforting feeling to see the generations there. And to wonder a bit about their lives. I always worry about the people in graves that no one visits.Delete
Such a sad story. We should remember enjoy every day.ReplyDelete
Yes, every day is a blessing.Delete
What a tragic story. Poor Lionel; he only wanted to see the new invention. So many of the cemeteries we visit have very young people's birthdates and dates of death inscribed and I always find myself doing the math and wondering what happened. There are so many stories there; time goes by, but Lionel is still remembered.ReplyDelete
It is always shocking and bit discomforting to hear of a young person's death. It is just not right. I guess the only thing we can do is tell the stories to the next generation.Delete
The Rose is gorgeous. The story very sad, even reading it this many years later.ReplyDelete
Cher Sunray Gardens
Yes, as old as this story gets, it is still tragic and upsetting to lose someone so quickly, and without notice.Delete
Our stories and histories must not be lost and you have done a wonderful job keeping your history alive...how nice you are near your family...mine is scattered even where they are buried. I love this rose and may have to add it to my garden as a remembrance of my family...ReplyDelete
I think you are right about our stories and histories. They connect us to our past, and keep memories alive.Delete
All part of our heritage. We would be nothing without our connections to the past and those that share the stories with us.ReplyDelete
"Those that share the stories with us". I like how you put that. That will be my new definition for family.Delete
This is one of the world's most beautiful roses, in my opinion. You have reminded me what its name symbolizes. Stories from past generations can touch us deeply and connect us to those who otherwise would be only names upon the tombstones. Memories are a precious gift to future generations, if we will preserve them.ReplyDelete
It is nice to have a story to go along with the names. Even tragic stories such as this.Delete
Such a beautiful story. Heritage is a super rose.ReplyDelete
I love its fragrance. It always a nice surprise to have its lovely scent greet me when I walk by it.Delete