Inaugural Events…….#272 – (2009)

1217 Blue Daisy Way

There must have been meaning in the statement, ‘the third time is the charm”  Gary finally  having retired,  able to subjugate his daily activities.  Reading was a priority,  attempting to be a extravagant reader through most of his life now able to reread many of the books from his childhood days that constituted and established many of his acquired values.   Fran finding a 24 volume set of the Walter R Brooke’s  “Freddy” series,  on E-bay,  the classic’s beginning in 1927,  the series a prize for a young fourth grader.   An enjoyment to reread and reflect on Brooke’s writings knowing  that it was a contributing factor to his character and moral standards.  Fran searching again able to find the missing editions in his collected 15 volume set of Robert Sidney Bowen’s’ 1941 – 1946 World II epic series of Dave Dawson on E-bay.  With the new Bowen additions his collection complete save one,  the 15th novel in the series,  “Dave Dawson at Truk”,  the seller asking $700 for the edition.   As a youngster the wartime adventure series sparked Gary interest along with the Japanese military items his father had acquired during World War II in Saipan, Okinawa and Korea.  In the early 60’s having read William Shirer’s ‘The rise and fall of the Third Reich, his World War II interest was again aroused pursuing a military history ambition subscribing to the Military History Book Club at a time when every retired German or Allied field grade officer authored a book of their WWII experiences.  Having one more literary collectible desire,  Fran again searching and finding the 54 volume edition of   “The Great Books of the Western World“.   A display of the works of Plato,  Homer,  Aristotle, Archimedes,  Newton,  Shakespeare, Tolstoy,  Marx and many others, the list goes on,  the writing of those in history that formed the course of western civilization.

Dave Dawson – The 54 volume Great Books of the Western World

It was almost a year into retirement when he received the call from Country Villa,  Gary picking up the receiver somewhat apprehensive, but this time it wasn’t Rashmi asking him to return,  but Scott Hensley his replacement.  Scott having a problem changing the two pipe fan coil units from heat to air conditioning asking if Gary would come by and resolve the problem.   Arriving adjudging the situation Gary addressing Scott’s predicament pointing out the procedural sequence and  the valves to redirect the flow of water from the boiler into 120 ton  cooling unit.  In some ways he missed this work environment,  the mantle of responsibility and the satisfaction that came with remedying a problem recalling the retirement idiom about stepping aside for a less experienced and less able man.

Marlo & Parker – Hollyann & Parker

Gary for some reason wasn’t surprised, daughter Marlo announcing she was once again an expectant mother,  a prodigious acclamation for someone who had reached the age of forty.   Parker Aaron Denton gracing life with his appearance on July 8th 2010, an equanimity in that Chris and Marlo were once again blessed with another son  after experiencing the tragedy and loss of  Garrett.

 Jeremy, Brennan . Sandra, Nancy, Rob - Jan and husband Burton

Jeremy, Brennan, Sandra, Nancy, Rob – Jan and husband Burton

Rob and Nancy Willson

Rob and Nancy Willson

It was expected, Gary’s son Rob called announcing that he and Nancy would be getting married and to expect an invitation in the mail.  Receiving the October 3, 2010  summons, Gary apologetic telling his son that he and Fran would be unable to attend mainly because of financial reasons,  the reality being Fran’s health had taken a turn for the worse and although she prodded Gary to go he was steadfast in remaining with her.  Those in attendance that Gary knew was daughter Sandra, husband Jeremy and son Brennan,  Rob’s mother Jan and husband Burton Smith.

Sandra & Karsen – Brennan & Karsen

 In 2011 the communique from Wichita Kansas was a surprise,  arresting and prodigious,  Gary’s youngest daughter Sandra was expecting again,  having imparted but to a few that she was again with child.  August 18th 2011, Karsen Nikola Birzer,  weighing 6 lbs. 5 Oz,  announced his debut to this world.   Gary blithe with the announcement, Brennan now having a younger brother,  experiencing the closeness of his son Robert and daughter Sandra,  their birth dates being a year and a little over three weeks apart,  the two growing up in accordance, be able to share many of the adolescent  joys of childhood.

Gabby 2 days old

4 month old Gabby

Another new addition to a Willson family,  a first for Nancy and Rob,  Gabriella Grace weighing 7 lbs. 4 oz., 20 inches at 1:43 p.m. arriving on May 26, 2013,  Gary’s grandchildren totaling 7, Fran’s numbering 8.

Dad at Sunset View

Dad at Sunset View

Life was attenuated in Modesto,  Gary having adjusted his retirement life style continuing to chronicle an autobiography of his life starting with his first recollections and remembrances as a child.  With both he and Fran somewhat subject to a solitary life the distance of their  immediate family for the most part remaining over a financial horizon except for an occasional trip to visit his sister Nancy and mother in Columbia.  Memorial Day remained special, the couple and their canines would journey to Sunset Cemetery outside of Jackson in Amador County to visits Gary’s father final resting place.   The drive north on highway 99,  turning east on highway 88, had special meaning,  Gary having honored his father every year since returning to California,  the placing of dime coins around his father’s place marker, a ritual performed,  its meaning initiated by his Dad’s esoteric assuetude started in 1947 by embedding dime coins in the branches of the youthful weeping willow tree at their Greenly Drive home in Oakland to mark it growth.  The symbolic placing of coins never-failing to bring a tear, a symbolic tribute to an everlasting childhood memory and the consequential fact of his  failure to find time to know his Father  and what could have been,  should have been, never prevailed.


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