Tag Archive | grandparents we never knew

Grandparent Orphan

Grandpa Altmann walking in yard holding hands with my sisters Mary and Betty.
After this picture was taken, he developed gangrene and had a leg amputated.

He sat in the corner of the living room on the davenport, watching me, his wrinled face glowing from the light of the lamp. I plopped down on the cool gray linoleum and began to roll around acting silly. Mama stepped into the room to scold, “Kathy, stop showing off.”

Who was that man? In my mind he was someone important. The gray fog of forgetfulness fills my mind until the next memory.

I stood in front of the table in our eat-in kitchen. Mama was behind me at the stove preparing our meal. Daddy stood at the entryway door, holding it open as an old man on crutches entered. Suddenly, a crutch slipped on the linoleum and the man fell with a crash.

Something bad had happened. I wasn’t sure what, or even who the man was. The gray fog of forgetfulness fills my mind until the next memory.

Something prompted me to crawl out of the bed I shared with a sister. Wandering into the living room I crawled up onto the davenport. The dark house didn’t scare me. Feeling cold, I felt around for something to crawl under. What I found was thin and not very warm. I looked toward the front door window where the Christmas tree stood. The night sky was pale blue and I saw the shadowy outline of the tree.

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