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Memory Monday–Uncle Grady Killed My Mom

Memory Monday-It’s a thing…

In the early 80s, before Grandpa and his friends remodeled the house, my mom would ride to work with my Uncle Grady. They both worked at the same clothing factory; he worked in the cutting department and she worked in the pressing department. Their shifts were the same and they normally had to leave well before I woke each morning.

Before the house was remodeled, the living room, bedroom, and a kitchen were downstairs and two bed rooms upstairs. Grandpa had one room upstairs and Uncle Grady had the other. There were three beds in the downstairs bed room. One queen size bed for me and Granny, a twin bed for mom and a twin bed for Debbie.

I remember waking up in the room alone one morning. The door between the kitchen and bedroom was a thick, heavy door, but I could hear people talking in the kitchen. I tiptoed to the door and pulled it open just a crack so I could see who was in there. Plus I could hear them better with the door cracked. Grandpa stood in profile to me, one hand was on the counter near the kitchen sink and he was looking at my Uncle Grady. Uncle Grady was leaning against the counter facing the door where I was hiding. His head was down and his hands were covering his face. I couldn’t see clearly, but it seem as if he was crying. Granny stood to the other side of him and almost out of my view. Her hands were on the back of a kitchen chair as if she needed help to stand.

“What happen?” Grandpa asked.

“I hit that curve and went over the hill. I killed her.” Uncle Grady didn’t move his hands from his face and it was hard to hear and understand what he was saying. I didn’t know he was talking about my mom or I’m sure I would have panicked. Also, in my childish logic, if Uncle Grady was home, then my mom was home as well.

“Where, son? Where did you wreck?”

“Before you get to the straight stretch near the camp grounds.”

“Where’s Mae?” Granny’s voice cut in.

“She climbed out and up the hill. [Name I don’t remember] took her to the hospital.”

“Well damn, son. If she crawled out of the truck and up the hill, you didn’t kill her.”

My Uncle Grady and Mom did wreck that morning and my mom’s head hit the windshield. This was way before seat belt laws. The broken glass from the windshield or mirrors cut her forehead near her hairline. Shortly after the accident another car came through that area and stopped to help. If I recall correctly, other than knowing the men who stopped to help lived in the area, they didn’t really know them. I couldn’t imagine getting into a car with two strangers no matter how badly I was hurt, but she did. She told me she remembered worrying about getting blood on the man’s car as he drove her to the hospital. Uncle Grady walked home to get Grandpa and Granny. Other than bumps, bruises, and a few cuts, they were otherwise unharmed.

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About Marsha Blevins, Author

Marsha Blevins lives in West Virginia with her boyfriend and six fur-children. She earned her B.A. in English with a concentration on writing from Marshall University. Two of her short stories and several poems were published in the university’s literary magazine, Et Cetera. She is an active member of the writing group Wicked Wordsmiths of the West and WV Writers. Follow her at www.marbleswords.com on Facebook at www.facebook.com/marbleswords, on Twitter @marbleswords.

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