I was raised by both of my parents (they’ve been married for 33 years) and knew three of my four grandparents. They taught my brothers and I the importance and value of hard work and from an early age instilled in us a strong work ethic. My parents have sacrificed so much for my brothers and I to have a better life than they did…they’ve loved, pushed, and encouraged us to never give up, get a good education, and to put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ.
Most of my time growing up was spent around my maternal-grandmother Shirley Jean. Grandma Shirley, was a strict disciplinarian and kept her grandchildren in line. She lived on Erastus in 5th ward for several years and her older brother Robert lived in a house on the street behind her.
My cousins, brothers, and I have fond memories of playing in the front yard, playing with the huge black caterpillars, having snail races (some of them were fast), and helping my grandmother peal pea pods. As children we were “to stay in a child’s place” and not allowed to be around when grown folks were talking.
My grandmother has always been very family oriented and her home was usually the center for family gatherings. In 2006 I started researching my family history to learn more about my grandparents and their lives growing up.