Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Letter To Mitch In Heaven: Promise Kept

Dear AL

The journey is complete as promised. 

I swore I would not stop until I found the family you had been looking for.

I was all in for the task because we shared a beautiful girl and two grandchildren. 

The need to know who you were grew stronger later in life for both of us. 

You with the wanting to know your naturals and me wanting our children to know who they were and where they came from.

As you know we talked many times about finding your natural parents, brothers and or sisters if they were still alive.

Did they look like you and you like them. What would you say to them, and vice versa? 

By now I believe that you have seen your mother and father in Heaven and that there were plenty of hugs. 

No reasons for questions and answers in Heaven just good old fashion joy and praise.

Just in case in their excitement to embrace you, they may have forgotten to mention that you have two brothers, two sisters, and two aunts down here.

Two of your siblings and one aunt live in California, one sibling lives in Nevada and then one aunt lives in Oklahoma City.

All praises go to God Almighty because He was instrumental in you listening to me and took the DNA Autosomal test offered by 23&Me.

Thank you so much for letting me manage your kit. 

I especially want to thank you for downloading to Gedmatch. 

That's the service where you were able to pick up other testers who used Ancestry and from those who used FamilyTree DNA.

Wow, was I surprised when a match came up that revealed you had two matches. One was a 1st cousin male and the other one was just as close and also a male. They had to be a father and son or durn near close to it. Right under them was your daughter and both grandchildren.  I almost fell out of my chair! 

I could not wait to send an email to the gentleman who tested through Ancestry.

After a few questions, we realized that his mother and your mother are SISTERS!

I could just hug the 1st cousin tester because he was the soul who was sent to start the happiness to rolling. 
His name is Richard Ivey, son of Mary Smith Ivey.

He then set it up for my daughter and me to chat with his mom.  We were all overwhelmed and happy and talked for a good twenty minutes. 

It was especially crushing to know that they lived in the same city for years as you.

We were also in Oklahoma City for the home-going service.  So close yet so far

My thoughts were of you as your aunt and I talked.

She gave me some new names that are leafs to your family tree.
Names like Benson, lawrence, Figures and a few others.

I also need to give a shout out to a dear friend by the name of Jeannine who guided me with the Benson clue over two years ago but I could not make that connection.  

Also another shout out goes to Willie A Heard for taking me visually through many youthful trips he and Al had during their childhood and beyond. For that I am eternally grateful.

I am over the moon with excitement.

I started this journey with you in late 1991 or early 1992.

A friend that I worked with named Carrie Moos asked if I wanted to go to the LDS Research Center with her in hopes we could gain some headway in both of our searches.

Remember when I sent you that 1930 census with your parent Lee Edward Holmes in Bristow Oklahoma with his parents William and Lilliebelle mentioned. Also listed were sons William and Dorris and a daughter Novella. 

I found nothing for Laura Mae Smith and mumbled to myself that I would come back to the Center again.

That was the day I was forever hooked.

In my heart I knew that this was not going to be a piece of cake but I also knew that I could unselfishly help others along the way when I got to a brick wall with my research.

So now after all these years we are here at this junction

I wish you could have still been here to express your joy but other plans had already been made.

I know you had questions and sometimes life sends us in other directions.

I feel that the direction you were sent to hear those answers, were passed on to me through that fork in the road we came to in life’s journey.  

I talked to your sister and I have a feeling we will get along great. She lives in Henderson right outside of Vegas and that may be an indication that I may be up for a drive every now and then.

My prayer is that my daughter, her kids and her other siblings will be able to meet all their family.

I know you loved the game of golf, and from what my Uncle Prof aka WC Daviss in Altus Oklahoma told me is that he was your teacher and you were a good student on the green.

In this case I would say that you got a Bogey on this one. 

Your family has been found!

Or should I have said that it is par for the course because we got it like that.


It’s been a long time coming as I count the years of search
Always wondering what it may be worth
The countless looking through records
Talking on the phone
Hearing faceless people with promises
Kept Secrets that could have been shared
Instead a cry of not knowing was carried to a grave

Let the truth be known for it was silence
That hurt the most
Pain you did not bear
Messing up more than one person’s thought and perception

And it did not have to be that way
Healing could have come early
Like the shutters on a window
When open
The light comes shining through
Fewer tears
Wasted years

I have said it before and then again
It’s in the blood baby, as simple as that
Made from the foundation
An XX and a XY found

I see you in faces now three boys and one girl
Paternal and maternal you should have known
Not your fault, not too late

Maybe now up there on the other side of heaven’s door
Down here those that are left hug
With all their might, try and make up
What should have been

Rest In Perfect Peace Alford for you are surrounded by many who love you. The parents who raised you, the ones now found: And, as an added bonus, those of us who are left here on earth loved you immensely then and we love you still

 P. S. Ok Now I can stop the crying.