This is my grandmother's youngest sister Florence, or as she was known Flossy. The only one of the four siblings who was born in the United States, most likely New York. She was married to an executive with US Rubber Company, better known as Uniroyal. Richard, or Dick as he was known was a nice guy, kind of high strung and a hopeless alcoholic. At one point the doctors recommended a change of scene hoping that he would stay dried out. After consultation with his bosses at Uniroyal, they sent him on a two year assignment in Scotland, a change of scene, and a change from beer (and lots of it) to Scotch Whiskey, and endless thirst for the good stuff. A couple of years after he returned from that assignment, the company arranged for him to start drawing a pension and changed the locks on his office door. The doctors gave up on a detox plan, and he agreed to a drinking schedule, kind of a medication plan (this was in the late 1960's early 1970's) that he was able to stick with most of the time. Flossy was his drinking partner, she was able to detox and stay sober for the last decade of her life, but she had a lot of challenges. The two of them died around 1980, younger and far sicker than would be expected.
My grandmother and I grew rather close in her later years, she confided in me. She told me a deep family secret one day - one my father had never heard. When Flossy was a teenager, she was off at school, came home at break with a baby, her baby. Her father threw her out of the house with the words "don't ever bring that bastard into our home again." Flossy returned a few days later, and there was never a mention of the baby. That helped me understand some of the obvious emotional problems Flossy experienced.
Flossy looks like she is not to be trifled with and has that look of knowing her hootch. I can bet they were a hand full.ReplyDelete
As I recall she was feistyDelete
Flossy has a troubled, drinker’s look. I can’t imagine how that early experience must have damaged her. I wonder what she had to do to be allowed home, and what torture it must have been to never be able to talk about it.ReplyDelete
My ex-mother in law had a son between her first and second marriage who was placed for adoption, he showed up unannounced at Thanksgiving one year. Complicated.Delete
Wow! I’ve been hearing more of these stories as time goes on. Some go surprisingly well. Others... complicated.Delete
What a great photo of Flossie. While I don't know what she was like when under the influence, she looks classy, functioning and in control. Were they in their seventies when they died?ReplyDelete
I think late 6's early 70's, they arrived in New York around 1912, and she was born shortly after that.Delete
Flossy looks like she had a hard life that probably began that day she returned home from school.ReplyDelete
Had to be roughtDelete
Wow, what a sad story. It made me think of the movie "Philomena" and those days when having a baby without a husband was a mortal sin.ReplyDelete
Things have changed, likely not far enoughDelete
Poor Flossy sounds like she had a hard life.ReplyDelete