In Grandma’s Words part 17 (FGK 79)

This is the end of the story in Grandma’s memory book. It ends kind of abruptly and I wonder if whomever has the original copy (if it’s still around) has more of her story. I’m kind of bummed – I wasn’t ready to be done already. But I have lots more letters, and I found an old audio reel that I was able to get moved to digital format that apparently has several people talking on it. One of my aunts in Ontario also gifted me a tape recorded by Grandpa Ramsay describing his childhood home which I am very much looking forward to hearing (I had it converted to digital format as well). Grandpa used to send tapes out all the time, and I’m hopeful that I can find some of those and transcribe those stories as well, he was quite a remarkable man with a fascinating story of his own.

I couldn’t help but think I neglected my family in the years from 1952 to 1958 as I devoted so much time and energy for Margi. Sheila and Marshall were wonderfully loyal to my course and of course Percy was the powerhouse behind it all. Without him we certainly would be a sorry lot.

Training for your RN is definitely not the easiest career to choose and with all the tension there was in our home at that theme, I often wonder how Sheila ever made it. But she is made of good stuff and they tell me she’s a good nurse. The Student’s Association of the Calgary General Hospital presented ten gold pins to student nurses in recognition of outstanding student activities such as sick and visiting communities and in the effective speaking club. Out of her class of 76 students, Sheila received this gold pin as well as nine classmates. We were very proud of her when she graduated with her RN in 1956. She then nursed in the Vulcan Hospital being a country girl at heart. She met and later married Ted Burger of Arrowwood in 1957 and has lived on a grain farm in that district ever since.

One fall I had to be in Florida with Margi just at threshing time and Sheila took time out from her nurses training school and came out and cooked for all that gang. Her friend Lois Toone came and helped her on her days free from the nursing school. They did a splendid job of cooking and had fun doing it. Sheila’s letter to me describing it provided me with many a laugh. Here is an essay Sheila wrote when in our little JP school. It describes our hay crew so well <perhaps whomever has the original copy of Grandma’s story has this essay, but it wasn’t included here>.

Seeing old photos of mom standing like this always amazes me. The balance it must have taken for her to stand there without her crutches is astounding. She lost her back and stomach muscles, the ones in her right leg, and most of the ones in her left leg. I often think it was just her strong will that kept her upright.
So many days were spent on this carport doing different things. Here I am with four of my cousins and the two kids who lived next door. Lots of fun was had here, and I’m sure we all wore the adults out!
Grandma, my sister, and another one of the greatest dogs of all time – good old Buster
It looks like they were riding in a parade Grandpa was on Toots and Grandma on Captain.
Log walking in Sidney BC is a longstanding family tradition. Grandma, Dad, my sister and I did this together for years, and I now do it with my kids when we go out there.

2 thoughts on “In Grandma’s Words part 17 (FGK 79)

  1. Ted Burger says:

    Hi Melissa, Thank you for sending Grandmas’ letters. They are very interesting and important for keeping those days alive.. Your commentary is important and interesting too. I hope you would consider putting them in book form. They should be preserved for posterity and I encourage you to do that.

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