As we ride along toward Houston I will write and if it gets unreadable I will have a good excuse. We left El Paso yesterday a.m. (6:00) because we wanted to stop and see Juanita and they live in Odessa, but were leaving in the afternoon to go to Alpine where Ralph works, and we figured it would make less driving for us to see them in Odessa than in Alpine. I hadn’t seen Juanita since your grandmother passed away when you were 13 months old. All these years I have always thought of Juanita as being much younger than myself but she is just 9 years younger—the same difference between you and Mark. She was quite pleased that we stopped to see them. I called her on Sat. night from El Paso and she could hardly believe her ears when I told her “Aunt Gladys” was calling. She said they plan to go to Laredo to retire—said they could never stand the cold weather in the north.
We plan to attend a game in the Astrodome tonight. We have reservations in a motel near there. We plan to go on to Hattiesburg Wed. evening and visit the Georges. We hope Debbie doesn’t kick up too much trouble in that area. The weather has been delightful where we have been—after we got out of the cool northwest in Gila Bend, Ariz. It was 104 the day passed thru. I remember Clint Youle, the weatherman in Chicago was always giving the high reading in Gila Bend.
We will pass thru Johnson City this a.m. also Austen on our way. This is very interesting country—but as I told Dad, as large as Texas is, everything should be here. We have seen mountains, farm lands, oil wells, sand and rocks. I told Dad there is so much land not being used in Texas, there should be plenty of room for some time to take care of the population explosion. Texans probably would not appreciate my comment. Juanita says in the 16 years they have lived in Odessa it has grown from a small town to a fair size city. We just passed a sign pointing toward the L.B.J. Ranch.
We have driven more than 6,000 miles so far and we have to cross the rest of Texas and then over to Miss. And then north, so as you can probably figure we still have a few miles to drive, but we have really enjoyed seeing the good old U.S.A.
Patricia received the lovely little shoes a few days ago. They had been sent to Brownwood. I’m sure they were your handiwork. They are the prettiest I’ve seen.
We have a big fence around our yard. Mary Lynn loves to learn all the gate latches. Still a “tomboy.” But wants to help wash dishes, cook, and in general do everything about the place. Here’s hoping that helpful attitude continues.
Was so sorry to hear about Dr. office burning. – Hope he is all back in order by now.
Patricia still the good girl.
The weather here has been mostly sunshine, except a tornado in the eastern part of the state. Would like to see some snow.
[Editor’s note: The WWII collection contains the birth announcement for Patricia Bryan. It can be found here.]
Patricia was the daughter of William Fletcher Bryan and his first wife, Wilma R. Martin. Fletcher served in the Navy, enlisting in April 1942 and working his way through the ranks. By September 1945, he was a Lt. (jg). Presumably, Fletcher crossed paths with Roscoe in Liberty, Missouri, but further research will be needed. Before the war, Fletcher was a school teacher as was his wife Wilma.
The most distressing part of researching people who lived long ago, I find, is that I know how the story ends. And sometimes the story does not have a happy ending. When Patricia was 15, she was killed in an automobile accident. Her mother Wilma died four years later, also in an automobile accident.
A link to a newspaper article regarding Patricia and her accident in The Corpus Christi Caller Times (Corpus Christi, Texas), 22 May 1961, p. 10, col. 3-4. can be found here.