Our Dad was born Waterloo, Iowa to the parents of Carl Fremont Jones and Victoria Mae (IDA) Foulk Jones. His Iowa life was very short moving to Wheatland, Platte Co. Wyoming when very young.
He worked on a ranch by the time he was 12 and carried out duties of an adult. His employer did let him go to school through 8th grade. Mr. and Mrs Morris Thomas were caring adults that helped to mold him into whom he became. His children got to meet them when we visited Wyoming. Each time he would visit, to see how they were. One trip Mr. Thomas gave us a grand tour of his ranch.
After he met and married Mom he then was hired to work for the Diamond Tail Ranch in Greybull, Wyo. working for Howard Flitner. Mr Flitner and his wife Maureen became my Godparents when I was born. That ranch is now part working and part Dude Ranch when I contacted them a couple years ago.
Dad met Mom when working the irrigation ditches with her father, Lee Hoffman, near Slater. Dad was the oldest of 6 children. He had 3 living sisters and 1 living brother, loosing a sister as an infant new born.
Dad was a bronc rider (until I was born), ranch hand, hunting guide, ( took the Fathers from Boys Town on hunts for meat for their Home). When we moved to California so he could help his brother in law, he became a dairyman. Years later when we had moved to our own home in Valley Ford, he was still milking cows but got a job working for Hunt and Behrens Feed Mill. He moved up the ladder as the years passed and run the night shift by the time I graduated from Tomales High School.
Ray and Dorothy had 4 living children, I was the oldest, then my sister B, followed by two living boys. Mom lost 3 children in between myself and the last botn. I was old enough to remember each event.
Dad retired and they did some traveling back to see their family in Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, and Kansas. They also traveled to Washington to see my sister and San Diego to see his brother and our family here in Chula Vista area.They went to Idaho to see the youngest boy and his family. They also went to various family reunions on both sides of the family. He helped raise several of the grandchildren at various stages of their lives.
When he had a heart attack, we sent our oldest to help him on the ranch and go to school there. So he graduated 20 years after I did from Tomales High School also. 1978. Our second son got a year with him and came back to San Diego for his senior year. Our middle boy moved back in after graduating in San Diego and worked in Sonoma County for awhile.
In various years my older brother or I went to the Reunions with them to help drive. I went in 1994 to SLC, Utah to see his sister, then to Wyoming to see family (both sides)and then to Colorado to see more of his family and then to Nebraska for Duvall reunion and then to McPherson Kansas for a Myers/Foulk Reunion, back to Wyoming to see kin and head to Idaho to see youngest brother and family. Idaho Falls, is a very pretty place.
When we were young Dad would come home from work and we would have all the chores done and Mom would have engaged the neighbors to take care of animals for 48 hours and we would climb in the car or the truck and go to Dallas, Oregon to see her baby sister, and family. Those were always fun adventures. We would stop at Road Signs for Historical significance and tour some of the sites when time permitted. We went up the road to Oregon probably every quarter of the year and they came down to our place as much. Finally moving into house near us. Of course, the people near our Aunt and Uncle had all come from Wheatland, Wyoming area so they saw lots of familiar faces.
I remember one time we went to my Uncle's Dad's funeral.
Other times we would climb in a vehicle and head to San Diego to see our Uncle and his family in Lemon Grove.
Dad tried hard to strive to make the family understand how important family was for the people in it to survive. We found his Dad and when that happened we quickly drove to Wyoming and seen him after all the years of Dad looking. We spent times scouring the local communities for his Uncle that he knew lived in northern Ca supposedly not far from him. To many JONES's but we found them after he passed and his brother and other family members got to meet Don Jones and some of his Uncle La Monte's family. Don passed this last year and that saddened me greatly but was grateful for the relationship we had. The same applied to his other Uncle's children we hunted for in Iowa and
Minn, My Uncle and I got to meet some of them but it was after Dad passed.
As you can tell from the story Grandpa and Grandma got a divorce after the last baby was born and died. The death destroyed the family. Ironic they both told me they loved each other but just could not live together. Grandad never said a bad word about Grandma never. Grandma stopped after I
told her what Dad had said about respecting my Grandparents.
I loved them both, I am most grateful that my Dad tried by example and words to make us as children understand that family is the most important thing besides God that should be in our lives.
Dad used to say, "God is everywhere, you can talk to Him when ever or wherever you want. You
do not need a church to speak to God, He is with you Always." His faith was very strong and I have
Mr. and Mrs. Howard and Maureen Flitner and the Father's from Boys Town to thank for much of this, along with Mr and Mrs Morris Thomas in Wheatland for the guidance he got after his family was broken apart. Also a deceased Aunt of his that he saw often in Wheatland that could not have
children. She sorta adopted the children as much as she could.
Mom also helped with some of the molding for a family since he never really had much of one.
She shared some great stories of their adventures with me, sometime I hope to write about them.
I know my siblings have heard them like I have but I do not want them to disappear when I am gone.
Dad we lost you, yes, That is what MOM said:"Susi I lost your DAD today" well that was a standard joke between them when shopping. Of course they always found each other but on this day on 12 April 1995, setting next to MOM in his favorite place to eat in Santa Rosa, he moved on to stay with the Lord. He ordered his favorite sandwich, teased his favorite waitress and smiled and went to the other side. 9 Doctor's were in the building but they could not revive him. His heart had exploded.
So We all Lost him on this day back when life was different than today. Dad I love and miss you.
12 April 1995.