We Three

Daddy was Thomas Edward Key, a son of the first David Mervin Key, a grandson of Jeremiah Andrew Key, a great-grandson of Obadiah Key, a great-great-grandson of Elijah Key, and a great-great-great-grandson of Simon Key (and so forth). Daddy was born 16 November 1906 in Francis, Oklahoma, and died 11 April 1978 in Ventura, California. He is buried in Electra, Texas.

Mother, ne้ Velma Lucille Smith ("Lucile" in her birth certificate, but she used "Lucille"), was a  daughter of William Benjamin Smith and Almer (always known as "Alma" or "Mama") Houston Smith. Mother was born 15 October 1908 in Maud, Oklahoma, and died 07 April 1990 in Houston, Texas. She is buried in Forest Park East Cemetery, Houston, Texas.

Both Francis and Maud are near Ada, Oklahoma, where the Smith Family lived for many years, where Daddy and Mother met, married and lived for about the next two years, and where I went to school (off and on) and spent several summers. When in Ada, I always lived with Mama Smith except for one year, 1947-1948, when I lived in the dormitory of East Central State College (now East Central University).

The background music for this page ("My Buddy") was selected because it was Mother's favorite song. Whether it was her favorite because I was known as "Buddy" or I was known as "Buddy" because it was her favorite song, I don't know.

Mother is 3rd from the left - photo taken nearly 11 months before I was born.

I, as you may have guessed, was an only child. Mother and Daddy must have moved to Wichita Falls, Texas, before 13 August 1929 because I was born there and then. However, I am still here in Houston now - January 2004.









(more writing to come as time and inclination permit)








This formal photograph (from which I cropped myself) was taken about the time of my first year of school. It could have been taken in Electra, Texas or, maybe, in Ada, Oklahoma - I went to school in both towns that year.

Come to think of it, I never went to ANY grade school for an entire school year at one time.



I remember Daddy's cast for his broken shoulder. It was broken while we were living in Electra, Texas.

He flew (or, more accurately, I guess, tried to fly) out of  a car that one of his buddies was driving - maybe they were drinking.


(more writing to come as time and inclination permit)













I think it was in the last part of 1938 that we moved from Electra, Texas, via Route 66, to Coalinga, California in a 1930 something Plymouth.

As time and inclination permit, I'll tell more about our new game in California. Meanwhile, you are welcome to have a look-see at a 1938 photo of me and my schoolmates on the page named My Favorite Class.

In late 1939 or early 1940, we returned to Texas via what my Daddy called "the Southern Route" - this time it was to Houston where we stayed, for a very short time, with my Great Aunt (the sister of "Mama" Smith) and her husband, Bill Caley.

Their home was on Heights Boulevard and I was impressed by the electric trolley which, in those days, passed in front of their home on it's trip to and from downtown Houston, a separate town at the time.

From there, it was back to Electra (in a newer car than the Model A) in time for Pearl Harbor. We moved from Electra to Houston in late 1942 or early 1943 and that became the "permanent" home of Mother and me.

Daddy and Mother were divorced in 1946. Daddy then went on (or maybe back) to Casper, Wyoming,  for a while, and then went here and there until he, at last, found his longtime and final home in Ventura, California.

Left is a clipping from an Electra, Texas, newspaper - only the birth date is wrong. 16 November 1908 is the  correct day according to his mother's family bible and she ought to know.

Mrs. W. O. Morris was my Aunt Belle and Mrs. Elbert Hoehn was my Aunt Lucile. Aunt Luella and my Daddy's four brothers predeceased him.

P. S. I know I misspelled Albuquerque but I'm too lazy to make a correction. How do you expect a skilled operator to operate with inferior equipment? 

Indian Page    The Early Years    Some Smiths and Keys

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