Saturday, August 18, 2012
1966 and then 1969
The turmoil of the decade ascended with Vietnam drafts increasing, rioting in across our largest cities and increased use of drugs. We saw the first artificial heart implant, pampers hit the shelves and the Vatican allowed Catholics to eat meat on Fridays.
For one young couple, much of this was beyond their day-to-day survival except for maybe the pampers availability.
She was 17 and he was 18 when they married in 1964. She was a dark haired beauty and he just wanted to make her happy. They had a 10 month old daughter born in 1965.
"Statistics Defied By Young Couple" was the headline in 1966 under Happenings in Society. The article sites that 50% of marriages end in divorce with a bride under 20. Not this couple. They were quoted "You read a lot about young people not being able to accept responsibility. That's not true." The couple attribute their successful marriage to practicality.
This couple did defy statistics. She finished high school and he was a assistant manager at a grocery store. He was enrolled for college courses in the Fall. They bought a 3 bedroom house. And a new car. They planned and had another baby in 1968. They had dreams.
The dreams literally crashed. The young mother and her two babies were in a car accident on a Texas highway. The 22 year old woman who had defied statistics did not survive that day. The 4 year old girl was pulled from the mangled Volkswagen bug with the top shaved off by the underside of a diesel truck - the trucker was helpless to stop the car as he watched it the run under his load. The local preacher stopped to help. He knew this young family and asked if they found a baby boy too? The police went back to the car and found the 15 month old toddler in the backseat floor board. Some say it was a miracle the children survived.
Lives left behind were changed forever. The loss is noticed for the lifetimes of many. Still noticed today.