Monday, February 15, 2016

Family History Writing Challenge Day 15

John F. Kennedy
The 1960s - it was the best of times, it was the worst of times. America was still riding the 1950s wave of optimism when the country elected John F. Kennedy as president. Taking office on 20 January 1961, the handsome and charismatic Kennedy was not only the first Roman Catholic to ever hold the nation's highest office, he was also the youngest ever elected at age 43. He also became the youngest president to ever die in office when he was assassinated in 1963. Soon after Lyndon Johnson moved into the president's role he enacted the draft, furthering America's role in the Vietnam War - a war which greatly divided the nation. Johnson also passed the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

The first man went into space in 1961, and the Beatles first single, "Love Me Do", was released in 1962. Barbie and G.I. Joe dolls were on every kid's wish list. Protests took place throughout the United States, bringing attention to the unfair treatment of black citizens, the unjustness of the Vietnam War, and demanding full equality for women. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy were both assassinated in 1968.

50th Anniversary celebration
The country was going through a lot of turmoil, but the Crusham family continued to go about their daily lives. In April of 1961 Michael's brother Charles died. Two months later, Michael and Mayme observed their 50th wedding anniversary. They had a celebration at Resurrection Church, and their children asked them to have a photo taken to commemorate the occasion. They were so disappointed when Michael and Mayme went to a photo booth instead of a professional photographer!

Photo booth picture
Just five months later, Michael died on 29 November 1961 at the age of 74. It must have been of some comfort to the family to have been able to celebrate the special anniversary of this couple, and have these photos from the last time most of them were together.

Michael's untimely death meant that he missed the birth of additional grandchildren who were born in the 1960s. The births in this decade were: Dorothy Crusham and Kathleen Heinzelman, 1960; Patrick Rizzo and Lori Crusham, 1961; Kathryn Crusham and Daniel Crusham, 1962; Brian Crusham and Susan Heinzelman, 1963; and the final grandchild, Mark Crusham, born in 1967.

Mayme Crusham
Mayme lived the remainder of her life with daughter Marie on Rosemont Avenue. She still enjoyed cooking, and having her family come to visit. She died at home on 13 March 1969. She was 80 years old. Through their 8 children, Michael and Mayme were blessed with 37 grandchildren, 35 of whom lived to adulthood. They lived their lives celebrating their church, family and nation. I imagine that they were both welcomed into heaven with a hearty, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

1 comment:

Mrs. Wryly said...

A photo booth photo for their 50th anniversary! That is so awesome! They had enough confidence in their happiness to know they didn't need a professional to bring out their best look!