Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Sharing A Generous Slice Of Aunt Kate & Uncle Don
What I'm about to share here is a copy of a comment I made on this page at YouTube.
I not only love his music, but, also, I love his name. My uncle (the one married to my mom's baby sister who was BIG into the country music scene) was named Donald Wayne Williams. I don't know if that's Don Williams name or not, but Uncle Don went by Don Williams, so their casual names are the same. My uncle worked for the U.S. Postal Service as a mail carrier here in the Anderson, Indiana area for many years, and his co-workers gave him the nickname of Dandy Don -- probably, because he, likely, answered "How are you doing?" with "Just dandy." Aunt Kate -- Mary Fayra Kathleen (nee: Jobe) Williams -- was into country music from the time she was a very small child. In fact, if she and her family were out somewhere when it was time for The Grand Ole Opry to come on (so that they'd be missing part of it), she was known to pitch quite a temper tantrum. The same would be true if Uncle Finley teased her by adjusting the radio dial so that the program came in distorted. When Aunt Kate grew up, she continued to be involved in the country music scene. She was one of the charter members of The Country Music Association as well as being one of the first cash contributors to the building of The Country Music Hall Of Fame. She was the President Of The Hank Snow Fan Club as well as being the regional President Of The Marty Robbins Fan Club. I have so much more that I could share about this remarkable woman (and Uncle Don was also an amazing person with a wide variety of interests from tumbling rocks to art to writing to music and then some), but I'll wind this down for now. But I believe that it's important you know that Aunt Kate did all of the things she did while living with a major physical challenge: blindness due to a degenerative condition called Retinitis Pigmentosa! For her entire life, she was always significantly-blind to some degree but graduated from mainstream school at the eighth grade level and graduated from the Indiana School For The Blind at the high school level, the latter in 1950. Before beginning high school, she took the eighth grade over so that she could learn a new way of communicating: Braille. For at least the last 30 years of her earthly life, she was 100% blind. But that didn't deter her when it came to keeping up with country music, politics, and NASCAR racing with her favorite driver of all time being AJ Foyt. She also kept active in alumni activities of her high school as well as trying to find a cure for RP. Uncle Don passed away a couple of days after Christmas of 2002, and Aunt Kate will be gone for six years come August 13. I'm thankful to have the Internet to share remarkable people like Aunt Kate & Uncle Don with people all over the world.
This won't be the last that you'll be hearing about Aunt Kate & Uncle Don -- two totally-amazing people who are, to this day, very much missed...