4 x 4 | Willa

There is an internet meme called "4x4." The way it works is that you go to the photo directory on your hard drive and choose the 4th folder, then select the 4th picture and write about it.

This is Willa--John's aunt. When I first met Willa, we were walking toward her at a family reunion--my first reunion as a new wife--and she yelled out across the parking lot "John?! Troy?! Get over here ya little sh*t's!"

(I had no idea what to do with that. In my world, grown-ups--especially women--never EVER talked like that.)

Willa was one of the first in the Women's Air Corps, and she probably would have retired career military if a fall (due to the high heels that were part of the uniform) hadn't wrenched her leg and forced her out on a medical discharge.

Willa was smart, funny and tough as nails.  She always talked to you peer-to-peer.  Never up or down. She also prayed in her old age.  A lot.  She prayed for all of us.  So much so that I felt the lack of it when she died.

Willa and I wrote each other in later years.  In fact, in many ways the letters were the beginnings of this blog. When she died, she left me her Japanese silk doll that still sits in its glass case in my bedroom.  Willa loved all things Asian and very much wanted to visit Japan.  (Pretty sure if she had ever gotten to go, she would have turned it on its ear.) I love it that the doll--that saw all of Willa's comings and goings--now watches mine.

Willa, you'd better have the coffee pot on when we are reunited someday.  I miss you.

1 comment

Gary Breeden said...

Cathy, thanks for this. Aunt Willa was unique, one-of-a-kind. She had an opinion about anything and everything. Very intelligent, a quick wit, very artistic. I have several of her paintings and most of her sketches. She had a rough life but made the best her difficulties.

Though never having children, her nieces and nephews were the world to her. She was THE family historian and I would love to have a little more time with her to ask questions.

Thanks again, we are all blessed she was a part of our lives.

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Maira Gall