Friday, January 03, 2014
D IS FOR DITMORE (D) IN THE SERIES CLIF FROM A TO Z
"MAMA, the damn Ditmores are here."
How many times did I hear that yelled out over the years? I was eleven years old. My mother had died and I had gone to live with my sister and her husband. Two of my brothers and their wives lived one hundred miles away and they would drive that one hundred miles as often as they could to come and see me. My brother-in-law was a good man. He loved my sister and the rest of her family he was just a little crude sometimes. Well, most of the time.
I absolutely hated to hear the words---"Damn Ditmores."
My brothers just laughed and shrugged it off with, "That's just Pete."
Well, Pete or no Pete. I didn't like it.
I'm the "baby" in this part of the Ditmore clan. I'm the last one standing. I had four brothers and two sisters. My father was in a mental institution all my life. When I was young people with mental problems were just considered crazy and put in an insane asylum. I was ashamed to admit I even had a father until I was an adult. All through my youth I told people he was dead. My mother died when I was eleven and I lived first with my one of my sisters and then later with one brother and then another.
None of my brothers graduated from high school but they wanted me to and did everything they could to make that happen. They dropped out of school to work and make a living for the family.
They encouraged me to work and be responsible. I did work and left college not owing anything. I went on to seminary and graduate school and earned a Masters Degree.
This small group of Ditmores were the only ones I knew until a few years ago. Now, through research my daughter has done, I am acquainted with Ditmores all over the country and I am friends with many of them on Face Book.
There are many Ditmores and in such a large group of people I'm sure a few of them may be "Damn Ditmores." But not to me. I still despise those words. To me, D IS FOR DITMORE.