Sunday, March 22, 2015

An Opening in the Clouds--Everyday's a Miracle

Baby Helen and mother Pearl Weaver in Ardmore Ok.  
Helen Weaver
     My mother's life was full and richly rewarding for seventy-six years, and I've missed her everyday since she died August 26, 1989. With her death our family experienced a miracle, one that could only have been created by the hands of God.  Born in Lansing, Michigan March 25, 1913 to a father who drilled for oil (a Wildcatter and geologist) and a mother who had known heartache early in life when her mother died so very young, my mother grew up to be a slender flirtatious woman with green eyes and blonde hair and a lifting laughter that enticed people around her to smile.
     My mother, Helen Stapp, like her mother Pearl, wasn't afraid to change the course of her life.  Her father, Tobias Weaver drilled for oil near Bartlesville, Ok when our state was Indian Territory.  He then made his way to Indianapolis to marry Pearl Clendening, a young school teacher.  The family moved on to the oil fields around Lansing, Michigan where my mother was born.  
     Their next home was Ardmore, Ok where Tobias moved his

T.B. Weaver and Helen at Turner Falls.
growing family from a tent to a clapboard home, and eventually to a nicer home for his three children and wife who loved the social atmosphere of the boom town of Ardmore in those years. The Kansas oil fields called Tobias and his family to Wichita.  The Weaver Brother's drilling split up with one of his brother's moving to Houston and the other one to Oklahoma City.  
     As a child, I remember driving from Miami, Ok to Wichita to visit grandparents and cousins.  We often drove through the refinery area around Augusta, Ks, and I would hold my nose and say something like "Pew Wee...That stinks."  Mother smiled and turned to me and said, "I grew up loving that smell because my father said it was the smell of money."  
     My mother met dad through his sister Della when both women
Johnie and Helen Stapp, May 1946
worked at Boeing during the War years.  In May 1946 my mother boarded a train by herself for Las Vegas, where she and my father were married at The Little Chapel of the West ( Thirty-seven years later Jack and I married at The Little Chapel of the West).  

     Dad's life as a golf pro in Santa Anita, was glamorous for my mother, but family called them back to Kansas a few years after I was born.  My sister, Jonya, was born in Independence, Ks. We both grew up and call Miami, Oklahoma our true home.  
     I was forty-two when  my mother died suddenly from Septic Shock at St Francis Hospital in Tulsa, Ok.  The story of her death is the moment a miracle happened in our family.  Through her death a life was saved, her granddaughter, my daughter Katy. 

     The full length story of  mother's miracle can be found in the book Everyday's a Miracle.  Author, Paul Robert Walker, listened to my story when he was visiting Norman Public Schools in the early 90's. He asked if he could write and publish it in his book.  With a gracious smile I said, "Please do."   Mother's story "An Opening in the Clouds" can be read on pages 144-148 in Paul Robert Walker's book called Everyday's a Miracle (Avon 1995). I think you will find this true story comforting, along with the other stories in his book.  

Everyday's a Miracle   This book can be purchased for pennies on Amazon. 
Paul Robert Walker's website


  1. I enjoy reading your memories. Your mother was beautiful.

    1. Thank you Jennifer. I truly believe we all have stories to tell or share in one way or another.

  2. What wonderful family history, Letty. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    1. Michelle, I have most certainly enjoyed piecing together my family's history. As always, I wish I knew more, but I do have pictures and postcards that tell us quite a bit.

  3. Love the pictures…you have your mother’s smile. nv

  4. Love reading your stories. You have such a gift and I so enjoy being able be an 'armchair' traveler with you. gf

  5. Wow Letty! That was a great story! I loved your Mom and Dad so much! They put up with the little shy girl from Okmulgee! lbj

  6. Thanks for a great story. Also, I had never heard of the Muntz. Thanks! ja