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  • Writer's pictureDoak Turner

Aunt Mary and Uncle Louie

Do YOU know I like Orange Marmalade and why?? My Aunt Mary used to make it in the summer when I stayed at her and Uncle Louie’s house. She also got me started on bacon and tomato sandwiches for breakfast and also onion burgers. Mary also made fried bologna with mustard sandwiches that went great with a cold bottle of RC Cola.

Mary worked at Leonard's Drug store and made me Pizza, Burgers, and Malt a Plenty - chocolate shakes with malt.

Mary also made applesauce cake and apple pies with apples from the tree in the backyard.

One late summer we had a family reunion in Huntington with Aunt Jenny and her family and Louie and Mary came for the event. She brought some of her famous homemade apple pies.

Mom got one of those pies off the table and hid it in her car.  Mary got mad and may have never known what happen to that pie – it sure was good that evening with a cold glass of milk!

When I was little, I’d go to Louie and Mary’s apartment that was on a 2nd story apartment above a garage area, behind Doctor Crigger’s office. I remember watching the Cleveland Brown’s on Sunday afternoon when Frank Ryan was QB, #32 Jimmy Brow and Leroy Kelly and I also remember Ernie Green in the backfield. I remember the names Paul Warfield #42 and Bill Glass and offensive lineman. Lou Groza was the kicker for the team.

Sometimes on Saturday night we’d make those Chef Boy R’Dee box pizzas. There was a time or two we made home made potato chips.

I learned to shuffle and deal cards and play rummy at Aunt Mary and Loui’s house. Their adopted daughter, Joyce took me to the South Charleston town fair one time. I remember there was a lady in a big wooden box with snakes in it. I remember sleeping that night with my feet pulled up to my chest, thinking there were snakes at the bottom of the bed. Joyce also took me shopping one day to Charleston and bought me an album, it was English cut – real thin – Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Cosmo’s Factory” that I still own.

May and Louie bought a house over across the tracks near Rail Road Avenue, right beside a playground.

I remember staying there a time or two and at least a couple times that Mary fixed me the above mentioned foods that are still favorites of mine. When she worked in South Charleston at Leonard’s Drug store, I recall one week in the summer all the merchants would have sidewalk sales, pulling some of the merchandise to the sidewalk. Many of the merchants had grab bags as you’d pay for so many grab bags and you did not know what you got till you opened the bag!

Louie worked for Workman Tire in Spring Hill, right beside where Mike Hall’s Photographix is presently and he later worked at a Pennzoil station in Kanawha City and later at Mister Ed’s gas station down the street from us in St. Albans at the bottom of Walnut Street and Kanawha Terrace.

There was one time that stands out when I rode in the truck with Louie and Uncle Butch to see Paw Paw, who lived down Bill’s Creek on Blue Tick Road. I was in the middle and they kept grabbing that ticklish place on my knee. I rode back from Paw Paw’s in the floorboard so they would not bother me!

I remember many Sundays and evenings Mary and Louie coming to the house to drink coffee, smoke cigarettes and talk with Mawmaw and the rest of the family.

I still see Uncle Louie’s smile, always drinking coffee and Aunt Mary oved giving people a hard time joking with them. I see her behind that counter and as soon as I walked in the drug store she would throw a pizza burger on the grill and fix my malt a plenty!

I was loved very much by Mary and Louie and thankful for those times in life we got to share as I was growing up.

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