52 Ancestors Week 7 - Valentine

+9 votes

Week 7: Valentine

AJC - Is there a love story in your family tree? Maybe a couple was married on Valentine's Day or you have a valentine that one ancestor gave to another. Maybe you have an ancestor named Valentine.

Are there any interesting Valentine Day traditions in your family?


asked in The Tree House by Robynne Lozier G2G6 Pilot (431k points)
edited by Robynne Lozier

What is associated with Valentines? Hearts! 

I was struggling to find an inspiration for this prompt.  The people with a February 14th birthday or wedding anniversary were not going anywhere for me and no Valentine places or surnames.  Then I realized I have lots and lots of HARTS to choose from.

I always knew my grandfather Lucian Hart was descended from a Hart family that went back to the founding of Connecticut.  But my Hart ancestry turned out to be a bit more complicated than I had ever dreamed.

Louisa (Bly) Bentley, my 3rd great-grandmother and mother of Harriet (Bentley) Arthur from “Census” had some surprises in her background.  Trying to find Louisa's maiden name I hit a brick wall for years.  Not too long ago, that mystery was finally solved.  In the process, I learned Louisa's mother's name was Ruth Hart.  Since I already knew a lineage book existed for Deacon Stephen Hart, it seemed a logical place to start looking for Ruth although I really didn't expect to find a link. 

My grandparents Lucian and Lottie (Wright) Hart were 8th cousins once removed.  Not only that, my grandmother was descended from two, possibly three different children of Stephen Hart.  (I don't have all the links in Wikitree at this time).  My grandfather Lucian’s family came from yet another son of Stephen, but only the one.  So my grandmother Lottie, who I very much doubt knew there were any Harts in her family background, had more links than her husband who had the surname.

Looking at the widely differing routes their Hart families took to finally get to Michigan from Connecticut, I'm amazed my grandparents ended up in the same place at the same time to even meet each other!

The Harts - what a brilliant Inspiration!! Thanks Jill.
Too many profiles to go through to look for Valentines birthdays... but we do have some romantic names, such as Queen Victoria Wonser, my d-in -laws 2x ggramma. We also have 3 Angels... Laverie Angeline Williams, Margaret Angeline Long, and Angie Lange. We also have a couple of Roses, Rose Condley Bandy and Angie Rose Lange. We have a Viola Callaway and a Violet Blevins. We also have a couple of Stars names Stella.
I was checking to make sure I knew which 52 week answers I still needed to do and discovered I had commented instead of answering this prompt so it didn't show up on my answered question feed.  Does it make any difference to the challenge?
Well I (Robynne) did count it for you, because it was a very thorough response to the prompt.

However, if Chris or Eowyn are checking to see who has 52 answers (for the badge requirements)  then technically, no,  a comment probably wont count.

I would suggest that you redo it as an answer.

33 Answers

+11 votes
OK I'll start off again.

I have just spent an hour going through both my husbands tree and mine.

There is noone who was born in 14 February, but I did find 2 relatives in my husbands tree who sadly DIED on 14 February. One died on Valentines Day in 1967 and the other died on Valentines Day in 1972.

I also found 2 people in my husbands tree who were born on 15 February - the day after Valentines day. One of them is my brother in law - Pierre - who is about to celebrate his 45th birthday.


Neither of our families have any Valentines Day traditions or love stories.

The only tradition we took part in was to help my son write out Valentines day cards for all his classmates at elementary school. We did this every year from Junior Kindergarten up to grade 6. My son is now in high school and noone does this any more.
answered by Robynne Lozier G2G6 Pilot (431k points)
I don't think I've come across anyone born on Valentine's Day.  Bummer about your husband's family. I think I have people who passed away then. I would have to look.

Gonna have to skip this week. Next week? We'll see. =D
This weeks prompt is a hard one, I agree.

But at least it is quite open ended to allow broad interpretations such as what I have used.

Everyone has until 31 Dec 2018 to complete this one, if they wish to qualfy for the badge. So NO hurry - at least for now!!
If you want I could make one up...

Two households both alike in dignity.....
I remember helping my daughters fill out their Valentines to take to school.  They had to do one for everyone in the class, not just their friends.
Yep, my sons school had the same rule.
+11 votes
I have no fabulous love stories that I recall in my line.  So, I went through my watchlist looking for Valentine Day births.  I found a great grand niece, Matilda Carey (who married a Curry) who was born in the Bahamas on 14 Feb 1870.  My second great grandfather, Abraham Carey, was her father.


More intriguing to me was the discovery of Robert Wiley Comer, born in NC on 14 Feb 1857.  I have not yet found my connection to the Comers but am following the line because it is likely that my great grandfather, Luther Stewart, who was illegitimate with no known father, is descended from the Comer line, based on DNA analysis by an Ancestry Pro genealogist.


It didn't happen on Valentine's Day but my only interesting (and tragic) story of love is about unrequited love.  My grandmother's sister, Lucy, was living with their older sister, Addie, and her husband, Robert Smythe.  Lucy married young and was in the process of divorcing. Robert fell in love with her and began pursuing her.  She rejected his passes, but he became so obsessed with her that he shot and killed her one night when she was walking home with her father.  He tried to kill her father, but the gun jammed.  He ran off and ended up killing himself.

answered by Carolyn Martin G2G6 Pilot (119k points)
OMG!  That is so awful!
Such a tragic love story.
+12 votes

I discovered a potential 'love story':

John HAYWOOD, my great great grandfather, married my great great grandmother, Johanna, in 1869 in Ottery St Mary, Devon.  One of the witnesses to the marriage was a lady called Jane. Johanna sadly died shortly after childbirth in 1875.

John remarried, this time to a lady called Eliza in 1878.  They were married for 24 years, but no children.  Eliza died in 1902.

John married - again - in 1903.  The lady he married was the Jane who was a witness to his first marriage!  She had never married, and when the two were wed, he was 59 and she was 56.

What do you think? Was this a love match? Did she wait especially for him - or just wait?

answered by Ros Haywood G2G6 Pilot (450k points)
edited by Ros Haywood
Wow, you could make up all sorts of scenarios.  I think Jane was always a family friend and after his second wife died, he saw Jane in a new light and fell in love.  Mature love is different than 20-something love.
+11 votes
I have a love story and a good thing my grandmother was cremated, so she can't roll over in her grave, even though she is the source of the story.  Her father was never without a Valentine.

My great-grandfather, Joseph Williams, was supposed to have a childhood sweetheart named Arilla Nichols.  Her parents were against the marriage, probably because they were of higher social status.  So in 1902, they each married another.  She married Charles Apple, who turned out to be an abusive alcoholic.  They divorced after 1910 (according to census records).  She remained single and worked for a living.

In the meantime, Joseph became a successful mechanical engineer.  He married a beautiful, young actress who lived in the same boarding house as he.  They had a son in 1907, but unfortunately she died soon after of tuberculosis.  He then married Ada Betts.  She proved to be a loving mother to his son and they had 3 more children.  They were married 27 years until her death in 1935.

Now it seems he must have been in contact with Arilla because she was now free and they married in 1935.  They were married until his death in 1943.  Poor Arilla was alone again.  She lived to be 98 years old in 1976.
answered by Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz G2G6 Pilot (236k points)
+10 votes

This is a difficult one.

The first who comes to mind is my father, who had a heart attack on Valentines Day and died the next day. I already invited him to dinner, though. (I always made sure to get my mother a Valentine card.)

The family story is that my grandmother’s parents ran away from Germany to get married, and settled in Iowa. So a brick wall great grandmother is a good valentine story.


answered by Kay Sands G2G6 Pilot (173k points)
Great story, Kay!!
+10 votes
There is not a birth, marriage of death on Valentine Day in my family or in my husbands family so its been hard making a choice. My great grandparents William Williams https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Williams-47597 and Mary James https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/James-10675 married on 13 February 1875. I am sure that they would have been each others Valentine in 1875. They went on to have six children, including my grandfather. Their marriage lasted 42 years before Mary passed away in 1917.
answered by Joan Whitaker G2G6 Mach 4 (49.2k points)
Very sweet!!
+8 votes
I was surprised to discover that there's an epic love story in my family tree. A distant relative posted this letter. It reminded me to post every small thing I have so that others can see. I love knowing about this couple! They are from 18th century England. This g. grandma was shunned by her family for running off with the stable boy.

answered by Libby Park G2G6 Mach 1 (12.6k points)
Libby - This is week 7 in your blog link - but thats not important.

A great story otherwise. Thanks Libby
Ack - thought I fixed that. Thanks
I noticed that the children and descendants of these two are linked to the wrong couple of the same name here. Not sure what to do about it.
I guess the blog link cannot be changed.The title is correct though..

You have not linked the letter writer so we cant see. But if they are on wikitree, you should be able to remove the children from the current parents and relink them to the correct parents...
This is Effie's page. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Woods-7173 There is a mention of a letter, but what is stated doesn't match up with earlier ancestors, from her  g.grandfather on, that are posted. I don't have enough source material (marriage records, birth records, etc). to change anything, so I'm leaving it as is. Maybe Effie got it all wrong, and this is correct. It's an interesting time line, going all the way back to the Puritan migration. It has the first Willards arriving in America in the 1600's. Something is off
+8 votes
My 2x g grandfather's name was Valentine Seifert, he was born around 1822 in Bavaria Germany. He came to the US with his parents when he was 5 yrs old. He passed away in 1904 after being hit by a train. He lived in Hamilton, Ohio
answered by Dallace Moore G2G6 Mach 3 (30.3k points)
+9 votes

My several times great uncle Alfred Watson Brien (A. W.) was born Feb 14, 1814. He was an interesting character, he left Tennessee and settled in Mississippi. He practiced law in Vicksburg and was highly interested in local politics. He was married twice; had one daughter by the first wife. He married 2nd Amanda Cowan. I have no doubt that they were in love, but I also think she had money and land. They were right in the thick of things during the Civil War. The confederate army retreated to Vicksburg nearby his country home. His office was in Vicksburg, which was besieged by the Union Army. A.W. was not a secessionist. After the war he was caught up in the events and politics of the reconstruction era.

answered by Anne B G2G6 Pilot (970k points)
edited by Anne B
No profile for Alfred, Anne? He definitely sounds like an interesting bloke!!
Duh! Of course there is. I added a link.
Um Anne, are you and Liz Shifflet related? Because she created that profile and added family knowledge according to the sources..

Just curious!!
Yes I meant to mention that. Definitely related. I was doing research on that family and came across her well done wikitree profiles. They were my first introduction to Wikitree, and I met a cousin. Our common ancestor is Elisha Brien, father of A W
So Anne, if I can ask, how come your tree is not here?

I see Liz's descent but not yours.
Mostly because I'm bored with my own tree. I'd rather be doing new research and I can't find time to add my family. I jumped into problem solving messes when I was brand new here, and haven't stopped. Lots of my family is here but I find the prospect of creating profiles for my parents and grandparents absolutely daunting (too much information).

I actually thought 52 ancestors might force me into adding or improving some of my own tree.
I can understand that.

I manually created all the profiles from the Software I currently use.

The new discoveries in my tree, are all on wikitree but not on my hard drive. In some ways, putting my tree on wikitree is MY WAY of keeping the family tree safe since it is out there "in the cloud." Having added the new discoveries to wikitree, I now cannot be bothered to add them to my software as well. I don't really need to. So I won't be terribly upset if my hard drive should crash - this is a 6 year old PC that still runs Windows 7. The family tree is safe.
I am blessed with EXCELLENT genealogists as cousins :D (Kimbell Everingham and Joe Sneed are also cousins)

Anytime you want to take over management of A.W.'s profile Anne, just send a trusted list request letting me know. Love what you did for him for the challenge!

I'm in a quandary about this week's challenge. I'll post more in an answer later today.

Cheers, Liz
+5 votes

I have decide to do my cousin Karen Wood and Michael Harris since they got married on February 14, 1976 in Mobile, Alabama. Here are the links for Michael Harris:https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Harris-31336 and Karen Wood link:https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Wood-22291.Here is picture of the family after the wedding that day.500px-Woods-9911.jpg

Karen and Michael is the couple in the middle and the two people at the end of them is Karen's mother and dad.


answered by Linda Barnett G2G6 Pilot (238k points)
edited by Linda Barnett
Know the feeling Linda!
+13 votes

Here is a romance from the "horse's mouth". My grandfather, Peter Stoner (https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Stoner-632), wrote his autobiography (for the family, unpublished) before he died. It included the story of his falling in love with his wife, and their marriage. His second year at U. C. Berkeley would have been the school year of 1910/1911. Peter and Edith got married Christmas of 1913. What he didn't mention in this story is that during this period, Edith got typhus, and almost died. Her hair all fell out. It was still growing in for her wedding photo.

"During my second year at U. C. Berkeley, my roommate, Ira Forrey, had a younger sister, Edith, to whom he wrote regularly. He sometimes shared her letters with me, and I fond them very interesting. Having known the whole Forrey family for many years, and Edith as a little girl, I finally wrote her a letter. She answered my letter, and an occasional correspondence for the rest of that year became regular after I started teaching in Pasadena. Edith was teaching school in Kansas, and at the end of her school year, she was coming to California to visit her sister, my brother's wife, in Orange, California. Just accidentally, of course, her train was arriving in Los Angeles on a Friday afternoon, just about the same time that I would be coming down from my teaching job to do work on the family ranch in Orange that weekend. Edith's sister, Ethel, wrote to me and told me the situation of the country girl who was coming to the big city, and she wanted me to meet her there, and bring her down to Orange.

"Of course I met Edith; I took her to dinner and then on down to Orange. One Saturday I took her up the incline road on Mount Lowe, and we hike to the top of the mountain. On another day we went over to Catalina Island and spent the day, and there was developing a love between us.

"Edith soon had to go to Kuna, Idaho, to live with her mother and her brother, Ira. The next summer I visited Idaho to see my old friend Ira, helping with his work in the daytime, and in the evenings Edith and I took long walks in the countryside. We talked and embraced as lovers will. Eventually I proposed and told her not to answer right away, but to think it over and talk it over with her mother. Two or three days passed, and I received no response. So when I asked her if she had talked it over with her mother, she said she didn't think it was her mother's business; she thought it was her affair and it was to be her decision. So I went with her, and we did talk it over with her mother, and asked her mother's approval. Her mother said she had no objections. I told her we really wanted more than that. We wanted her blessings. That she gave us.

"We decided we would be married the next winter at Christmastime, when I had my vacation. Before I left to go back to California, we spent a great deal of time planning the house we would build in Pasadena. It would be close to my school, so things would always be very convenient and I could always come home for lunch.

"I returned home to California, and needless to say from this time until the next Christmas the mails were busy carrying love letters back and forth. As in my boyhood days, it seemed Christmas would never come.


Peter writing love letters

"But it did come, and I prepared to go to Kuna, Idaho, where Edith and I were to be married. It happened that the worst storm in several winters was raging and my train was delayed. It was snowbound in many places, and we had to wait for a snow plow to clear the road before we could proceed. Consequently, we were about two days late in getting to Kuna. I supposed that my friends and wife-to-be in Kuna knew the condition of the roads and the train as well as I did. I supposed that the Kuna station kept informed as to the location of all trains coming their way, but this was not the case. The only word that my friend could receive about the train was simply that the next train would be at such a time. So for two days Ira and Edith had met all of the trains coming in from my direction. I was not on any of them. At the end of two days, they decided that I must not be coming as they had heard no word from me. They did not know that my train was died up many miles away in a snowstorm. Edith thought I had deserted her. When the train did get to Kuna, it was so late that the conductor refused to stop and let me off. He went straight through, saying that he would stop at the next station, Caldwell, and I could get off there. In Caldwell I went to the livery stable and asked for a man to drive me out to Kuna. The manager said that he did not know whether he had a man who would care to make that trip. He would go and talk to his drivers and let me know. He came back in a few minutes and said, “Yes, I have one man who is willing to make the trip.” So I went back and watched the driver dress. He put on woolen underwear, two pairs of woolen pants and a pair of leather pants on top of that. He put on all of the heavy coats that he could find and an overcoat, and he was ready for the trip. I almost got cold feet myself, being dressed only in my California summer suit. However, he had plenty of lap robes and materials. So I wrapped myself up and kept warm, and we made the trip to Kuna without any difficulty.

"On arriving we found a very surprised bride-to-be. She thought that I had decided not to come. She thought that I had decided not to get married and had stood her up, but when she found the difficulties that I had in arriving, I was forgiven and welcomed with loving arms. Due to the weather conditions we had a private wedding, made our preparation to leave, and went back to Pasadena and a new apartment that I had rented, ready for Edith's arrival. The love which had blossomed between us grew in to a great love. It sees that God had chosen us for each other. We both had the same background, the same strong Christian faith, and we spent many happy years together with a love growing still greater."

Peter W. Stoner and Edith Hazel Forrey wedding photo.

Peter W. Stoner and Edith Hazel Forrey, Christmas, 1913, Kuna, Idaho


answered by Alison Gardner G2G6 Mach 2 (25.2k points)
Wonderful post and photos, as always, Allison!!
OH my gosh what a wonderful love story.  Thank you so much for sharing this.  It has made my day
+7 votes

I struggled with this week's prompt. While it's certainly not a romantic story, I ended up going with my great-grandmother, Clara Lockhart.


answered by Leanne Cooper G2G6 Mach 3 (33.2k points)
To lose your mother and 2 siblings at the age of 7 is definitely tragic!!

The Lockhart connection was inspired as well.

Thanks Leanne.
+8 votes

I agree with everyone that has said this is a hard one so far. I wish I could say I was related to George Burns or Gracie Allen because they had, to me at least, one of the greatest love stories every. I've been reading George Burn's book "Gracie: A Love Story" and it proves it to me more and more as I read it. Just the facts support it to though, I mean they were married for 38 years and he loved her until his death another 32 years! That's almost as long as they were married. I can pull two events from my family out of my "tree" though.

So, the first would be my great-grandparents Joseph Peter Frank and Theresa Rosella (Rieger) Frank. The reason I think of them is because of their death dates. See Joseph died on December 15th 1954 and Theresa died just 3 days later on the 18th. Now they were only in there late 50s. They had been married for 38 years so it makes me think Theresa died of a broken heart. Scary thing is this happened also in the case of their son Joseph and his wife June, my Grandparents, but in their case my Grandmother died first and it was 17 days apart. 

The second has a much closer connection to Valentine's Day. Lulu Emily Killips, my 2nd Great Grand Aunt, was born on Valentine's Day in 1878. Sadly though she died in 1882 at the age of 4.

answered by Amanda Frank G2G6 Mach 4 (40.7k points)
edited by Amanda Frank
+8 votes

I'm in! Not with an ancestor named Valentine (I've been working on Valentine Peyton/Payton profiles for ages... the brick wall to my Robert Peyton is which Valentine is his father). But I did find an ancestor who was born on February 14th - my 7x gr-grandfather John Manson. And I haven't worked on his profile since 2016! (It shows, too.)

So this week I'm working on John Manson, born 14 February 1702.

Cheers, Liz

answered by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (297k points)
+7 votes

I'm sure I probably have some ancestor who was married today (14th) and I really should know, but just can't think of one at the moment!

So today I concentrated on building the profile for the first Valentine in my branch of the tree Read-4051

He has been driving me a bit crazy as I just couldn't find the original source for his baptism - and I can't be certain when/where he died as strangely there were several Valentine Reads in the area and the burial registers don't tend to give ages at burial.

I'll now work on Valentine senior! 

answered by Michelle Wilkes G2G6 Pilot (104k points)
+7 votes
My “Valentine’s” baby is my 3rd g-great grandfather Francis Shave Jr.  https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Shave-113 b 14 February 1782 in Ringwood, Hampshire, England. Francis was the eldest child of five, and his parents, Francis Sr. and Ann Corbin, jumped the gun a bit, for they weren’t married until the following 1 October in the larger parish church at Christchurch.

What makes Francis’ story a bit unusual is that his father Francis Sr. began life as a mixed-blood Native American/Northeast African slave in Jamaica. Francis’ father was taken from his mother at the age of five or six and sent to England to serve as a “Page”.

Pages were a sort of ‘fashion accessory’ to wealthy women in the 18th Century. These little boys, chosen for their beauty, were dressed in extravagant livery and trailed behind their ladies (the wealthier the lady the more pages) carrying her parasol, lapdogs, parcels, and whatever else she wanted brought along.  

Almost without exception England’s “Great Houses” of the 18th centuries were built, expanded and supported by the Jamaican sugar trade. There were a dozen such Great Houses in Hampshire alone, one of them, Sopley Manor, only a half mile from Kingston, Ringwood, Hampshire.

As pages grew into adolescence they might be dispatched to work in the stables, the gardens, the maintenance crews or the scullery, or sent back to Jamaica to work in the cane fields. Though under English law they were not technically "slaves", they were not paid, nor free, and it was against English law to teach a Jamaican servant a trade. But the occasional Lord and Lady developed a deep fondness for a boy, and wished him well. Under such circumstances a quiet arrangement might be made with a village family, usually a tradesman who could use the added labour of a healthy teenaged boy. A stipend was paid to the tradesman’s family, the teenager was baptized as their son in the village church, learned the family trade, married a village girl and went on to lead the life of a working class Briton.   

One can only begin to imagine the disbelief and joy with which Francis Sr. must have found himself, not only a free man, but taken in by one of the English Shave families in the area, baptized and given their name, wed to an English wife and the father of a family of English children who were as accepted by the community as any other.  

Francis Jr. married Lydia Lockyer https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Lockyer-287 at the age of 20, and they went on to raise a family of 11 children, one of which was my 2nd great grandfather Robert Henry Shave, to whom he taught the craft of thatching.

In the 1851 English Census he is found living next door to Robert and family In Kingston, Ringwood, Hants. He is a 62-year-old widower, whose occupation is “Formerly Thatcher”  

Francis Jr. passed from this world on the 4 Dec 1858 in Kingston, Ringwood, Hampshire and is buried in the churchyard of St. Paul’s Church, Bisterne, the church which serves Kingston.

We had no clue that my great-grandmother Susan Ann Shave was 1/4 Native American/Northeast African until in September 2016 at the 63rd Annual Cavel Family Reunion we decided to test all of William John Cavel  https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Cavel-10  and Susan Ann Shave’s https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Shave-104 11 surviving great-grandchildren. Another dozen or so gg-grandchildren also tested.

Since I have both Native (Tuscarora, Lenape and Mohawk) and African ancestry I’d never questioned the stretches of Native and African DNA on my chromosomes. But I administered the Cavel/Shave project and when my cousins’ results began returning, all with matching stretches of Native and African DNA that could have come from the only ancestry we shared we were stunned.

I had documented all our Cavel/Shave lines with the help of cousins still living in the area my great-grandparents left in 1872. I still have the meticulously copied parish records, marriages, births, deaths from trips to Winchester in the early 1980s to consult parish records stored there. The Cavels, married, birthed, baptized and died on a Swiss timetable. No slipping an errant 16-year-old in on them. On one baptismal record the priest has written in crabbed little letters, “This child has grown to eight months before being presented for baptism!” One gets the idea he did not approve.  LOL

Francis Sr.’s baptism puzzled us from the beginning. His “parents” were too young to have a 16-year-old child. If he was a relative why would he have been baptized as their child? Many from the area went off to the Newfoundland Banks and only returned once every four or five years, so you find couples marrying and baptizing three or four children in a single day. But never this. We were perplexed.  Where did this 16-year-old boy come from. And no, the 16 wasn’t a 6 - he fathered a child six years later and married soon after.

But here’s a case where DNA, and several months of research along with consulting with British historians who specialize in the history of slavery in 18th Century England, very unexpectedly, solved a long-standing puzzle.

I don’t know if Valentine’s Day was celebrated in Britain in the 1780s’ but I’m sure young Francis was the best Valentine’s Day gift Francis Shave Sr. ever got.
answered by Deb Cavel G2G6 (7.5k points)
You have such INTERESTING ancestors and relatives Deb.

Ever since I discovered that you are distantly related to Edith Cavill, I was somewhat interested by all these very interesting relatives you are related to!!

The Hugeunots you mentioned from Somerset in the Favourite Name Prompt from last week all but cemented this fascination!!
Hi Robynne,

I think the only "dull" ancestors are those we can't find anything out about. Once you learn anything out about someone they all have fascinating stories to tell. All you have to do is "listen", or in this case "dig". :)
+8 votes

I really couldn't think of any profile in my family that is appropriate for this occasion.  It may be a stretch to use my own story, but I am absolutely euphoric right now despite today being the first time since I have known my husband that I did NOT get flowers for Valentine's day.  After 3 weeks and 2 days in the hospital, today I got my husband back from the twilight zone and that is the absolute best Valentine gift I have ever received.  

Until 4 days ago, he was in cardiac intensive care with assorted tubes connecting him to all kinds of equipment.  It seemed like the song about the knee bone connecting to the hip bone is very true - what he needed to aid recovery of one thing seemed to have bad effects on another thing and it kept mushrooming as they tried to fix everything without breaking even more things.  He was sedated for over 2 weeks and after they let him come out of it, he was "confused" - that was the medical term they used to describe his disorientation from reality.  It seemed like he was having bad dreams while he was awake, dragging everyone around him into the scenarios.  He had CAT scans, MRI's, and an EEG that all thankfully showed 100% normal brain function, so it was hoped that his irrational behavior resulted from a combination of the long sedation, the lighter sedation on an as needed basis for the last couple of days when he became too agitated, occasional periods of dehydration when they tried to relieve the fluid surrounding his lungs, lack of adequate nourishment, and a few short episodes of hypoxia when he kept disconnecting the supplemental oxygen source.  We were becoming really concerned when he did not return to reality for 3 days after sedation had been stopped.  The next step in his recovery is a heart catherization, which could not be performed unless he is capable of cooperating during the procedure.

When I got there this morning, I got the best surprise of my whole life - I found him sitting in a chair for the first time and he is now 100% himself once again.  There is still a very long road to recovery, but he will have the catherization tomorrow and that will enable the doctor to assess the precise nature and extent of damage so we can address how best to repair it.  The final step in recovery will definitely be a transfer to a rehabilitation hospital, because it is absolutely certain that a significant amount of physical therapy will be needed.

So .... my Valentine entry is my husband's profile, although I'm embarrassed to draw attention to it, since I had barely started it but never completed it.  Now is certainly not the time to work on it, though - I'm not able to spend a lot of time on WikiTree nowadays - but I will endeavor to complete it when I'm back to a more normal schedule. 

answered by Gaile Connolly G2G6 Pilot (511k points)
Gail, you and your husband are in my heart and prayers. My husband (who is 77 and has muscular dystrophy) fell and broke his hip and femur on Dec 3rd and spent Dec in the hospital. That's really nothing to compare what you and your husband are going through, but I understand a measure of the exhaustion and worry you've been experiencing.

I just wanted to say hang in there, make sure to get as much rest as you can, and I hope he is 100% on the road to recovery now.

Hugs and all the best,

Deb in Calgary
Oh I am so glad you received this wonderful gift.  I  will keep you and your family in my thoughts.  It was not too long ago that I went through a similar thing with my husband.  I hope his journey to good health is quick and he returns home to you soon.    

Thank you for sharing with us.  

Sending wishes for joy to fill your lives
Hello Gaile, thanks for sharing.  Hope your husband is well on the way to recovery by now.  Here's hoping for many more happy years together.  

+5 votes

Posted here 

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks  Week 7 : Valentine

I have 15 members that were either born or died on Valentines Day.  I know nothing about most of them other than the data that has been found.  One family came to mind immediately when I saw this challenge.  The family of Minnie (Samples) White her story, what little I know of it, breaks  my heart.  When I was working on adding sources for her family I realized that 3 of the children and her husband all died on the same day.   I then decided to look at the death records to see why.  I originally thought maybe a car accident or a house fire.  I did not expect to find what was on each of the records.  

The order of the events is not know by this writer but the outcome is known.

On 14 February 1932  while Minnie was in the hospital after having her 7th child,1 her husband, Bolton White went home and changed their lives forever. Bolton struck his oldest daughter Louise White ,who at the time was twelve, in the head with a poker fracturing her skull. He then struck, three and a half year old,  Hilda White in the head with a poker fracturing her skull. He used a hatchet and struck, five and a half year old,  Elen Joan White  in the head fracturing her skull. All three girls would die that day from their injuries.   He struck eleven year old James White in the head with a hatchet fracturing his skull.  James survived the attack but died on March 1, 1932 from complications of a skull fracture.  On 14 Feb 1932, Bolton dead by his own hand, from a gunshot to the chest.  

I cannot imagine the pain and sorrow Minnie and the surviving children felt. To always have a day which is associated with love become one that would be remembered as the worst day of their life.  I have looked to see if there are any newspaper articles that may help explain why, then I realized even if I found them there would never be an explanation for what went on that day.  



As told by a family member from William Patterson Samples line to the author



answered by Mel Lambert G2G6 Mach 2 (28.9k points)
+7 votes

Peter and Amanda Pettyjohn

“Two buried in one grave aged man and wife together in death at Marysville.”[1]

This is a story of my two times great grandparents, Peter and Amanda Pettyjohn.  Peter and Amanda were married December 15, 1852, in Van Bruen County, Iowa. They spent their married life together living in Iowa and Missouri farming and raising eleven children.

On February 4, 1920, Peter passed away. Amanda was seriously ill at the time of her husband’s death but not so much that her death was anticipated. When the preparations for Peter’s funeral began that day, Amanda cried, “Wait only a short time and we will go together.”[2] Approximately twenty-one hours after Peter died Amanda departed to join him.

Peter and Amanda had spent sixty-seven years together in marriage and died very close to Valentine’s Day. I do not know what their day to day life was like but in the end, Amanda did not want to go on without Peter. This year on Valentine’s Day I will think of them.


[1] “Peter and Amanda Pettyjohn,” obituary, Knoxville (Iowa) Journal, 20 February 1920.

[2] Ibid



answered by D D G2G2 (2.9k points)
edited by D D
+6 votes
I have a Valentine in my family, and his obituary,while accurate, doesn't do him justice. His dad was named Valentine as well.

answered by Alex Stronach G2G6 Mach 1 (18.7k points)

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