#12: Alfred Francis Hamel
My number 12 ancestor is my great-grandfather, Alfred Francis Hamel. He was born in Suncook, New Hampshire to Eugene Hamel and Celanise Lefebvre in 1896. He married Clara Laplante in July of 1916 and had many children including my grandfather, Robert.
That's only the beginning of the story! My mother tells me that he was known as "Mr. Fix-it" in Newburyport, Massachusetts because he had his own repair shop in the downtown area. I'm thinking he worked on appliances or some of the first refrigerators. He also had a ton of keys as he made them for a living. My mother told me that it was like that show "Pickers" and that the shop was like a Picker's dream.
The sad thing is my grandfather never really talked about his father much. Alfred and Clara filed for divorce some time after my great-aunt Doris was born. I'm not sure what the issues were. But, I can tell there were quite a bit. I've never seen a picture of him like I have for my other great-grandparents. My aunts and uncles think my grandfather had pictures. That would make sense as he took a TON of pictures in his lifetime.
My aunt recently got a box full of pictures my grandfather had in storage. She has yet to go through them all. She thinks a picture of Alfred might be in there.
I should also note that Alfred served honorably in the Navy. There's a history of Hamels serving in the military. My grandfather was one of the first people in the Air Corps after all. His son, Alfred Francis Hamel Jr is actually buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
Alfred also had a house on Plum Island, Mass. It's not that far from Newburyport. How do I describe Plum Island? Beach houses. Lots of beach houses! He enjoyed fishing and fixing things.
Alfred came from a long line of Hamels which date all the way back to the original 200 settlers of Quebec. We descend from this settler, Charles Hamel. I hope we get a picture of him some day! Just need to dig through my grandfather's stuff! Or maybe my aunts and uncles have a picture. Time will tell!