The oldest of four children, I was raised in suburban Cleveland, Ohio. My father was a electrician/repairman in the coin operated machine industry. Our basement was like an arcade with a jukebox, a pinball machine, 2 pool tables (regulation and bumper), a spin poker machine and a shuffle alley bowling machine. Needless to say we were the most popular house on the block! My Mother was an old fashioned stay at home mom who never learned to drive but could cook up a storm. My maternal grandmother lived with us and I would marvel at the number of cousins she had and wondered how she remembered them all. Sadly, no one thought to write down the identities of all the people in her photo albums which now are just old photos with no context. My dad's maternal Grandmother, whose maiden name was Foster, lived with us for a couple years before her passing and would tell us that she was related to Stephen C Foster, a connection I have not been able to prove yet. Because of the influence of these grandparents I was always interested in family history though didn't really pursue it until recently.
Following graduation from high school I enlisted in the US Navy. After basic training and OS'A' school I was assigned to the USS Bausell (DD-845), a Gearing class destroyer homeported in Yokosuka, Japan, spending the last two months of the Vietnam War conducting Naval Gunfire Support (NGFS) north of the DMZ. In addition to the Bausell I served on the following ships and shore commands during my career:
I retired in 1993 after 21 years service having visited over 40 countries on every continent except Antarctica.
After retirement from the Navy my wife and I decided to stay in Virginia Beach so our 2 teenage daughters could finish high school without having to be uprooted. I worked a variety of jobs and two years after retirement began driving a taxi cab in Norfolk. It turned out to be the perfect job for me. I was my own boss. setting my own work schedule and I really enjoyed meeting so many people. I remember 9/11 I was taking an Air Force Sgt to Langley AFB from the airport when we heard the news. I immediately volunteered to return to active duty but being just months away from 30 yrs total service and transfer to the retired list from the Fleet Reserve, the Navy would not let me return to active duty.
In 2005, after several years of physical decline I was diagnosed with "Kennedy's Disease" or Spinal Bulbar Muscular Atrophy, a rare progressive degenerative neuromuscular disorder caused by a mutation on the X chromosome. The symptoms are very similar to ALS, though progression is much slower. I had to stop driving in 2009 and the following year relocated to Fort Myers, FL. Now I spend my days working on family history, doing data entry for the World Archives Project through Ancestry.com, playing bridge several times a week and spending way too much time watching TV.
The United States is a nation of immigrants. This is no less true for my family. Of my eight great grandparents four were born in or near Germany and one was the daughter of German immigrants. Of the remaining three, Henry N Thompson aka LaVie is the son of Spanish (Basque) emigrants; and Mary (Foster) Krakan is the daughter of English emigrants. The remaining great grandparent, Carrie (Francis) Thompson has roots going back to Palatine origins through Noffsinger and Pfleger, Scottish Quakers through Erskine and another Thompson line, and New England Puritans through Jones and Mayne. Through her I have been able to trace this branch to Scottish nobility, counting Robert the Bruce as my 18th Great Grandfather.
Besides trying to break through the brick walls, I'm particularly interested in the Puritans of the Great Migration, especially the members of Rev T J Hooker's congregation who settled Hartford.
I'm doing what I can to clean up the profiles of Puritan families and merge duplicates where ever possible. I also participate in the World Archive Project helping to create searchable data bases of various records.
Have you taken a DNA test? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.
On 23 Jul 2019 at 04:50 GMT Drika (Aucamp) Brown wrote:
I found your profile through the veterans sticker section. Could you please add the emblem for the South African 1st Infantry Brigade to the list of Insignia? Military service was mandatory for South Africans at the age of 18 and lasted for 2 years. The insignia features a Springbok (Antelope) and is the National animal for South Africa.
Thank you for the valuable work you do
Regards Drika (Aucamp) Brown
On 16 Jun 2019 at 23:06 GMT David Wilson wrote:
On 28 Jan 2019 at 05:53 GMT Darlene (Scott) Kerr wrote:
On 4 Nov 2018 at 14:26 GMT SJ Baty wrote:
On 20 Oct 2018 at 12:08 GMT Melanie Paul wrote:
Do they even exist? (Example: my mother was a WAAAF, so the RAAF badge would not be appropriate for her.)
On 2 Sep 2018 at 16:20 GMT Deb (Lewis) Durham wrote:
I am working on all of the Congressional Representatives from the state of Rhode Island as a personal project. I requested TL access to Wilbour-39 on Aug 12 and am still waiting.
Hope to hear from you soon.
On 15 Dec 2017 at 11:08 GMT Michelle Erskine wrote:
Kind regards Michelle Erskine
On 19 Nov 2017 at 15:39 GMT Evelina Staub wrote:
On 6 Nov 2017 at 23:57 GMT Abby (Brown) Glann wrote:
I hope you're doing well- it looks like it's been awhile since you've been on. I always enjoy stumbling upon your Governors additions across WikiTree :-)
It looks like your email box may be full or maybe you have a new address? The Team is getting some bounce notices. I hope everything's okay!
I look forward to "seeing" you back again soon :-)
On 26 Oct 2017 at 14:58 GMT Janet (Langridge) Wild wrote:
Hope you are well. Just dropped by to say thank you for your contributions to the community's shared tree. Every contribution is appreciated you are doing a wonderful job of support others. You obviously love what you do Thank you
Janet Member of the Wikitree Appreciation Team
Categories: Puritan Great Migration Project | European Aristocrats Project | Profile Improvement Project | Categorization Project | Cleveland, Ohio | Seven Hills, Ohio | Alameda, California | Charleston, South Carolina | Virginia Beach, Virginia | Fort Myers, Florida | Y-DNA Haplogroup R1a1a | MtDNA Haplogroup T1a1 | Thompson-9019