Friday, December 07, 2007

Cannot let Pearl Harbor Day Pass . . .

. . . without mentioning a familial tie to December 7th.

December 7th, you see, is also the birthday of my mother's mother (or "Nanny," as we called her). Her husband ("Pop-pop" to us) often marked the event by observing, "One day, two disasters."

She was born December 7, 1907, in County Cork, Ireland, and turned thirty-four on Pearl Harbor Day, a Sunday. The attack would have come directly after lunch, New Jersey time, as she tended the kitchen in her family's walk-up, while her two infant (just turned three months-old) twins (one of whom would grow up to be my mother, the other my Aunt Peggy) probably napped close by.

Pearl Harbor, of course, is at the front rank of "Where were you when you heard" moments of the twentieth century, along with the death of FDR, the shooting of JFK, and 9/11 (along with the Challenger explosion--put that at the front of the second rank). So it was with great curiousity, as a teenager, that I asked Nanny: what was it like, having Pearl Harbor interrupt her birthday? What happened? How did she hear?

Her answer: "I forget."

Oh well. Today is the hundredth birthday of Nanny Fox, who, years ago, found herself in heaven before the Devil knew she was dead. Happy birthday, Nanny, and Up the Irish.

1 comment:

DesertRose said...

There is never a day that goes by that some memory or laugh from Nanny is not in my thoughts. We are all blessed to have had her in our lives.