SquadCast S01Ep01 - "From my house... every New Years Day, I could hear the beat of the drums, getting ready for the [Mummers] parade."
DescriptionIt's our first interview, for me and my Mom, and we get to talking all about growing up in South Philadelphia in a row home on 11th and Porter. My Mom shares how her father was killed in World War II and how she lost my Grandmother at a young age. She also shares some of her happy memories with her Mom, her Grandma, her brother, and Uncles, how they were a tight knit group. We talked about how her happiest moment in life was the day my sister, Michele was born, and how she did more than she expected she would in her life.
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00:00 Hello, this is Jackie, Neal. It is January 13th, 2020, recording in Collingswood, New Jersey. I'm here with my mother. What's your name? Kathleen decosmo?
00:14 Okay. So today with my mom, we are working on a project where we are going to create a podcast talking about some of the really cool that Marie's that my mom and her friends have of South Philadelphia and growing up over there. And then raising a family over in South Jersey or in various parts of the Philadelphia metro area. So today, we're going to lay the groundwork and this audio couples with her portrait of which I made out of a fabric cyanotype. So, thanks for coming. I am you're welcome from
01:03 I'm from South Philadelphia.
01:06 Pennsylvania, where were you born? I was born in Philadelphia and what part of Philly South Philadelphia on Broad Street and I think the leave the hospital is called lying in bed lying in.
01:29 It was a smaller hospital. But so was it on Broad Street in South Philadelphia? What year? Were you? Born 1944?
01:40 Where was your home?
01:42 My home was on 11th and Porter, 1108 Porter Street in South Philadelphia. Was this the first house you lived in when you were born? I was born in and who, who live there? My mother, my grandmother, my uncle, my brother, and myself.
02:03 1108 Porter Street, so, Porter was between
02:10 Tell me where Porter is Porter, was between Shunk and Ritenour.
02:16 Between 11th and 12th Street.
02:20 So, it was a pretty small Straight Street.
02:25 It was a one-way Street bus. If you could three cars come, if they had to come go down. The street together was one of the bigger streets.
02:35 Okay. So, how long did you live in that house? Till I'm 16 years old.
02:42 So that was 1960. I believe I had already graduated high school so I could have been closer to 17.
02:52 So, where did you move to move to Beulah Street, which was about four blocks away. Is it for blocks south or north parallel Porter, Street, and cross street between the numbered streets or supporter is parallel to Broad Street. Then I think I have a vision of that in my head. So you were out, but were you still around 11th and 12th Street?
03:32 What's around in what way has kind of a porter? Is perpendicular to understand, right? So, how far far were you from Porter Street and 11th between 7th and 8th? And then it's 7th and then 8th, Puerto Vallarta home side and Shunk on the other.
04:03 The closer to 8th and 7th closer to 7. So you're going to be between Shunk and Porter closer to 7th, and I was going to say, what were the names of your parents?
04:23 My father's name is cordino, Messina and my mother's maiden name was Teresa monzo, minor name with an ID middle name.
04:41 What were your grandparents name? All four of them? And Anthony and on the Messina side it was gay, Messina and Michael Messina make out of
05:04 Well, my grandfather, Michael Messina had passed away when I was born. So I called my grandmother Grandmama's. Oh and Grandma, Messina. And my grandfather was
05:17 Grandpa Grandpa.
05:25 When I would talk to someone about her I would say she was Nona.
05:35 And what's your favorite? We were trying to be very American generation, was trying to be very American and like sometimes deny that we had Italian. Speaking people in the, it was like great that we spoke English and that everybody smoking. What's up?
05:55 Which I regret because I didn't bother picking up the language as well as I could have.
06:01 Speaking of which, what was your brother's name? My brother's name was, and still is Michael from the scene at Michael Francis masino, and I think it was a friend.
06:17 And do you have a middle name? I actually do my I was born Kathleen Carol, Messina. I don't know who the caller was. But I also took my God. Mother's name is Kathleen. Carroll, Clara, Messina.
06:34 Flower flower was my godmother. A lot of times. You took your Godmother's thing uncles and aunts.
06:48 Uncles and aunts. My my mother had a brother. Rick America. We call them Rick. He has four versions of his name and a brother Ralph monzo. What was going on in the neighborhood? Because his name was a Mariko and we shortened it and we call them. Mariko. Like I said his name, for sure. He was Marie, but I always pull them Marika, but I never really knew his Amerigo named after America. Whoever was the famous person from Italy named America. The story behind Uncle Ralph.
07:37 Mom said, there were three routes manzo's of that Generation. All my grandmother's side.
07:45 It was there were eight or nine brothers and sisters. There were two girls and I think Seven Brothers. The two girls. I believe her older there my brother, so in between so it was Connie.
08:09 Massena. Daddy. Want their married names.
08:13 Sure, I want you to say whatever. I don't know if I remember Walter first Elvira and then
08:24 They would have been my uncle, so I know them. Best Buy off of Uncle, Tony, Uncle Angelo, Uncle Al Uncle Jamesy uncle.
08:36 S46 Joseph Joseph, and my father would have been Italian names that they just changed too. Like wow. Was it Alberto in Italy? And I and my father was an infant and born in Italy because he came over. I think what he was 2 years old, so they all had Italian names and all spoke Italian, but I knew them by those names.
09:15 I haven't really heard of any Italian name for kids that turn into Joseph right now, honey.
09:32 Change the? I don't know about the art. Thou Cortina was the most Italian of all the names, my father worked in. I love that. All right. So, where did they live? Where did your aunt and uncle's Live? Well is funny because my I get 1108 Porter Street, my mother moved there when she was a teenager and with her brothers and they live further north and south Philly right next door. My grandmother was seeing him moved in.
10:09 And her family, all the boys and my uncle Ralph. My mother's Brothers became friends with the boys and my father happened to be one of them and that's where they met and they started dating. So we so they originally originally lived in Northern Philly or did they just look a little further north? I can only store in South Philly and then they moved.
10:54 Where they threw things, and
10:57 My brother will go there with a BB gun and try to shoot animals running.
11:13 How to make sure I got that one on tape, like a couple doors down next door and they started dating. And interesting story is they both had the back back back bedrooms, which faced the Ali's Graves we had Ali's. So they would say goodnight never go in their bedrooms and open the windows and talk through the night. My mother would say that's so cute. And it was a song called The Boy Next Door, very famous song. That really was like there's song, Sweet.
11:53 Far away over here. Okay. So here's something. I would love. If you could do, if you can close your eyes and using really descriptive words. Could you describe the inside of Nonna's house of your grandma? And I have dreams of houses. I lived in on this answers all the time. My grandmother's house or our steps and my grandmother Mazo steps were together and we had a screen door, put a brand new screen door up. Once I'm in the wind caught it while I was coming home from school and
12:37 Through me upside down and I hit my head. Right? And it is stitches and everything from the force. They didn't know what screen door is is like, they didn't know that it was the win. His son. They fly open. Remember that. And we had a vestibule and then there was a living room and to the left of the living room. There were always two easy chairs and a rocking chair. Where everyone the ladies would talk and sit there and then we have a TV when we got a TV, finally, I guess around 1950 49 and a couch and then
13:17 You open the door. Is there was a dining room, but there were like footprints on the ceiling because we had like,
13:26 We had like you so much but we decorated things on the, right as you enter.
13:39 It was really funny because when my Uncle Rick we come down, he would grab a hold of the soffit, or whatever you would call it and he would swing like Tarzan and put his footprints.
13:53 I think it was funny but always entertained on dining room with the door that went downstairs, but my grandmother was a dressmaker. So that was where she did her dress. She had a sewing machine and paper and cut them actually wasn't a pattern that would be a picture of a dress and she would make the pattern and then they were cleared away so we can have Thanksgiving and every Sunday chicken and
14:29 Spring chicken and spaghetti and meatballs. And then it's right past. That was the, it was a bigger house than normal and South Philadelphia. The whole houses that we would have our kitchen with the old fashioned chairs and a stove that they never used and a kitchen sink and refrigerator. I didn't have an icebox. We were new to get the frigerator freezer, but they had another stove downstairs cuz they were afraid of the gas stove, upstairs. They would use the top of the stove. But it whenever they do anything, they ran up and down the steps. What was different about the stove? In the face is my grandma. The first of all she wasn't used to any of these new things and she said it might start a fire. I knocked you never explain why the one downstairs was safer and she always said, she pulled over. If we had a TV or anything. She pulled all the plugs cause she said the TV turns itself on.
15:27 You couldn't understand how that ever whatever work. So she went around checking everything and unplugging things cuz she was afraid of fires again. Yeah, and then we had a, we had a, if you open the door, it was wonderful, dockyard cement but on the left were grapes growing over the side and on the other side was too thick trees, tomato plants basil. All wrapped up in the winter like with tar and and wrapped up like pick up Drew Fink like like something they could put around. It was kind of not too hard, but it's like rooftops or something like that kind of look like that and they would tie up all the trees and
16:19 And then we had Alleyways. Everybody had a rally racer. We newer Neighbors on the other side. Of course, my grandmother. Do you want the upstairs now? It wasn't a kitchen. It just was the the one stove was down there at the basement.
16:37 What's a wonderful mysterious place now that I call it? A big walk-in closet? That's the only way you can live in South Philly. It was a gigantic and I would go down there and I was fine. My grandmother shoes from when she was younger. And I remember that they were gorgeous shoes with pointy toes. Really like Victorian heels that? She had like three or four pairs down there and there was a before my mother got a washing machine. We have the ringer.
17:05 It's one machine. Would I have to take your clothes and then you had a boyfriend soon and then you put him through the wringer and then you would hang all your clothes down on the lines and it was tables with stuff on it. But in the back was where I can play and I have my little desk and I tied a lot down there by myself. I had all kinds of index cards and I was happy to be there. And then when I go into the right at that was a big wine Mill, where my grandfather made mine, that was all made out of stone and I don't know what he did or how he did it, but he made while I'm there. He didn't live with us cuz my grandmother and he were divorced before I was born.
17:47 And my brother, then decided he was going to put his trainings down there. So we had a whole thing of the page of trains. I think they're called Villages, and he built the stereo down there before. Anyone knew what a stereo was really not like you could go down there and bring your friends. It was too crowded to bring your friends. What it was like the mysterious place for us to go down, there. See now, but I didn't know he had it, it it in Philly, House of my grandmother made her wedding dress and they didn't do the story about how they had to reinforce all the walls.
18:44 The florist from downstairs cuz they're going to have so many people in there for this wedding vases with my grandmother. And she made the first bedroom, David in the first bedroom. They made the second bedroom, which was attached into a kitchen. So, they had their little apartment.
19:02 And then, my uncle had this little tiny room.
19:06 That we never go in. So you never go into his room and he was sleeping a lot. And then my grandmother was in the room in the back and like every child whenever she wasn't around, or my mother. I would go through every drawer and I was like, what is she going to give them to me, which I never did get that box doesn't work. Maybe we got them when she passed away, but she never never heard off.
19:48 And her room was so nice and cozy and the bathroom was a top like everybody had the same kind of bathroom. And now it's we had no air conditioning. So in the summer time when you went to the vet that there was a toilet with a window so you had to hear everybody's conversation across the currents. In the couldn't stay in there. And oh, and what was so, interesting was, when you go in our bathroom, there were a pair of shoes, painted silver.
20:23 Because they were my uncle's Golden Slippers. So I guess they were gold and he more than everything. Anybody could be in the New Year's parade. So every new years, he got up foot on the Golden Slippers, grab the umbrella. I want Santa.
20:46 Yeah, that's will get me have to touch on that later, right? At the Mummers Parade. They want to stop the Mummers Parade actually not recording this right now. It's just because it's goes to sleep. Well, I'll just say that the news was, they were going to make them stop, because they started out as minstrels.
21:07 And almost all of the comics painted, their my uncle didn't, but they painted, they got cork painted their faces black, cuz there was a lot of minstrel shows all over and now they say that was disrespectful. So they don't want that at Freeport of Philadelphia history, too late. It's too late. There was some idiots that rated up and down the street. We don't know who they were. They born from their faces. Black just said they were going to be locked up. It was just like it for razor and the groups have been there for years and we have friends who belong to them and it's a wonderful Club in a wonderful thing for kids. Growing up to be part of it is organized organized.
22:07 Untraditional in Malibu.
22:10 Everybody well-respected.
22:13 It's too much of a.
22:19 What do they say of the Philadelphia? And what street, where they March was only like 3 blocks away as so they had a line up the bands with line up before they would actually go. Every house in South Philly, became an open house. And if you as you woke up inside, if you go in that house, there was Sue point on dick head. There were cookies from Christmas and liquor out like all the the sweet Liquors have a shot of whiskey and some had roast beef and you were if you were called you just walked into one of their houses. Usually, you know, everybody but in the morning at 7 in the morning every New Year's Day, I could hear the beat of the drums.
23:08 Getting ready for the parades and then and then it would start rehearsing. We were so excited. So now now that I grew up, we were neighborhoods, people tagging people kind of stayed in one area and got kind of the Irish and another and then we're I moved to 9th Street was now what is now the Italian market? It was way up more North. Like we couldn't usually walk to it. We had to take a trolley or something, but where I moved on 7th street was almost like the Italian market, but it was the Jewish Italian market and it had almost everything the other Market had fresh cheeses and fresh.
24:08 Go buy chicken, they kill the chicken for you. If you want it all and stores shoe stores in everything said that neighborhood was a little more Jewish that I moved into but there was silver, Italian family. So won't be able Street every house that a porch which IV lost. I just ignored the front door about 6 or 7. Okay.
24:36 Yeah, but we will put it on our beach, chairs in the summer that we would sit out then, fill air conditioning. But anyway, so we love sending out there. So my mother Italian purse. If there was a great Jewish deli on our corner and we love the people there and it was the best sandwiches. But anyway, my mother was traditional to put when we lived at Christmas time, to put our speakers house. Cuz now, my brother is doing all this stereo stuff. So we will speakers out, front play Frank, Sinatra, and John 24 hours a day.
25:12 Christmas. And I just remember when I worked when I get them for the street getting off the trolley. Nobody was around, the snow is falling and I could hear the song music by and it was just some great memories. So my mother mousse is removed his near 7th Street. She gets her speakers out. She put so Frank Sinatra and the people didn't appreciate that.
25:49 Well, I mean, that must be where we get our music loud.
26:01 So, could you tell me where mama was from?
26:05 Well, I know she was born in the United States but her family. Yeah, okay, so my mother was born
26:15 What are Manana? Do you know the name of this town better than I do? It was. All right, and I forget the name of the little town. She was born the families from their, how many? I know I don't like the next Village down, who got us out on where your grandfather is from, and they were born in Italy and came over here. But this is the stuff that I know. They came over here and Uncle Ralph and Uncle. Rick were born in the United States, but they weren't naturalized. They were still considered Italian citizen. That's what Bobby told us.
27:12 So, they went back and forth to to see family and Italy, I think three times when they were very young when I became United States citizens, but which I have to follow up on. All right, but then, tell me where your, your father was from. I know, when my grandmother missing, it became an Italian Citizen. And I was about, I was maybe twelve United States in the United States citizens and she couldn't pronounce anything really. Well. She didn't speak that much, anguish and my brother would say,
27:49 Grandma tell me who's that President. They see if you wanted in the question. What's his name? And she said, all you mean to Hamma Hamma Lincoln Define?
28:17 He's painted them on the other side of the boot near, the hill cheese, from a little town, called Troy Troy and which is in there.
28:40 Recently, right, Anthony, so, he's just, he's a good historian for anyone who wants to talk to him all the time, with all the times in my Brooklyn neighborhood. They literally shut their doors down and leave for August and they go visit their family like and that's present day. So I think that was probably something that I wanted. I was wondering why they stop doing that and your family but it so it seemed like they did that when your mom was young when they did that they went by ship and I'm sure they were in steerage. They weren't? What does steward mean in nice places to stay serious, where they threw everybody else? And they were all together, everybody, slept and bunks together. She have bathrooms.
29:37 Some of them got really sick from that and end of the, as I understand the ride was never very smooth when you cross over and we didn't have jet. So if you wanted to fly you had to go over and probably took wait 12 hours, 15 hours for the Walmart, in the world expensive. They didn't have the money to do that babe. They came here to buy house and have a house and a car and a question. So why, when you did you ever talk to your grandparents about why they or your your no
30:22 You're going to seeing as it all to see why they last. Did anyone ever tell you why? I had asked, Italy. Guess there's a story about it. Oh, my grandmother. Who had seven boys, Massena.
30:33 Was afraid that the World War 1. I think I've just begun or ended and she didn't want any of her children to be drafted into the war cuz she had all the boys. So she came to United States and then my father got drafted into the army, the only one of the brothers and died in while he was in the service. So that didn't work out too, good for her.
30:57 He was the only one drafted but there was another Uncle of your presence. There will cause and all those are cousins.
31:04 My father's sister's children were all cut. My father was the youngest so when he was born, so was the sisters were having children. So he was Uncle to all these people and it was really there, all the same age as him face-to-face, when he's a little older, your first cousin.
31:30 Okay,. Great. They were, and I don't know, their names very well. I didn't follow that family. Well, that was in my grandmother Saturn of my grandmother, Messina and my grandfather, their family, but I knew my grandmother's family because she has cyst like five sisters or six sisters. All came to America. Armenia is so once one or two came. She lost her sister. She was so close with her sisters.
32:05 Three of them all the time. We was there. One is my average in your butt, one. Stay just one stayed in Italy, and it must have been so hard and I still talk to her about that. You know, how she did that.
32:20 Because first of all, they were told to America the streets are paved with gold and if so, then you've been Italy and, you know, they still have to go get water sometimes when the and make their own food. And and so they had at the time, they had no running water, hardly any heat. I guess they use fireplaces hardly any electricity or even there in a beautiful land and I had a wonderful homemade food and cheese is that they did the sort of personal getting a job. There were jobs. You could have a car and you can have a house and if you could do that, that made you a millionaire because most of the people York didn't have that. So she's a poor people, the ones that lives in the South so they came here and there was a
33:09 Streets. Were paved with gold. They will got job. Save, run businesses. My grandfather was a Shoemaker. My grandmother's sister's. Husband was a candy maker had a big Factory. Were you make candy? Very successful. So that's what they did. And they were Rich. They thought they were Rich, that they have running. But all I remember, my grandmother's house was shut the door and stop running. The pewter Love, Austin. Cuz if you open the door, if when he was on your wasted, if they had, keep shutting the door or your love, I don't know what she said about the water, but you didn't run the water because you didn't have much water and Italy. It was limited.
33:52 So, and I think they're ever you all the time for being so brave to do that to come over.
34:00 It was like one helped the other when they came over to get settled. And I remember her father was
34:11 I would have been hard to leave him.
34:14 You may not have even then. I don't know if he was alive when she left, I may be.
34:19 I don't know. I should never talks about that. But I remember she would write them all the time and send them all our clothes, all clothes would go over to them cuz they didn't have access to be able to get all this stuff and the pool lifeguard. Winter coats and back, would come, all these Cheese's fresh cheeses and whatever they could send you home. I got my grandmother has cheese and it must have been descendants of that one sister of her that we went to her house, this sister, right? So I went to visit to zap de Mando and he took us to see, I think she would have been my mother's cousin foreign land and not knowing what they had to do was say they are so like excited and happy and then I just brought the spa.
35:19 I'm looking at pictures of you as a Mike. This is the weirdest thing I've ever done is so cool because I think it just like half dog after one grandmother miseno. She was like a midwife and they they had Farmland. All of them had like a land and she would help people. They were pushy New World, Messina, Messina, if you have to choose what you could rub into it and make plans to do things for you. And I think she said, she may have delivered to they made like
35:58 I don't have some kind of cash to heal you, I didn't get it. I didn't see that much but that's what they told me. She used to do and she couldn't read or write the other hand. My grandmother Mondo who was younger than her was fluent reading and writing and because her father was the mayor, she was the person who did all the documents and it look like the kind, it was the Constitution the way she would write beautiful.
36:26 Like a calligraphy, something like that, was she fluent in English as well. Messina and Mongo could speak Italian partially speak English. But Armenia could write read and write in Italian, in Italian to English, but she, like, to speak Italian. She okay. Let's move on to a little more personal questions for you. So, can you tell me one of your happiest memories?
37:05 The day I became a mother and I saw Michelle. Well, I guess that's pretty. Here's some tissues if you never done and I could describe it because it's the time everybody got.
37:23 Anesthesia, and they just knocked you out. There is no such thing as birth of, you know, what is the growth natural? Nothing. You just went under that's it. And they let you go through the whole labor cuz I don't want to stop it and then they knock you out. So I never saw her. She was born and I never saw her and everybody else saw her and then they brought her over to me. Yeah, everybody saw. When I came through, they did you want to see?
37:53 And if they put her on the side and my arm, and she looked at me sideways and I swear, I recognized her and I said, so I know and I say and you were
38:20 The almost the same shirt. I said, I don't want anything. I want this natural cuz I wanted to hand soap.
38:33 I went to a small Hospital also on Broad Street. I don't think it was lying and I think we can Pennsylvania hospital. So I go into labor before you were induced because they were worried. You were a winter baby and we lived in New Jersey and we were they were afraid. We were there be a snowstorm, so there's never been an issue. So I wanted to get into switchman's. I delivered like five or six hours later. But as I was in labor, I said, this is really bad. I can't do this cuz you're screaming when your neighbor I said, please give me something. I didn't mean it. I didn't mean if I go and I need stopped, you hear me natural, but the good thing was a real me back to bed and I got up and went to the bathroom. I with everything like snaps. Right? Where was Michelle? And even Jerry I took me like 2 or 3 weeks.
39:34 The round was really just getting over her. Or what? Michelle was born in 1966. Jerry was born in 1969 and I was born in 1972, right?
39:59 I'm 75. A lot of happy memories and difficult memories.
40:11 I can't remember anything difficult. That was of course going through a divorce was difficult. That was real late. Is there any one particular memory about that that or is it all just the same memory?
40:30 In general, I had the feeling that I my mother always told me I was special and I sang everywhere for everybody or wherever I went, and so, did Shirley Temple. So let me know if she thought I would be Shirley Temple dancing, lessons and acted as modeling lessons and singing lessons, so I thought I'm going to be terrific and then maybe we'll go on to this more about another time, but I found I found out I'm a girl. I'm supposed to be a mother and I got to get married after high school and that's what I'm going to do. When I have fan up because my father died in the war, I can get a full scholarship to college and I thought I'm having a college. I'm just going to college. So I met your father and like everybody else we got married.
41:22 16, I met him married by 18 and I thought, well, I could still go to college, right? I can still do something and I
41:32 Without being real negative and terrible. What I went through, I found out, I can't, I got to stay home, and I was married to someone who someone who foot that was no, not the right thing that I should just stay home. And then that was the hardest part of my life up to that because I live with my grandmother and my mother, they did everything. Women did everything and I felt I could do everything to. I wanted to be a baseball player for God's sake. I lost my ex-husband wanted me to stay home. Don't move, stay with the kids. You should be happy. I don't have to work and I felt bold when they're ready to go to college and they're in school. I'm going to go to work so I can get their money for college. I'm going to do something and I found out when I got out of high school and they put me, we had a program where we could work and they put me in a pool of typist.
42:32 That's not for me. I'm not going to sit here and what it is. Something else. I want to do something and accomplish something. So I thought maybe I could do it later and I just got shot down and shut down. That was the hardest thing, find a car. So I'm not happy and my kids aren't happy and he's miserable. So
42:55 I had heard a lot of people.
43:09 But I don't regret anything and I have three beautiful children.
43:18 Can I, I know it's very hard for you and YouTube.
43:23 Yeah, that's it. That's hard. Watching the kids and they hadn't even affects a good thing.
43:31 So, will I
43:34 Anyway, hopefully we all learn something from it, and
43:39 Thanks for sharing that with me.
43:45 I'm very proud of my children.
43:47 Yeah, I have no doubt. You, you don't regret having children with Dad and everything, but I understand how difficult it was for you to, like you said to find the courage to leave and then raise kids on your own.
44:05 Let's go to the next question. Can you tell me about a person who has been kind to you?
44:12 She said, okay.
44:24 Well, I got to compose myself now, to get back on track. We can read that, and we're proud of what I did in my life. Anyway, Uncle Ralph was there, every minute, every second for us because we lost our father. Give us our father. He would come over to take a shopping again. If as we got older by the New Jersey, Uncle Ralph would take my mother.
45:01 Is my wife yet, he would take my mother everywhere and luckily my aunt. I didn't like to go anywhere. So
45:15 Nope, my grant. My mother, and my grandmother were inseparable. They were best friends. They didn't everything together. And then Uncle Ralph would make sure they got to where they had to go. Now. He didn't come and fix things, and maybe once in awhile or pain. They said all that stuff to take care of the house to the person that drove. And he would take everybody over and
45:43 And they were just, he was there all the time and the kids love them. He loves to be with my children till the day he died.
45:51 And everybody who ever, he was just kind of kind person and I still miss him now, but he died in 2015. He was 95. I think he's the kind of person. Everybody wouldn't be like that person. He was always smiling and happy, joking around with oil joke around all the time, but he was like, to be like him and
46:29 The whole Mazo family was sweet, even the people who we went and met everybody was so nice. My mother was a great person, really nice person. But Uncle Ralph stands out in there. It is for sure, considering to Rome to pick us up or Naples. I just got a Christmas card and he said, you're in my heart. Always. Can you tell me about someone, you'll always remember, we sent over house. So when I will always remember either they're gone because they passed away or because they moved away or so many people.
47:25 That I will always around.
47:28 You have a really good memory. I have a really good memory. I like, I remember how things smelled and looked and felt like
47:37 My Uncle Tom is a person that he was like Uncle Ralph. He was my mother. My grandmother's only brother out of all the girls.
47:49 He never had any children, so he still loves to visit my house, but I don't have my grandmother. And he loved my mother, and he was very light complected. You look Irish.
48:06 He was on my grandmother's side.
48:09 Armenia, brother complected. My grandfather was very light. My mother was very, like, she couldn't go in the sun ever. So Uncle, Tom was visited and Whitney married. This woman who wasn't Italian? Her name is now.
48:34 And I really smart woman and had a job. They had no children. They had a big, big, big house.
48:41 And he will come over and they just love me. And my brother more me than my brother cuz he wasn't around and they love my mother. They just, she was so attached to them. So one time they said and of course, I signed for them all the time. Will you come and stay want to stay with us? And we'll have so much fun. And I said, oh, yeah, so they took me into the big house where no children were around. Was no music playing and within like the second by the second day was crying. I have I never left my mother. I would always cry when I
49:25 I thought I want to go somewhere and then they Uncle Ralph would take me to the seashore with him, and he had to take me back cuz maybe you looked at Uncle Ralph. The same personality Uncle, Tom, and Chee oldest. His wife died as the years went by and then he left everything. You had his two sisters.
49:57 So, my grandmother got some of that inheritance and that was a nice. So remember him a little bit but what are you proud of in your life?
50:12 My children.
50:15 No, seriously, come on.
50:19 If I could raise three children, who are good citizens, that was Michael good citizens. Nice people.
50:28 Ann and didn't have any trouble from any of them compared to what other people are going through. Nothing.
50:35 Will you do you give us a lot of support? So I'm not sure if that's the trick to have. I feel like everybody else on this Earth to do something to make it somehow better and if that's what I did and nothing else. That was great. Cuz then they pass it on to other people. Can you remember a time in your life, where you felt most alone?
51:12 Martha Quinn, my mother died or divorced.
51:21 No, my mom had a problem with gallbladder. She had gallstones but they never diagnosed that they would say no.
51:34 Excuse me. Anyway, so this went on for years, she had this gallbladder, but that she would say and she belongs to the VA hospital was for soldiers because my father died, not be the best hospitals in the world, but that's where she went for her checkup thing to say, you're fine. You're fine. So I was divorced losing over in Medford at the time and she still lives in South Philly and she had an attack, she was in her sixties, and she called my Uncle Ralph. And they couldn't find me because we didn't have cell phones. I wasn't home.
52:10 And she went into the hospital with the attacking. It says you do have Stones week. This is an emergency. We have to remove these Stones so you stay overnight.
52:21 And I will do first thing in the morning. So they stay by, then. I knew where she was. I got to the hospital. So they went in to do the operation. They didn't have the simple operation. It was the regular.
52:33 They had to cut her open and everything and maybe because she had eaten or she didn't prep. She didn't prep for this operation. It was an emergency as she was being wheeled out. She aspirated, so she has all this anesthesia in her lungs, and it's basically throwing up, and it goes back into your lungs. So I was in the hospital. I saw her go by. She saw me, and then I see all these people running into this room.
53:02 Not thinking it was my mother and then they called me in and she's on a ventilator and they said she aspirated and and at the time I was with Doc and
53:15 Later, he had talked to some of his friends and they told him who were surgeons. Also. They said, whenever you ask for me, it's very costly. You pay a big price for that way after operation, cuz your lungs are are frozen, and you can't get whatever the bacteria that's going into your luggage that you threw out, just to tax your lungs. Like you just said.
53:43 Good luck with whatever, whatever, like, maybe pneumonia, whatever it does. So.
53:50 So, anyways, I was able to see her and then I would, I would go every day to see her and she was starting to get better. She still had the ventilator, and she was sitting up, and she had a tablet. She was writing notes to us. And here's my Uncle, Rick, again, cuz there's always a story about my uncle her brother and she
54:14 He's talking to me and she wants to say something and so she writes him a note and she gives him the note and he gets the pencil. They write Sarno back with your mom's doing pretty good. And you know, we're going to take her off the that. I don't want. You know what I was so glad that I didn't I think of it now all the time when she was like that. She always was worried cuz she had an aunt that died because when they went to do gallbladder operation, they found cancer. So there was no cancer. So I thought if I told Mom, you don't have any cancer, but I sent to her mom. When you leave this Hospital, you're going home with me. You're not going back to your house and she has like a big smile on her face. So, at least she knew that
55:13 I've said they wanted to take her off the ventilator I go in to see her and event and ventilators back in her never going and she's in a coma.
55:24 And the nurses are crying and the. I said, what happened? They said the doctor tried to get her off. That wean her off of that and it didn't work and they're never really, I'm bringing they made a comment like there's more ways to skin a cat. So they were really mad at this Doctor Who probably made was, was the first time, I don't know the date. I was dating a physician's. I'll get the time and I thought
55:54 What did they do with that? They do something wrong. He says, none of those things happen. That's the way it went. But what I regret is I never looked into that. Really, my mother shut his eye.
56:06 They would if he puts the veteran later in her again, and then she's in a coma and never comes out yet. I don't know why she went back in a coma ever had something happen when they were trying to take it out. I guess. She think she could hear me, but it's her day. She probably died within a week.
56:34 It is a couple days. I try to get her off of off of it and and you could see if she was going more and more in a coma and then it said my brother was in a lot of California. They said, you better call him back. He was in California for work. He always was traveling with me. It was a vacation.
56:57 But they think I'd hold to him the night. They brought her in the hospital and he was over in Norristown and hit what he regrets his. He knew my mother was going in the hospital, but he's got everything will be okay. And I will talk to her and say she seemed, okay, you're fine. You don't have to pay for and then I just called what time is it? You better get home and his wife tells me he really took a bit. He was crying at night would have nightmares, you know, so that's why I probably have this rapid heartbeat every time. I know that you get really nervous whenever we go in for surgery for and we have anesthesia on the first thing that you asked, are you getting anesthesia?
57:44 It wasn't much longer that the Jerry had his appendix out. Really. Yeah, and I was like,
57:52 We could be able to pause.
57:56 So, where was Uncle Ralph in in while my mom was in the hospital? It was he, he was around right after you took her to the hospital and take her to the doctor's or anywhere. She needed to go and he was always there for us, always, but
58:16 The one thing that was like, one of the saddest Parts thing that ever happened to me, and I'm sad and but I must say, in regards to that. My life is a child because my father was killed in the war which we didn't specify, but everybody would know that I bought. I was 6 months old the rest of my life from then on was to family and neighbors and Uncle Ralph and Uncle Rick spend all their time trying to make us happy, especially my mother and me and my brother trying to make her happy. So we became the jokesters. We were gently laughed and had fun in my mother just loves to watch his have fun. And when ever we were together, we would joke around and it'll be a happy time. So,
59:09 It is just hard to lose people when you do, I was in my thirties and now I have to Father no mother and
59:18 My brother had moved away, but I had Uncle Ralph, he was still there.
59:24 You guys used to travel together all the time. I used to love hearing Dockside with his best friend and my cousin, his daughter. Janice was a little bit more history, even though you don't want to talk at length about it. But your father went to World War II, you said he was drafted and he was in the room on fan.
00:00 Who is bugle, Corps, and The Story Goes, and maybe perhaps we'll talk about it later. But week, they had word that they were going to be home soon because of war was ending 1944 December and he went there. They allowed his team to go to see a movie and interesting part of it that it was not the team only sent so many guys could go into town and they put their names in a hat. And is he got your own? His his name was drawn to go into town. Did you see how my friend my friend James, he wrote about how his grandfather was on the same thing, is as gordinho, really? That he his grandfather had to remain back at the base. And he said most of his friends were
00:51 At the theater and he like he came back from the war and was absolutely miserable alcoholic. They couldn't talk about swear. I'll have to talk to James. He said, you should read it because I had put up that photograph. That is famous photographer. Robert Capa took a World War II and then you put up a list that you want to see. He wrote underneath that saying because I was like, I wonder if there's more photographs taken by Robert Capa of this area and he wrote back and said something about how it was his grandfather's, what do they call? Army Corps, Marine Corps, the core. I don't know.
01:38 And then I said, do you have our information because we have you know, we have like logistical information not so much first-hand accounts of anything and he wrote some stuff about it, but he said he had limited look at it on Facebook.
01:54 So, he goes to the theater organ and I can't work that day.
02:05 They had to know each other.
02:10 He's not allowed. That was a rough course.
02:14 I just think it's really remarkable. How you know you guys eaten you and Uncle. Mike just made a positive. Have a positive life, you know what time you're happy and you're good people, and you had upward Mobility.
02:46 The thing you got to remember is the war was over. And in another few months. The war was over and when everybody came back, that there was a aura of happiness and finally, it's over. So, I'm going to be great. And when I was born, I was born without a father and that's me. That was normal for your born before he died. I was wearing before he died, but it's nothing seemed different to me. I just have a loving family till I went to school and it was Father's Day and everybody's making something for their father. And and and I would always wish like my wish would always need from. I would hear my mother tell the stories. And when you would say, give a wish when your blood, your I would say, I wish my father. Could she always thought maybe it was a mistake.
03:38 So there was some sad times but nobody dwelled on that in my mother just what life was precious and that we were going and just she loved watching us have and I was Happy Days. It was the 50s.
03:51 Okay, so just to clean play, the story is that he's in Antwerp. He goes to the theater and then they begin to drop bombs for the Battle of the Bulge, and they drop a bomb. Her eyes are going to the surprise attack. And from what we understand is that he actually didn't, we don't know if he died from shrapnel, that he died from a heart attack. Most likely my mother had a visit visitor from the person soldier who said he was sitting next to my father in the theater, and he said, he was not touched by anything that he just I guess he just got there. Frightened. However, my brother and I agree that a person with tell my mother that that's true. It's like a peaceful.
04:41 It's sort of like if you can Envision a death, you'd wanted to be peaceful like that. Okay?
04:47 And then of course, we should mention that you remarried. How old were you when you remarried?
04:57 A 39 years ago was like, 40 yet.
05:05 Certain about 36. I think it was nice 939 years ago. 1980, I remarried.
05:29 If we got married in May, so you're 35 technically and so could you marry Michael D, as well as a big force of life, for sure. And for sure, we call him doc term of endearment and you know, he's the only dog we care about is there's lots of people that go by Dokken, you know, they're not important important. So
06:02 We can probably go into that more with the fun, memories with good, your girlfriends and stuff like that because there's a lot of great memories with dock. At least two is when I said everybody became our neighbors and everybody and we all even because the war was over, it was going to be a wonderful life for everybody. Wonderful. And so the same thing happened, my friends became my family. As we tell the story later on, we became my friends became like your aunts and cousins and suddenly the family, I didn't have, was there an end? Because of my husband's family that there were problems with. He took one, my uncle became like his uncle and
06:49 We have some really nice time with them.
06:53 If you could hold onto one memory from your life forever, which one would it be?
07:00 Considering you, remember everything one memory of something or like spiritual and away. Sometimes you have a lot of like for instance, that one story where you're on the bus or the trolley and the Charlie gets, all right.
07:26 Yes, tell me about that. First of all, I always felt my father was part of my life forever to this day and that he's been like an angel. Guiding me.
07:41 Cuz my mother told my mother had a virus me. Totally, she was talked to everyone, she met on the trolley. She would know everyone in the store and own a restaurant and she always half-hour got into, I've lost my husband in the war and everybody with it. And I'm like, oh my gosh of, I feel so fat and I would be like a story.
08:16 That we were on a trolley cart with a wooden trolley car going up, 12th, Street 11th Street. We just hop on that and go into Center City and every restaurants and shopping and it was a wooden old one season. We were facing each other in this particular section, and I was sitting by the window next to my mother and a Truck went by and fangs into the trolley and crashed. The right where I was sitting
08:42 And there was always all things off of it around me. The last broke and it just fell around me. That didn't touch me at all. Nothing happened to me and my mother said, oh my God, it's a mirror. Her father must have been with her for so I probably think that became my father's with me. I could get through this. I could do this.
09:07 Yes, so and I really truly believe that and I think I'm blessed to be able to believe that. So do you have another memory? That's like that that you will never forget.
09:23 Something like that, kind of think a happy memory or just one memory that I will never forget.
09:40 I don't know if I should sit on my own. Now, you are okay, love music and I always have music going on. In my head. There's a, there's a song always falling and my happiest memories or maybe just sitting on the beach in. Las Vegas is sitting there by myself by the pool. And then Frank Sinatra comes on his farts singing, or even another son. I think this is, I have the greatest life and I said that since I was 8, or 9 and 10, and I said, a lot of it has to do with Frank Sinatra, Just Singing. And
10:26 What time Dokken I were going to go over Frank. Sinatra. What's playing on the boardwalk? It was an outdoor theater before one of the casinos and he was appearing and he says, what he want to do tonight. I said I want to go to Atlantic City and I want to listen to Frank Sinatra singing this concert cuz I you could hear him on the boardwalk. And I just, I could hear the whole thing. Please take me, and he didn't like to do silly things when he said. Alright, so we go, we park at the casino and Frank Sinatra singing away, and all these people are dancing on the boardwalk, and he starts the Summer. Breeze can come in through the nose and lingered. There was like the breeze came into the ocean, and I was just like,
11:13 Oh my God, I can't believe I'm here. And I'm listening to Frank Sinatra and then out of nowhere and young couple of comes over runs over to us and said, we have to leave. If you want to come in there and say we have two tickets. You're kidding me. Do you want to go see the concert won't start with you. We want to give these to somebody but I know I know whenever I'm driving, especially or I'm anxious about something. I put on Frank Sinatra.
11:45 And that's how shallow I am completely completely relaxed. And just had a big thing on TV about him. And in the middle of it, Frank Sinatra song came on in Millbrook. Said if there's one person that should have never died, should have been Frank Sinatra. That's shall. I think it's a great way to sort of yourself and then you deal with it after you come down so good for you. How is your life is different than you imagined. Is there? Any particular part that was different than you? I never thought I'd live to be 75 since I've lost everybody.
12:44 Really my father 28, my mother 61, +. So
12:57 How is my life different than I imagined?
13:03 I did more than I ever would have imagined. I could have gone. I traveled long time ago. Fortune-teller told me you're going to travel a lot and I don't even know if I was married to talk or not, but I thought maybe or something and I always wanted to travel, but I did remember every single detail Which Wich locations to New York frequently, Philadelphia, Florida, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Netherlands.
13:54 UK coronavirus in UK. Did you go or did you ever get to go to Spain? We were never went to Spain. All around Bermuda. Welcome Mike. Was there 20? San Francisco, Arizona to San Francisco?
14:49 Yeah, sure. Yeah.
14:54 And also Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico.
15:01 Yeah, I've been up been around and I still would like to travel to ever go. Did you ever go to Mexico?
15:08 The Cancun or something. Now, I don't think I'd ever really know. Have you ever been to the Caribbean? Yes, Jamaica. You've been to Jamaica on a conference and then we took a cruise. So we saw a saying, a couple places like that St. John's. I think I like Brazil or Costa Rica.
15:36 No, proof of going to Aruba. This is kind of interesting. I remember when I was in college. I remember saying
15:48 There's a lot, you know, as my life has had this trajectory to New York City. I'm surrounded by a lot of Cosmopolitan, people who have a lot of
15:57 Cosmopolitan, parents and stuff like that would just kind of it at the time was very distinctly different than us. And I remember being college and he said, you know, you know, something about their parents have passports and they're just going to fly a lot of lies, like, my parents don't have passports, traveled outside of the country and when we would go to Mexico, you just need your driver's license and something about it. I think it was 96, 1996. Thanks. I had a lot of interest in going there, but doc.
16:50 When I married him, he told me I'm not going in a vacation if I can't play golf and I have to be able to play God. I remember that some of our friends and if they were our Jewish friends would get ahold of him and say we visit Italy on your Italian. You have to take your wife to Italy round trip. To tell me about a little bit about your childhood friends a little bit.
17:19 My teenage friends at Shasha. Okay, so it's because when I got into High School, everybody was rock and roll and Jerry, blavat oldies. Music as my brother loves Jazz, and he played Dean Martin and girl jazz singers and it was always like who's going to play their music was. So we listen to the antenna for my grandmother was playing Opera and the radio. So when I got it to school, the girls that I became friendly with either had an older brother or someone in the house who had that music playing?
18:10 Because as soon as we found out, we would take care of you like that to like we were, The Oblongs like
18:16 Yeah, we like rock and roll. You like Frank salvino every friend before you know it we would be getting together and singing those songs and my brother would chime in. So we had that together that's specifically in common. And also they were some of the funniest people I ever met in my life from the day. I met them when I started high school and his story after Story until this day we fight, we just lost my other one of my friends, but up until then every time we got together. We would start telling the stories and just be falling over. Laughing about we video tape. All kind of crazy things just to entertain ourselves to know.
18:58 I would think like, in South Philadelphia. There are a lot of funny people, my uncle. And his friends were funny to me, how to be funny. It is soon as I have the Jewish has people have so many comedians. It was like you did that to him all the sorrow. You had had a list to keep from crying and there were some of the funniest people and the, when I was in school, I was in a classroom with the guys were hysterical. Nobody took the classroom for think it was serious and we all had this music in common and we just all hit it off.
19:40 Every say friend. So tonight what are some of the Maria and wrote? We just lost Rose last year, more. So like it's hard to get back on track.
19:56 Who am I missing?
19:59 The four of us anymore. And then we had other people that would be with us.
20:12 Yeah, but there were five of us since we did everything together. Yeah, we went away within the name of your life. You've sworn to secrecy as for that mean you're not coming. So this is this is to be continued with the, the members of s u a, a sorority in. And then people started thinking, we went to college Beyonce, appropriated the squad, even before I had bought a house. I bought a house in Cherry Hill.
21:05 Talk to the pools in there and that's where everybody came all the time. And then we all became and if her husband's Larry, he's the one who gave it to somis. All those terms came from the Army, get some grinds.
21:27 Chico's, desert revenge, and everybody started talking. Like they did everything together. Then then we lost one of them, Brian, and that just kind of ended, but the way to the mountains together, with the guys and girls would go down the shore.
21:57 We recruit, but it wasn't.
22:01 As a sort of like a week with rose and Larry, and every Saturday night Aleta, and we called it in search of ethnic rhymes with so many restaurants called restaurants. So we're going to have a Squad cast and a small portion. I'm going to have t-shirts made up already dedicated to the most recent ethnic grinds. OK, Google, sorting map it out, and in my life, but anyway, thanks for letting me. Thanks for your candidness in for sharing and
23:00 And this is Katherine. This is Jackie Neal signing off and Kathleen to come by.