Flyboy


Volume 12


Patriarch


by Gordon Buttars

         Volume 12 – Patriarch takes place between July 1, 1967 and December 12, 1981 with an epilogue through June 9, 2004. Upon returning from their mission, Sheffield and Ramona finally got to do the traveling they looked forward to after he retired from coaching but was put on hold while in Hawaii. Their travels included a trip to New England to see the fall colors, a Mediterranean cruise twenty-five years after Sheffield had sailed those waters during the war, and trips to Utah and Idaho to see Janet and Norma.
         As life settled down, there was still much to do around the Two Star Ranch. The calls to serve didn't end when they returned from their mission as there were more opportunities to serve in the church with the continued growth in the Roanoke Valley, Sheffield and Ramona willingly answered the calls to serve.
         Sheffield was the patriarch of a growing family. He and Ramon were involved in the lives of their grandchildren as they grew up and got married and had families of their own, many of them settled in the west, as their posterity grew to include great grandchildren. They were always there for their children and grandchildren in the good times and the bad; celebrating their successes or offering encouragement and comfort in their trials.
         Sheffield and his family witnessed history unfold as it played out on the evening news. he continued to follow the space program with keen interest and watched with fascination as the first men went to the moon and later walked its surface. The news broadcasts reported on the Veitnam War, political and social unrest across the country, and natural disasters which hit close to home.
         As the years slipped away, Sheffield began to notice the effects of aging and wondered how long he could keep flying, dreading the day it would come to an end. He never let age deter his usefulness as there was always something for an old man to do. And what an old man couldn't do, a young man could as he taught his grandchildren the value of hard work. Ramona on the other hand continued to age gracefully, thanks to her gift of youth.
         The Navy honored Sheffield for his years of service and the contributions he made to naval aviation by naming a frigate after him while he was still living. He and Ramona and some of their family made a trip to Seattle, Washington, for the christening and launching of the USS Brason and another when she was commissioned. The ship and her crew became an extension of the Brason family.
         The Hawaiian Islands kept drawing them back every five years as they returned for the Pearl Harbor Survivors Reunion and to revisit their mission. It was on one such trip that Geannie came for her beloved Curly and they were reunited after forty years.
         After Sheffield's passing, the family continued to grow with the addition of more great grandchildren. Eventually everyone except Ramona, Craig, and Edith ended up in Idaho and Utah. Wanting to be closer to the rest of the family, a reason presented itself and they also move to Idaho where Ramona lives out the rest of her long life.

Chapter I There's No Place Like Home July 1, 1967 – August 3, 1967 Page 1
Chapter II A Trip Out West August 3 – September 27, 1967 Page 15
Chapter III Bitten by the Travel Bug September 28, 1967 – April 10, 1968 Page 25
Chapter IV Mediterranean Summer Revisited April 10, 1968 – May 21, 1968 Page 37
Chapter V Time With the Grandkids May 21, 1968 – July 22, 1968 Page 51
Chapter VI Silver Anniversary July 22, 1968 – January 22, 1969 Page 65
Chapter VII The Man in the Moon January 23, 1969 – July 24, 1969 Page 757
Chapter VIII Camille July 25, 1969 – August 20, 1969 Page 87
Chapter IX Answering Yet Another Call August 28, 1969 – February 23, 1970 Page 99
Chapter X Something Different February 23, 1970 – September 26, 1970 Page 113
Chapter XI Years Slipping Away September 26, 1970 – March 17, 1973 Page 125
Chapter XII Three Quarters of a Century March 18, 1973 – September 9, 1974 Page 139
Chapter XIII To Laugh or Cry September 10, 1974 – August 28, 1975 Page 153
Chapter XIV Something An Old Man Can Do August 28, 1975 – July 8, 1976 Page 169
Chapter XV The Wicked Witch of the West July 9, 1976 – May 18, 1977 Page 187
Chapter XVI An Ever Growing Family May 18, 1977 – June 5, 1978 Page 203
Chapter XVII Octogenarian June 6, 1978 – January 6, 1980 Page 217
Chapter XVIII Lots going On January 7, 1980 – September 7, 1980 Page 231
Chapter XIX USS Brason JSeptember 7, 1980 – February 28, 1981 Page 261
Chapter XX Grounded March 1, 1981 – November 14, 1981 Page 253
Chapter XXI Rejoining Geannie November 15, 1981 – December 7, 1981 Page 265
Chapter XXII Between Two Worlds December 7, 1981 – December 11, 1981 Page 277
Chapter XXIII Remembering Sheffield December 12, 1981 Page 291
Epilogue Epilogue December 12, 1981 – June 9, 2004 Page 307

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