This past Sunday (September 14) was the “Tansey Family Reunion Picnic”, in Salem, OR. My mother was a Tansey, and as a child I recall the summer family picnics when aunts, uncles, cousins by the dozen, and Grandpa and Grandma Tansey would gather as a family. It was important to each of us, especially the aunts and uncles. They so enjoyed the time together with their siblings, and the cousins had fun laughing and playing! As the years passed by, grandparents passed away, cousins moved away, but the aunts still gathered. This was family. They maintained that family connection throughout the years. I was grateful to remain in the Salem area and be a part of the much smaller gatherings.
The 2008 reunion picnic was incredible. Cousins came that I had not seen for over 30 years. It was a time to catch up on life in general and find out what we’re all doing these days. Some of the cousins are now retired, some married and now grandparents, some are still single. But we are family. It was evident that time had not stood still for the Tansey Family! We seemed to pick up where we left off years ago. We’re just a “few years older” now!
Several cousins, including myself, brought old photos of our families and grandpa and grandma. It was a trip down memory lane as we all recalled a much different time in our lives. There were pictures of Uncle Rex, our beloved Uncle who was in a tragic plane crash in 1946 that claimed the lives of all 25 military servicemen and Red Cross personnel, coming home from Greenland. Uncle Rex was only 20 at the time. I never knew him, only from pictures and stories have I come to know who he was. I grieve, even today, 62 years later over his death. My heart aches knowing that I never knew him, and longed to. From the stories my mom told over the years about her brother, he was very talented musically. Rex sang at the St. Paul (OR) Rodeo in the summers when he was just a youth. I understand he also sang, with his guitar, at the military base(s) where he was stationed. I enjoy looking at the family photo graphs and discovered a new one of Uncle Rex! I certainly feel a close kinship and bond to my Uncle Rex, and perhaps will get to be with him someday in heaven. I do not know if my Uncle Rex ever accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior. I often wonder what Uncle Rex would have done with his life after the war, had he lived. I think he and I would have been great friends best of “buds” and shared our musical interest with each other!
Family is important to us. It gives us a clear sense of who we are, and where we came from. Family can help us to who we can become. Perhaps you have researched your family history and done genealogy. It’s amazing what we can discover when we find out about our family history.
Check out our family web site at www.freewebs.com/tanseyfamily and see who we are!