Dad was in the Air Force, so our family traveled all over the United States and even went to Japan for 3 years. Because of our moving so often, we 4 children depended on each other more than many other families. Cara and Candy were the youngest, so ran around together. Charles and I were only 2 years and 1 month apart; we did a lot together.
I also was a “tom boy” so I did a lot of things with Charles because I chose to play boy games. Now, children, this was before women’s - girls’ rights to play on recognized teams so I had no baseball or basketball teams to play on. Charles played on a Little League team when we lived in Japan. The wonderful coach allowed me to practice with the team and I was allowed to go to the games and sit on the bench as a sort-of mascot. Charles and I would argue about who was the best baseball player. Of course the New York Yankees was the best team, but I knew that Mickey Mantle was the best player. Charles, in his delusions, claimed that Roger Maris was better but I knew that he was wrong.
When we were 12 and 10, someone asked why we spent so much time together. I said “We’re twins!” Of course, that was questioned, as we were 2 years apart in school. My story was that Charles was held back a year and I was put forward a year. Our friends went to Mom to ask and - not even knowing the background story - said that “Sure, they’re twins!” Charles and I use that story again while in high school just for the fun of it.
Charles was a Boy Scout, a drummer, and a pianist. His favorite song on the piano was “Heart and Soul.” I believe the biggest reason why he liked it so much was because I hated it.
When he was in college, he joined the Army, became an officer, and went to Vietnam.
We stayed close from the time he was born until the time that he died. I had him for only 64 years and I still him very much. It is not fair that he was taken away from us so soon.
Happy birthday, Charles. I wish you were here so that I could say it to you in person. I love you.