One of the saddest things for me is to walk into an antique shop and see boxes of old pictures and old pictures in old frames. I always wonder who the people were - they had mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, children - but here their pictures sit. Nobody knows who they were or what their names were.
I want you to meet Mr. Mack - this picture will probably end up in one of those boxes someday because Mr. Mack does not mean anything to anybody except me.
Here is what I know of Mr. Mack - he was married and he and his wife had no children. He didn't even really like children. One day his wife threw some hot oil out the back door and the wind blew it back on her. She died from complications of this.
My great-grandmother, Ada Bodie, was good friends with Mr. Mack's wife. After Mr. Mack's wife's death, he did not have anyone to take care of him. My great-grandmother became Mr. Mack's housekeeper.
When I was about four years old, my Mother left my Father (they later divorced) and she brought me to Texas and we lived with my great-grandmother and Mr. Mack. The porch he is sitting on in the picture is the front porch of the house. It is still at 210 Hutchins Street in Houston, Texas.
Remember I wrote that Mr. Mack did not like children? Well, that was true until I came along. According to my Mother, he adored me. He told me stories and he always told me about how he won at dominos when he would go to the domino parlor each week. That is about all I remember about him.
I was told that he worked for the railroad for many years and that he also played baseball.
Mr. Mack committed suicide. The day Grannie told him that she was not able to care for him any longer and that she was putting him in a nursing home, he pulled out his gun and shot himself in the head.
I was given two things of Mr. Mack's. One is a small round gold pin - it had a diamond in it, but that diamond is now in the wedding ring of my daughter-in-law, Tiffany. Someday that ring will probably go to my granddaughter, Madeline and I want her to know the story of one of the diamonds in the ring. I still have the pin.
The other thing that I have is Mr. Mack's pewter baby cup and pitcher. It is engraved with his name and the date - I can barely see them anymore, but I know they are well over 125 years old. They sit on a shelf above the door in my bedroom. This cup and pitcher won't mean anything to anyone after I am gone, but perhaps this story will mean something.
So, to you, Mr. Mack - I say thank you for loving me when I was a child.
Posted by Judith Lee McCoy - wife of Warren Weldon McCoy