by Phyllis Zeck
Since my father had no siblings, my only set of cousins were the children of Auntie Phyllis, my mother’s sister. They lived on the east coast so we didn’t get to see them often, but we made the most of the time we did see each other. The photo to the left was taken in 1962 in Springfield, MA. Back row: Auntie Phylllis holding Gina, Grandpa, mom holding Holly. Center row: Rob (kneeling), Tom, Mark, Toni. Front row: Ricky, Phyllis, Janice and Steve.
When my siblings and I started our families our children got together as often as possible. Now the middle generation help gather our grands for play dates, zoo lights, and pool
parties all year round. It’s a miracle when everyone can unite at the same time! My two oldest children Buck & Heidi and my grandson Tyler are missing from these photos. Someday I’m going to corral everyone at the same time and snap photos like crazy.
I asked Rob to listen to one of the clips from our interview with Auntie Phyllis and he shared his thoughts below.
Rob wrote “Phyllis included recordings of our ancestors speaking. Nothing recalls memories quicker than hearing the voice of a loved one who has long ago passed on. Especially when it involves people in the family who have shared many of the same experiences. Experts say that is one reason why siblings stay close in many families: the common bond of recognizing your mother’s stressful voice when she can’t find her car keys, for instance. No one else in the world would know that sound unless they had been there and shared the experience.
So, it was with that kind of anticipation and attention when I listened to the latest recording Phyllis sent me, of an interview we did with Aunty Phyllis many years ago. Hearing her speak again, and especially the sound of her laughter, brought her presence and spirit right back to me. Or maybe her voice brought me back to HER!”
In the 4th audio clip from our 2011 interview Auntie Phyllis talks about her uncles, growing up with her cousins, working in the music store, and eloping with Richard. I asked her about advertising that was purchased for the music stores. I ran across this advertisement in Google Books. It was placed in the Popular Mechanics magazine in March of 1938. The ad states that the music store was established in 1890.
Click below to listen to part of our interview with Auntie. If you’d like to hear snippets of this interview in past blog posts, click on the “Vincent Family” category in the right column of the web site.