My Backstory series offers stories about my upbringing and background. You can find the whole series under the category “Biography,” if you’re interested.
I wish I knew more about how my parents met. This is all I got so far:
My mom lived & worked in Connellsville. My dad lived in the same town, though he worked in Clairton. She worked at a finance company and meanwhile worked at raising her two boys. So they kinda knew each other; it was a small town and I think dad may have done some business with her office at one point.
Dad told me only a couple stories about his life as a man, beyond the Army stories or occasional mill story, or a caper involving him and his friend Ellsworth. He told me that long before he had any kind of religious allegiance, he prayed and asked God to give him a red-headed wife someday.
My mom had gorgeous red hair, a true red, almost carrot colored but not quite. She didn’t have the flock of freckles on her face that you’d expect; maybe as a kid but not as I remember her. She also had a tiny waist, a petite 4’11” frame, and a love for swing coats and high heels. [My mom will remain better dressed than I, with much better fashion sense.]
Somehow, my dad met my mom and she invited him to church. That’s about all I know.
He wasn’t particularly interested in “vacation Bible school” or church, though he found her description of the building’s wooden beams and ceiling rather intriguing. (She told him it looked like an upside-down ark on the inside, and it kinda did.)
Nope. He was interested in her.
Their first date was to see a double-feature: The Lady and the Tramp, followed by 10,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Presh. And as they say, the rest was history.
Well, there was a wrinkle.
My mom was attending an independent Fundamental non-denominational church in town (yes, that’s a mouthful; yes, that’s a real denomination). Actually, the string of adjectives read “independent Fundamental Bible-believing local church.” It wasn’t Baptist, so “non-denominational.” It’s a rare bird, actually — you’ll find plenty online about independent Fundamental Baptist churches (or IFB for short). Nosomuch the non-denominational or “Bible church” variety. I digress.
Mum’s church was full of good people; I met most of them. Dad felt rather welcome actually. He discovered that he had a thirst for learning more about the Bible, so his mission of getting my mom to date him by attending church ended up making him a Christian. He made a profession of faith shortly before he proposed to her.
And then all hell broke loose. But it’s midnight and I’m tired, so I’ll pick up that thread next time.