Words "share your world!" on a grey background with a hand picking up the letter 'r' in world

A Tribute to Judy – Part 15

© ChristianChan - iStock-476118892
Ernest Hammer


MAY 31, 1938 – AUGUST 8, 2023

Part 14 was published November 27, 2023, and can be found here.

Our Only Plane Trip

My mother had a camping trailer that she spent the winter in. It was located in a trailer park in southwest Texas next to the border with Mexico. One winter she came home early for some reason.

Judy and I flew out of Denver to drive Mom’s car home. They were having a storm in Denver and our plane was the last one to fly out that night. We had the option of not flying, so we thought we would not fly. They shut the door then we thought “Maybe we should go.” We knocked on the door and they opened it and we got on. That was the last flight out of Denver for three days.

We were late getting to Dallas. They put us up overnight. The next day we flew to Harlingen. When we left Dallas, there were two Rabbis who got up to go to the bathroom before the plane had reached its altitude. They were promptly told to sit down. Mother picked us up there and drove us to her campground.

On our way home we spent the night with cousin Chuck and Mildred at Belen New Mexico.

Camping Trips

Judy and I took our grandchildren on several camping trips. Andy always went with us. One time in the Black Hills, where we visited Mount Rushmore, we went into this big store to look for souvenirs and get a snack. We were all sitting at the table eating our snack when Jeremy, our youngest grandson, showed up. He said, “I have been looking for you guys.” We had not missed him.

We took our grandchildren to the Great Sand Dunes near Alamosa and also the alligator farm which they enjoyed.

Dinosaur Nation Park

We took all of our grandkids except Emily on a camping trip to Dinosaur Nation Park. Andy always went with us. This time Kim and Jerry also went.

We stopped at a rocky area on Independence Pass, close to Aspen, so the kids could do some rock climbing. Michael fell and broke his arm. We couldn’t find a hospital in Aspen, so we just kept on driving to our campsite at Dinosaur Park. Kim and Jerry took Michael to Vernal, Utah, to have his arm put in a cast. The people there were very nice.

Our campsite was close to a stream and there were rocks close by for climbing. The cast on Michael didn’t slow him down.

Leah was just two. She loved to play in the dirt. It was black dirt and she got filthy. She threw such a fit when Judy tried to clean her that Andy had to hold her down. After everyone cleaned up and went to their tent for a night’s rest. Andy and Jerry sat by the campfire and visited. While they were visiting, a skunk ventured into their mist. They made not a sound or movement. After the skunk was through making his survey, he disappeared into the night.

Pete From Chicago

Peter stayed at the Twin Pine until late into the fall when it started getting cold. He went back to Chicago. We wrote a couple of letters to him and he to us. After that we lost track of him.

Thirty-four years later he did a search for us and found us in Wild Horse. He, his wife Marcela, and two teenage daughters came to visit us. We really enjoyed them. The girls wanted to experience the different ranch activities. It so happened, Tony was building a new barbed wire fence, and they eagerly got involved with the project.

One day we were moving some cattle and they wanted to be involved. They were riding along like they knew what they were doing. I asked them how long they had been riding. They said this was their first time.

On our train travels, many times we would have a layover in Chicago and stay in a hotel and toured Chicago depending on how long the layover was. After we found out where Pete and Marcela lived we would spend the layover night at their house. They always took us to an interesting point of attraction that wasn’t known to many tourists. One place we remembered was the botanical gardens.

Pet and Marcela have visited us several times since they found us at Wild Horse.

Next: More About Wild Horse