She didn't make me menudo but she made one hell of an Aunt Wally Cake. That's coffee cake for those of you outside the Lynch family.
Born February 25th, 1917 in the state of Iowa. Grandma Ticky had eight sisters and one brother. Grandma as well as everyone of her sisters spent some part of their lives as teachers, some of them their whole life. If you attended Hollywood High in the 1960s and 1970s you may have had Mrs. Van Sickle for home economics. That's Grandma's sister, my Auntie Flo.
Grandma Ticky was the youngest of the family. She met my Grandfather, Seward Edward "Ed" Higby at Iowa State Teachers College, now the University of Iowa. They were married in 1937. My grandparents went on to raise two boys, owned two hardware stores in Iowa and were pillars of every community they lived in. My Grandpa was the Mayor of Rudd, Iowa for a time. They were involved in a number of organizations and were always busy. Their backyard pancake breakfasts, first in Iowa and later in North Hollywood would be attended by 100 or more people.
Grandma was loving and sweet but stern. She was ahead of her time in many ways in how she treated people. But she also expected you to work hard and be a good citizen. She also had a heck of a sense of humor; something every one of the Lynch girls had.
Grandma and Grandpa moved permanently from Iowa to North Hollywood not too long after I was born. All together, there were four of us granchildren.
After moving to California Grandma went back to teaching in her early 50s. She taught nursery school classes at First Christian Nursery School, then in North Hollywood now in Studio City (the school didn't move; the map did). Among her students were the members of the rock band Nelson and many other children of celebrities.
When licensing rules changed for pre-school teachers, Grandma went back to college and got her degree. It was her experience as a teacher and a love for learning that motivated my joy of reading and writing. She encouraged me to write as much as I could and always enjoyed my stories (as did Auntie Flo too). Grandma instilled in my love of "performing," we built puppets together and did puppet shows for her college classmates and for our fellow church members.
My grandparents are responsible for my love of community service and volunteering. Both of them were prolific to this regard. They never did it for ego reasons, they never sought attention or glory for themselves, they always helped others and this engenderd an amazing respect and love for them from everyone they know. I have never met one person who knew my grandparents that ever had a negative word to say about them.
We lost my grandparents in 1972. I was just eight years old. My sister wouldn't be born for another seven years and sadly never knew her amazing grandparents. My grandfather was an experienced private pilot who had built and owned several planes. On a Sunday afternoon in November 1972, as they took off from Lancaster Airport, engine failure caused the plane to crash just a few hundred feet in the air. They were both killed instantly.
I will always miss my grandparents and am sad that they were not there during the many milestones in my life. Considering that most of their brothers and sisters lived well into their 80s and 90s - indeed Grandma Ticky's older sister Marjorie just passed away a few months ago at age 94 - I believe they would most likely be alive today and getting a big kick out of Mayor Sam's blog.
Happy 92nd Birthday, Grandma!
(By the way my maternal grandmother is still alive and kicking and will be celebrating her 90th birthday soon. I spoke to her Tuesday morning. These relatives sure live a long time!)
Labels: grandma ticky