My mom, Shirley (Kimmel) Pharo, was born in a small adobe house on the edge of a small town in extreme Eastern Colorado. The date was October 6, 1929. That was just 23 days before the infamous Black Tuesday when all the stock markets crashed.
Black Tuesday was the beginning of what we now refer to as the Great Depression. Along with the Great Depression, those who lived in this part of the world also had to contend with extreme drought and dust bowl conditions. We still refer to the 1930s as the “Dirty Thirties.”
Times were tough and dirty in the 1930s, but Mom didn’t know any better. As far as she knew, that’s the way life was supposed to be. She had many fond memories of her childhood. Those of us who grew up in better times are somewhat handicapped.
When I try to think of all the amazing things that have taken place since Mom was born, it boggles my mind. We went from farming with horses to farming with tractors driven by GPS. We went from visiting our neighbors to putting men on the moon. We went from mailing long handwritten letters to sending emails and text messages.
Mom led an active and memorable life – a life that was also full of sacrifices. She raised five of her six children to adulthood. I was the oldest. Mom’s third child was tragically killed in an accident at one year of age. I know that had a devastating effect on her – as it should have.
Mom taught first and second grade for 10 years in the school she graduated from. She loved all of the children who passed through her classroom almost as much as she loved her own – sometimes more! Mom always had a desire to help those who were downtrodden, as well as a desire to share Jesus with those who did not know Jesus. She made a difference in the lives of many, many people.
Mom passed from this life to the next last Sunday morning. She was 92 years old. Mom has been patiently waiting for God to take her home. (Well… she wasn’t always that patient.) We love you Mom – and we will miss you.
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