My Heroes

by Arnold Nelson

     When I was growing up I had two stars I really looked up to. I will tell you about them but I will not give you their names until the end.

     She was born in Texas in the early part of the 20th century. She was married at 14, had a son at 15 and was divorced at 17. Not a very good start is it? She had something going for her. She a mother would do anything for her. She wanted to be a singer preferably an opera singer. So she started singing at radio station and shows around her house. When she started having to go farther away her mother would take care of the boy. She finally got to New York but only got a few small parts. One time she married a band leader but that didn't last long. She finally decided to go to Hollywood and make movies. It was hard at first, all she got was a few bit parts. One day they asked her if she could ride a horse. she said yes even though it had been many years since she rode. They wanted her to star in a movie with the Singing Cowboy. She finally agreed and they made the movie. The chemistry was great and they kept making movies together. She even got to sing on the shows. It was about as far from opera as you could get but she accepted it. She learned to enjoy it.

     She had one problem she always let everybody believe her son was her brother. She didn't want people to know how old she really was. When W.W.II broke out her son enlisted in the Army. before he left he had a talk with his mother. He said I know all these years you let everyone think I was your brother. I cannot lie when I go in the Army I am telling the truth. I am telling all that you are my mother not my sister. If it hurts your career I an sorry but I cannot lie about it. She just hugged him and said everything would be all right.

   When the news came out there was a little flap but nothing serious. She felt better not having to live a lie anymore.

    The singing cowboy was born in Ohio about the same time she was. He worked in a shoe factory with his father and sang on the weekends. Finally someone told him to go to Hollywood, things would be better there.

    So he loaded up his car and drove to Hollywood with his parents. They found jobs pretty fast and he started working on his singing again. He started a singing group with 2 of his friends they were singing in all the small radio stations around the west trying to make a buck.

     In some of these small towns some of the girls were bake stuff and take it to the singers at the radio station. One day this young lady brought a pie for him. The pie was good but he could not forget the young lady. They started courting and they got married a short time later.

    One day while he was getting his only hat cleaned he heard about tryouts for a new singing cowboy. So he tried out and got the job and started making movies. They always wanted lots of children but they found out she could never have any, so they adopted a little girl. A year or so later later she found out she was going to have a baby. She had a little girl, now they had 2 girls and were very happy, a year so later she was pregnant again this time she had a boy but there were problems. she died shortly after the baby was born do to complications.

    I am going to tell you a short story to tell you what kind of hero he was. The day his wife died he called his best friend to pick him up at the hospital. When the best friend got there he found the man sitting on his tailgate of his truck, tears running down his face signing autographs for children.

    My two hero made many movies together and they had a close relationship. They got married in a friends home on New Years Eve. She almost burned the house down during the service. She used to be a smoker and as she was getting ready, she was smoking, and carelessly through the cigarette in the wastepaper basket.

    As the service started someone smelled smoke. They looked around and found the burning wastepaper basket. They put it out and finished the service.

    The next day he went 'coon hunting. Theirs was a good marriage it lasted over 50 years. it wasn't always a bed of roses through.

    Her son brought her to the Lord and then they both brought him to the Lord. They had a baby girl shortly after they were married. The baby had severe problems and died 2 years after she was born. Then they adopted two more a little abused boy and an Indian baby girl because he was part Indian.

   Then they got a girl from Scotland and one more from Korea They laughed and called there family a united nations family. There were 2 more deaths the adopted boy went in the Army and wanted to drive tanks and he finally got accepted to tank training school. That night they celebrated too much and in the morning he was dead of alcohol poisoning. They lost their Korean girl in bus accident when she was 12. She was returning form Mexico with a group of kids form her church. They had delivered a bunch of stuff to an Orphanage down there.

    Their strong faith in God got them through all the bad times. If you don't know who I am talking about now I will tell you it is the King and Queen of the cowboys. Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. They were people to look up too.

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