I would have never been inside Ava Gardner’s shoe closet in Madrid, Spain except for the fact that I was married to Major H. H. Macurdy at the time. Being married to an Air Force pilot has its advantages. My path first crossed with Ava Gardner’s in a military chapel, not while I was in her closet admiring her shoes. In the “bare as a barracks” chapel on Torrejón AFB near Madrid, Ava and I both attended the wedding of a fighter pilot from my husband’s squadron. Ava was dating one of the Squadron Officers, Captain Kip Elsey. Due to the shortage of relatives in a foreign country, all squadron members, spouses, and girlfriends were invited to the wedding just to fill the chapel. I sat across the aisle from Ava, and I can confirm that she cried. She said that was what she did at weddings, whether she knew the bride and groom or not. Continue reading



I was born to Stanley and Hattie Martin on the day of the stock market crash in 1929. I was the youngest of Stanley’s and Hattie’s five children. Dot, Imogene, Leita, and Dale were my older siblings. I was always referred to as “the baby”, as though no matter what age I reached, they would never ever treat me as an adult. I did not like that. And, the implication was that since I was the baby, I was therefore spoiled. I did not like that either. My childhood memories are from the depression years of the 1930’s, and the war years of the 1940’s. Continue reading


During an ultrasound, Clea’s OB-GYN doctor informed her the baby was a boy. He pointed out the penis, saying “See? There it is, right there”. I hid my disappointment. I already had two grandsons and was hoping for a granddaughter. Clea and John decided on Robert Vincent as their baby’s name. Robert for John’s father and Vincent for Clea’s brother, Vincent Case (Casey). I quickly recovered from my disappointment and gave the unborn babe the nickname, “Robbie V”. Clea and John, knowing her Dad wanted to remain young and took no joy in being called Grandpa, told him they were calling the baby “Lil’ Shit. Continue reading