My Favorite Photo of my Grandma

This post is inspired by the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow. The week 2 challenge is “Favorite Photo”.


My Time Machine

The hallway in my house is like a time machine. One that takes you back 150 years through family photos, old cookbooks, and little trinkets that represent various lives well lived. There are photos of people we grew up with and those of people we only met through family stories. I love all of the photos that scatter these shelves. They are my favorite among a few boxes that hold stories yet untold. And, yes … there is a BB8 droid sitting there! What can I say? 

Ancestor photo wall

Each of these photos tells it’s own tale. Some are funny, others are heartbreaking. One, in particular, is a reminder of how important family is.  

My Favorite Photo

Meet my grandma, Doris Louis Shuster. She was born on July 23, 1923, in Murphysboro, Illinois. On March 18, 1940, grandma married my grandpa, James L. Raines … they snuck off to Missouri to get married! Alas, that’s a story for another day.

Grandma is about 16 in this photo. She looks like my mom. And my cousin, Aimee. Family resemblances always intrigue me. 

Doris Schuster 1939

My grandma passed in 2006, followed by my grandpa about 18 months later. He gave me this photo not long before he died. It is one of the few photos I have of her as a young woman and it is my favorite.

Notice the photo is torn in half. My grandpa carried this single photo during WWII – tearing it allowed it to fit snuggly in a pocket. He protected this photo while stationed in Chicago and Okinawa – to Japan and back she went! He kept it close all the years after … until he handed it to me for safekeeping.   

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