I was recently at my half brother’s, getting to know him and listening to some family stories. One story really caught my attention, it was about his aunt and her baby girl that was killed by her father who then in turn killed himself.
Now, I didn’t know that Aunt Glady’s had been married more than once. I knew she married Bart Parker in 1932 and he was her husband when she died in 2001, so I assumed they had been married to each other all those years. My brother and his wife swore that the story they told was true, but they didn’t know any names or dates. My curiosity was peaked and I knew I had to try and find out what happened.
When we got home from our visit, I went right to Ancestry and got to work. I first went to Glady’s Social Security record and saw that she had 2 last names besides Parker. In 1942 she was a Brown and in 1946 she was a Thompson. Dang common names. I searched Newspapers.com with Glady’s name, Genealogy Bank, etc. But nothing was coming up. Then I decided to try the California Birth Index, using Glady’s maiden name, the father’s last name (either Brown or Thompson) and a birth range in the 1940’s. I knew she was probably born in Los Angeles as that is where Glady’s lived most of her life. For Brown, nothing came up. But for Thompson I got a probable match:
Now I had a first, middle and last name so my search continued. Since I was told she had died as a baby I looked at the Death Index:
Right away I was struck by how little Barbara Jean was when she died. 6 months.
Then I found the Findagrave listing for Barbara Jean and it had a picture of her headstone:
When I saw “My Baby Doll” I cried. But the saddest find of all was a newspaper article from the Los Angeles Times on October 2, 1947.
Such a horrible tragedy. By 1949 Glady’s was back together with Bart, her first husband and they stayed together until her death. She never had any more children.
So many questions enter my mind. What caused all of her break ups? Her family tells me she was a very strong willed, bossy and controlling woman. All I know is that she must have had a hole in her heart that couldn’t be repaired and I can certainly understand why.
Rest in Peace Barbara Jean