Uncle Dave

Dave, Dad, Arn, Rick, and John. And Ray in the back.

I know there are some good stories out there about my Uncle Dave (AKA “Gradle”), there just has to be, but unfortunately I don’t really know any of them. At least, not any good ones. I’m gonna have to depend on my other relatives to come to my rescue on this one. By the same token, I know Gradle has good stories on the rest of you, so I guess it all evens out.

Like my other Ridgecrest-dwelling relatives, I got to hang out with Gradle during my brief stint in the Mojave Desert. I can tell you two things for sure: Gradle can cook some mean fish, and he’s really good at Yahtzee.

When we would go to Gradle’s house, it was always a nice time of kicking back and re-kindling an addiction to the game I hadn’t played in years. And once Gradle reintroduced my to Yahtzee, I couldn’t believe how long it’d been since I’d played last. Most of my other relatives are really super competitive, but Dave would be genuinely happy when someone else had a good roll. His enthusiastic encouragement and support, even in something simple like a board game, is something I still remember fondly.

And there’s also the fact that his fish is a-to the-mazing.

Gradle is also very loving and quick with a kind word. Although he’s probably the relative I’ve spent the least amount of time around, I think I’ve heard “I love you” and been told how much God loves and cares for me from Gradle as much as (or more than) anyone else. That says something.

Gradle’s been through a lot, I know that much, and yet he’s come away from it all with a strong faith and a heart as big as his smile. How could I not be a fan of that?

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One comment

  1. Wow! There isn’t enough room to tell you everything I know about “Gradle”. I will start by saying Dave has always been there for me. Always had something good to say about me and would do anything I asked. Dave was the most punished by Dad and Mamacita (hands down). As a kid, he was always up to something and it was generally mischievous and he always got caught. Every single night when Dave, Arni and Gene were in grade school they would get into a knock down drag out fight up stairs at bedtime. Mamacita would yell at least 3 times for them to stop so she could go to sleep and it was routine, they wouldn’t listen and Mamacita would go upstairs with the belt and give them each a pretty good whipping (with mamacita there was no such thing as a light belt warming because by the time she went up to do business she had really had it). I don’t know how this happened but one night Gene and Arni tied Dave to a light fixture high over his head, embedded in real plaster (they used this in the old days). Of course the boys all slept in their birthday suits so needless to say Dave was naked and that was just when Mamacita arrived at the top of the stairs. She didn’t take pity on poor naked Dave and commenced to do her business, after 4 or 5 good smacks with the belt Dave heaved and pulled the fixture out of the wall wires and all! Needless to say things didn’t go any easier on Dave (Gene and Arni too) (mama was always fair lol) . There are so many other funny things involving Dave, this was just small thing I remember. I love my brother and his family. He lives in Bakersfield, Cal so I don’t get to see him often enough but when we visit him we always come away happy (and well fed cause as Eddie said, that man can cook!). Good job again !

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