This particular long-haired guy was newly arrived in McCall from Los Angeles, which had the risible reputation of a laid-back place. Laid back if you were from New York maybe, or Tokyo, but hardly to the early-twenties crowd slouching around the porch of Lardo Saloon & Dance Hall, across the street from Payette Lake. Let’s call the newcomer Jake, because I barely knew him and certainly can’t pluck his real name from the entangled ecosystems of memory spanning four decades, and more important anyway is what everyone called him. We called him a Flatlander, the same thing we called everybody else who drove against the down-rush of the Payette River up the twisty highway from Boise to the lake in the mountains. Continue reading →
Category Archives: McCall
Even from her earliest years, Velma knew all too well that, for all the good times and good things that came her way, life had its share of tears.
She has suffered more than her fair share of bumps and bruises along the way.
It’s hard to imagine anything more painful than losing a child.
Velma lost her younger son, Gary, in the kind of needless tragedy that shakes a mother to the depths of her soul and sends her to storm the heavens, begging an answer to the simple question “Why?” over and over again.
There is no answer except what her faith tells her it was God’s will, and it is hers to accept. Acceptance closed the wound, but the scar never heals.
Nearly forty years and innumerable tears later, Velma still struggles to tell the story of Gary’s short life and his sad death. Continue reading →