Shirley Jean {Bell}{Haire} Duncan

July 10, 1938-December 8, 1994


My Mother was a remarkable woman. Born in a cabin in the hills of Kentucky in 1938, she was a 7 month baby, and weighed barely 3 pounds. No one, except for her mother, expected her to live. But Granny had already lost one baby a few hours after birth (Eva May Bell, April 13, 1937) and she was determined not to lose this one too. Granny and her mother, Great Grandma Beckie, kept the tiny baby warm, fed her, loved her, and to the amazement of everyone she grew and thrived. 

Early Days
 
When Mom was  young, her parents moved to Indiana, where they were divorced, and Granny married Grandpa Jerry. She grew up on a farm in Indiana, and was very happy there.
 
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Young Lady
 

  Even though Mom was an only child, her mother's  family was large, and she grew up surrounded with love and family.  After she graduated from high school, they decided to move to Florida.

 
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Mama Loved Her Babies

 

Mom gave actual birth to 6 children, but she had 12 children as she would so proudly tell you. She also had a lot of other kids who liked to call her "Mom".  And she loved us all so very much. 

 

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Mama and Her "Kids"

 
We all loved her so much,
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Mama Loved Her Babies

Round 2

Grandchildren, Mom's greatest delight, she loved them all unconditionally.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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I Remember Mama

I remember, Mama, the sound of your laughter, how much you loved to laugh, how you would sing "You Are My Sunshine" to me, and to all your babies. I remember you always said "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all", and you lived those words. I remember how greatly loved you were, and how you knew everyone in town and were friends to them all. I remember how proud you were of all of us, and would just beam with happiness whenever any of us had accomplished anything. I remember, and I miss you so much, Mama.

 
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One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky. In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints. Other times there were one set of footprints. This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life When I was suffering from anguish, sorrow, or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints. So I said to the Lord, "You promised me, Lord, That if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I noticed that during the most trying periods of my life There have only been one set of prints in the sand. Why, When I have needed you most, you have not been there for me?"The Lord replied, "The times when you have seen only one set of footprints Is when I carried you."

 

By Mary Stevenson

© 2017 by lauraforever.com 

Shirley Jerry and Emma

Mom, with her stepfather, Grandpa Jerry, and mother, Granny Emma