Died Laughing

I also found these old photos. Some you have maybe seen. Our grandmother Mabel. Our great grandparents and even our great great grandparents. Did Mabel ever tell you the story about her father Rufus (what a great name) and how he died laughing? Playing checkers at a family gathering after church in August of 1932. My mother told me the same story, that he had his opponent in a game ending move that caused him to laugh so hard he fell over and died. I always thought it was a charming story that was most likely rather embellished. One day I was searching the internet about the name Heslar. I had always assumed it was German, which would explain my blonde hair.  It’s not, it’s British. In the process of my search, I found Rufus’s obituary. And there it was, spelled out. Family gathering, playing checkers, collapsing with a cerebral hemorrhage. It didn’t mention the laughing part, but it must have been true. Oral history is pretty amazing.