Thursday, August 21, 2008


Lately I have been watching my daughters-in-law and the remarkable courage they show in the things they have been doing with their children. Here's three cheers to mothers who go the extra mile for their children. And now, I want to tell about an extraordinary thing that my mother did while my dad was in the Army during World War II--this is My Tonsils Story:

Our small Panhandle town of Pampa only had one or two doctors in the early 1940s and when World War II started the doctors were drafted. When I developed very infected tonsils at about 2 1/2 or 3 years of age, Mother took me to Lubbock to a well-known pediatrician, Dr. Overton, who practiced there. Dr. Overton took my tonsils out in a hospital in Lubbock and then Mother took me back to Pampa. However, my throat hemorrhaged when we got back to Pampa, so Mother put me in the car in the middle of the night and drove back to Lubbock.

The year was about 1943 and the trip was a longer one than the current three-hour trip because there was no IH-27 and the road passed through a number of small towns between Pampa and Lubbock. The road was narrow and winding, gas was rationed, tires were terrible, and cars were not that dependable. Mother must have had a strong guardian angel with her as she drove through the night with a child bleeding and coughing up blood in the back seat. I remember seeing her shine the flashlight on me from time to time as we rushed back to Lubbock where they used radium on me to stop the bleeding.

We then stayed for a while with Grandmother and Granddaddy in Amherst, which was about an hour from Lubbock. I recovered and live to tell this tale. The story of my tonsils is one of my "war” stories. The picture on the left shows me with Grandmother and Granddaddy in Amherst.


  1. I love this story. I swear, those Willett women had moxie!
    I also love that picture. What a cutie you were and are!

  2. Wow, that is so scary. I can only imagine how Grandmommy must have felt as she raced you to Lubbock!