My Branch Of The Family Tree

I am indebted to Jane, one of my followers, for pointing out the need for a family tree in order to clarify some of my posts.  What began in May 2012 as a record of my days based on walks, has become a much more extensive project, arising out of far more interest than I could possibly have imagined.  The blog title ‘Ramblings’ comes from the idea that as I physically ramble along and take notice of what is around me, I also ramble in my head.  This brings about much reminiscing woven into current experiences.  Memories are not neat and tidy affairs.  They pop in and out of one’s head at will.

‘Ramblings’ have become a record of one man’s life as prompted by this aberrant and disorganised memory.  My daughter Rebekah has initiated me into the joys of digital links and tags.  The computer, you see, is capable of tidying everything up.  I am working my way through more than 600 posts, adding these amazing aide-memoires.

A comment from Alex Schneideman has also prompted me to tidy up a lifetime’s photographs.  My archives are in four forms.  There are photographic prints in hundreds of albums dating from 1942.  There are boxes of colour slides dating from 1963 to 1981 and again from the first decade of the current millennium.  There are albums of negative film covering the hiatus in the colour slides.  And finally there are the computerised digital images from the time of the acquisition of my Canon S100 in July 2012.  The albums and colour slides, and of course the digital pictures, are correctly filed in chronological order.  The twenty years of negatives are the problem.  They were kept in the processors’ envelopes with no dates or identification attached.  One cardboard box containing these was lost in the move from Newark in December 2006.  Whilst at Sutherland Place I began to attempt to sort the remaining collection.  That is how they found their way into negative albums.  The task of identifying everything on each strip is what I have been procrastinating over for the last few years.  Thank you, Alex, for giving me a reason for getting on with this.

For Jane, and anyone else who would find it helpful, here is my branch:

Mum and Dad 1940s

Mum and Dad:  Dad died in 1987, three weeks after I moved to Newark.  Mum is still alive, and living in West End, near Southampton.

Mum, Derrick, Jacqueline, Chris & Elizabeth

Joseph 1961Me: Born 1942; Brother Chris: born 1943; Sister Jacqueline: born 1947; Sister Elizabeth: born 1954; Brother Joseph: born 1960:

Vivien & Michael 24.4.64

I married Vivien in June 1963.  She died in September 1965, having given birth to Michael in April 1964.  Our son Michael – ten days old in the picture – is married to Heidi.  They have three children, therefore my Jackie 3.68grandchildren, Emily 20, Oliver 18, and Alice 14.

I married Jackie in March 1968.  Our children are Matthew (b. December 1968) and Rebekah (b. August 1970). Flo 001 Rebekah’s daughter Florence, now 17, is our shared granddaughter.

This is where it begins to get complicated, as if it weren’t already.  You may like to pause and take stock.

Jackie and I parted in 1972 and each remarried some years later.

I married Jessica in 1980.  Our children are Samson (b. 1980), and Louisa (b. 1983).  Jessica died in 2007.

Sam is married to Holly.  Their children are Malachi (almost five years) and Orlaith (13 months).  Consequently these two offspring are my grandchildren.

Louisa is married to Errol Thompson.  Their two daughters are Jessica (almost 7), and Imogen (5).  Two more grandchildren for me.

Jessica, Malachi, Imogen & Orlaith 8.13

For Christmas the Thompson family gave me a framed photograph on canvas of the grandchildren I would have shared with Jessica.

Jackie and I met again at Matthew’s 40th birthday party in 2008 and have been living together again since soon afterwards.

This is merely a factual record.  The events have been full of all kinds of emotions, both extremely pleasurable and terribly painful.  This particular post is not the place for those.

P.S. Family Tree by JudithMy far more intelligent friend Judith Munns has sent me this hand-drawn Family Tree gleaned from this post.

Update  29.8.15.

Matthew and Tess have been married for fifteen years. They now have a daughter called Poppy. This required me to amend Judith’s family tree:Amended Family Tree

34 thoughts on “My Branch Of The Family Tree

  1. Thanks for the family tree, it makes it so much easier to follow your blog when you know who’s who, and their offspring.

    You haven’t been to France or London for a while, and how is the passenger door?

    • Thank you, Jane, for the family tree suggestion. Sinusitis put paid to my last French visit. I expect the last batch of work to be finished soon, and will go then. Christmas suspended London visits. The next one will be on Wednesday.

  2. Pingback: Is This Orlaith? | derrickjknight

  3. What a wandering web you weave
    And a rambling legacy you leave!
    The sadness of your first wife Vivien is unspoken but palpable.
    The reunion with Jackie is laudable.
    There’s such a life story in here Derrick.

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  5. Now that this is all cleared up for me I shall not be scratching my head any more – or at least can pop back here for clarification when needed. Or maybe this post could be a separate page for new readers? There has been much tragedy in your life Derrick – while agonising to go through it so often leaves us stronger and better people in the end don’t you think? xo

  6. Really fascinating stuff and your connections with the photos here makes me think back to the comments you made on a post I wrote not long ago about my forgetting. Glad you shared this and I can’t imagine the range of emotions you must have traversed while writing this.

  7. Pingback: Pops | derrickjknight

  8. All makes sense now and it’s what i’d guessed- that there was a big age gap between you and your younger brother (joseph). I love the pic of your’s and Jessica’s grandchildren. So many other questions – but I will stop being so nosey!

  9. Thank you, Derrick and your friend and family tree illustrator, Judith Munn. This made my crooked path in life look not too crazy, definitely not as tragic as yours. You have gone through quite a bit of sadness. Glad you have a happy, comfortable life to keep you heading together into the sunset. 🙂
    I have been married 3 x also, Derrick. College sweetheart met at 18, married at 22 and divorced while I was 28. We are still friends and parents of 2 of my 3 children. My second one I met at age 30, had dear Felicia and he wished to wander more than stay at home. We parted ways and I was a very happy child care provider for income and was at home all day, although we all set off to jazz lessons, swim lessons, gymnastics and teams my 3 children had. I was married the final time 1993 -2006. No children but we did share a life with his and my children. I have been on my own 10 years but date men and enjoy friends. Smiles, Robin

  10. Derrick – this might be my favorite post of yours. I have to keep referring back to it – like the graph in the first pages of a complicated novel. I have just now come to understand that the Jackie of before is our same beloved Jackie of now. Bravo! I have a similar story. I am married to my high school sweetheart – after we both went off & married someone else. : ) Cheers to trying until it works!

  11. Loved the detail that has gone into the creation of this page Derrick.. a truly wonderful gift to pass along to family as they look back to see their roots..
    Wonderful..
    Thank you so much for sharing the Link of this page with me Derrick.. 🙂

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  13. I have meant to read this for quite some while and I am so glad I have. No doubt I will want to refer back to it from time to time but for now I am clear enough. They never promise us a simple life, I don’t think but some, it must be said have more bumps and turns than others – I know this to be true!

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