I was fortunate to be the only child of and born to elderly parents that knew I was a gift from God.
My father, an evangelist in the Evangelical movement at the turn of the century, was born in 1892. Dad had physical problems and felt better in the “Dry heat” of Tucson. In the 1930’s, Dad with the help of local people, built a two room mud adobe house with no running water or indoor toilet/restroom.
Dad lived in Tucson during the winter months and would travel by bus or train to his scheduled revivals during the summer months. (Dad never had a driver’s license nor did he ever drive).
Dad, at 51 years old, finally decided to marry his girlfriend of thirteen years. Her name was Pauline Elizabeth Porter and she was much younger than Dad. Mom was born on a farm in a small town of Ohio by the name of Fredricktown. When she was 18 years old she moved to Lexington Kentucky to attend Asbury College. During her sophomore year her Mother died and Mom was called home to raise her three younger siblings (twin brothers and one sister).
Finally, after the siblings became adults, Mom had been in love with Charles for so many years she finally agreed to take his hand in marriage. Dad was in his 50’s and Mom was 40.
Soon after they married, Dad brought Mom to his home in Arizona. Dad was always dressed perfectly wearing a white double breasted suit if he was preaching. Mom’s anticipation was sky rocketing looking forward to “living in a mansion”. Mom was used to the large farm houses in Ohio.
In the car ride from the Tucson train station to Dad’s home on the southside of Tucson they drove down dusty roads and arroyos, Mom knew something great was about to happen. All at once Dad, with unbelievable enthusiasm, exclaimed “There’s our home”!!! What a bitter disappointment to my dear, soon to be Mother.
Mom had a melancholic type of temperament; however, she had a great personality.
Within three months, she had made the mud adobe into a home with a well, indoor plumbing and a bathroom on the way. Mother made the money for the add-on’s by teaching piano lessons, making tortillas, enchiladas, tamales, etc. It’s a wonder Mom made any profit from the Mexican food. As a growing boy, as years went by, I’m sure I “cut” into the profit.
Mom & Dad found out about the pregnancy. To them, it was like the immaculate Conception. God was giving them a marvelous gift, however, there was one major problem; Mom had heart disease and her family doctor in Ohio recommended an abortion (1944). An abortion was not in my parent’s DNA or a part of their religious values. They prayed. Mom specifically prayed that God would give her the privilege of raising the child. I’m not trying to make a political or religious statement; however, I’m kind of glad they didn’t pursue the abortion.
Finally, little Charles David McVay, was born by caesarean to Charles Marien McVay and Pauline Elizabeth McVay January 2, 1945 in Mt. Vernon, Ohio.
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