Today is my brother’s 70th birthday. Happy birthday, Eddy.
What is there to say about my big brother? He helped to make me what I am today. For example, he is the loving brother who, in childhood in the 1940s at the cottage, called in to me while I was in the outhouse (lovingly called the Orchid Room), “There’s a spider in your hair!”
Eddy always cared about David and me. He taught us the meaning of the naughty words we shouldn’t know or say. He also told me not to mention this to our parents. When we were new to Sturgeon Bay, I was in 5th grade and he was in 6th grade. He hit me a lot to show his love. I would have gladly sold him to the first bidder then, but everyone can see that I simply didn’t understand him. By the time I was in 6th grade and he had new boxing gloves, we finally had a match and I beat him. He improved after that. In dear old Sturgeon Bay High School, he made sure to make fun of every boyfriend I acquired. The most memorable was Bill Swan, who he called the Great White Bird. It’s obvious that Eddy really cared. He managed to keep his own love life under wraps.
Somehow we all grew up. Eddy miraculously got a college degree. Then he was an officer in Korea during the Vietnam War, which gave him better survival chances than some who went to Vietnam. He came home and gave his life to our radio station, WDOR, and became manager when our father almost retired. That is, Father retired and continued to go to work every day. Eddy was able to manage family issues then and now. We waited a long time, and he finally got married at age 37 (didn’t rush into it) to Mary Lou, who has been a great spouse for him. He became stepdad to John and Liz, and then Danny came along. No, he’s not the dog, he’s Eddy’s and Mary Lou’s son. After Eddy, David and I inherited the Allen stock in the radio station, Eddy continued to steer that ship as President of the corporation and general manager. During lulls, he goes bowling.
Hail to you, Eddy. I expect some good words on my birthday.