I have kept four tiny cups that my grandfather collected for his strong, black coffee (today’s term espresso). Paul Fugett loved his coffee so much that he encouraged all 3 grand daughters to drink the last drops from his cup which usually included some coffee grounds. I guess he thought it was good for us! He made coffee drinkers of all three of us. So curious that this big man would prefer such tiny little cups!
This stern, six foot tall man with steel gray hair worked as a carpenter all of his life. He built a homestead for his wife and two girls in what became Haltom City, as well as four rent houses on the property he owned. The homestead he built will be sold on Monday. I am sad it could not stay in the family, but having been built in the 30’s with only one update in the 60’s, it is so outdated and needs so much repair that our family cannot afford to maintain it.
He was one of the carpenters who built the old Casa Manana and Montgomery Wards, neither buildings there today. One of his jobs during the Depression was with the Works Project Administration ( a New Deal work project of FDR) laying bricks on Rosedale Street. I tell my sons and older grandsons about that anytime we are driving along that road.
When I was in fourth grade, I had an outstanding teacher who taught me a different mathematics system. When I showed Grand daddy, he wanted me to teach him & he wrote it all down in a ledger that I have kept as a momento of him. His intelligence impressed me though all he had was a high school education from Batesville, Arkansas, graduating in 1913.
He brought his father Walter Edward Fugett from Arkansas to live near him because of his blindness. My mom told stories of walking with her grandfather, guiding him along. When she developed macular degeneration in one of her eyes, she and I surmised that Walter may have had the same problem, just didn’t know back then what caused the blindness. When Walter knew he was dying, he asked Paul to take him back to Arkansas and my grandfather did.
This alcoholic grandfather took most Friday nights to go to bars, even when he wasn’t out of town on work, and probably had relationships with women there until my grandmother left him for a time after their daughters were adults. She insisted he stop drinking and carousing or she was gone for good; he loved her enough to quit drinking “cold turkey.”
He was not religious until my grandmother died; then he became a faithful member of her church until his battle with colon cancer. God reached him through my grandmother’s death. This guy looms large in my mind as a person of strength, who fought his demons and won with God’s help.