I just want to take a moment to honor my Aunt Earlene Sargent that recently passed away.
What Is A Celebration Of Life?
With a Celebration of Life, we gather and tell all that we remember about the person, our strongest memories.
My aunt was a Theological Scholar and taught everything from Sunday School to Seminary Classes at Lighthouse Bible College. She was a daughter to Earl & Barbara Jackson. She was a wife to Henry Sargent (Uncle Bud), and a daughter-in-law to Henry & Lucile, a mother to son Scott & daughter-in-law Amanda, and daughter Shelly. She was a niece to Preston McLaughlin & his wife Marie, and Johnny McLaughlin & his wife, Clarence & Delvina Beanum (aka Anderson), Dorthy, Elizabeth, Mary, Eleanor & Robert, and many others (way to many to list – her father had 12 siblings & her mother’s siblings are listed, and only a few of her in-law aunt & uncles are listed). She was a sister to several siblings 3 sisters & 3 brothers – Gary Virgil & Gary Lyn (twins), and John Jackson. She was a cousin to a plethora of people, and a friend to many, but she was my aunt, and aunt to many more. She was also a preacher & an inspiration to many.
My Strongest Memory:
My strongest memory happened at a private (family members only) party for my twin & I. There is a back story of events that took place prior to the birthday party. Most people either forgot about it or were not privy to the information, because it was a family matter we rarely spoke of back then.
This is a secret that I’ve kept for my twin aunts until now. My twin aunts (Barbara & Earl’s youngest daughters) were two years younger than Cousin Tommy Johns, one year younger than my Sister Brenda, the same age as Rick Johns & Krystel Jackson, one year older than Susan Jean & myself (Rachel Angelica Beanum), two years older than Carol Jackson, and several years older than Scott Sargent, Mike Johns, Cindy Jackson, Shelly Sargent, and Jeremiah Jackson.
Back story continued up to the birthday party:
My two aunts loved pranking people regarding their identity. The four of us constantly pranked my Grandma Barbara, our aunts, each other & our older cousins, and on a rare occasion my Grandpa Earl & our uncles. My aunts were starry-eyed and wanted to trade places with me or Susan in order to see all the sights my sisters & I had shared pictures of with them. They asked if one of them could swap places with me or Susan. All four of us looked identical other than clothing choices and hair cuts (rarely hair cuts).
One of my aunts wanted to make the swapping places permanent. Brenda was scared and told all four of us “if mom & dad ever found out there would be hell to pay.” My aunts were willing to take the blame.
Well, they found out shortly into a few months of the swap. They gathered us all up. My Grandma Barbara insisted we all have our butts paddled for it.
Well, long story shortened… One of my aunts called child services when she decided that she shouldn’t get spanked for that severe of a prank.
Susan & I would swap presents with my aunts at birthday parties since we were usually unable to visit them much because of my dad (Gary Virgil) being on duty or we’d moved because he’d been stationed in various locations in the U.S. AirForce.
At the particular birthday party in question, my Grandma Barbara was upset. My mom asked me if I had any problems donating my presents to unfortunate children. I laughed because I’d picked out a horse for my birthday present. I’d named it Lightning because it had a lightning bolt on its nose & up between its eyes. My Uncle Bud (aka Henry) said, “I’ll give you a bunch of presents and candy if I can have your horse.” I said, “NO WAY!”
My Sister Susan said, “It doesn’t matter to me, I donate all my gifts anyways.” I started to think about what she said and then I said, “Okay, you can have Lightning because Susan’s right. She & I always donate our gifts to an orphanage and I don’t think an orphanage is going to have much use for a horse.”
The whole family began debating on the renaming of Lightning. Someone suggested, “Excalibur.” I said, “No, how about Frost?” My Aunt Earlene came out of the dining room laughing and said, “Did someone say frosting?” This segued to eating cake and ice cream. One of my cousins, I think Tommy Johns said, “Well, Frosting it is.” I laughed. After cake and ice cream, we had to leave because my dad had duty. We went to Sorrell Field and my family got on a helicopter to leave.
My Grandparents (Clarence & Delvina) caught us before we took off. My Grandfather suggested that he take us back to the base after a while because they wanted to take us clothing shopping. The clothing shopping was again a donation to one or two children at the orphanage. Well, I changed into play clothes and Susan and Brenda changed clothes. We briefly revisited the party as the case worker showed up with my two aunts. Uncle Henry ushered us off to the garage and took us over to the barn.
He explained to my Grandfather Clarence that the case worker was there and he didn’t want any funny business. We took frosting for a ride back to Sorrell’s Field and waited for my Grandparents (Clarence & Delvina). My Uncle Henry rode Frosting back to his barn.
Frosting’s name eventually was shortened to Frosty. And, the next time that situation happened, we were on the helicopter in Sorrell’s Field and my Grandparents (Clarence & Delvina) picked us up at Fort Lewis and took us shopping. However, a certain individual showed up wanting Susan or I to pose as one of my Grandma Barbara’s daughters, because she’d ran away from her foster parents. My father told me, “If you’re my sister, be my sister. If you’re my daughter, be my daughter.” I stayed on the helicopter.
Regarding Frosting, my Uncle Henry had been training Frosting. He showed off his training skills in a strange way.
When we arrived the next birthday get together, there was a cake sitting on the counter unfrosted. I asked my mom, “Are they even ready for us?” My mom had been in a slight mood and sipped some conj ac. She said, “It doesn’t look like it, does it?” My Uncle Henry took us all to the back yard. First, he told us that he’d attempted this training in several locations.
He said, “Frosting is barn shy. He gets to the barn doors and just plops his butt down and just refuses to go in.” Then he said, “He doesn’t like the old mule I bought off the neighbor.” He said, “When I put him in the barn, the old mule & Frosting get kicking and fighting like cats & dogs. And, every time Earlene bakes carrot cake he sits outside the kitchen window like old Abe (the German Shepherd) begging for some carrot-cake.”
Aunt Earlene came out with the cake that had sat unfrosted and showed off the finished product. Frosting knocked it out of her hands and sat square on the cake. Everyone laughed and said, “Well, your birthday cake has Frosting on it now.” My Grandma Barbara laughed so hard. We ended up snapping beans for our birthday that year.
By the way, these things took place many years before Michael Luetral and Becky Luetral, Jr. (aka Rachel Angelica Luetral – she was named after me & I was named her Godmother) were introduced to my family.