Memorial Day-A walk down memory lane

Take A Mulligan

John Sheda

As you know, last Monday was Memorial Day, the day we take a moment or two and honor those brave men and women who gave their lives for the freedoms we cherish today. But it’s also a time for people to reflect on all our loved ones that have passed on. Deb and I don’t get down to Chelsea very often anymore but we always make an annual trip on Memorial Day weekend, visiting both St. Joseph’s and Rector Cemeteries. The Sheda’s are resting well at St. Joe’s and the Veit’s are comfortable at Rector. Both cemeteries are in beautiful condition. Kudos to those who do such an excellent job of caring for both of them.

This year we placed flowers on eleven graves of our loved ones. And, of course, with each one, we spend a moment of silence, a moment of prayer and shared a story or two about each of the eleven. Then we talked about the “good-old-days” of an era that is long, long gone from us. While at St. Joe’s, we happened to cross paths with Ray and Betty, (you know who you are), and swapped stories for 15 minutes or so. It was a wonderful few minutes of reminiscing, especially when Betty mentioned how much she just love this column. She made my day!! Thanks Betty.

Next we drove through our old stomping grounds of Chelsea before heading south to visit Deb’s family at Rector. As we drove by the empty lot that used to hold Sheda’s Grocery Story and our attached home, and even a driveway for Dad to park his pick-up, it sure looked way too small to accommodate everything. As we drove by house after house, we tried to remember the names of all the Chelsea-ites who lived there or had lived there when we were growing up.

A lot has changed over the years, except the Silver Dollar is still up and running as are the Methodist and Catholic Churches. The store right on the corner next to where our store used to be is still there. Not sure how many remember the big old house that used to be on the corner there. My “Granny,” (Mom’s mom), lived there for a time being and there was a tiny little building between that house and our grocery store, where two old men lived separately. Do you remember Joe Borosky and Frank Spinler? Joe used to keep an eye on my bicycle. They were both good guys.

Well after driving through the town for several minutes we were now heading south to Rector Cemetery. We drove past Dad’s old ranch. What a place that used to be. Probably shouldn’t tell this but down that driveway to the ranch was a perfect place for Deb and me to park when we were dating back in the early 70’s. It was a nice dark quiet place where just the two of us could, well………….you know, talk about school, future plans, the weather and things like that. What did YOU think we were doing?????

We enjoyed also our time at Rector, once again sharing our memories and various stories. We talked about Deb’s family, relatives and all the friends that have passed on throughout the years. Where has all the time gone?? As we headed back to town, Deb wondered if trains even went through Chelsea anymore. Well we had to wonder no more because not one but two trains came through at the same time. And a minor traffic jam ensued!! Ha ha…..traffic jam in Chelsea.


If you have a memory or story to tell, Deb and I sure would love to hear from you. Contact me at jsheda@indytel.com or call me at 319.327.4640. Hmmm, our old phone number was 489.2316. And before that when we had the old telephone office, (remember that?), our old, old “crank” phone number was #60. There ya go!!