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Their legacy was sisterhood

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By Carolyn Ten Broeck

 My maternal grandparents left a long legacy–seven children and 29 grandchildren.

Over time, those 29 grandchildren “went forth and multiplied” and today, my family is huge and, of course, scattered.

Of those seven children, my mother was the only one who stayed in the same town as her parents. Several times a year we benefited from visits from the Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky cousins who came to see the grandparents. We were close and loving–the way families are supposed to be.

And then we grew up, had our own families and life suddenly stood between us and the closeness we once shared.

Two weeks ago the female cousins did something to change that: we had a Girl Cousin Only Reunion in Columbus, Ohio, where the matriarchal cousin lives.

For months I had looked forward to it and I assure you, I was not disappointed.

There are 13 girls–all women now ranging in age from early 40s to almost 70 (sorry, Loretta) and  we were blessed to have eight of us, plus a daughter and cousin-by-marriage, under one roof for three magical days.

We laughed. Oh, how we laughed. And shared remembrances, even though some of us remembered things differently. 

We slept little–going to bed at 5 a.m. only to get up and start again at 8. But it didn’t matter.

We were invincible. We are Hall women.

There were many tears as we parted–me especially since I alone am the one who does not have a sister. 

Through tears, we embraced hugging fiercely.

Almost every girl expressed wariness about what I would write in the newspaper about our reunion.

Because, you see, there are stories of Bubbles, Kitty (a/k/a Quarters)  and others that one day I will share–tales that will include mentions of rabbits, casinos, Glen Campbell and more.

But today, the story is the same as the legacy–it’s about the ties that bind and sisterhood.

I know my grandparents would be proud. I am.