Wednesday, February 5, 2020


For Christmas 2018, Anna and Chris Casey, arranged for me a gift called "Storyworth".. Each week for one year, I received an email prompt to respond to.  The responses were saved and then available to be compiled into a book of the memories that had been recorded. 
Thanks to Anna and Chris!

For me, this was very having a major assignment from school due each and every week during the year. At Thanksgiving, I had completed about 15 or so of 48 till then.  I began a marathon push to finish before the year expired.  I padded some of the stories with lots of pictures.

Then I hit on the idea of including my church talks given over the course of several years.  Many of these talks have snippets of personal experiences woven into the theme.  Even now they are interesting for me and I hope will be read by some of you.

Then finally to finish my project, I added family group sheet information for Anna and Katie covering five generations going back and then also a chapter listing all descendants of Mom and Dad, Marna Maynes and Lloyd McGee. (three generations)  along with my Priesthood lines of authority and pictures from family reunions.

The initial copy included with Anna and Chris's gift has black and white photos inside to be used as a proof copy.  After correction and multiple revisions, the 'final' version was submitted. I obtained 7 copies for myself and my kids with color pictures. For anyone else who might be interested, there is a color PDF version that I will share.
Proof and Final editions

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Small world

Michele and Larry traveled 3000 miles from Pacifica to find a small historical plaque that tells the story of Larry's 10th Great Grandfather being aided by Michele's 10th great grandfather in 1637.
Lion Gardiner and Mohegan Chief Uncas.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Studio Pictures from 1954

Mom has lots of photo albums at home.  I'm starting to make digital copies of them.  here are two of the best pictures ca 1954. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Another Family Reunion Picture

Here is an interesting Picture I found on my hard drive. I don't remember where this came from.
Although the label says 1954, the picture seems to be from 1953. David McGee was born in Jan 1953 and seems on his mother's lap to be a lot younger than 1 year old. (He passed away in 1970). The baby in Russell's arms is not labeled but is likely to be LaRaine and Dolly's son  Gary born 8 days before me.  Both he and I look like we're still under 1 year old.  With no sign of Karen, I doubt this is 1954. Colleen married Fred in 1954, but he is not in the picture here, while Leola and Roger Ball were married in 1953 and he is here. My best guess is July of 1953.  There were some older kids for Russell and for Solon and Louise that are not showing. also the oldest two sisters and their families were not here. and Russell's wife Alice was missing.  Those grandkids would have been from 22 to 13 and perhaps too busy to come to a reunion. Also Irene McGee Despain and her family is missing.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Family Reunion Time

We held the annual reunion for the Lloyd R and Marna McGee family at the home of Heidi Pickrell in West Ogden Utah on Saturday June 22, 2019. Separately, I took Mom on Monday 25 June to visit her brother as the last two children of their family. Here are the pictures. All Mom's living kids and about half of the grandkids and great grandkids were able to come.
Generation 0: Fred and Colleen Maynes  with Marna McGee

Mom's family:

Generation 1
left to right: Back row: Heidi Pickrell, Patti Kasten, Bob McGee, John McGee, Linda Anderton
Front row: Jim McGee, Marna Maynes McGee, Larry McGee

Generation 2 and 3
15 (of 30) grandchildren and 5 (of 16) great grandchildren
back row: Rach Atwood, Trishel,  Ben, Catie, Katie, David, Isaac, Cherry Wolf, Andy Chow, Brittany
middle row: Carson, Josh, Grandma, Emree, Noelle, Ariah, Cade 
front row: Jaya, Brianna, Jasmine, Elise, Sam Anderton
Thanks to Linda Anderton and Cherry Wolf for coordinating everything and to Heidi and Monty Pickrell for hosting at their home. 
and with spouses. Rachel McGee, Carla McGee, Catie McGee, Monty Pickrell, Michele McGee, Frank Kasten, Dave Anderton and Julie McGee.  Thanks for coming.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Alpheus Gifford in Missouri

I recently came across a document from 1839 that was written or dictated by Alpheus Gifford in 1839. Alpheus is my 3rd Great Grandfather. It appears to be signed by him as well so that would be the earliest primary document that I have for an ancestor, followed by the Bible of Sarah Jane Holder of which I have the original book.
The LDS church requested affidavits from families who had lived in Jackson, Clay and Caldwell Counties and had been driven from the state by Mobs. These are saved as the 'Mormon Redress Petitions' at the Church History Library. Pages 17 and 18 at that link are from Alpheus Gifford. --- additional record indicators: Call Number: MS 2703 Language: eng Containers: MS 2703/b0001/f0012 --- Caldwell County was specifically set up for Mormons so they could evacuate the other parts of the State. But they were driven from Caldwell in 1839 over to Quincy Illinois and from there to Nauvoo. --- I have stories from another ancestor who moved into Caldwell County IN 1839 and lived there for 10 years. --- Here is my transcription of the Redress Petition with punctuation added for clarity. [Feel free to suggest improvements and corrections] ---- May I take this opportunity to relate [a much] of my Sufferings in Missouri. I moved into jackson County march 1833. After laboring through the summer [I] was driven from the county into Clay to suffer with my sick family without a house, after living there three years and a half and laboring under many disadvantages and suffering much through sickness and other fatigues on the account of being driven. Then we was driven from there into Caldwell. After remaining there one year and a half we was driven from the State into the state of Illinois where we now dwell and are now destitute of bedding Clothing and provision and all most every comfort of life. All this on the account of being driven. A charge for actual losses by being driven from Jackson County two hundred dollars; from Clay two hundred and fifty dollars; for losses in Caldwell three hundred dollars; for the act of driving from the state I charge ten thousand dollars; for being deprived of liberty of living in the state of Missouri nothing will satisfy but being and protected Alpeus gifford I certify the with in to be just and true according to the best of my Knowledge Alpheus Gifford The within Sworn to, before me this 14th day of May AD. 1839 C. M. Wovels clerk (circuit court) State of Illinois

Monday, March 4, 2019

Are Prayers Answered?

Yesterday in Sunday School in the Half Moon Bay ward we were discussing answers to prayers and the fact that a key to getting answers to prayers is to Ask and Seek. In discussing examples of answered prayers, I shared one from our family that is a perfect example of an incident that can be viewed by a believer (like myself) as an answered prayer but by a non-believer as an unanswered prayer. _ This morning, exploring a new Family History feature at, I came across some results that made me realize we have another such example. High School Yearbooks are now indexed by name and crosslinked to pictures. Here are 3.
Cool Pictures of my Dad Lloyd Ross McGee from 10th grade at Jordan High School in 1943; Junior Year in 1944 in American Fork Utah and Senior year in 1945 at American Fork. MyHertitage, in addition to indexing, also estimates the birth year and gave this:
which jumped out at me since Dad's birth year is 1926 instead of 1928. His natural graduation class would have been 1944. As soon as he graduated in May of 1945, he joined the Army and was in basic training by the time World War II ended in Europe in May and in the Pacific in August. He ended up being sent to Europe as part of the after-war occupation. While that was still a dangerous time, it was far less dangerous than 1944 had been. So what was the Miracle that kept my father safe during the war? For that, you need to jump back a few years, before the war. Somewhere between 5th and 9th grade, the Ross McGee family was living in Granite Utah. They were a large and religious family, their family prayers often included requests for protection from harm and danger. But one cold winter day during that time, their home caught fire. It had something to do with warming engine oil on the stove that then caught fire. The home was destroyed and the family moved in with Aunt and Uncle Washburn a block or so down the road but in the course of the disruption, my Dad missed a year of school and got delayed one year from his peers that he had started with. So were their prayers NOT answered because they lost their home? ...or was my father's delayed schooling the REAL answer to all those prayers? Believers and non-believers can view the same events and have their own desires confirmed.