Civil Rights, Fried Fish & Family (2)



And then, the weekend arrived. I was excited because it was Cousins’ Weekend. My mom’s family is pretty big; she’s the youngest of nine! Even though my first cousins all lived in different places, we still managed to grow up close. Most of them now have children of their own. In order to ensure that this next generation of the Sears-Deane Family grows up knowing one another, all the first cousins banded together a few years ago and created a new family tradition called Cousins’ Weekend. Every year someone volunteers to host it. This year it was held at my cousin LaShaune’s new home just outside of Raleigh, North Carolina. LaShaune and her husband Barney set up a slip and slide in their backyard for the younger kids to play on before dinner. All the food was freshly prepared and delicious. We ate everything from fried fish to blackberry cobbler (gatherings like this definitely made you happy to be from the South). All the younger kids ended the night watching Disney Channel’s Hannah Montana with their free 3-D glasses. It was great just being surrounded by so many loved ones.

This weekend was good because I also got to spend quality time with my Uncle Kindle. At 84 years-old, he’s theUncle Kindle eldest of my mom’s eight siblings (my late grandmother was born in 1904 so I also come from an older family). My Uncle Kindle is literally a walking, talking family history book. When we got back to Cumberland, he and my Uncle Sydney took me to the Deane Family cemetery. It was the first time I had ever been. We drove down a forest-covered dirt road until we reached a small, fenced-in plot of land. In the center stood the tombstone of my great-grandfather, Carey Deane – born in 1866. There were also two other stone markers with no writing; my Uncle Kindle didn’t know who they belonged to. I had found my next research project.

Categories: Student Blogs, Traditions & Events

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