My Grandfather, Guy Vernon Newcomer, died about nine years before I was born. My mother’s father had died from complications while recovering from a farm accident when my mom was only seven years old. Thus it was in God’s providence I never got to know either of my Grandfathers. Back in 1988 I asked my Aunt Florence (Newcomer) Ruffer to write about what she remembered of her father, my Grandfather. The following is what she wrote in December 1988:
Guy Newcomer 1880 - 1940
“No one can tell me much about our father so what I write is my remembrances of Guy Vernon Newcomer.
Our mother was the dominant figure in our home so I remember Dad as a quite, gentle man. He had many friends and was a good neighbor. Dad did not attend church. Would he have if Mother would have gone to the Methodist church? We’ll never know.
I can see Dad, at 6 P.M., sitting beside the Atwatter Kent (radio) listening to Lowell Thomas’ newscast. He never failed to listen to his favorite newsman. I also can picture him with the cigar in his mouth as he drove the horses or car. Also, driving the horses attached to the bobsled as he picked us up from school on snowy days. Often he took all the kids home around the square mile. No, he didn’t smoke the cigar at that time.
He loved his Masonic lodge and was a loyal member of the Waldron lodge. He had a wry sense of humor for instance; mother’s W.C.T.U. (Women’s Christian Temperance Union) was, to him, the “Women’s Continual Talking Union” and lodge members who only came for the “eats” were the “belly members”.
Ruth Merrifield Suffel (his grand-daughter), says he always took them with him to the mill and he always bought them candy. I recall the ice cream cones he always bought us on the Saturday night town trip.
Dad always rested his horses at noon - he also rested on the couch on the back porch. He always fed milk to many barn cats. that feeding always came first.
Dad graduated from the eighth grade and I believe he should have gone to college but destiny said “he a farmer”. He could have been a surveyor or some trade similar.
Dad was a good man, as I recall him. I remember going to the Fulton County fair with him and the many friends he also had in Wauseon.”
[Florence (Newcomer) Ruffer, December 1988]
The school Aunt Florence mentioned was the old White School on Hartley Road just west of Tuttle Road. A house now sits where the school building once was. My grandparents moved to Waldron, Michigan about 1911 from the Wauseon, Ohio area.
My father says that in the late 1920’s Grandpa had to take off-farm work to make ends meet. He got a job in Toledo, Ohio. Toledo is about 50 miles east of Waldron. He would stay in Toledo during the week, then come home for the weekend. At that time one could catch the train in Fayette and ride in to Toledo and back.