Tag Archives: Air Force

Foolin’ with Old Junk

Carol and Tad, ca. 1961I delight in the fact that he [Tad] liked to work. He liked to work.

When I went to Union Baptist Church, he had an eighteen-wheeler. And an eighteen-wheeler is like a motor home. If you don’t keep it on the road, you’re not going to get your money out of it. When you own an eighteen-wheeler, you have to keep it rolling. He’d make long runs. I’d see him come out from where he lived and I’d see him come back in. He worked. He was a hard-working man. Everything that I can say about him, Carol, he was a worker. He was a worker.

I know the last, I guess maybe the last conversation, I was over there cutting grass at their house. Tad had a mower and he was cutting. I said, “Tad,” I said, “Why don’t you consider getting you a big mower?” If you’ve been over there where they live on Steele Road, it’s a pretty good size yard, isn’t it, Trey? And I think I might have had him talking into getting one.

“But Tad was a guy; he liked to fool with old junk.”

[Trey interjects]: Amen!

Old junk. My son-in-law gave me a lawnmower, a riding lawnmower and it was parked down at the house, Marvin. I didn’t ever use it. I said, “Tad,” I said, “Could you use this old mower?” It cranked up and run good, but it had miles on it. He brought it over. Still over at the house over there. You rode it the other day. He got it out and was going to ride it when they got back. The deck on it wasn’t level. When I saw him, he said, “Ralph, I’ve cut some grass, but I really whacked it up.” You could, you could see it where it was dug in. I said, “Well that’ll heal in time because that grass will grow back.” He was that kind of a guy. He just liked to take something or other that looked like it was wore out and make it go. And most always he was successful. I delight in the fact that he was a workman.

I delight in the fact that he loved his family. He and Carol met on a blind date. Didn’t you?

[Carol]: Yes.

Carol, Gloria, Trey, Tad, ca. 1970You did. He was in the Air Force. You see Tad’s from Massachusetts. That’s where Romney’s from. I don’t want to get into politics. But Carol’s from Pennsylvania. There’s a distance between Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. Anyway they were brought together on a blind date. A spark flew. It turned into a fire. And they got married [ca. 1959]. I believe you told me y’all had been married 48 years?

[Carol]: Fifty-three.

OK. How about that? And in that marriage, the Lord gave them a handsome son and a very pretty daughter and also a son-in-law Chris and a grandson Brett. He delighted in his family.

Tad delighted in the Lord’s work. I never heard him teach a class nor never heard him preach a sermon, but he delighted in joining in and participating. He liked music. I delight in that fact.

But there was something else about Tad Duncan that I can’t pass over and that’s this: I delight in the fact that he was man enough to stand up when he thought something was wrong and speak out. And some of you know what I’m talking about. He wasn’t hard to get along with, but if he didn’t think it was right and going right, down the right path, he would stand up and he would speak out. There were times he had to stand alone. I delight in that.

So, my dear friends, I could go on and say more, but time is passing by.

Ralph Simmons, pastor and friend, speaking at Tad’s memorial service, Wildwood Baptist Church (950 County Line Church Road, Griffin, GA 30223), June 22, 2012, transcription of audio provided by Gloria Boyer (Tad’s daughter)

Can you add to the story? Please do. Write in the box below (You may need to click “Leave a Reply” above to make the box, name, and address fields appear.).

  • Do you recall other stories about Tad as an adult?
  • Can you tell about his experience in the Air Force? When did he join? Why? What did he do? Where did he train? Where did he serve?
  • Can you tell more about Tad and Carol’s wedding? Do you have photos? I guessed they married in 1959? Was that right? Can you provide the exact date?
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Steve Saves Sandy from a Sledding Accident & Princey

[Uncle Steve] actually saved my life. I was sledding down on the sidewalk by Grandma and Grandpa’s house when the sled took off for the street. Fortunately [he] was right there and grabbed my foot just as a car was driving by! He said, “When we said ‘go play in traffic,’ this is NOT what we meant!”

You may not know this, but [Uncle Steve] actually saved my life. I was sledding down on the sidewalk by Grandma and Grandpa’s house when the sled took off for the street. Fortunately [he] was right there and grabbed my foot just as a car was driving by! He said, “When we said ‘go play in traffic,’ this is NOT what we meant!”

written by Sandy Moyer (Betty’s daughter) in response to a photo of Taylor and his boys, which Colin Duncan (Bob’s son) posted on Facebook, February 23, 2010

As far as the approximate dates for the sled “incident” (when your dad grabbed my foot as I headed for traffic), I believe it was in latter part of 1960, early 1961. I remember my folks were concerned that JFK was going to be elected president (which he was, obviously). So I am guessing possibly November/December 1960. I would have been seven years old. 

Your dad [Steve] still lived at home. He had a wonderful German shepherd named Princey. I was just speaking to my mother [Betty] about the dog, and I told her that I remember that his food bowl was out in the enclosed porch. She reminded me that your dad had trained him a bit. He would say to Princey: “Stay . . . stay . . . stay . . .” and the dog would look longingly at his bowl but not move toward it. Then your dad would say, “OKAY!” and the dog would make a beeline to his food. I loved that dog; he even walked me to school which was just a couple of blocks away from Grandma and Grandpa’s house. 

added by Sandy Moyer (Betty’s daughter) on November 5, 2012

This occurred outside of 16 Washburn Avenue on the hill in front of the house.  We did have a sidewalk in front of the house before the road, but the sled twisted, turning right into a road. Coming down the road was a car and a sheet of ice. I was where she passed and I reached out and grabbed her foot and kept her from getting in the way of the sliding car. 

I guess that I was about twenty years old, home from Boston University, prior to going into the army.  Betty and Harley were unquestionably home for furlough and we all took advantage of the snow and the wintertime sport.  I don’t think that I was so impressed that I was a hero, as Sandy might have remembered, but I like the idea of being thought of as such.  My Brother Tad, who was called Junior at the time, was probably in the Air Force at the moment and others of the family were not about. Who was doing the cooking?  I’m not sure. I would imagine it was the work of both Grandma Duncan [Virginia] and my sister [Betty].

added by Steve on November 26, 2012

Can you add to the story? Please do. Write in the box below (You may need to click “Leave a Reply” above to make the box, name, and address fields appear.).

  • What do you remember about Princey?
  • What other pets did the family have over the years?
  • What were other family members doing near the end of 1960/beginning of 1961?