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Coolest story/member in your family tree

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by spikechiquet, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. spikechiquet

    spikechiquet Well-Known Member

    The family secrets thread got me thinking about my family history.

    I got into my family tree a while back (mind you, I am adopted...so it's actually my family's family tree...but you know..whatever) and learned a lot of cool stuff.
    I think the coolest story that I read was that one of guys moved from France in the 1600s as a teen to help found what became Montreal. He even has a statue or something of the like in front of a hospital there still.
    During one skirmish, he was scalped by a Indian and lived to tell about it and lived for 10-15 years with a hole in his head.
    My family also has two former major league baseball players, including one of the Black Sox.
  2. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I have a distant relative who played in one of the early World Series.

    Have a great uncle who was one of two members of a bomber crew who survived when their plane crashed into a mountain in Europe. He had a broken back but sympathetic locals helped carry him down and hide him until he could be taken to a hospital.

    He lived into his 80s and was a college professor.
  3. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

    Some distant someone on dads side was a turn-of-the-century Senator and robber baron toady. Mom's side was all disreputable Scotch-Irish hillbillies. I relate to her side better.
  4. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I have a cousin who was a Division I basketball prospect in high school. Instead of going to the Big 8 schools that were offering, he went to MIT, became a Division III All-American, and graduated with honors.

    He then went to Med School and joined the Navy. He did a few stints in Iraq and when he got back, he applied for and was granted a patent on a huge health care product that, without getting too specific, is being used all over Africa and is credited with saving thousands of lives. He took the patent to a venture capitalist and it made him millions.

    He's now on the faculty at an Ivy League school where he only teaches one class a semester and spends the rest of his time demonstrating his product around the country. His wife is one of the coolest people I've ever met, and his three daughters are the best-behaved kids I've ever seen.

    He is probably the most awesome person I've ever met.
  5. Piotr Rasputin

    Piotr Rasputin New Member

    My uncle thought he was Saint Jerome.
  6. Big Circus

    Big Circus Well-Known Member

    Dorothy Parker.

    Well, I'm related to her by marriage, not blood. But my cousin on my mom's side who married her (twice!) was an Oscar-nominated screenwriter who seemed to have a pretty cool life (until he killed himself).

  7. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    My great uncle (grandmother's brother) was the interesting one in the family. He was a brilliant artist and the head of a university art department for a few years later in his life. The shame of it is we have very little of his work. He would just give it away or toss it. My aunt (his sister) saved what she could. He could do anything. Drawing. Painting. Sculpture. But his real gift was for blown glass.

    A company in Germany flew him in to create a new line of glassware for them for six months. Rather than come home, he just kept going and traveled all over for a year or two. When he left, he was over 300 pounds. By the time he came home, he was around 180. Nobody knew where he was most of the time or when he would return. He just showed up at my grandparents' front door one day. My mother answered it and didn't even recognize him at first.

    If the stories are to be believed, he was also a fantastic athlete, but he just lost interest too quickly to play a sport regularly. I was very young when he died, four or five. I just remembered the cool uncle who taught me how to whistle. Well, that and that he used to eat parsley. Even got me to try it.
  8. qtlaw

    qtlaw Well-Known Member

    My mom's dad came over to the US from mainland China in 1920s and worked 20 hour days, 7 days a week running a one man laundromat in Cleveland. Somehow was able to support 3 daughters and get them over here. A more honorable (and humble) man I'll never meet.

    By marriage, my wife has traced her lineage to the Daughters of the American Revolution.

    So my kids hail from the American Revolution and the peasants of old Canton, China.
  9. bigpern23

    bigpern23 Well-Known Member

    Great pull.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  10. albert77

    albert77 Well-Known Member

    I have a first cousin who is a helicopter pilot in the Army National Guard. While on his first tour of duty in Iraq, he was part of the attack squadron that took out Saddam Hussien's two sons. There is a picture of him shaking hands with President Bush that ran in the Clarion-Ledger after he got back home.
  11. micropolitan guy

    micropolitan guy Well-Known Member

    One of my direct relatives on my mother's side was killed at Chancellorsville, fighting for the Union.

    I supposedly am distantly related to Thomas Dewey and Rutherford B. Hayes.

    I also have a neice who was a sponsored professional bike racer for several years. I don't know if she was very good but she looks nice and got endorsements, etc., and is now living in Monaco or someplace like that.
  12. cyclingwriter

    cyclingwriter Active Member

    Justin Strzelczyk was a second cousin. Met him for the first time at one of my uncle's funerals just after the Steelers drafted him. No one in the family thought he had a snowball's chance in hell of making the team.

    And somewhere along the line, one of my ancestors killed enough Turks/Muslims/Germans/who the hell knows that the Vatican bestowed a family crest to us.
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