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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Booking photo revisited

As a boy, requests for information about my father were handled as if I was asking for the codes to the nuclear suitcase. I was told, he was missing, and that not a soul knew what had become of him. But after my mom passed away and I spied the contents of her purse, I learned otherwise. I learned that he was remarried and living in Michigan all along, at least, up until 1982 where the trail went cold due to divorce.

While still in grade school, I was given nine pictures of my father, which I still have. Eight were of him as a boy of 11 playing eight different musical instruments. The other was a mug shot taken in 1961 by a police department in Florida. And growing up, that was the only image I ever had of my father, that booking photo.

Courtesy of the Wilkes-Barre Police Department, I had the following picture taken. It was my surreal gone sublime homage to my father: Look, Dad, I got one, too.

Just a couple of years ago, after an exhaustive Internet search by my daughter, a couple of long lost relatives were found over there on the other side of the country. And they forwarded pictures such as the one posted below, which shows my parents together (a first for me) in the very late fifties.

When I recieved that photo, I just sat and stared at it. It was the first time I saw my dad looking young and vibrant and happy as an adult. Not exactly the it-sucks-being-arrested pose.

Anyway, in keeping with the arrest photo tradition, we had this pic taken after my grandkids tangled with the WBPD...

After my mom died, I used her heretofore unknown mini phone directory to track down and speak to my dad's step-son by way of that marriage that ended in 1982. He told me that after the divorce my dad set off to Seattle, presumably to work for Boeing. And because of that, while using the Internet to locate the long lost parent, my efforts almost always focused on the Pacific northwest.

And finally, finally, after all these decades, I struck gold...http://www.mugshotsworld.com/GENE-JOSEPH-COUR

So, after five decades of asking and wondering and imagining and yearning and searching, we're back to the booking photo thing. Same as it always was.

What's that dated spiel? Be careful what you ask for?


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