Anne's Letter - Photos at bottom!
30 Mackenzie Street
12 December 2010.
Hi HCHS classmates fifty years on!
You can imagine my joy and surprise when, last week, I received an early morning phone call from this gentleman with a rather deep American drawl.
I didn't recognise the voice at all and then he revealed that he was Ken Kraning, and had been trying to locate me since March, to convey the news that Opal Lord, Jennifer's and my host mum when we were exchange students with you, had passed away in March of this year. The sadness at hearing the news about Opal was mixed with the joy of having a link to you all once again and, in a sense, it was her death which brought that about.
Ken told me about Bari's 1960 class website with a whole lot of info' about your lives to date, and I have loved catching up with all your news. Isn't it fascinating to observe how we change over the years? Larry Cunningham has ditched the braces on his teeth and Brooks Jackson has grown his hair!
Now that I have spied on all of your lives, I will bring you up to date with mine.
After leaving Hartford City and returning home to North Wales in the UK, I began work as a draughtswoman in an architectural drawing office, and did that type of work until the birth of our first daughter Sally, in 1969. I was married in 1963, and my husband Glyn and I moved from North Wales to Warwickshire in England where Glyn was a buyer with a firm of engineers, and I continued my work with architects.
After Sally was born Glyn and I moved to a village near to Chepstow in S. Wales where our second daughter Alison was born in 1971. In 1975 Glyn and I were divorced. My own father had died when I was two and I think that I was looking for a father figure in a husband which, in hindsight, was an unrealistic expectation. I brought the girls up alone and, in a sense, I was imposing upon them the same situation I had experienced myself, ie., life without a father around, although Glyn and I lived fairly close to each other, and he was able to see Sally and Alison on a regular basis.
Our lives were reasonabley happy until 1986 when everything turned upside down, but those events were the catalyst which brought about a huge change in my life and consequently the lives of my daughters.
My mother became ill with cancer and died in the February of 1986. There were other distressing life situations taking place over the same period and, as a result, I went into a downward spiral of depression which I was totally unable to pull myself out of. The next two years can only be described as a living hell, and I spent periods of time in hospital having treatment for a depression which moved on to become a psychosis. It was hard for Sally and Alison to cope with this as they were just 15 and 17 at the time.
During this two year period I had a friend who had become a Christian four years earlier, and she would come and visit and pray for me on a fairly regular basis. I wondered why she bothered as I felt so ill and believed that nothing could help me to recover. However, my friend persisted and didn't give up on me, and in the February of 1988, I repented of all my sins, which were many, and asked Jesus to come and be Lord of my life.
I was in the local mental hospital at the time and the staff couldn't understand how my illness had suddenly lifted. During the time I was ill, our eldest daughter Sally had become pregnant, and she was released from hospital with her beautiful baby boy, Joseph, on the same day that I was released from hospital, totally healed from my illness of two years. That was just two days after I had given my heart to the Lord on the 24th February 1988. I want to pay tribute to Sally, as she was studying for her final school exams when she gave birth to Joseph and she managed to pass the exams which she took in the June, and her grades were good enough to secure her entrance to university. I also want to pay tribute to Alison who was only 15 when my illness began and she and Sally supported and helped each other, and carried on with life as best they could while I, to all intents and purposes, was 'out of it.'
Another miracle in my equation was that for twenty years prior to becoming a believer, I had suffered with a debilitating condition called agorophobia which is an irrational fear of being in open spaces. I used to have to take tranquilisers in order to go out but God, in His grace and mercy, healed me of that at the same time that He healed my depression, and I have been free of both ever since. The whole situation was a complete U turn, and life took on a totally different focus and meaning. While Sally and Alison both went on to university in Nottingham, England, I worked with a Christian Book wholesaler near to Chepstow for a short while, and then the Lord called me to open a Christian Bookshop in Chepstow and, when it was established, to go on to two years study at a Bible College in Cheshire. He had to do that as I knew very little about the Bible before I became a believer.
For those of you who have also taken that step, you will know that, if one is willing, God gives you a commission, and mine has been to pray and intercede for the Jews, many of whom, as you may already be aware, have yet to come to know their Messiah. The Lord has put me on planes to different places including Africa, the US, Israel and Australia, where I now live. There is a big Jewish community here in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney.
After being single for many years, I married a German/Australian in the March of 2009, but our relationship didn't work out and we split up a few months later. I don't know what the future holds but, in the meantime, I am happy to be here in Sydney, where both daughters and their families now live. Sally is married to Matthew, and Joseph, who is twenty two, now has a brother Jack who is six. Alison is married to Glen, and they have a daughter Maya, who is ten, and a son Tom, who is seven.
I do some voluntary work at a Jewish retirement home near to where I live, and where over 30% of the residents are Holocaust survivors. It touches my heart to be amongst them, as many of them are still burdened by the terrible traumas which they experienced all those years ago.
I have been out of touch with Jenny for many years, so Ken's phone call has been instrumental in linking us up once again. So much water has passed under the bridge since Jenny and I last saw each other, which was at Jenny's wedding, so we will have lots of catching up to do. I think that it is great that she and Ken have made contact again after all this time.
Much has changed in the world since we were all at High School together and, as a believer in the Bible, one knows that there will be no real peace until the Lord returns, whenever that may be. I pray that His love and mercy will touch the hearts of those of you who have yet to come to know Him.
Thanks to Ken, I am so happy to have news of you all once again.
Lots of love,
Anne (Wardle-Morris) Hart.
January 2, 2011 - Anne shared these photos - click on thumbnail to open and then "back" to this page!
|Ndola, Zambia, September 1992. Went there for three months after Bible college.||Alison on the left, Sally and Joe to the right. N. Wales 1993.||Matthew and Sally's wedding, 2002. My brother David to the far right, my ex husband Glyn next to him, Glen, Alison and Maya extreme left on back row plus all close family on our side of the family.|
|Alison and Sally, N. Wales, March 2010. We went over for Dave's funeral.||Two friends from school and me, N. Wales, March 2010. Do we look like and advert for scarves?||Left to right. Alison, husband Glen, daughter Maya and Sally, Bondi promenade November 2009.|
|Bondi beach 2010.||Opera house in case you hadn't guessed.||Tom on left, Jack on right. Serious computer game in progress. December 2010.|
Maya watching her TV debut on Australian Junior Masterchef (episode 12), December 2010. Can be seen on U tube.
|Tom, Maya and Jack in the back garden here.||Photo taken by Birmingham Dental Hospital shortly after they had removed braces I wore on my teeth to close the gaps! 1969.|
Back to 1960 Home Page