Thursday, June 01, 2017

Bedford, PA: Day 1

My grandma is from Bedford, Pennsylvania, which is a somewhat rural, cute town along the lines of Door County, Wisconsin. Historic, crafty, agricultural.

She was one of the first in her family to leave Bedford, coming to Chicago, IL in the 1950s with my grandpa, who got a job as a union trucker. Some of her family is still there, including her brother, Clyde, who is celebrating his 60th wedding anniversary with his wife, Emily, this year.

Grandma was invited to the party, but she doesn't drive much, so she relies on her children and grandchildren to drive her. I have been getting into family history a bit lately, so I volunteered! My mom jumped on board, too, and we had a fittingly awesome girls trip.

I picked Grandma up from Tinley Park early in the morning, then switched cars with my mom in Hobart, Indiana, and we were on our way. We made great time, stopping only for lunch and gas. Lots of great conversation on the way, plus maybe a little napping.

When we got into town, we dropped our stuff off at the hotel and visited downtown Bedford, including the war memorials. All of my grandma's brothers served in either World War II...

Alvin ("Pete"), Clayton, Ernest ("Ernie"), and Milton Deremer (presumptive cousins John and Glenn, too)

Or Korea!

Clyde and Frank Deremer
Believe it or not, they all came home.

We noticed that my grandpa doesn't have a brick in the Korean monument even though he's from Bedford, too, so we contacted the town and we're going to get one installed for William D. Smith.

It was fun seeing the downtown; not many shops were open, but I did pick up some tasty chocolates at Bedford Candies.

We drove over to the Landmark for dinner; it's one of Grandma's favorite local diners, and it had a good salad bar! We talked about our plans for the next few days and relaxed a bit.

Grandma had said that we should pack some wine because Pennsylvania has weird liquor laws, so we did - and we each brought a cork screw. Come prepared, people.

I was excited to see Bedford again, because I haven't been for a while and I have never really spent more than a day there. Good to be in my family's homeland.

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