Ellis Seth Jonas

With the passing of Uncle Ellis and his funeral today, I thought I would make available the pictures I have of him over the years similar to other family members.  My way of remembering him and honouring the family.  Until we meet again.

Ellis Seth Jonas was born 6 September 1926 in Lewiston, Cache, Utah to Lillian Coley and Joseph Nelson Jonas.  The fifth child of eight to his parents (my Grandfather, Norwood, was fourth).  Ellis was born on the tenth wedding anniversary of his parents.  He married Geraldine Pitcher 17 August 1946 in Elko, Elko, Nevada.  My Grandparents were going to elope and go at the same time but chickened out and ended up making the trip the next month.  Five children were born to the marriage; Kent in 1949, Mary Lou in 1951, Julie in 1954, Dan in 1958, and Ron in 1965.  Ellis died at home in Smithfield, Cache, Utah 12 August 2012 and will be buried today, 18 August 2012 in Smithfield.

Ellis as a boy.

A certificate regarding his promotion to North Cache High School.

I have a host of World War II pictures.  I will just present them all here.

Ellis is the second from the right in the second from back row.

A letter home near the end of the war.

I have this graduation picture.  I don’t know if it is high school or college, probably graduation from Utah State in 1951 or 1952.  At this link are a couple of photos from Ellis’ days coaching baseball.

A picture of Ellis on the ground at the 1957 Jonas Reunion.

Ellis Jonas (on the ground), children (l-r): Paul Jonas, Julie Jonas (sitting on Ellis), Janeal Jonas, Sherlean Talbot, MaryLou Jonas.

The Ellis and Geri Jonas family in classic 1970’s fashion.

Back (l-r): Julie, Dan, Mary Lou. Front: Ellis, Ron, Geri.

Working at the armory.

Ellis and Geri.

Here is a picture of their home in Smithfield taken in July 2003.

The last picture I have in life of Ellis is from 2009 with his great grand niece.

Ellis Jonas holding Gracie Christiansen

1955 Coley Reunion

I have these two photos of the 1955 Coley Reunion in Richmond, Cache, Utah.  These two pictures are obviously of the same group, the black and white one of much better quality, but I thought I would include the color one since it can add a dimension to the black and white (since it is pretty blurry).  The first picture seems like it was just for Coley descendants, but then spouses sneak in to the picture, so I really do not know what was the thinking for the shot.  The second photo has a few more people I will need help naming, especially the younger ones.  Let me know if there are corrections.  (Click on the photos to see them closer)

Back (l-r): Blaine Thomson, Olof Neilson, Lloyd Coley, Ivan Coley, Art Coley, Golden Coley, Lillian Bowcutt, Hannah Thomson, Gay Coley, Betty Coley, Edna Neilson.  Middle: Verda Coley, Carrie McMurdie, Clara Coley, Bill Thomson, Kathy Coley, RaNae Coley, Martha Coley, Gary Coley, Dean Coley, Stephen Coley.  Front: Shirley Coley, Lillian Thomson, Mary Coley, Janice Coley, Joy Coley, Nina Coley, David Coley, Susan Thomson, Doug Thomson.

Back: Blaine Thomson, Olof Neilson, Lloyd Coley, Ivan Coley, Bill Thomson, ?(child held by Bill), Hannah Thomson, Gay Coley, Betty Coley, Edna Neilson.  Two men in front of doors: Art Coley, Golden Coley.  Second row from back: ?(held child), ?, ?(partially obscured woman in front of Blaine), Verda Coley, Carrie McMurdie, Clara Coley, RaNae Coley, ?, Martha Coley, ?, Steven Coley.  Second row from front standing: Shirley Coley, ?, Evan Jonas, Lona Jonas, ?.  Back row of sitting children:  Dean Coley, Gary Coley, David Coley (partially hidden), Stephen Coley, Bob Jonas.  Second row of children sitting: Kathy Coley, ?, Doug Thomson, ?.  Front row: Lillian Thomson, ?(child held by Lillian), Ren Bowcutt, Lillian Bowcutt, Mary Coley, ?, Joy Coley, Janice Coley, Nina Coley, Susan Thomson.

Now comes the fun part of linking everyone together.  I will only link together those in the photo, so this is not the entire family.

Martha Christiansen Coley (1879 – 1961).

Lillian Coley Jonas Bowcutt (1898 – 1987), daughter of Martha, married to Ren Bowcutt (1883 – 1966), previously married to Joseph Nelson Jonas(1893 – 1932).

Evan Reed Jonas (1928 – 1999), son of Lillian, married to Lona Rae Jensen Jonas (1930 – 2012).

Edna Coley Andrus Neilson (1900 – 1983), daughter of Martha, married to Olof Alma Neilson (1891 – 1960).

Carrie Christiansen McMurdie (1906 – 1992), daughter of Martha, married Joseph Lorus McMurdie (1905 – 2000).

Hannah Marie Coley Thomson (1909 – 1982), daughter of Martha, married to William Surgeoner Thomson (1903 – 1985).

William McBlaine Thomson (1928 – 2001), son of William and Hannah, married to Lillian Moss Thomson.

Susan and Doug Thomson, children of William and Lillian Thomson.

Ivan Stephen Coley (1912 – 1994), son of Martha and not pictured, married to Clara McMurdie Coley (1914 – 2012).

Clarene RaNae Coley, daughter of Ivan and Clara.

Oley Lloyd Coley (1918 – 1998), son of Martha, married to Verda Anderson Coley (1918 – 2013).

Alice Maxine, Betty Jean, Lloyd Dean, and Nina Rae Coley, children of Lloyd and Verda.  (Is Verda Gay in the picture?)

Arthur Christiansen Coley (1921 – 2004), son of Martha, married to Mary Popwitz Jonas Coley.

Stephen Coley, son of Art and Mary Coley (Is Ronald Gary in the photo?).

Bob Jonas, son of Irwin John Jonas (1921 – 1944, son of Joseph Nelson Jonas and Lillian Coley Jonas Bowcutt) and Mary Popwitz Jonas Coley.

William Golden Coley (1924 – 2009), son of Martha, married to Shirley Hall Coley.

Shirley Kathleen (Kathy), Joy Ann, David Lynn, and Janice Coley, children of Golden and Shirley Coley.

Do you know the ? individuals in the photo, if so, please let me know.

Update: LOST:OLD TRUNK

I am republishing this old post with a pretty cool little update.  I first published this post on the 26th of October 2006.  I am happy to report that while the trunk was not located, its contents have been!  I will not disclose where these contents were found, the important part is that family once again has these items.  Future posts will start to share these contents as I have the opportunity to review, scan, and make it available.  There are some pretty cool, and useless, items in these contents.  Everything from tokens obtained in Cigarette packs for Hoppie’s Billards in Richmond, Cache, Utah to a stash of photos that I can only hope we can name all the individuals captured.  Calendars from 1934 to mail received in the 1940’s.  Telegrams regarding the bringing of a body home (9 years after dying in World War II) to receipts from the Benson Stake (Richmond, Utah) Tithing Office.  Franklin Institute flyers from 1930 to a wallet of my Great Grandfather containing receipts from the day he died in 1932.  This will be fun.  None of the journals have been found yet.  The flag from her son’s coffin is not present (yet).  The person is still looking to see if there are more items, which I hope there are.  As a taste, here is a photo from a negative found in the contents of Yellowstone Falls.
Thanks be given for this modern miracle.

Yellowstone Falls about 1966

Here is the original post.
Here will certainly be a different blog. It is both a prayer and an announcement for the world. There is also a hope that the miracles of God
will be manifest. I ask that those who read would offer up a prayer and hope for the same.

My Great Grandmother, Lillian Coley Jonas Bowcutt, grew up in the mountains to the south-east of Richmond, Utah. She was born to Herbert and Martha Christiansen Coley in 1898 and was the eldest of 10 children. In 1916 she married Joseph Nelson Jonas in the Logan Temple and had 8
children.

Joseph Herbert Jonas
Spencer Gilbert Jonas
Irwin John Jonas
Wilburn Norwood Jonas
Evan Reed Jonas
Ellis Seth Jonas
Lillian Jonas
LeReta Jonas

In 1932, Joseph, her husband was electrocuted working for the railroad in Ogden, Utah. His father had worked for the railroad, and most of his family also worked for the railroad. He was made manager and had moved to Ogden from Richmond only a year or two before.

The family moved back to Richmond. Lillian then did her best to raise the boys. She remarried in about 1959 to Lorenzo (Ren) Bowcutt in Preston, Idaho. Ren died in about 1966. She lived alone mostly until the mid 80’swhen she moved in with her daughter, Lillian, in Layton, Utah.  Here is the reason for writing. Through all these years, she kept a trunk with personal possessions. Contained therein are the birth certificates of all her children. We know she kept journals through most of her life in calendar books issued by the insurance companies. There are at least 10 of these journals in the trunk. There are a couple photo albums that were hers and her mother’s. Also there is the flag that draped her son’s coffin after his death in WWII. There are apparently some books that came over with her grandfather from England.

This trunk of is wonderful value when it comes to family history work. The only thing that might be of any worth is the trunk, but it is so old and
worn that I cannot imagine it would hold any monetary value.  Somehow, for what reasons I do not know, my grandmother ended up with the
trunk. I only remember it being placed in one of the upstairs bedrooms of my grandmother’s house and we were forbidden to look in it. She placed a television on it when we were younger to keep it from younger hands. It sat in that same space, even until I left to go to England for my mission.

In 1999, she died, and shortly thereafter, somebody broke into her house.  The trunk is one of the objects that were stolen. My aunt was living there at the time but insists she has no idea who made off with it. She thinks it is somebody she knew or knows. There might be other items that were taken, but the official inventory was not taken for another week or two afterward.

So here is the plea. This trunk would have little or no value to anyone who is not a member of the Jonas/Coley family. I sincerely hope that whoever did this deed, friend or foe of the family, would not have carelessly thrown away or destroyed the trunk and its contents. In fact, I don’t care about the trunk. But it is the possessions of the trunk which are of great interest at present. All living members of the family still ask me
regularly about the trunk. Their own birth certificates are in there. I am interested in the history and priceless information contained within that
trunk.

Here is the plea to those who come upon this blog. If you are searching for the owner of the trunk, please contact me. While there are no individuals who would possess the names in the trunk in Southern Idaho, I hope you stumble on this blog. There will be no questions asked, we just want the inventory, any of it. If you are just reading and can understand the plight, please offer a prayer to heaven in our behalf that this priceless gem is returned to those who would honour and cherish it. This is a deep and sincere desire of my heart.

Jorgensen and Christensen

Robert Mathis shared with me this copy of a short history written by Amanda Emilie Jorgensen.  It is a history of her parents, my fourth Great Grandparents.  It also has a reference to Hanna’s parents.  This was written around 1933.
History of my Parents

My father Olaves Jorgensen was born in Drammen Norway 19 November 1830.

When he was twelve years old he started working in a saw mill for Mr Kjer.

My mother Hannah Mathea Christensen was born in Drammen Norway fourteen November 1831. She was a dressmaker when she was old enough to work. They were married fourth november 1855 in Drammen Norway. Two girls were born there. Constanse and Olga. Then Mr. Kjer transferred Father to Fredrikstad Norway to another saw mill and he worked there until he came to America in 1896.

Mother was very religious and always went to some kind of church but never felt satisfied. She lived in an apartment house and was talking to a lady named Mrs. Ask that lived across the hall. Religion was mentioned and mother said she wanted to find a religion that baptised people like Jesus was baptised.

Mrs. Ask asked her if she had ever heard about the Mormon people and mother said no. Mrs. Ask said to be ready Sunday afternoon and she would take her to hear the Mormon Elders.

As soon as mother heard the Elders preach she knew it was the true church. The Priest and other people tried to tell her it was wrong but she wouldn’t listen. The Elders had to take her to the ocean to be baptised after dark as they would be arrested and put in jaail if they were seen baptising people.

Mother was a very faithful member and the missionaries were always welcome in their home. She was President of the Relief Society for years.

Father wanted to join but didn’t dare to because he knew he would lose his job. Father was baptised just before he and mother came to Utah.

They went directly to Richmond Utah in Cache Valley to be near their daughter Othelia. They were here four years and had never had the opportunity to go to the temple when mother died in November, 1900. Father and Othelia and Constanse came to Logan and did the work for mother and she was sealed to Father. Father died in November 1904 and they were both buried in Richmond Utah.

Mother told me that the pastor of the Luteran Church said her parents Christen Hansen and Marie Evensen were the most beautiful couple he had ever married while he was a pastor.

More of the same; Life

Time keeps ticking by too quickly sometimes.  I have so much to write but not as much time as I would like to do it in.  Such is the limitations in the probationary game.  There are plenty of achievements to report though in the past week or two.
This evening I spoke with Gerald Neuffer in Columbia, Missouri.  In a most random turn of events, I noticed that a Jenna Neuffer became friends with my friend, Kami Lowe on Facebook.  With a name as rare as Neuffer, I knew all odds were in my favor of having a near shared ancestry.  I sent Miss Neuffer a message and asked for her Grandfather’s name and phone number.  Which she supplied.  Come to find out, I even had Gerald already in my family history.  I just had his first name Myron (Gerald is his middle name but he goes by it.  Probably due to remove confusion with his father’s name being Myron).  He knew the Andra’s well and said he remembered Millie, who was just younger than him.  Funny how small a world it is.  He went to get his PhD and never left Columbia after moving there in 1947.  We conversed for a little while he dug for information verifying I was not this total stranger calling for his family history for some other sinister reason.  He sounds like a good guy.  He asked if I was doing genealogy.  I confirmed I was and that I was the family historian.  He then happily related he was basically that for the Neuffer/Nuffer family.  I was definitely glad to hear that.  What is the chances of the Andra historian running into the Nuffer historian in Columbia Missouri?  Very far removed from Preston, Idaho!
I received a phone call from Jacqui yesterday about the Phibbs/Ross/Beachell family.  I tried returning her call and spoke with her mother for a few minutes.  I am glad she finally returned my message.  I only left it in May!  That was before we moved!
In other news, there was an e-mail that found its way to me from Robert in Fresno, California.  A most interesting question.  He asked if I knew of any of the siblings of my Constance Jorgensen.  I always felt Constance most likely had siblings but was never able to find any.  Between her parents marriage and Constance’s birth, there is twelve years.  I was sure there were other siblings.  Olavus and Hanna Mathea Jorgensen immigrated with Constance and settled in Richmond, Utah.  Constance married Ole Christiansen and gave birth to my Great Great Grandmother Martha Christiansen who is the mother of my Lillian Coley.  Constance died in Portland, Oregon while visiting and was buried there.  In the whole episode, I knew some day I would have to do some research in Norway to find the rest of this family.  Well, Robert e-mailed me asking me if his grandmother, Amanda Jorgensen Swensen could be a child of Olavus and Hanna.  He produced a copy of a hand written copy pedigree she had produced in 1935.  Sure enough, everything lined up.  Well, Amanda was born another 12 years after my Constance (24 after the marriage of the parents).  She immigrated to Utah a good 10 years after her parents and sibling came over and settled in Logan, Utah.  By the time she arrived her parents were both deceased and her sister had married.  It seems that she never knew she was only 15 miles from her parent’s graves and her sister.  The exciting news is that Amanda gave us the names of her siblings, none of which made it to America to her knowledge.  We added the 5 siblings.  Don’t know their ages, but definitely gives some more to go from.  That will give us much more to go from when the time for the Norway research begins.
I am happy to report I completed the New Testament this evening.  I am one day late.  If I had read the one chapter a day, I would have finished yesterday.  Last weekend put me just off enough that I did not catch up in time.  I completed the Book of Mormon on schedule this year on August 27th.  Now I can go through some General Conference talks and some other reading for the year.  Next year is the Doctrine and Covenants which you can almost read three times in a year.  I think I will just do it twice though.
The ward continues to blossom when it comes to family history.  It seems like people are doing their homework, research, and compiling regularly.  I have e-mails at least once or twice a week for help on something.  That is an indication something is going on.  That is definitely something which is a good thing.
Online the family history work continues to reveal new and interesting things.  I received an e-mail from a Homer Mason.  He was inquiring concerning the Jonas family in Washington State.  Come to find out, Anna Jonas is his Grandmother.  Anna was the daughter of William Jonas who was the brother to my Joseph Jonas; father to my great grandfather Joseph Nelson Jonas.  He knows very little so it has been fun introducing him to the family.  I have especially enjoyed his research on a line of the family I have not been able to crack.  It has proved not to be an easy line for him, but with his living in Yakima, he is much closer and capable of doing the work than I can.  I really hope I am accepted to the University of Idaho for Law School.  Then I could work on the Jonas, Ross, and Sharp lines in Washington State.
Stepping back to the Andra family.  This past weekend Amanda and I took a trip to Washington DC for our monthly temple visit.  But a new aspect as emerged.  My Great Uncle and Aunt, Donald and Lolane Andra, are now serving a mission in the temple.  We went up Friday night and stayed with Amanda’s Uncle and Aunt in Springfield.  Saturday we picked up Don and Lolane and made our way to Mt. Vernon.  They thoroughly enjoyed themselves.  It was the 18th Century Fair so there were masses of people.  Don and Lolane are good and quick on their feet.  Despite being in their 60’s they move well.  Don reminds me so much of my Great Grandpa.  I get a kick out of both of them.  We were limited on time as they had to be to the temple to work later in the afternoon.  We did probably the fastest walking tour of Mt. Vernon I can imagine.  We zoomed all over the grounds, through the fair, and then back up to their apartment to change and attend the temple.
On a side note, as I went into the endowment room, I noticed the officiator’s name was John Whatcott.  I looked at him and asked if he was from Kanosh.  He looked a bit surprised at me and said he grew up there.  I told him of the Whatcott’s I knew.  After the session he asked me to remain in the celestial room so we could visit.  We had a great visit.  Come to find out he knows Don and Lolane from St. George.  Small world.  Don knew which session we were on and waited for us to leave the celestial room.  He walked us down to the next floor and we parted again.  I met Don’s Home Teaching companion, Elder Toronto, while picking up Amanda’s Aunt’s glasses from the temple lost and found.  Funny how interlinked the world is, at least in the church.
I have not made mention of it yet, but I am going from contractor status to full associate status at Bank of America.  Meaning, I will be an employee of Bank of America and not an at will person filling a seat.  Many companies now do the contractor business as they can then hire on employees after they have shown their worth.  I must have done well enough for them to offer me employment starting October 1.  I am excited.  Business has been picking up.  I don’t know if it is from the crunch in the market or what.  Bank of America definitely stands on higher ground than those feeling the squeeze or sinking under the housing market.  One thing is for sure, with this rate cut, we are expecting the next month to be hectic.
My birthday came and went just like every other day or the year.  I am back to being congratulated for it being my unbirthday.  I received all sorts of e-mails (which will take me a good week to respond to them all), many messages on Facebook, and a couple of cards and gifts.  Amanda and I enjoyed a nice big meal at Chili’s for dinner.  We joked about it being our triannual beef night.  It is birthdays or anniversary that I get to eat a steak.  Monday was a 12 oz Ribeye.  Mmmm, so good.  That is of course not mentioning the Idaho potatos.  Amanda got me a shirt, a jump drive, and something else which slips me at the moment.  I also received a journal, a few checks, and some other random memorabilia.  I honestly don’t feel any different now than I think I did when I was 19.  Except the fact my knee was reconstructed in 2004 and doesn’t give me the issues it did at 19.  So I guess I feel better than at 19.  I have filled out in stature, even added a little padding in the middle,  and perhaps a little wiser.  Life is good.
My blessings continue to flow despite my inept nature.  I continue to be given the little peaceable things of the kingdom from time to time.  They make the living and endurance all worth it.  Line upon line right?  Sometimes I wish it was more page upon page, but alas, I am not the one running the show.  Church goes well.  I feel spiritually well.  Not the muscular behemoth I would like to be spiritually, but I feel strong enough to do what needs to be done and any forseeable adventure.

Christiansen Family Photos

I just uploaded all the pictures I have of the Christiansen family relatives.  Here is my tie to the Christiansen family.
There is me.
Sandy is my mother.
Norwood is her father.
Lillian is his mother.
Martha Christiansen was her mother.  The same one I referred to in the past that Lillian gives no emotional record in her journal concerning her death.  She was born in 1879 in Fredrickstad, Norway.  She and her parents immigrated to the United States arriving in New York on the 2 Oct 1889.  It was a long route getting here as in the early 1880’s they moved to Melbourne, Australia.  After about 5 years there, they moved back to Norway.  It was then that they joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and then moved to the United States.  They found their way across the United States by rail and were sent from Salt Lake to Cache Valley.  They settled and homesteaded near Richmond, Utah.  Martha’s parents had 10 children.  Surprisingly, all of them lived through the move (the one’s who were born) to Australia, back to Norway, to the United States, and across the country.  They would only have one child die and that was the last child born near Richmond.  If anyone has more information on this family, I would certainly be interested.  I am especially interested since some of the children married husbands with common names which makes it hard to chase down, or they fall off the map and apparently out of the records of the church so they probably were not active.
Here is the family in full.
Olle Christiansen 1853 – 1900.  He was born in Trygstad, Norway, died in Richmond, Utah.
His wife from 1874 is Constance Josephine Eliza Jorgensen 1857 – 1932.  She was born in Drammen, Norway and died on a sightseeing tour in Portland, Oregon.  She is buried there.  Her parents Olavus Jorgensen and Hanna Mathea Christensen also came to Utah.  They died and are buried in Richmond, Utah.
Walborg Christiansen 1875 – 1951 Born in Fredrickstag, Norway; died in Salt Lake City, Utah.  She married to Charles Christian Anderson and lived in Salt Lake all her days.
Martha Christiansen 1879 – 1961 Born in Fredrickstag, Norway; died in Logan, Utah.  She married Herbert Coley.
Eivelda Christiansen 1881 – 1892 Born in Melbourne, Australia; died in Richmond, Utah.
Constance Christiansen 1883 -1953 Born in Melbourne, Australia; died in Pocatello, Idaho.  She was married to John Rocky Clawson and Charles Roy Huff.
Henry Owen Christiansen 1887 – 1932 Born in Fredrickstag, Norway; we don’t know where he died.  Church records have his exact death date but no location.  I believe he moved to Washington State and was married to Anna Wilder Hooser, but am not sure.
Rhoda Christiansen 1890 – 1965 Born in Richmond, Utah; death location is also unknown.  I believe she was living in either Vancouver, Washington or Nyssa, Oregon at the time of her death.  My Great Grandmother was writing to her in 1962 in Nyssa and in 1963 to Vancouver.  We have three marriages, none of which I am sure; George R Davenport, Edward Holman, and Peter Pappas.
Roy C Christiansen 1892 – 1892 Born and died in Richmond, Utah.
Jennie Christiansen 1894 – 1949 Born in Richmond, Utah; we don’t know where she died.  We assume her husbands were as follows; Peter Dee June, a Mr. Ewing, Orval Charles Sherwood, and Junior Albert Shirley.
Myra Christiansen 1896 – 1897 Born and died in Richmond, Utah.  There is another Myra Christiansen in church records born 2 years later, but I have no confirmation it is this girl.  Plus this girl is missing in the 1900 Census so she is either dead as the records and family tradition says, or who knows what.
Ole Loren Christiansen 1898 – 1977 Born in Richmond, Utah; died we assume in Oakland, California.  The dates and everything match, but I would like to have some contact with a family member or something to confirm it.  His spouses we believe are Sara May Strong and a Florence.
Anyhow, this line is a hard one to chase.  It is often misspelled as Christensen, Christinsen, Christianson, and so forth.  Plus there are so many of these other names it makes it tedious work to sort them out.  So I hope for some communication with a family member to open the door on these.  (If you are reading this and are related, please contact me!  Leave a comment with your e-mail or contact me directly, please)  This family has too many holes in it for how I like to do things.  But it seems to be so difficult to do.

Old Journals

Time has been flying by lately and I have been thinking or watching for something to write about.  It seems that some of it is so common knowledge, I wouldn’t dare post it here.  I still find so much of the ordinary as little miracles.  It seems so mundane that I would not want to bore the reader (which I have already started).
Then there are the little things that keep happening around us.  Anna Nicole Smith died.  The Colts won the Superbowl.  The Presidential contenders already starting.  Snow in New York.  Storms in Florida.  Sabateurs and terrorists in Baghdad are to be strangled.  Pelosi wants a plane.  Debate over whether the holocaust happened.
In the little world of Paul, everything marches to a different tone.  I suppose I just don’t see the world the same as others.  In fact, I seem to have the complete opposite of ideas about everything.  Since there always seems to be such a stark contrast, I don’t bother writing it.  Perhaps it is the fear of sarcasm.  Probably more of looking the fool.
For a note of news.  I received my journals in the mail this week.  The journals that were taken as evidence in my mother’s murder trial.  They were taken for what reasons I don’t think I will ever really know.  So, it has been since before 25 October 1998 that I last saw these journals.  Opening them, I feel like I am opening an old book from the 60’s.  Indeed, they smell like my Great Grandma Jonas’ journals.  (Which I am half through her last one)
Wow, I caught a glimpse into the mindset of a boy who turned 18 in the first book.  I found a boy who was getting ready for his first big move.  The first move from home.  The first move from family.  I was dying to get out and petrified at the same time.
I read of my wonderful, amazing, loving roommates.  They are still my dearest friends even today.  We communicate less, but I love them dearly.  I see into the mind of a boy who was very innocent and pure.  I feel the emotions of a boy who is disowned by his mother.  Stressed and devastated by the divorce of his parents.  Enthusiastic and zealous in learning a new religion.  Eager and a little too anxious after the girls.  There is the life of a young man whose stupidity is embarrassing.  In the same pages I am astonished by the insights of a boy who I would aspire to be.  Some of the mundane details are frightening that are noticed.  Yet, as dates come and go, I wonder why some of the most important events of life were not recorded.
I honestly see this person as so far away, foreign, and alien.  Yet I feel, somehow, the deepest intimations of the words.  Even the placing and style of the words on the page are familiar.  It scares me.  I laughed, I cried, and my heart swelled.  It was interesting to read the entries of others.  Some personally placed, others who were dictated to for the daily entry.  I read of the littlest events that were huge and read nothing of some of the largest.
Horrifying was to try and decipher what the investigators placed a marker for.  Some of the notes were damning to my father.  Sadly, some very important details and rumors which put him in a very bad light.  Perhaps I forgot them, perhaps I repressed them, perhaps time drifted them with time.  Other notes were of terrible destructiveness to my mother.  I record outlines of conversations with her on the phone which make me shutter in memory.
There were some events which were so extreme I could not seem to comprehend them now.  How after one conversation, I literally wept for hours.  My roommates horrified knew the details of what was taking place.  My heart broke into a million pieces.  My whole life crashed in one night.  It was with detail I emerged from that room to find my roommates sobbing as well.  They did not know what to do.  I sat at the piano and started to play.  James sat by me and told me he loved me.  I started sobbing and went to hide in my bedroom again.  He grabbed me and hugged me in the hall.  There I stood, embraced by James, bawling.  Within seconds I felt another embrace, and another.  Altan, Tom, James all held me tight.  We cried together that night.  They were my dearest friends and my world at that moment.  We all sat down afterwards and read the scriptures.  The Spirit manifest at that point was something I will never forget.  The love that enveloped us.
I describe my love for Kyla, Jennalyn, Amanda, Trisha, and a whole score of girls.  I talk of my heros and greatest examples.  Duncan, Tateoka, Christiansen, and Jentzsch families.  I had my first personal visit with my Grandparents and came to know them.  It was the first time I came to know my Grandma in a new light.  My life was beginning to be flooded with light despite the deep darkness hovering in all the pages.
It was a spiritual experience to read these pages.  They don’t even seem real to me.  Only hours later did my heart swell as wide as eternity in happiness and joy that I was this person.  I inspired myself.  Yet at the same time, realized what I had lost.  I have lost too much of that innocence.  I am now too mental, too cathartic, too doubtful, too old.  It was with a certain horror to witness what life had done to me and some of the decisions I have made.  I must needs repent.
Anyhow, it was a new experience.  In the end, I only scanned the last two books.  I lost interest and my memory became more keen.  It was so much as a story as just rehearsing something I already knew.  It is like learning to crawl again.  You just don’t have much patience for it after a while.
There were 4 journals they returned.  One is missing.  The good news is that it was the last.  I had just started it and was only into it about a month when it was taken.  It was probably 30 pages full at the max.  I am somewhat disappointed as I think those would be some of the most interesting.  What did I realize as things drew closer.  I knew things would break loose.  What was my reaction the night Dad told me he was going to engage Meta?  What was my feelings the night before the farewell?  What about shopping with Meta?  What did October and part of September hold that are now lost?  The Jerome County Sheriff insists they returned all the journals.  What happened to #4?  (There was another journal not placed in the numerical order.  An apocryphal one if you will.  Oh, I am currently on journal #17).
What does the next 10 years hold?  Will I read then of now and think similar things.  How stupid I am, yet how innocent.  How inspired and zealous?  I sure hope not.  Perhaps in 10 years, I can look back and say I was such a pitiful stig.  I complain, think too much, and am pathetic.  I have to change a few things to return to innocence.