Grandpa Gleason’s 42nd Birthday

Grandpa Gleason’s 42nd Birthday in March 1976.

Grandpa Gleason played music his entire life, which is why Grandma Gleason and my mom made him a guitar cake for his 42nd birthday. He played in bands, with Grandma Gleason, in bars, at festivals, and in people’s houses. It didn’t matter to him, he just wanted to play. He even recorded a song that got pressed on vinyl, but we’ll get more into Grandpa Gleason’s music career in a later post. For now, let’s get back to his birthday.

Grandma Gleason (39) and my 2nd cousin, Jimmy (1).

Jimmy and I didn’t hang out much growing up, but I did see him occasionally over the years. I remember Grandma Gleason had those black dogs on the refrigerator for years and years (by the way, the rust coloration is on the photo, not the fridge). Another common sight at my grandparents house through the years was cans of Stroh’s. It was Grandpa Gleason’s beer of choice.

Uncle Vincent (17) and my 2nd cousin, Elizabeth (3).

Uncle Vincent always got the job of babysitter during family functions. He was good with kids and somehow managed to keep us all entertained and under control while our parents mingled.

Uncle Steve (9) and his friend, Phillip (9), in March 1976.

According to the back of the photo, Uncle Steve and Phillip had been best friends since they were three years old. I have no other information about Phillip, but I love how 1970s this picture feels. I want to go on the record saying that I dig Uncle Steve’s pants.

By Justin

I was an only child.