My family roots began originally in North-Central
Kansas - Mankato to be exact. My parents, Carlos M. (Carly) Beardmore and
Margaret R. (Cookie) Ellsworth were high-school sweethearts. They were
married on Aug. 1, 1944 in Jacksonville, Fl. and lived at various Naval bases
until Dad was commissioned by the U.S. Navy during WWII as a fighter pilot and
served on the carrier USS Bennington in the Pacific Campaign. It was during
this time that Mom, back home in Kansas, gave birth to the first of eight
children.... my sister Carla. Following
the conclusion of the war, Dad was awarded several honors, including the Navy
Cross for meritorious action. Upon discharge, he returned home to begin a new
life with his family.
They first moved to Flint, Michigan, where Dad had
enrolled as a student at General Motors Institute of Technology while working
part-time at the Buick factory on alternate months. Soon afterwards, my second
sister Cathy was born. Then in
1947 the family moved back to Mankato, where Dad joined his father in their
Buick-Pontiac business. It was here that Dad really got his start in the
automotive business. - Incidentally, the building where it all began still
bears the "Beardmore" name on the side. - As the "family" business began to
grow, so did our family. During the next four years the first half of six
Beardmore brothers were born. The oldest, John, came in 1950 - followed
by myself in 1951. Not far behind was
son #3 Tom who was born in 1953. It was
the following year that Dad's first business opportunity came and we all moved
to Cambridge, Nebraska, where he became a partner and eventually, sole owner of
a Chevrolet-Buick dealership. Some of my earliest recollections of childhood
are during this time. The Shoemaker family (Kool Aid) - Testing for
kindergarten in McCook - Family Firetruck rides on Sunday - And that
"Big" house we lived in - the one with
the Indian Relics in the basement and the "basketball court" in the attic !!!
During the Cambridge years brothers #4 and #5 were born - Rob in 1955
and Mark in 1957.
In 1959 we again moved. This time to Beatrice,
Nebraska where Dad joined his brother, Moe, and his family to own and operate
the Chevrolet dealership in town. They felt a more populated area would provide
a better base for their growing car business as well as a better quality of
education for their growing families. Then in 1960, my 6th (and final) brother,
Todd was born. This would make a
total of eight children in the family now and just like the TV series
from the the early 80's says......."Eight is enough!" - Thank goodness for
Chevy's 9-Passenger station wagons. A family of ten will fit - But it's
pretty tight!!! - Poor Todd got passed around a lot on family outings.
The 70's brought quite a few changes for us. As
children grew up and started leaving the nest, Mom and Dad made the decision to
move to the Omaha area and rejoin my uncle Moe who had recently opened
"Beardmore Chevrolet" in Bellevue. After college, I began working fulltime for
the dealership and was later joined by two of my brothers, Rob and Mark. During
this time most of my brothers and sisters were each going their own separate
way, raising families, and establishing their own careers. As Dad was getting a
little "up" there in years, he had visions of helping one or two of us get
started in our own businesses. His vision became reality when he and Mark
purchased the Chevrolet dealership in Carroll, Ia in 1984. It was a good
combination - Dad's years of experience and Mark's youthful approach to the car
Unfortunately, we lost Dad in the Spring of 1987.
But he left behind some wonderful memories for those who knew and loved him.
Today, my family has scattered itself a little bit
everywhere. Mom has chosen to remain in Carroll for the time being, but has
thoughts of moving back to Omaha eventually. Mark and family are well
established in the Carroll community. Several of us are still here in the Omaha
area. - Carla and her husband, Bruce, live in Bellevue. Rob lives just a few
houses away from them and Todd's family recently moved into a new home just a
couple of miles away. Currently, I reside in Millard on the west side of Omaha.
Cathy lives the farthest away in the San Fransisco area. John's family has been
in Michigan for quite a few years. And brother Tom has been in Austin for the
last couple of years. Many "next-generation" Beardmore's are also in various
stages and places in their lives. Our children, nieces and nephews are also
starting to spread their wings and are finding their own places to settle down.
Although we may be apart from each other these days, we still manage to keep in
touch on a regular basis.
I'm very fortunate to have a family the size of
mine - There isn't a day go by that I don't think about one or more of them. -
Good Times and Bad Times . . . We've shared them all.