About Susan Lydia

Susan LydiaSusan Lydia, my half-sister, was born in Wisconsin on June 16, 1947. Her father was Alan Ramsey (from West Virginia), whom Gen met somewhere in the nebulous transitional conditions after World War II.

Gen was working in a Milwaukee hospital when Susan was born. She returned with her first-born to her hometown, Blue Earth, Minnesota. When Gen showed up with an infant, the chagrined Ohmer (Gen's father), quickly made arrangements to save the Gust family's reputation from having an unwed mother in its ranks. He summoned Dick McKinney (Gen's presumed husband from their days together in Colorado at the end of the war) to Blue Earth and procured a job for Dick at the local Ford dealer. Dick was then recognized as Susan's father and Ohmer was more or less appeased.

Gen held a job as a public outreach nurse at the Blue Earth hospital. While Gen and Dick worked, Susan stayed in the affectionate care of Gen's stepmother, Frieda, and the youngest daughter of Frieda and Ohmer, Joyce. Susan became "Susie" and that's who she remained for the next four years. You can read about those years by clicking here.

From my perspective, Sue's story begins in Wichita, where Dick and Gen moved a year before I was born. Her story ends with the last time we saw her. I don't know where she is, how she has fared since then, or if she is still alive. The years between 1951 and 1985 were poignant for this achingly beautiful, intelligent, and gentle child.

I'll relate her story here as best I can. I hope the telling serves her well.