Written by Jesse Muhammad
Originally published 10.28.08
In the midst of so much story writing on so many sad cases, I wanted to take this brief pause to introduce to you Mr. Charles Chavis. Don’t feel bad if you don’t know him, because I didn’t either until a few weeks ago.
Matter of fact, the picture that you see attached to this blog was given to me on October 4 by my mother Mavis Jackson as part of a funeral program dated February 14, 1982.
It’s her father. My grandfather…and this was the first time I had ever seen his face.
See, I was three years old when he made his transition and even my mother did not own a photo of him. To receive copies of this funeral program was one of the greatest gifts I have ever received. I know my brothers and sister, would agree.
I don’t believe in coincidence. But a few months ago, something special would occur that would allow my mother and her 5 children to have this treasure in our possession.
This is how it happened.
It was not long before this that my older brother, Deric Muhammad was telling my mother that we didn’t know much about her father’s side of the family and that she should try to connect with them so we can learn that part of our history.
That was a seed.
Then one day my mother was in the cafeteria at her job and was talking with a co-worker named Wanda Chavis who has been working there for a while with her. My mother noticed that she had the last name Chavis and my mother told her “Girl, my father’s last name was Chavis.”, and Wanda replied “what was his first name?” and once my mother told her his full name Wanda said “I had a uncle by that same name”.
As the conversation progressed and few more names were pitched, the two realized that they are FIRST cousins, working at the same facility, and not knowing it. Our cousin! The two are so happy! Cousin Wanda then gave my mother several copies of the funeral program from Grandpa Charles’ service.
When I took it home, I could not stop starring at and reading the program. He was born March 19, 1925. Truth be told I got his nose. (smile) And I can see his features in all of us in some form or fashion down to my daughter, nieces and nephews.
Word is now that his side of the family can’t wait to have us at the next family reunion. I can’t wait either.
This is Grandpa Charles’ Corner.
This is a part of my history….this why I am.