I was named after my paternal grandfather who died in a mysterious explosion at the fireworks factory where he worked two days after Christmas in 1951. My father to be was 13 years old. Within a year, he was earning $15 a week to help support his mother and two younger sisters delivering newspapers and working in a drugstore as a stock boy and soda jerk.
He was bringing home $400 a month, in today’s dollars, to help support his family.
He was 14 years old.
by Estes Shane Whalen