My Grandmother

Day 20 Twenty Minutes

June 20, 1963. The United States and Soviet Union signed an agreement to set up a hot line communication link between the two countries. 

If you could have a hot line to any person, dead or alive, who would it be? Who would you want to chat with if you only had twenty minutes on the hot line? What would you tell them?


Lots of names come to mind, but the one I think I’ll choose would be my paternal grandmother, Ellen Erickson Fullmer.  I wish I had a picture of her that I could put up for you to see. I have nothing on my computer, and I don’t have a scanner.  Well, here’s her firstborn son, my dad, John Fullmer:


He definitely resembled her.  It’s the best I can do 🙂

Grandma Fullmer was a remarkable woman.  She grew up in comfort on the East coast,married a man  who was about 20 years older than she was, traveled across the country with him, and ended up living for a while in a dugout in the Arizona Strip when the stock market crashed in 1929. She had six.  One of the little girls died of appendicitis because they just couldn’t get her to a doctor in time to save her.

While Grandma lived in that dugout,  she began to read her Bible faithfully. Her dedication resulted in her coming to faith in Jesus Christ.  Later they moved to Grand Junction, Colorado, and settled into a real house.  The bathroom was an outhouse which I dreaded with all my heart and soul when we went to visit. Great big old grasshoppers would jump on me from the weeds.  I was sure there would be a rattler out there some day, and I think I would have just died right there on the spot.

Obviously, that didn’t happen.

Grandma lived long enough to come to my wedding. I was so glad she could be there. She looked like the quintessential wester woman, skin browned from the sun, and a twinkle in her eye.

What I would want to ask her would be, “What was it like to go from financial comfort to such poverty?  What was it like for you to rear some of you little ones in such conditions? What was it like to be all alone out there in the desert?  Were you afraid?  Were you lonely?  Did you think about packing up and going back to your parents?  What was it like when you little girl died? How long did you live out there?  Was it hard for you to move back into a town after spending time living in the desert? “

I only know the story from my dad’s point of view. He thought living out there was a boy’s paradise. He had a gun and a dog, and was free to roam at will. Sometimes he bagged some meat for dinner. It was perfect. But I’m not so sure Ellen thought it was perfect.

Someday I’ll get to ask her.

Twenty Minutes


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