Robert Duane Elliott and I met in Hawaii in 1965. I was a Miss Hawaii contender & worked retail in the Waikiki Market Place.
Bob was a recent graduate from LaJolla – turned temporarily – beach bum.
Perfect match… 😅😅😅😁
His parents lived & worked in Hawaii, and lived on a fairly large boat in the Hawaii Yacht Harbor. Beautiful people.
On a beach in Maui.
I was working in Lahaina for the retailer – at The Whaling Spree Fair – Bob came over from Waikiki to propose.
It was a ‘rush’ for both of us & the progression resulted in our marriage, in January 1966.
When he came back from Vietnam, we began a small horse operation in Yorba Linda, CA, raising, training, showing Appaloosas.
This was our first and best. We qualified her to go to The Nationals in Las Vegas by 1971/72.
Our ranchette was neighboring a slightly larger one owned by Dr. Gary & Lu Gordon.
Since we were pretty much the same age – we became friends & Dr. Gary was already our animal Vet. He specialized in horses & was a premier Doc to a large number of valuable & famous horses of the time.
Including Roy Rogers’ Trigger.
Rogers, as all know, was closely connected with Son’s of the Pioneers Western singing group. They were always fantastic.
Gary and Lu were invited to an evening BBQ at a large ranch in the foothills of Northwest Orange County & they, in turn, asked if we’d also like to attend.
Sons of the Pioneers would be the entertainment… Ya! We jumped on that one alright.
No mic or formalities – sitting around a campfire on hay bales – and immersing in their music – clear night loaded with stars up above – and across from us.
They sang ALL of their hits… Mesmerized and immersed – Bob especially – since he also was a musician, acoustic guitarist and fantastic singer.
Over two hours of unforgettable, never fading memory.
Bob… So very many things about Bob – and the family.
For now – grazing Bob’s iceberg – what a voice.
Accomplished at accompanying himself while he sang, was a marvel at entertaining all within hearing distance.
I may be hearing impaired now – but his notes and emotion will never, ever leave me. Or likely, those who were blessed to listen & are still living.
When finishing College he happened to acquaint then befriend original Mariachis who played Southern Cal.
They took to each other – they mentored & he learned fast. Their styles & language.
He was invited to ‘jam’ on numerous occasions.
My favorite was La Paloma…
Bob was basically medium barritone but he managed to hit the very high notes with heartbreaking accuracy.
I get chills yet – after decades – when I recall his voice and style /singing/playing.
Loved you then – and always Bob…
1944 – 2012…
I own both our heartbreaks – I know you didn’t want to go – I’m so very sorry – thank you for coming to me in the dreams – I wanted more, but dared not push…
I have so much of you with me until it’s my turn to leave – this is understated as I don’t have the words to convey all I’m immersed in when I think if you – recalling of the best of us in 4-D.
As constant as our emails, calls, flowers to me; to you, were, it was your last written letter & gift that poured me into a dark pit of remorse and self beating – then you lifted me out…
I could hear you say as you pulled me out “You don’t belong there…” It’s been so very, very hard for you to know you were dying … Hard for all of us – but YOU most of all… I know this.
I rediscovered the envelope yesterday 4.29.18 – it was like a gift. Was it also a sign of some kind? Don’t know, but this and a couple other things have me on medium/high alert.
What is it Bob? What do you need? How can I help?