History of Mary Lou (Abbott) Shaw Written April 1, 2010


Dear Reader, Bob and I are celebrating our 60th Wedding Anniversary, 2 April 2010, in the Fair Oaks Fourth Ward Deseret Building. The theme is: “Tell Me a Story”. The histories of our five generations are being compiled. Our daughters and sons have the spirit of Elijah. We have a Web site, and are preparing for a book. Great progress has been made. Through the years, I have written many accounts of incidents in my life. I am age eighty-four now, and am taking a class in writing about family history. It is with the Renaissance Society from Sacramento State University. I have found the most appealing accounts are short, but interesting. I have written a biography about each of our sons and daughters (Gayle, Keith, Mary, Holly, Scott, John, and Michael). However, for this writing, I have included an account of my early years, also a history that I wrote in 1993 for a Shaw Family Reunion. I have included some details about my life since 1993. I cannot conclude this writing, so I am going to take the advice of my cousin Mary Fairbairn and end it with “to be continued.”




Early Memories By Mary Lou Shaw Written April 2010 When I was six years old, I talked to my Mother about changing my name from “Lou” to “Mary”. She suggested I enroll in school as Mary Lou. Armed with this decision, Mother and I walked to the Nampa Idaho, Bungalows of Eastside School. All though my school years and professional life I was known as Mary Lou. In my private life and with friends I was known as Lou. Later in my life, I decided to change my name legally. It was a requirement to have someone who attended my birth to sign for me. Since I was born in my grandparent’s home, I approached my Uncle Ed Naylor. Amazingly, he divulged that Mary Lou was a name that had been considered for me. Miss Barton and Miss Ronoe were my first and second grade teachers. They were young and pretty. I was a shy child, but I could run very fast. I remember a fellow student named George who liked to chase me at recess time and try to kiss me. One time, he even persuaded the big sixth grade boys to help chase me down. I out ran them! After that they taunted him with “Georgie Porgie puddin’ and pie, kissed the girls and made them cry. When Georgie Porgie came out to play, all the girls ran away.” In the third grade at Kenwood School, I was apprehensive about Mrs. Reynolds teaching me. She had confronted me once at Eastside School when I wanted to use the outdoor restroom. The results were most embarrassing. I was relieved when my Mother decided to move to Salt Lake City, Utah and take her four children, (Lou, Fay, Venetta and Neal) to live with her parents, Frank and Rhoda (Laird) Naylor. Austin and Ruth were having trouble in their marriage. Neal learned to walk in the fall of 1933, in the Naylor home. We all watched in awe as he bravely took his first steps. We had enjoyed many happy times with our grandparents and Mom’s brothers and sisters: (Lois and Victor McFarland and their three-year-old daughter, Renee; Sefton, Ed, Marvin, Garth, and Verna Naylor). Grandfather was purchasing a ranch in Hobble Creek Canyon, near Springville, Utah, which we had visited many times during the summers.


Venetta, Lou, and Fay as children


Lou in Grade School


I attended Forrest School. My Uncle Garth would walk with me. One day, we were doing a project collecting sugars. I was able to find Maple Sugar in Grandmother’s pantry. The Naylors had a piano in their nicely furnished parlor. Garth taught me to play chop sticks on the piano. Also, we enjoyed the “player” organ in the front room. Grandmother would encourage us to pump the music out. (When Verna was too little to reach the pedals, she would lie on her back on the floor to pump out the beautiful music.) Uncle Sefton had returned from his Mission in England and was courting lovely Nellie Poll. One evening, Verna, Fay, and I sneaked looks at them kissing on the couch. We were caught! Furiously, Sefton chased us through the house. Verna led us to the bathroom and locked the door. Sefton and Nellie married on the fourth of May 1934. Frank Robertson, the author of western novels, his wife Winnie and brother Obe, lived next door. I have a copy of an article he wrote for the Reader’s Digest, “The Ram in the Thicket.” Mother enrolled in English and typing classes, (I think she wanted to qualify to work and earn a living to support us). In those days, secretarial work, teaching, and nursing were almost the only jobs available to women. We had a huge Christmas celebration in 1933. Santa brought us large baby dolls, a play stove, table and chairs, and a tea set. That Christmas, Dad came to visit us. He held me on his lap. His body shook with quiet sobbing, tears ran down his cheeks. I felt very sad. Later, I was afraid he would come and kidnap me, in the night. For years, I insisted on sleeping on the inside of the bed. In the late spring of 1934, we returned with Dad, and rented a home in Gooding, Idaho. I remember attending my first funeral of the brother of my good school friend, Hazel. I remember being afraid because of the news about the gangster, John Dillinger, being in Idaho. We returned to our home in Nampa, Idaho at 316 19th Avenue from Gooding. Dad had allowed his brother, Stowell Abbott, and his family, (wife, Fontella Richardson, son, Fielding, daughters; Marva, Lova, and Juna Abbott,) to live in our home, while we were gone. We were good friends with our cousins.


Johnny, Chrissie, and Stephen Abbott as children


I attended the old Kenwood School again. (It was on an acre lot and has been torn down now.) The teacher was hot- tempered Miss Baker in the fourth grade. The kids would irritate her and she would loudly slam the book down hard on the desk. All would be quiet as she bawled us out in shouting tones. At the Naylor’s Hobble Creek Strawberry Ranch, Grandfather’s collie dog, Lady, had a little black and white puppy, which became my dog, Reuben. One day, a Strawberry customer ran over Reuben and he died. I was heart broken and sobbed and cried. My grandmother and mother comforted me. After we returned home to Nampa, Idaho, my Dad brought home a little red shepherd puppy. He was the runt of several puppies and they would push him away so that he did not drink enough milk from his mother. We fed this wobbly little dog milk with a spoon and called him Reuben. He grew into a fine large Shepherd Dog. There was a big Police Dog that traversed the block. When Reuben was younger, he used to hover in a corner of our yard, while the Police Dog pranced in front of our home. When Reuben grew older and participated in some of those middle of the street dog fights, the proud Police Dog humbly walked across the street on the other sidewalk. Reuben started snapping at the paper boy. Mother decided that "town" was no place to have a dog. Dad took him away with him on his paper route. He found a farmer who would take him and left him there. In about a week, Mother said, "Austin we must go and get Reuben. I just can’t stand him being gone." So we all piled into the Model A Ford and rode over to the farm. From a distance we saw Reuben lying down close to the house with a rope tied to him. As we approached, he jumped up and down, barking an excited welcome to us. The man untied him and he was all over us. The farmer said, "You know, if you hadn’t come back for this dog, he would have died. He is a one man dog. He wouldn’t eat and would just lay sad all the time, pining away since he’s been here." One day, Reuben was very ill. Louise Frazier, our neighbor, was a nurse. She said, "This dog has eaten some food with poison in it. Some people around here are setting it out to kill the dogs. It looks like Rueben will die."

I prayed for Reuben and he became well. I publicly thanked Heavenly Father for this blessing in church at the following Fast and Testimony Meeting. In the fifth grade, I finally made the Honor Roll. I was the last name on the list and how proud I was. Either Duane Drake or Leatha Feeler was first, as usual. Shirley Amundson was third and there were others that I can’t remember. I was number five. Miss Campbell and Miss Hammond were my teachers in the fifth and sixth grades. They toured Europe together and blended the accounts of their trip into their Social Science and Geography lesson plans. I wanted to travel to Europe and foreign countries, but had no hope of it ever happening. Dear Reader: As I write this history by subjects I realize that the activities we engage in when we are young becomes a vital part of our life. We carry these pursuits with us into our older age, and they become memories. (However, in July 1976, my husband, Robert Shaw and I had the privilege of traveling to England, Scotland, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Holland, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland. We engaged in Family History work. We visited places of our ancestors in England, such as Westmoreland. Cheshire, and Lavington counties. We searched Church records, cemetery records, searched in libraries, and interviewed others working on our lines. I am still corresponding with Barbara Smith and Margaret Schorap. We were able to meet them at the Nevinson reunion held in Sedona, Arizona. Through Barbara’s efforts much has been accomplished in behalf of our pioneer ancestor, Ruth (Nephewson) Wright. We also met with my sister, Janet Dutton and her daughter, Jill, who were traveling. We visited with Janet’s daughter, Mary and her husband, David Jordan, in Germany. They were doing top secret work for the U.S. Army. During this time an unusual event occurred. Janet ran out of money and didn’t know which way to turn. At the same time, our Dad had the picture of her distress come into his mind. He quickly sent a hundred dollars to her in care of Mary. Somehow it arrived much sooner than the regular postage. The tour Bob and I had was beyond our wildest and fondest dreams. I reflected on those desires about traveling to Europe that came to me long ago in my fifth grade class at Kenwood School).

The family car, sitting left to right, Fay, Lou, Venetta, and Austin Abbott


Lovina, Fay, Austin, and Lou, and Cletus.


On March 18, 1937, my sister Janet was born in the house in town. Mother was the teacher of the Trail Builder boys in Primary. They came to visit her. She asked them to choose a name for her new baby. They tied with the names of Ruth and Janet. They requested that I break the tie. I explained that our Sister Fay’s full name was Ruth Fay, so the name needed to be Janet. Those boys became the male members of our Gang, which started when we, the girls, individually, invited them to accompany us to the Gold and Green Balls, held in the leap year. When I entered the Seventh grade, we were still meeting in Kenwood School. We would go over to the newly built Gymnasium at the Junior High Central School for Physical Education classes. That summer, we had moved to the country on the South Powerline Road, so I needed to catch the late school bus there to go home. One day, while waiting for the bus, I drew up enough courage to make friends with LaRue Yorgason. She was a musician and played the violin, piano, and the flute. She and Duane Drake entertained at Rotary Clubs at the fancy Dewey Hotel. LaRue and I are good friends even today. We often discuss our activities of our school days. When I was twelve, I attended one of the first camps instituted for the Mutual girls, “Beehive Camp.” Vera Allen, who was in the Mutual Presidency, had attended General Conference in Salt Lake City. She returned with the suggestion that the camp be organized in Nampa, Idaho. Warm Lake was the chosen site. The Boy Scouts were camped across the lake. We made up a call to yell back and forth. It was, “Hi Low Minnie Minnie Cow Cow Um Chow Chow Pea Wa Wa You Who.” (Later, I thought that unique call could be useful for emergencies. When a family became separated, instead of calling Mom, or names of persons, lost, yell the Hi Low Call.) I have taught it to my family and my grandchildren. For many years it was been a tradition for that call on hiking and camping trips. (In the year, 1965, the family of Bob and I (Gayle, Keith, Holly, and Scott) were camping near Eureka, CA with my father, Austin Abbott. Holly and I became lost. My dad panicked and talked to the forest ranger. My dad had thought we had fallen over the cliff. , He said,” Oh dear, my 40 year old daughter is lost!” Later, Gayle heard our call and yelled the call back. We were reunited.) One of the best surprises, Fay and I received in our lives was the year we returned home from Beehive Camp and our home had been

Lou in Junior High School plastered and all the walls and ceilings were gleaming white. The cardboard had been removed and the lath was covered. I felt like I was in a palace! In the seventh grade, I had a remarkable Social Science teacher, Mr. Meinzer. He shared his political science views with us and predicted war with Germany. He didn’t like Hitler’s dictatorship and his invasions of Germany’s surrounding nations. All the students were called for an assembly, in the Nampa High School Gym on, Monday, December 8, 1941. We heard President Roosevelt’s radio Declaration of War, Japan had attacked Pearl Harbor, December Seventh, a day that would live in infamy. We knew our lives would be changed, nationwide. For the next four years, we felt the stress and strain of the war daily. (In Oostend, Belgium, 1976, my husband and I met a lady on the train who spoke good English. She had learned English from the American Military that she had over for dinner many times. She


expressed tremendous gratitude for the Americans coming in World War 2 and helping to save her country. After the war, she came to Calaveras, California and participated in the Frog Jumping contest. Her frog was a winner. My thoughts went back to December 1941, and President Roosevelt declaring War on Japan and immediately sending troops to the European War Scene. I was grateful). Through the years, I was active in Drama and Declamation classes. I gave readings to clubs and entered Forensic contests. Miss Dilla Tucker spent hours coaching me, as I waited for the bus. Besides the poem, “Home” we worked on a cutting of Enoch Arden, by Alfred Lord Tennyson, William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Life On The Ocean Wave, The Waltz, Ma At The Basketball Game, and Aunt Effie Goes Horseback Riding.

Lou reciting “Aunt Effie Goes Horseback Riding”


(A few years ago we had the opportunity to visit Miss Tucker. She very ill and lying in bed, but with a strong voice she recited “Home” by Edgar A. Guest with much feeling and pure enunciation like in the classroom, so many years ago. It was a thrilling experience). (A few months ago, I did “Aunt Effie Goes Horseback Riding” for the Michael Shaw family. At the conclusion, little Eva climbed up on the chair and proceeded to be Aunt Effie. Soon Sophia and Chloe were involved in the imitation of the horseback riding scene). (About 1954, we presented a Merrymaker Talent Show for the Willows Branch building fund. We used talent from the Bay Area. .A few years later, we attended the dedication of the Willows Chapel. The congregation was promised that all those who had assisted with building the chapel, would be able to pay their debts. That blessing has given me comfort through the years. While living in Willows, Bob worked for Rumiano Cheese Company as their bookkeeper. We could only paid five dollars a month to the building fund. Such a tremendous blessing for so little effort was astounding). (Our son, Michael Shaw, has compiled an account of his incredible grandmother with interviews from her daughters, Venetta, Chrissie, Janet, myself, and Ruth’s sister, Verna Naylor Cleverly. Even included are accounts that were written by our deceased sister Fay and memories about Fay. Vivid pictures help tell the story, especially of Ruth’s exquisite beauty. When Michael was a young child, he would ask the older ladies if they were his grandmother. I think he has found his grandmother. His book g will be read for generations to come. As I read this account, I feel the abundant love of my Mother). The greatest display of faith I have ever witnessed was when my Mother became desperately ill with her heart condition in January 1939. Three actions attest to her healing. 1). Her tremendous faith and prayers. She pleaded with the Lord for her life, for the sake of her children. Mother told me that only when she surrendered to His Will, did peace fill her heart; 2). The priesthood blessing given to her by James and Arnold Johnson. She told me that during that blessing the terrible pain left her heart; and 3). Her personal revelation and her determined efforts to gather water cress and eat it. (I’ve read since that water cress is a healing agent for the heart).


Miraculously, she regained her strength. She gave birth to three more children, John Frank, born 18 June 1940; Chrissie Eveline, born the 19 September 1942 (both born in Nampa, Idaho); and Stephen Edward, born in Gleneden Beach, Oregon, 3 September 1944. John bares the name of his two grandfathers, JOHN Austin Abbott and FRANK Sefton Naylor. Chrissie has the name of our beloved grandmother, Chrissie Eveline (Whitney) Abbott, whom our mother adored. Stephen EDWARD. Edward was the name of mother’s brother, Edward William Naylor. In the early 1940’s, new management came to the Idaho Daily Statesman Newspaper. They stopped paying a salary to my father and switched to paying by commission. Austin Abbott lost his job. About this time, Mother learned to drive a car. Starting with a $25 dollar base,*(I think that was the amount), she ran a fruit stand in Nampa. Ruth also sold fruit and vegetables, at weekly outside sale yards in Boise and Meridian. Fay and I missed some schooling to help her when Chrissie was born. February 14, 1944, my parents decided to move to Independence, Missouri. Neal brought his valentines from school. Dad had the windows cut out of the Panel truck and put in wooden benches, so his children could see the beautiful country on the move, creating one of the first Station Wagons. We traveled via Union, Oregon, and stayed all night with Grandfather Abbott. The family went along the beautiful Columbia River into Portland and then to Seaside, Oregon where we stayed awhile. Dad fished on the ocean and we dug razor back clams. Fay and I visited the Aquarium and went roller-skating. I went swimming in the cold Pacific Ocean and built sand castles with my siblings. We made our way down the California coast visiting Crescent City, Eureka, the mighty Redwoods, and San Francisco. We stayed at Half Moon Bay and went into San Francisco to visit Mother’s brother, Elder Garth Naylor, who was serving a mission. I could see why they called San Francisco one of the most fascinating cities in the world. Seeing the Golden Gate and ships going in and out brought the awareness of the war close to my heart. We went on down to Los Angeles and Hollywood, CA. Dad’s sister, Ora Gilford lived in Hollywood and had a beauty shop. She greeted us kindly and styled our hair.


Because of the war, the area was thronged with service men. We couldn’t find a place to stay except in South Laguna Beach, where a private owner had a lean-to and a camp stove, table and chairs. Fay and I worked at Curries Ice Cream shop and often hitchhiked to work as the buses were overloaded. Dad and Neal took the car to work in the orange fields. Aunt Ora and Cletus (Dad’s brother) showed us the glittering sites of Hollywood. As a family we traveled on to Death Valley, CA. In Nevada, we visited Hoover Dam, Bunkerville, and Mesquite. In Bunkerville, we visited some of Dad’s relatives. In St. George, Utah, we saw the George Burton Whitney home. Then onto Salt Lake City, Utah, and visited the Naylors. Grandmother Naylor wanted to go camping so we went down to Springville and Hobble Creek. Mother was very disturbed at the thought of “more camping.” We headed back up to Gleneden Beach, Oregon, where we had reserved a cabin. The eighth child, of my parent’s family, Stephen Edward Abbott, was born 3 September 1944. (Dr. Taft worked hard to deliver Stephen, as the cord was wrapped around his neck. He quickly gave him to me and exclaimed, “I’ve got to get back to your mother.” When he had things in order, he said, “It is a miracle that both of them are alive.”) Then we drove back through our hometown, Nampa, Idaho, and to Denver Colorado, where we saw the Continental Divide. When we arrived at our destination, Independence, Missouri, Dad wanted us to see the mighty Mississippi River. So we drove onto St. Louis, and then Hannibal, MO., where we saw the Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer, and Huckleberry Finn sites. Finally, we settled back in Independence, where Mother ran The Sugar Bowl Cafe, 315 W. Lexington, Independence, Missouri. We purchased the equipment from an English woman, Mrs. Skinner, and leased the building from the RLDS Church. Sleeping quarters were upstairs. It was close to Conference time for the RLDS Church members. The Auditorium with the Dome, where they met, was across the street from the Sugar Bowl. Mrs. Skinner assured us we would have a huge business from the Conference attendees. When the day came they certainly did pack in the first day, but the second day, when they had found out we were Utah Mormons, most of them went on down the street to the Mayfair Restaurant.

Fay, Venetta, Neal, and Janet enrolled in schools. (Over the years, Fay, Venetta, Neal, Janet, Chrissie, and Stephen attended colleges and universities. Fay earned a Master’s degree. Janet, Chrissie, and I were school teachers. Janet changed careers and went into the real estate business. Chrissie has recently retired from teaching special education, but is still substituting and is very popular in this field. Neal was graduated with honors from Rolla College of Mimes.) (Sadly now, Fay, Neal, and John have deceased, and they are greatly missed.)

Lou at William Jewell’s College in Liberty, Missouri


Lou as a young adult.

A sketch of Lou by her Art teacher, Tom Tolman, 1946


Standing Left to Right, Brother, Neal, Sister, Fay Sitting Left to Right, Venetta and Lou


I had saved my tips from working in cafes along the trip we made to Missouri and was able to enroll in William Jewel College, in Liberty, Missouri. Because of the war there were very few young men there. One particular blind student, who played the piano, was popular. I enjoyed the Bible Class on the Old Testament. The Zoology class was fascinating. I worked at the library and in a sewing factory. My funds and clothes were limited but I was happy to be in college. I stayed at the Hilltop House where we had room and board. Venetta visited me there. It was difficult times in Missouri, especially for Mother. They were having extreme trouble in their marriage. Dad left for Salt Lake City, Utah. Mother divorced him on 14 September 1948 according to the Independence, Missouri Court Records. As a single mom, she struggled to provide for her family. I had met Robert Shaw when he came to the Central States Mission. We were married 5 April 1950. After our marriage, we lived in Modesto, California. My mother married Henry Dutton on 17 December 1951. We visited her and the family in Missouri several times.

Lou and Robert April 5, 1950 (Salt Lake City, Utah)

Wedding Announcement from Deseret News


In 1956, Mother, Henry, John, Chrissie, Stephen, and Venetta made a trip West. They visited the Naylors in Salt Lake City, Utah. They came to our home in Sacramento, California. In the spring of 1957, Mother suffered with an acute heart condition. I went by train with Gayle and Keith to be with her, Her health worsened and she was hospitalized. I was with her when she passed away. I saw all the cares of this earth leave her face. It was a great loss to our families. I still miss her and know that she loved all of us. In 1958, Stephen came out and lived with our family. Holly was a baby. Stephen stayed with us for two years. In 1961, Chrissie came out and lived with us. I was pregnant with Scott and he was born shortly after she arrived. Chris and I attended college together. I enjoyed her immensely. She married and is still here in the Sacramento area. (Recently, she persuaded me to buy many tree roses and other plants. The majestic roses have enhanced both of our homes with beauty and fragrance). When I graduated from Sacramento State University and earned an Adult Education Teaching Credential, Bob was the Community School Coordinator at Arlington Heights Elementary School. Part of his duties was providing interesting activities for the local adults. One day, he invited me to participate in the program by teaching Flower Arranging. This activity sparked a vocation for me when my brother-in-law, Walter Olsen, suggested I approach the San Juan Adult Education with the idea of offering a course in Florist Techniques. The class caught on and flourished. Soon they wanted a class in Arts and Crafts also. A few years after our return from Logan, Utah, where Bob had earned his Master’s Degree at the Utah State University, I sought a position teaching in the Folsom Cordova School District in Adult Education. I approached Dr. Wayne Beckman, with the idea of starting a Genealogy Class. Then he wanted a Florist Technique class. As the years went on, I enjoyed teaching Oil Painting, Current Events, Arts and Crafts and English to the Foreign Born, who were senior Koreans, (This occurred at the same time as Scott was on his mission in South Korea,) When we moved over to the new Cordova Senior Center, in 1987, the Genealogy Class grew. There was a need to do Family History on

the computer. Permission was granted to teach in the computer room at Mills Jr. High School, if fifteen students would enroll. Before the coming semester, Bob and I enjoyed a trip to Israel, accompanied by his sister, Karen Thomas. When we visited the prayer wall, I slipped a note in one of the crevasses asking that the genealogy class would meet the required qualifications. That night, as we said our prayers, Bob asked for that blessing in the very words I had written. Without a doubt, I knew then it would be a go. Teaching online genealogy computer classes expanded to the expert, Jim Rader and others. They taught classes in the newly constructed Adult Education buildings on Gadsten Way in Rancho Cordova. I attended some of those computer classes. I kept my “Show and Tell” Family History Class at the Cordova Senior Center. What a powerful blessing and what fun we had with the somewhat unorthodox curriculum. One day, I substituted at the Folsom Convalescent Hospital. Shelby Venables, from England, was the Arts and Crafts Director. She called Lorraine MacIntryre, the secretary, and told her, "I would crawl on me belly to have Mary Shaw come and teach." We became very good friends. Shelby has won many awards for her service and ability with Arts and Crafts. One of the paramount incidents at the Folsom Convalescent Hospital was that my father, Austin Neal Abbott, was sent there about 1994 from the American River Hospital. Since I worked at the Convalescent Hospital four times a week, I was able to see him often. He passed away 13 November 1995. He was ninety-nine years old.

Lou and Austin


Lou in her home-owned Floral Shop


The joy of my life is my family, and I want to pay tribute to them and acknowledge the mighty blessings of the Lord. A Descendant’s chart of the Robert Keith Shaw family will be enclosed in this history, so you can see the growth of our heritage. To date, we have 22 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren. One great grandson. Logan Keith Shaw, was just born Thursday, 25 March 2010. His parents are Sarah Marie Zurcher, and Ryan Keith Shaw. Logan Shaw’s cousins are Boston Riley and Phoenix, son and daughter of Christina Colette McCann and Riley Burton Shaw. Bob has been very ill since 2005. By a miracle, his strength has been renewed. He still suffers with diabetes, heart trouble, and related illnesses. My eyes have macular degeneration and I have arthritis and bone on bone in my legs. We wisely purchased “Long Term Care Insurance” when we were younger. It provides us with help in showering and light housework. Our family has been of tremendous assistance, especially Mike and Holly. They live close to us. We cheerfully greet each day with gratitude. When Bob was ordained a High Priest, he received the gift of timing. It has been fascinating watching this blessing come to pass over and over. We have a family joke we say, “Just in the nick of time, Shaw’s timing came through again. “ I want to relate a couple of very important incidents. Last Thanksgiving, Bob fell and broke his left arm up by his shoulder. Being left handed, the break caused a severe handicap situation. He could no longer give himself insulin shots, write, get out of bed without assistance, shower, etc. etc. With my limited eyesight and physical condition, I couldn’t help him. We had the home care staff increase their hours. For a few days, Mike would come before he went to work and give Bob the blood sugar readings and shots of insulin. Then our granddaughter, Melissa Miller, came home during a month long break from Nursing School. She took over and her brother Josh assisted her. (He was also on a break from Sierra College.) They even stayed overnight when needed and Melissa tended to Bob. For a few days, our daughter, Gayle Soren and her husband, Ron and daughters, Kayleena and Mariah, were here. Ron and Gayle’s


son, Shawn Burnett Soren and Mallory Marie Cain were to be married, 19 December 2009, in the Oakland Temple. Gayle had finished her course as a LVN, so she was a tremendous help also. What a powerful blessing this all was to Bob and me. On December 13, 2005, Bob had a serious by-pass operation on his heart. Keith and Gayle were here, even though Keith’s son Riley, was marrying Christina McCann in the Logan Temple. Gayle’s daughter, Camille Soren, was marrying Daniel Borup in the Boise Temple, 17 December 2005. Holly and Mike were as usual giving their all. Our family wanted to attend the marriage services. Joshua hopped in the car with Keith and Gayle for the Utah trip. Melissa came up from San Diego. Bob rallied, but was still terribly ill. Melissa and Holly were going to drive to Utah with Eldon, Holly could not go. She stayed with me. Both Eldon and Mike and their families traveled all night and attended parts of both marriage celebrations. During this difficult time, I was with Bob as much as possible. Since I couldn’t drive, Holly lined up rides for me, when she and Mike were not available. Even though my heart ached for Bob to live, I couldn’t pray that way, directly. I was reading the Bible and the following verse penetrated my soul. "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint." Isaiah 40:31. This became one of my favorite scriptures. I recited it with feeling almost every day. Now, I know that scripture has come to pass, in our lives. Looking back on the serious events during Bob’s illness, Keith and Gayle have been here to render extra service to us. I was thinking of when Bob had a bout with related illnesses in 2007, He spent a week in the hospital. He came home very weak. They were here. Keith stayed longer and helped us through a rough time. They both provided a break for Holly and Mike. Words cannot express the abundance of help that Mike and Holly consistently do for us. Holly and Bob are helping me with editing this history. Sometimes we cry together about it. (Scott has written an excellent autobiography with a format that keeps your interest from page to page. Bob and I helped him with editing it.) Even though, Scott lives far away, he consistently calls.

Sometimes we even say a prayer together over the telephone. We have enjoyed a few visits, Once, Andrea accompanied him and there have been “surprise” visits, connected with his work.

Lou and Bob reading their daily scriptures and poems.


Dear Readers, my travel days are gone now. I cherish my visits with Bob and others abroad: Following are a few I would like to mention: Our first missionary son we went to greet was Elder Keith Shaw in New York City in 1974. Gayle was married, and her husband Ron was attending Utah State University. Holly, Scott, and Mike traveled with us. We were living in Logan, Utah. Bob was working on his Master’s Degree. How thrilling it was to be in the Mission field with Keith. We journeyed to Boston, Massachusetts and accomplished successful research for my Whitney and Abbott lines. We saw the Washington DC Temple being constructed. We never dreamed that our young son, Scott, would be marrying his bride, Julia Guastella, in that new Temple, 6 February 1988. The summer after Mike was in the seventh grade, 1981, Mike, Bob, and I visited the Orient, visiting Hong Kong, toured Red China and the Philippines. NOTE: Bob had taught classes to exchange students from the Philippines and Japan. We stayed a month in Japan. We met with a LDS member family, Maya and Setsu Nakahara in Tokyo, Japan. We attended church services and Bob and I went to the L.D.S. Temple. We traveled as far north as Nikko and as far south as Kumamoto. Often Bob’s former students and their families were our guides. We traveled to Seoul, Korea to pick up our son, Elder Scott Shaw from his mission. It was a thrilling experience to visit his meetings and hear him speak so adequately in the foreign tongue. In line with his Security Work, Scott has returned several times to revisit South Korea. The knowledge of the Korean language is a valuable asset, when you are in the “Land of the Morning Calm.”

Lou in Korea

In 1990, we traveled to Melbourne, Australia to pick up our son, Elder Michael Shaw, who was completing his successful mission under President Dale G. Newbold. We enjoyed meeting some new converts, which Michael had influenced to come into the Church. I was impressed with the landscape of Australia, the trees, plants, birds, Kangaroos, and penguins, which were taking care of their young. It was exciting to be closer to the South Pole area. Also, I knew that my great grandmother, Lovina Syphus had been born in Sydney, Australia. We visited the library, and found more information about the Luke Syphus family. Then we journeyed to New Zealand with Mike driving, we followed some of my Grandfather John Austin Abbott’s trails of his mission to the Maoris. He had performed some of the dances and told our family stories when I was young. He also, wrote about his experiences in his autobiography. He served there at the beginning of the 20th century. He served soon after my father, Austin Neal Abbott, was born 3 August 1896. We had planned to visit Holly at the end of her mission in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1979, but it didn’t work out. We were very disappointed. However, I was able to meet her mission President, William Atwool, because I attended a shower for his daughter, Tammy who married a long time friend of ours, Joe Wheeler. The party was in Fair Oaks, CA. Also, I went to Birmingham, Alabama, for the funeral of my brother, Austin Neal Abbott Jr., who passed away April 14, 2006. We had a splendid time in Italy in 1989. Scott was working in Security for the U.S Embassy in Rome. Bob and I visited them with the intention of doing genealogical research on Julia’s heritage, the Guastellas and the Bonvicinos. We visited Tarsia, Italy, the home land of Julia’s mother. Scott’s Mercedes Benz stalled on the narrow road of Tarsia, right across the street from a Bonvicino residence. It had the photo of Julia’s grandmother’s wedding hanging on the wall. .Needless to say, we were well received and learned much about the Bonvicino family.


Dear Readers: We want to stay in our home as long as possible. We know we are receiving the Lord’s blessings through the hands of others. We are grateful for the “Gift of Timing” in our lives. The past seventeen years have been filled with activity. In writing this recent history, it is apparent many relate back to their beginnings earlier than 1993. We received a lot split for our property in 1991. It was divided into four parcels; one of them includes our home. Engineer costs, County Fees, to meet the qualifications were expensive. However, one huge expense was removed from us when the contractors, who were developing a building a subdivision off an adjoining street, were required to install a large drainage pipe through our lots. This move allowed the proper boundaries to be set for our lots. We did not go into debt to meet the requirements. The property remained free and clear. We did not pursue further expenses to develop the lots and build on them which had been our desire. In the year 2004, some of our friends sold their homes for prices like $250,000 and moved to other states, where the housing costs were less. They purchased a beautiful acreage in Kentucky for a low price. The California Housing boon was in full force. Our health expenses were high. We could meet them because I was teaching in Adult Education. This situation could not last. Mistakenly, I had retired early and was now limited in the amount of wages I could earn, Because of my age, the day was close at hand, when I would need to stop working. I loved my job and felt I could continue on working. We felt we needed to use our property to prepare us to meet the expenses of the future. In January 2005, we had our property appraised. During the coming months, we received some offers for our home and lots, but none were finalized. We wanted to stay in the Sacramento area. We looked at other houses. They did not have the attraction of our home. We decided to go ahead with the project on our own. In order to build a house on one of the lots, we were required to put in the cul-desac according to the county plan. We reasoned that in order to make money, it was necessary to spend money. With much duress, the underground work for the water and gas were established. We could see that the completed cul-de-sac demanded more money then we had, at that time.

The first 2006 semester, I couldn’t teach, as I needed to be home with Bob, because he was ill. I suggested other teachers to replace me temporarily. When I did return, I only had my Floral Design and Genealogy Classes. The Adult Education Department wanted to retain my friend, Ted Allebes, for the oil painting class. The Arts and Crafts teacher wanted to keep her class. The Sacramento Housing Agency installed the beautiful curved ramp outside and grab bars in the Master bathroom. Our roof was in need of repairs. They approached us with an offer to repair and update our home at a low interest rate. .The workers put a new roof on the house, air conditioning was installed, the water heater was replaced, storm windows were installed, new carpet was installed and the home was painted inside and out. We are enjoying our repaired home.


Now Dear Readers, I want to write about The Sacramento Temple. There are so many wonderful eternal feelings with the Sacramento Temple. Despite adversity, the knowledge is: "The Lord is mindful of each individual." His overwhelming love for us and our families has been expressed. What a humbling awesome experience for me to design flowers for the Sacramento Temple Dedication, 3 September 2006. I’m grateful for my daughter, Holly Miller’s assistance. It was breathtaking that early Sunday morning when Holly and I delivered the flowers. Brother Gary Close humbly met us at the door and escorted us through the rooms, now filled with chairs, into the Celestial Room. We felt the honor of our task and the Sacredness of the occasion. The orchid Spray was carefully set on the Organ. We breathed a sigh of relief when Holly placed the White Bowl of White Snapdragons, Star gazer lilies, and elegant Colombian pink tipped white roses, on the floor in front of the pulpit. Holly lovingly pointed out names on the chairs. The prophet’s name, President Gordon B. Hinckley, and Elder Thomas Monson, stood out to me. It was a precious time we had delivering the flowers. A closeness and sacredness occurred in that moment of time. It carries on in my heart even now. I felt a soft powerful spirit of love. We felt the Sacredness of the Sacramento Temple. Our joy was so full we could scarcely take it in. I feel the blessings of the Lord penetrating throughout my being. It is indeed a time of rejoicing.


Dear Reader: In closing, I am glad for each day. I rejoice in the Lord and the blessings of love I feel in our hearts. In closing I would like to acknowledge the hand of the Lord in our lives. I am grateful for my husband, Robert Shaw. He is fun to live with. My heart swells with gratitude for our remarkable daughters and sons, and spouses, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Outside my family circle, I thank my long time friend, Tona Wood, for her help with floral decorations. Also, Alton and Eleanor Sissell, for their assistance on our Family History computer work. These are happy days for me. Bob and I are looking forward to our sixtieth wedding anniversary party on 2 April 2010. We are pleased to see the spirit of Elijah prominent in our family members preparing for this event. By Mary Lou Shaw, April 1, 2010. (Just in the nick of time for the Anniversary Party!) To Be Continued!


Miscellaneous Pictures of Family

Lou as a baby.


Ruth Venetta (Naylor) Abbott, mother of Lou


Frank Sefton Naylor, Grandfather of Lou


Rhoda (Laird) Naylor, Grandmother of Lou


John Austin Abbott, Grandfather of Lou


Ruth Venetta Abbott, Mother of Lou


Standing, Michael, Scott, Keith, Holly (Miller) Shaw Sitting, Bob, Lou and Gayle (Soren) Shaw 1985