The day finally came when Jeff and Gregg and I were to meet. Jeff is the Livermore Heritage Guild president. Gregg is the descendant of William Mendenhall who contacted me online. Gregg was to unveil a story he was told by his grandmother, long ago.
Even I seemed a bit nervous on this bright sunshiny day of our meeting. It had been such a build up to this point, and the story was actually coming out on this day. The decision was to meet at Roselawn Cemetery in Livermore early on a Sunday morning.
I arrived at the cemetery purposely earlier than the arranged meeting time. I wanted to explore the cemetery a bit and look at the Mendenhall grave site. Because I knew the story, I also wanted to check out the lay of the cemetery a bit too.
The cemetery was quiet and empty. I finally went to the meeting area, where I found someone leaning against his car. I pulled up and asked if he was waiting for someone, and he said "yeah, you." It had to be Gregg. I asked how he was as I got out of my truck and he replied “not so good.” When I asked why he told me the cemetery wasn't as he remembered it, it had changed. Indeed it had.
It wasn't long before Jeff Kaskey showed up and we all introduced ourselves to one another. Gregg explained to Jeff how he found me, and a bit of how he is related to the Mendenhall's. We talked about William Mendenhall's headstone being found, the background of the Mendenhall family and the origins starting from Oak Knoll Cemetery. Gregg knew so much of the Mendenhall history and explained he had tried to tell "his story" before, but there was a major lack of interest ten years earlier.
Eventually we all walked across the cemetery up to the Mendenhall burial site, talking all the way. Here, I took a couple of pictures of Jeff and Gregg. I don't know where the time went, but the conversation was non-stop for a good hour and a half. We eventually started heading back toward our cars and I am sure Jeff thought he had heard everything he was going to from Gregg and seemed anxious to move on to his next appointment.
Shortly before reaching our original meeting point, Gregg casually came out with what he wanted to tell Jeff. Jeff stopped dead in his tracks. I am not sure he knew what to say, or think. It caught him off guard.
(Remember where this leaves off and please watch for Part Ten of this series when the full story comes out! I just felt it was to much to put all in one post. I would love to share a picture with you of Gregg and Jeff, I feel I need to ask permission first though as I never told them I planned on posting any of the pictures.)