Previous                                                             Next

The Personal Histories

of

Darvil Burns McBride & Josephine Phillips McBride

 

TRIBUTES TO JOSEPHINE AND DARVIL

 

MOTHER AND DADDY, by “Sally” Josephine McBride Butterfield, third born and only daughter of three children:  How does one begin to pay tribute to such wonderful parents as I have been blessed with?  I do believe that Heavenly Father, in his infinite wisdom and love for me, placed me with the two people that he knew could and would have the most influence on this earthly life of mine.

 

I am grateful for the many years I have had the privilege of calling them “Mother and Daddy.” Some of the very early memories I have of my mother are of her beauty. I loved looking at her beautiful face. I was very much aware of how beautiful she was. This awareness has been with me all my life and still is today. “Pretty is as pretty does was a reminder for me in our home: She, to me, being that example.

 

I can honestly say there is no other “old girl,” as she sometimes refers to herself, that can compare with my mother. I remember as a small child how I loved to watch that miraculous transformation all we females struggle through usually at the beginning of each day of our lives, of applying “the make-up.”  After she had spent time putting on “her face,” as she always called it, she would be very careful not to frown. If my brothers or myself would cause her to become cross, she would remind us kindly that her cross wrinkles might stay—but they never did.

 

I was seldom spanked as a child and I believe it was because my mother and father loved us so much that they really didn’t want to physically punish us. They were wise in their disciplining and knew they could reason with us. We would each have our own private “reasoning together times.” I am sure it made more of an impression on us than a spanking ever could.

 

My early memories of my daddy were happy ones. I always had feelings of being secure and cared for. I don’t recall feelings of not having enough or not having as much in the way of material things as my friends. 

My daddy was, and of course still is, a great story teller. At bed time he would create in story the exciting adventures of Tarzan with all the wonderful antics and yells. Then he would make it, to be continued for the next night. 

 

I have always had a feeling of pride about the many years of his faithful performance of church service, and he continues still the same to this day. My mother and he have always shown great responsibility and have both been meticulous and dependable in their responsibilities to others. 

 

How blessed we all are to be able to purely enjoy his writing talents, his many poems, books and histories.  This truly is a tangible part of my father I will always hold dear even after he is gone.

 

My father’s sense of humor mixed with a quiet dignity will last for ever in my memories.

 

I thank my mother and my father for the many patient hours of suffering my practicing the piano, and my mother’s many hours of interest and love in helping me develop musical talent—one that has brought me many years of enjoyment.

 

My mother and father’s examples of integrity and honesty were before us every day. I was never allowed to gossip or talk unkindly about my friends. The good and positive of situations and people were always presented to us. “If you can’t say somethin nice, don’t say nothin at all,” was another reminder in our home.

 

I believe one of the greatest tributes I am able to pay my parents is how very much I was aware of their deep love and respect for each other. The love, devotion and dedication to their marriage and to their three children, has poured over and been a priceless influence to their many grandchildren and their mates—and their many great-grandchildren.

 

There are no better parents, grandparents or great-grandparents in this world than my precious mother and daddy.

 

I love you forever Mother and Daddy,  

 

Your Sally Josephine

 

 

TRIBUTE TO MY PARENTS, by “Jon” Robert McBride, the second born: Let me tell you about the time I learned to appreciate the true beauty of a woman.

 

I was sitting at my desk, among my associates, in moderate anticipation but bored as a procession of older women—over dressed and over made up, gum chewing and parading—moved into the room. Suddenly the whole room stilled as a woman of elegance, grace and bearing appeared in the doorway. Her simple presence among those lesser lights absolutely took my breath away.

 

My location that day was my Balboa, California second grade classroom, and the woman in the doorway was my mother.

 

It was hardly the beginning of her influence on me. All I can remember of my first six years in Solomon, Arizona, is comfort and confidence in her presence. She paid attention to me in Sunday school, she cleaned the red ants out of my pants and gave me assurance when I thought my life was ending in that pain, she seemed so strong and capable and protective when the teenage boys, who were so huge and threatening, came by the house shooting out our decorative lights. Above all, I always knew I was very special to her: probably  even her favorite person.

 

And dad was larger than life back then also: Hailstone frozen ice cream; the open trunk with the black bear he had shot stuffed into it, and we got to eat some of it; horse meat steaks and jackrabbits also, and quail and venison and dove and trout. Camping trips with hiking and hunting and fishing and Dutch oven cooking. He was, I know, the most important man there was. He was the principal of the elementary school where I finally passed kindergarten after three years trying! He had a GIANT PADDLE in his office!

 

These kinds of things were not just real to me when I was young. They were still happening as my horizons broadened and teenagers were no longer a threat to me, but I was one to them as a dad, scoutmaster, soccer coach, Young men president and mission counselor.

 

Darvil at 59 enjoying his first experiences on a motorcycle, waving at the senoritas while tearing down the dirt roads of Baja California. In his sixties with his legs going bad on him, up San Jacinto mountain backpacking with his grandkids and capturing a horse and riding it bareback there in the wilderness—everything still a little bigger in my mind than an ordinary life.

 

Jo who always found something nice to say about even the least likely candidates for niceness—Dee pointing out to me that neither of us can ever remember one derogatory statement about anybody…except about me, to my face, in defense of her daughter-in-law, many, many times. The woman who had been so loving and special to her children, becoming the life model for her daughter and daughters-in-law because of her love and interest and carings for them and her grandchildren, then the model for her granddaughters and granddaughters-in-law.

 

They put zest into the lives of us kids as they put struggle and effort and adventure into their search for fulfillment. Mom back to school when we kids were finally starting to become independent, so she could fulfill herself a little more with her music. I try hard now, and can't quite recall the scripture based music she wrote and directed for our 50+ member youth choir. The two of them—and us kids—hard at work together on their many entrepreneurial efforts, failures and successes. Especially I remember sacrifices like supporting Black Mac the Fox on his mission when mom had to take the extra job at the A & W stand. I thought I might be a little embarrassed having my mother work there, but I wasn't. She just did it very well and everybody liked her. I used to go there before she worked there because there were always cute carhops to harass, but it was more fun to harass them with my mom looking askance at me. I observed enough other sacrifices by both parents at this time, both economic and healthwise, that I determined they wouldn't have to do the same for me. I know now, that I was wrong, because it was at this point that their lives seemed to turn to complete successes and of course they have usually enjoyed overall good health, now into their nineties. I wonder how many blessings I cost them with my poor decision. As it turned out, one year later they received an offer from Jo's uncle, Spencer W. Kimball, to support me on a mission—another opportunity lost because I didn't allow them to determine what was best for them and me.

 

I especially remember the wonderful Colorado summer when I was 13 and Dad was recruiting for a business school. There were Mac and Sally and I assisted by mom, picking cherries to earn enough to buy a .177 caliber Benjamin Pump pellet rifle. It seemed to me to take forever but probably not much more than a week or two. Then all those early evenings and Saturdays around the farms and up the Mesas poaching quail, pheasants and rabbits. Also trips up Grand Mesa for fishing and functioning in what are the most beautiful landscapes of my boyhood memories. Also the frightening trips along the narrow, steep-sloped, caliche-slick path of the million dollar highway and Mom’s split second driving skill which averted more tragedy down in the desert when the car in front of us came to a dead stop upon hitting a horse.

 

Probably the crowning accomplishment of my parent’s career was Darvil the senator, the one single thing they accomplished that seems just slightly beyond their children's energies to match, but not necessarily beyond those of their grandchildren.

 

I am proud of myself and my own history because of the example of my parents. I can now, in my own older age, see so much of them in so many of the things I do. And, I can demonstrate how their interest in experiences for us has shaped, at least, my life. Because they were educated people, I grew up assuming a college degree was just to be part of life. Because of Darvil's naturalist tendencies, I have enjoyed and accomplished much out of doors, in jungles, oceans, deserts and mountains—I have a degree in Zoology.  Among the myriad influences some of who's results I do recognize in the shaping of me, one memory does exist—maybe my earliest—which I have always thought of as a defining moment. Mom asks how I remember it, as I was only three. I remember the car with mom and Sally in it parked at the side of a dirt airstrip, with Mac and I and Dad climbing into this big box-like airplane. Then, with nose and face pressed hard against a porthole, the sound of engines in my ears and the smell of gas and oil fumes, the bumping, the lifting, the extra gravity in the turns and everything, all the people and houses and cars and trees and roads, getting smaller and smaller, clear down to toy size. Pretty soon the heavy vibrations lightened and there was this splendid sensation of floating free, and then everything started to get large again.

 

Do you wonder that I adore my parents, want greater health and an even longer life for them, for my sake?  That even with all their little imperfections and foibles they are precious to me beyond ability to describe?

 

 

CHILDHOOD AND ADULT THOUGHTS ABOUT MY PARENTS, by Darvil David “Mac” McBride, the eldest of two sons and a daughter:  Mother:  My earliest memories of mother were feelings toward her as a protector and of liking any attention she directed my way. At the age of about four, I began to compare her with other mothers. It soon dawned on me how beautiful she was, and I began to see her obvious talents in singing and piano, and later in kindness and diplomacy. These exceptional attributes warmed me with pride. 

 

I don’t remember when Jon arrived, but I do remember vaguely a time when I thought mother was sick. I’ve always believed it her last uncomfortable days before she delivered Sally Jo, though I don’t recall the newness of Sally in the family. I remember often thinking that mother had so many things to do; she was always busy, busy about the home, and no wonder, with three babies within a two-year-eight-month period.  But, did I ever feel neglected or deprived? No. She never showed any favoritism: how fortunate for us to have been nurtured by such a mother. I would observe other homes not so fortunate. 

 

I recall so many wonderful things we did together as a young family. We enjoyed special outings, camping, visiting friends and vacations. She filled my childhood with countless memorable good times. When I sit back to reminisce, the array of pleasant occurrences that pass through my mind go on and on. Feelings of comfort and safety ever enveloped me while in her presence, and, what fright gripped my heart if she disappeared from sight, especially if we were away from home. To my horror, I did lose her a couple of times as she shopped in big stores. She had deep empathetic tenderness about her, soothing my times of fright, hurt, embarrassment or disappointment.

 

As I grew older, though still a young boy, I was guilty of some mischief and disobedience. Those times naturally incurred mother’s tempered wrath and consequent punishment. To spank me, she used a variety of instruments, usually the hair brush, but only after giving fair and reasonable warning. Sometimes the offense merited punishment so immediate that she used her hand with a fervor that I know wounded her more than it hurt me. Regardless of the mode of discipline, it scorched my tender feelings appropriately. I will say though, that I always knew her responses to my misbehaviors were deserved and always just; the problem was always me. I seldom repented for long; hence, I was a well-paddled boy for the first ten years of life.

 

As an older boy and teenager, I recall how much I loved her for the way she treated my friends; friends that I very frequently brought into our home. Always, she would soon appear with a dessert for us all, and she made them each, individually, feel welcome. If it was that time of day, she frequently encouraged them to stay and eat. She never neglected to pay special attention to each friend, and all felt comfortable in our home.  Kind and gracious always, many adults through the years have expressed to me the special place they have in their hearts for her. Each in turn recounted their heart-warming reasons. 

 

As a young teenager just starting to notice the pretty girls, our family played at the beach one warm holiday.  I walked in the wet sand at the water's edge and came up behind a beautiful, shapely, pretty-legged girl I judged a seventeen-year-old. Her slender figure complimented a nice, black bathing suit. I stepped up my pace to pass for a glimpse of her pretty face. As I turned to take a peek I was stunned, for next to me strolled none other than my own gorgeous mother. She turned to discover me at her side and gave a pleasant, “Hi Mac,” and we continued along together. She’s a beautiful woman to this very day. She is a person of divine attributes; she never wears them on her sleeve, for they surface naturally from deep within her soul. Even though some few may have disliked her, out of envy or jealousy, she has always returned kindness for meanness. 

 

After nearly eight years in California, we returned to live in Arizona. At fifteen, I had become a Californian in dress, grooming and speech and not a bit acceptable to the small-town-spirit of the boys I wanted as friends. After several instances of cutting cruelty on their part, I confided my dismay to Mother, for never before had I been unable to quickly break down barriers and quickly make friends. She listened to the problem, then, explained the two paths from which I could choose. One could be revenge. She explained there would never be happiness nor an end to that ugly road, for it was a vicious circle. The other could be to return goodness, in every instance, no matter what, for malice, and let love win me the battle. She promised to help me know what to do, and of course I chose the latter path. Within a short period, with her wise prompting, I broke into that circle of valued and lasting friendships.

 

As an adult, and at this point well past the era of youth, she still showers me and mine with a constant outpouring of concern, attention and love. Why, she sent not only one congratulation card for dental school graduation, but a second one, and then even a third one arrived. She is so full of thoughtfulness and compliments for our entire family. Guess who is the favorite Granny? Our children and their families have enjoyed the good fortune to have lived close to her, and of course each one considers themselves her favorite.  Her spirit pervades our home even when she’s not here. I have been given the extraordinary gift of knowing that she always has and always will love me. It’s a priceless gift, perhaps akin to the comfort of a soft warm blanket that never ages; a protection for me from cold and hurt, impossible to loose or be stolen away.

 

No child, no boy and no man could ever have had such a marvelous mother. I have always loved her, and will through all eternity.

 

My Father: Though I occasionally call him Darvil to get his attention or just for fun, I have always called him Daddy. I still do and always will. It may sound strange for a grown man, even an older man now, to call his father daddy, but it still sounds right to me.

 

My first memories of my dad are of times he played with his children in our home and outside in the yard.  He played with me and my toys, tossed me around, carried me on his shoulders, swung me by arms, legs and even by one arm and a leg, airplane-style. He played hide and seek, ran races, showed me how to catch butterflies, made me a very successful sparrow trap and helped me try to ride the dog and all those dozens of little-boy kinds of fun things.

 

To me, he seemed the ultimate hero, a hero in every way imaginable to a four, five and six-year-old. I had to be slowly weaned, over a period of time, of thinking that he happened to stand in second place to Deity.  Nevertheless, he became the personification—all rolled into one—of all the men I ultimately classified as super. To me, he was Tom Mix, Jack Randall, Ken Maynard (cowboy movie stars of my early youth) Superman, Captain Marvel, and last but not least, Tarzan. We three kids always hoped for a bedtime story from him about Tarzan and usually got it. When I reached the age of six, it took me a while to tolerate my friends who I found didn’t quite see him in my same light—much to my amazement and then disgust. Some even had the maddening audacity to suggest that their dads were, smarter, stronger, handsomer, faster, and better at high jump, marbles, basketball and multiple other hero attributes. His superiority was perfectly obvious to me.  Anyway, back then he was the very best father on the face of the whole earth, and still is today. 

 

He took us with him to have fun: swimming, camping, and hunting and on vacations to far away wonderful places. He knew a lot more about birds and animals than anyone else, and he hunted and fished and knew how to trap with home made traps. He taught me early how to make them, sling shots too. My first experiences of hunting with him for quail and cottontail were exciting. I remember looking like an Indian in a feathered skirt, for he tied the quail to my belt. The load soon became heavy, but that was all right; I could bare the burden just to be with him. However, after he added the second and third cottontails, the fun changed to hard labor and I couldn’t keep up; so, I would begin to whine.        

 

I spent two years in the kindergarten and one in first grade in the Solomonville Elementary School. Daddy was the principal. I bragged about him being my father to my class mates and glowed with delight and pride when he’d walk into our class room. I used to see him mingle with the kids on the playground too. With as much discretion as I could muster, I told as many as possible that “He is my Dad.”  I often watched him take time to play ball or get down on his knees to shoot marbles with the older boys. He was good at it; I know he played for keeps too. Also, I seem to recall him jumping rope with the girls. I felt elated when he passed me and gave me a pat of recognition, and especially when he visited with me for a minute, while, as I supposed, all the world looked on.

 

It wasn’t only mother who disciplined me. It only took one glance of his displeasure cast my way to stop me in my tracks. Yet some transgressions merited more instant, weighty punishment: a bop across the top of the head, a firm shaking, a solid hand across my bottom or the race ahead of him, as he loped along behind me wielding a long switch to swat my legs. In terror, I had waited and watched him cut and trim it before he turned to me sternly and said, “Now, get for home!”  In record time I reached home where my parents had expected me to be long before he came hunting me. As with Mother, the punishment dispensed always stood commensurate with the sin, and he never punished me too severely or without just cause. In the back of my mind I continue to suspect that I may have been more of a trial to my parents, misbehavior-wise, than my younger brother and sister.

 

I am forever grateful for the many hours I spent with him at so many tasks, as we worked side by side.  Because of it I gained experience with the shovel, hoe, rake and hammer and saw, to say nothing of the many other tools and equipment, including the wheelbarrow, growing accustomed and somewhat skilled with them all. My experience by his side as we dug, cultivated, renovated, repaired, built additions and dwellings were all vital for future years as a husband and father. I’m amazed now at how many big kids and grown men are so awkward and inept with something as essential as a shovel or hammer. 

 

Since before my early teens and on into—now quite a ways through—adulthood, I have esteemed him my best friend. If given the choice to hunt, fish or pal with a best friend or with him, he always won out, and he still wins out every time. Oh how I looked forward to each outing, when he announced we would do something together, whether on the spur of the moment or in the specified future.  

 

I have always felt a close kinship to him regarding fun and hobbies. I believe in the truth of kindred spirits, especially since we enjoy so many things in common that have their settings in the great outdoors, athletics or just plane old adventure. This is not to infer that I will ever be as well rounded to deal with life as he is, or that I eclipse him in personality, intellect, knowledge and wisdom. Unfortunately, I fall far short. But, what fun I’ve experienced with him, and how fortunate that my children too have been with us on many occasions.

 

I’ll relate one vibrant experience that forever impacted my life. At home after school, I grumbled in complaint about a class mate. With feelings of disgust, I said disparagingly of Stanley, that I couldn’t stand to sit by him because he looked so unkempt and smelled like an out house. Daddy sat down beside me and said he needed to explain a little about Stanley’s family. Well, as I listened, I found I knew nothing of the recent surgery on the father to remove a lung, his physical weakness at the time, their desperate financial situation and that their bathroom plumbing was plugged. My own unhappy plight as a new boy in town, trying desperately to find friends, strangely, appeared before my minds eye. He told me other things too and continued the discussion with a couple of stories about other good people, his friends, but, despised by the community. Then he solemnly looked me in the eye and said, “Remember this Mac—We McBrides are always friends to those who don’t have a friend.”

 

Daddy has always been the finest example to me in steadfastness in the Church and to all duty. He took the lead in our family, and fortunately, though often too slowly, I followed. His deep testimony of true and eternal principles demonstrated more through deed than word, laid the foundation on which I could hopefully begin to build a stalwart person of myself. I have never known him to be other than a man of integrity to his family, friends, associates: and God. May I stay as true and on course as he has throughout his life. Would that every son could be as fortunate to have such a dad as mine.

 

Anyway, way back then he was the best father on the face of the whole earth, and he still is now. I am grateful for all he has done for me. I have always loved him and will love him through all eternity.

 

Both Mother and Father:  Over the passing years, they have been to nearly all of our family’s special events. Things like baptisms, settings apart, mission farewells and home comings, weddings, receptions, family and holiday family gatherings. It has been our pleasure to be invited by them to travel together and for us to have them along with us on many vacations, outings, visiting children, picnicking and sightseeing drives.

 

Surely we have done and said many things that have irritated them as married children with our own families, for we are only humans. Yet, never have we heard one instance of criticism, nor observed a single experience from them appearing in the least, critical, disgusted or disappointed with us. Would that I could say the same, about myself, regarding my own children.

 

Their constancy and unwavering steadiness in church attendance, religious obligations and fulfillment of callings has been testimony in itself of their undeviating belief in the restored gospel of the Savior that they found in “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

 

Their examples caused me to reflect and then to search for the truths and depth of understanding that they had searched for and found. This led me to knowledge that I wanted to share with others as they had painstakingly shared with me. They supported me, as a 20 to 23-year-old, on a two and one-half year mission; they did so at a financially difficult time in their lives. I learned recently that my brother, Jon, saw the hardship their sacrifices caused them and hence decided he should not fill a mission, which he now admits was a mistake—three of his five girls and all five boys have served missions. Nevertheless, it touched my heart and I hid tears that welled up in my eyes when I heard the depth of their unselfish sacrifice and their desire for my spiritual welfare. Except for the great mission of being a proper husband and father, no other experience in my life has surpassed the importance of serving as a missionary. Of course, the example of their marriage relationship and their treatment of me was the primary driving force for me to even have the chance to be a good husband and father.

 

 

HIS NAME WAS “DOBBS,by Bruce Lane McBride, {my youngest brother):  Among the members of our family and acquaintances, almost everyone had a nickname. I was “Guzzie”, Floyd was Mac, Leonard was “Chinie”, Orlando was “Lando” and for a number of years, they called Darvil “Dobbs”. I never knew the genesis of the name, and I think it only stayed with him into his early teen years. Beyond that time I don’t know that he was called anything but Darvil—unless you count the time he and his friends decided to spell their names backwards; then it was “Livrad”. Two of his friends, Gordon and Fenton, were “Nodrog” and “Notnef”.  And there were others.

 

I point this out just as a hint as to the type of person Darvil was, and is. Surely, anyone with names like Dobbs and Livrad is bound to be a peculiar person. Now I don’t want anyone to get bent out of shape because I used the word, “peculiar”. While originally the word was restricted to mean quaint, odd, strange, (not that he isn’t a little of that too) in more recent times it has taken on a different meaning, as many words do in a changing world. We can all recall when ”Keep off the grass,“ meant simply, “Don’t walk on the lawn,” and “Pot” was something you cooked your dinner in. Need I explain what comes to mind when these words are spoken today?

 

My use of the word “peculiar” is meant to convey some of the following: Having a character exclusively its own, select, special, uncommon, unusual excellent or distinguished. While all these have related meanings, I like the middle one. Surely Darvil is the uncommon man. Let me mention a few of the things which put Darvil in this unique category.

 

When he was a youngster I recall that he was continually pursuing innovative ways of having fun in the neighborhood: Playing destruction derby with rolling hoops; a game of golf with home made clubs, with the entire neighborhood, including the school yard, as the playing course; a trolley ride by cable from the top of our tall mulberry tree across the corn patch to our neighbor’s fence; a cycle-dome for a tricky bicycle ride; writing and producing plays with the neighbor hood kids to take the parts.

 

Darvil participated in sports excelling in basketball and track. In high school, the trophy winner for best player and first place in the conference pole vault and third in the State; and in junior college, he was a member of the basketball team that excelled in the State. 

 

Without enumerating the details, Darvil distinguished himself as Student Body President of the high school and the junior college, also as an educator, a public servant, (eight years in the Arizona State Senate) A story teller (At the drop of a hat he had a story to tell.) Author, Poet (At the slightest provocation he would write a poem on the spot.) A builder (He made the adobes and built his own home.) 

 

A kind and gentle person, Darvil’s life has been full of charity and good works. The closest he came to being unkind to me was one time when he and a friend went for a hunt along the river bottom. Unwanted this time, I tagged along, barefoot, a respectable distance behind. Consequently they led me through thickets of willows, across rocky terrain and through patches of sand burrs. Though slowed at times I was not defeated. 

 

Above all, Darvil was kind and thoughtful to our mother. Living close by, he and Jo were attentive to many of her needs, for which she was truly grateful.

 

In many fields Darvil was a leader. In church callings, a youth leader, a scouter, a Branch President, and excellent speaker. In all these endeavors Darvil was not satisfied to perform at an ordinary level. He always strove for, and indeed attained the more excellent dimension. Greatly loved by a delicate and devoted wife and emulated by three talented children and a myriad of grand and great-grandchildren, Darvil with Josephine at his side, stands as Patriarch to a truly great posterity.

 

Besides all this, in our later years, backpacking buddies: an endeavor in which I was the more experienced.  I led him over some steep and rugged trails; but he did more than just tag along.”

 

True it is that many have had the responsibilities and done the things that Darvil has done; But few there are who have done them so faithfully and well. Is not this the legacy of my beloved brother: an uncommon Man

 

Not bad for a guy with a moniker like “Dobbs.”

 

Darvil: Floyd, named me Dobbs—he claimed when asked my name I would say, “Daubel.” Just for fun he

started calling me “Doorbell.” Just how the thing degenerated to Dobbs, I’ve never figured out. But, it stayed with me through junior college—really until I left Thatcher.     

 

 

A TRIBUTE TO JO AND DARVIL, extracted from a letter to Darvil David (Mac) McBride with the salutation, “Dear Cousin Mac and Linda, Sunday, January 8, 1995.” by David Phillips, (living in Heber City, Utah) the youngest son of Jo’s elder brother, Virgil:

 

David Phillips writes: When Daddy passed away on July 30, 1978, Uncle Darvil and Aunt Jo came up for the funeral and get-together of family. President Kimball spoke at Dad’s funeral. Uncle Darvil gave the family prayer and said the most comforting things to us as family members. I’ll always remember the spirit that was there as he talked about Dad, life, the plan of salvation, and the great hope that lies in Jesus Christ. (He attended Mom’s funeral as well, and spoke.)

 

Mom called President Kimball’s office, leaving him a message about Dad’s passing and her phone number to call her back. But, she left the wrong number. President Kimball returned her call and told her that he had a difficult time getting through to her because the number she gave wasn’t exactly her number. Now, Mom and Dad’s number wasn’t listed in the directory, and President Kimball learned that when he called for assistance to get the number. I asked him how he got through, and he grinned and said the telephone operators were very gracious to help out. (Sure, after they found out WHO was asking them for their help!) But of course, being the humble man he was, he didn’t tell us that.)

 

President Kimball called Mom a few days before the funeral and asked if he could stop by her house and visit with the family. By then, he knew that Darvil and Jo would have arrived from California, Eddie and Mary Ann too. We all gathered there in the living room of their home in Salt Lake City. Utah was experiencing a terrific heat-wave that summer. This must have been about August 1, 1978.  He hugged every one, and there was a great reunion between him and your parents, Mac.  It was so hot in the house and we had a fan going (Mom and Dad didn’t have air conditioning.) Someone tried to offer President Kimball a seat, but he opted to sit on the arm of Mom and Dad’s Couch—not wanting to put anyone out. Aunt Jo told him, “Uncle Spencer, come over here and sit by this fan, it’s a little cooler here.” And, with a genuine twinkle in his eye, he told her, “That’s okay Josephine, I’m used to this kind of heat, I was raised in a rather hot area of Arizona, you know!” We all laughed, and Aunt Jo, understanding the little joke between the two of them, just grinned at him. She too had spent many years in that hot climate, and was familiar watching her grandfather and grandmother Kimball deal with general authorities of the church, they having served as hostess to many of the visiting ones, since he was the Stake President of the St. Joseph Stake.

 

Uncle Darvil wrote a poem with a line I shall always remember: “A promise made is a debt unpaid.”  I can’t tell you how many times over the years I’ve thought of that.

 

When I was about 11 years old (perhaps 1960 or so) we went with our family over to Safford and Thatcher for a family vacation. Having lived all my life in Southern California, it was the first time I got to visit Arizona and the land where it all began for us.

 

We stayed at Uncle Rodney’s and at Uncle Darvil and Aunt Jo’s place. Darvil was running the store at that time. I got to go down there and see him at work, and what wonderful, wonderful memories I have of that.  He gave me a bottle of pop and said it looked like I could use one. A little later, I found myself on the end of a broom, sweeping a little here and a little there and making myself useful. I think I had been “Tom Sawyered”—somehow. It felt good then, but it feels even better now. A customer came in for some ground round, and Darvil went behind the meat counter, cut some hamburger off a large chunk of it that was just delivered that morning, and put it up on the scale to weigh it for the customer. I think they ordered a couple of pounds, or something like that. All the time, he was visiting with them, asking them some questions and giving them the opportunity to tell him how they were, etc. I remember him wrapping it up, putting some tape of sorts around it, and marking the price on it with a greased marking pencil. He told me afterwards that it’s important to talk to people, and especially important to ask a few questions and give “them” the chance to speak, because everyone has something to say and wants to be heard. The problem he said, is that more people want to speak than listen! This is something I learned and it sure came in handy as I served over the years as a bishop.

 

Aunt Jo’s house was so cool. She had the neatest dishes and knickknacks and everything was put in its place.  She was one of those perfect hostesses, always worried that someone might be hungry or thirsty and might be too bashful to speak up and say something.

 

She truly loves and loved her family, and she told me many times how GOOD a man my father was. At the time, I don’t think I really gave it that much thought, but now that my parents are gone, I think of it often. It was important for me to have heard those things from her—she must have known that. This too is a lesson well learned, and something I have been able to share with others. 

 

I had a wonderful childhood, and I have the fondest of memories growing up. Aunt Jo and Uncle Darvil have always been a wonderful part of my life, and they’re the ones that have “always been there” when needed. 

 

Mac, you really need to get in touch with Sissy. (Virginia, the firstborn of David’s siblings, and the first grandchild of our grandparents, Nettie and David Phillips.) She has shared with me stories about the laundry Dad and Darvil owned and ran, and one time down at Balboa Beach, I think it was. We were driving along an she had us stop, and she pointed out where Jo and Darvil lived. (Their actual house.) It would only be worth about a million dollars on today’s market.

 

I Also found a copy of a letter that Dad received from Spencer Kimball concerning Dad’s ordination to the Melchizedek Priesthood. It’s interesting to note that Dad was ordained by a Prophet of God. I will send that along with this letter. It’s interesting to note that he was ordained by a Prophet of God whose priesthood line of authority came through four men—three of whom were also Prophets of God.

 

 

[Email received Feb 2, 1997 from David Phillips]

 

Hi Linda and Mac:

 

Hope your traveling is over and your trip was good.  Last night I attended a satellite broadcast for the Singles in the Church, originating from BYU Marriott Center, with President Gordon B. Hinckley as the featured speaker.

 

In his remarks, he addressed the subject "Faith in Every Footstep" and told how the pioneers were truly heroes, how they should be remembered during this special year, and he shared with them the article—word for word—that was in the Church News, sent in by none other than the one and only Darvil McBride! I was sitting there popping my buttons (almost). Please pass this info along to your parents. 

 

Thanks, and stay in touch,

 

Old Dave   [David Phillips, Heber City, Utah, Feb 2, 1997]

                  [David is Josephine Phillips McBride’s nephew.

                    He is the son of her older brother, Virgil.]

 

 

A TRIBUTE TO JOSEPHINE AND DARVIL 

by

Frankie Thursa “McBride” Farr

(the youngest of Darvil’s brothers and sisters) 

 

I knew Josephine Phillips from the time she lived in the home by the canal in Thatcher. And, I remember her as the prettiest girl in the town

 

I remember when she and her several friends met with a serious accident that could have taken their lives. A match was struck by one friend and jestingly placed over an old automobile’s open gas tank, and it exploded leaving Jo seriously burned and cut.

 

When the Phillips Family moved next door to us and Darvil started courting Josephine’s attentions, I was as happy and elated over that as maybe Darvil himself, though really not quite, I’m sure. My memory still harbors their lovely out-of-doors wedding on the Phillips front lawn.

 

I also recall vividly of hearing Josephine and Eleanor playing the piano. It made me want to learn the same pieces that they played, and I believe I did learn some. They both were an inspiration to me.

 

Also, I have always appreciated the help that Darvil and Jo gave to Mother when they lived next door to her during her final years and last days. The fact that they lived close to her was a comfort to me. Mother always paid her own way, but appreciated the fine discount when she bought her groceries at their store.

 

Each one of my brothers and sisters played an important part in my life for good. We often played games at night and the boys would play tricks on me, but always in fun. Darvil was responsible for much of the trickery. but of course with the help of Bruce and sometimes Ruthie and Orlando. One very vivid trick in my mind could be called “Shaking Hands and Feet with the King and Queen.” Darvil, the King, and perhaps, Ruthie, the Queen, would sit side by side with a blanket spread over their laps so that only their feet could be seen. Darvil sat on the right, with his right leg tucked back and a false leg all stuffed properly with his shoe on it, was positioned in its place. They told me to start with Ruthie and shake each hand and foot and when I got to Darvil’s right leg I was to be less gentle and give it a good, hard shake. Enjoying the game and following instructions, woe and behold, with a solid jerk-of-a-shake, I fell over backwards to the floor holding the dismembered leg.  It’s needless to discuss the uproar it caused—at my expense, of course.

 

The chicanery that takes the cake began when they made a dummy out of a shirt and pair of pants, complete with shoes and socks. They laid it on the bed, stomach down, and put a puffed up pillow over what was supposed to be the head and told me it was Orlando there asleep. They explained that he needed to be awakened. They gave me a board and said to give him a swat, and if he didn’t wake up the first time, I was to swat him again, even harder. Being such a little girl, I followed their instructions to the T, and began to swat harder and harder, but to no avail, while they stood behind me back by the door in an uproar.    

 

 

COMMENTS ABOUT MY HUSBAND

 

Darvil has been a most delightful person to live with. But, he has a few terrible failings. It used to be that I couldn't tolerate some of his hobbies. He always wanted to go off hunting without me, and he would go. I could have been a hunter and fisherman's widow except, I had enough temper to curtail it—well, just some.

 

Once, while window shopping, I found a beautiful bathrobe, and I so coveted it for Christmas. We didn't have the money then, so I couldn't buy it myself. About two months passed, and Darvil made plans to leave with other scouting men from all over the state for several days of training. For him, the experience would be wonderful, but I would find myself left behind again. However, he partly redeemed himself. He brought me that very same bathrobe as a present. He had known that I’d found it, and absolutely loved it. He knew too,  that I’d refrained from buying it, because we couldn’t really afford it. I always resented it though, for I believed the true intention was to buy me off, so he could run off with a semblance of clear conscience. He went, and again I stayed home with the chores and kids.

 

There’s one fault he doesn’t like to admit. He never wants to admit he's wrong. When I argue with him, and he actually knows he’s wrong, and he knows that I know that he knows he's wrong, he gets as mad about it as a soaked rooster. Rather than admit he's wrong, he tries his best to make me feel guilty, by making me think that I'm the one who’s wrong and mean instead of him.

 

Week by week, month by month, on passed a decade, Darvil has brought to completion several outstanding works—and he’s still busy at it. With his love for the Old West, his pioneer ancestry, his dedication to precise history and an incessant tenacity, under his hand four outstanding books have unfolded into reality. Each has become "priceless" to our family. Each stands as a tribute to his parents and forefathers—a "heritage treasure" for our present posterity’s five living generations and for all our decedents yet to come.

 

He’s the author of "The Evaders": A carefully researched and documented history of the events leading up to the death of his sheriff-father and his two deputies. The book includes the ensuing events of the great man-hunt for the murderers and the eventual turning of the wheels of  “partial” justice.

 

The second book is co-authored with his brother, Bruce, "Chariots of Hope": a novel based on documented factual history of his Great-grandfather and Great-grandmother, Robert and Margaret Ann McBride, and of the family's thirst for and quest of truth, plus their dedication to a "marvelous work and a wonder," the Living Church of God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. The story’s setting centers around the courage required under prodigious circumstances of the Robert McBride family to organize and successfully complete a journey of 3,000 miles across the uncharted plains of Frontier America, motivated by unwavering dedication to their newly found religion of their quest. The climax is the miraculous rescue of the ill-fated Martin Handcart Company with which they had thrown in their lot. The Father of the McBride group perished in route, but his heroism provided the drive that safely led the rest of the family to the Great Salt Lake Basin.

 

The third book is also co-authored with Bruce, "AGAINST GREAT ODDS, The Story of the McBride Family". It's a compilation of personal history sketches of their Great-grandfather, and Great-grand Mother, Robert (3) and Margaret Ann Howard McBride. Included are sketches of Robert and Margaret's progenitors and progeny including some of our grandchildren. A nearly complete record, i.e. it consists of the combining of pedigree and family group records with attendant vital statistics that culminates the masterpiece.

 

In addition to the forgoing, he has compiled a portion of the many poems he has written over the years; some, not included in the book are very personalized, most are spontaneous and others by request for friend's special occasions. He still continues adding to their numbers.

 

Though none have been published, he's completed the following fictional novels: "The Pink Gun", "Vengeance on the Verde" and "The Badge and the Gun". Right now (April 1999), he’s at his desk working on another western novel, "Pick-Im-Up". All have their setting in the Arizona Territory with which he is intimately familiar, for he has lived through more than 90 years of its fascinating history and has been personally acquainted with scores before him whose memories reached back at least another eighty years.  He has also written  short -short stories, “No Greater Gift,” though based in much fact, a fictional story of his relationship with a humble Indian family, living within the vast wilderness of the great White Mountains of Northern Arizona while employed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

 

At this moment, since late 1993 until 1999, and probably for another two years, Darvil, our son, Mac, and I are engaged in putting together a large volume which includes our histories including personal writings and memories of the extended family—both past and present—which will become a family treasure of great worth. (There are special contributions from Jon and Sally and others.)

 

These writings will be preserved and will give our children and their children and continuing posterity, a clear, colorful, vivid gaze, not just a glimpse, into our character and integrity, understanding of both of us as real, vibrant people of imagination, hopes and dreams. Though far from perfect, true-to-truth, we hope to be perceived, at least in part, exemplary roll-models of whom memory will live on to inspire all our descendants.

 

As we continue to cooperate together with our history—and we know it's still in its infancy—we as husband and wife, father and mother, grandfather and grandmother and even great-grandfather and great-grandmother and on back, hope to leave more precious gems. Precious gems in the form of an example by which you'll be inspired to live, and a matrix from which you who belong to us, will help develop your own, already wonderful histories, which in turn will strengthen and bless even additional generations of our descendants.

 

Let me take a smidgen of credit at this point. I am, always have been and will be to the end, jealous of anyone and anything that takes my husband away from me.  He's mine, and I like all his attention, but I still have to  share him too much. I don't like it, but he's an independent cuss, usually appropriately so, though occasionally not, and I know the endeavors he puts his hand to are unselfish ones and of inestimable worth. I grumble out loud and under my breath, but without me to feed him, pick up after him, read his compositions, do his other many biddings and be his love, believe me, he would have accomplished much less. Actually, he and my children and their wonderful spouses continually let me know how wonderful I am, too. So there!  (Darvil:  Oh, pshaw! She makes me sound like a mixture of perfections—an extraordinary example of how blind  love can be.)

 

 

OUR GRANNY JO AND GRANDDADDY

                                 by

                  Linda Ann McBride          

  Presented to the family at the Family Reunion

                                 by

              Darvil David (Mac) McBride

June 9, 1996 at the Schnepf Summer cottage in

                        Show Low, AZ.

                          -----------------

 

They were from hardy faithful pioneer stock.

Not too far removed if you hear Darvil talk.

Mac said, “Linda, why don’t you write us their story

You do the work and I’ll take all the glory.

 

Where do we start? There are just tales galore.

Then Linda yelled “Stop! I can’t take anymore.”

Hands on her hips, Audra said, “This is too late

To start writing tales on this very last date.

 

Linda said, “I don’t think so, it’s not late at all.

To which Audra replied, “Last minute takes gall.

We’ll start with Darvil of the two he’s more sane.

After tales about Jo, he seems quite inane.

 

Darvil grew up with brothers but it’s still sad.

He lacked what we all have: a mighty good dad.

Of course there was Leonard to lead him astray.

In prohibition Leonard made beer one day.

 

Leonard slipped his young brother a shot or two.

Not knowing it was green Darvil swigged the brew.

What Darvil drank down soon came up the same way.

I guess that he nearly lost his head that day.

 

Sadly his lawn was on the Main Street of Town.

It didn’t take long for the word to pass ‘rown,

That Darvil sat there and was singing a song,

A cursing green beer ‘cause his skin tone was wrong

 

At church Granny begs for a baby to hold.

You think that’s nice? Hey! You’ve just never been told.

Once in her arms, she gives a pinch. Makes them cry.

Then she’d take them out though we never knew why.

 

Until one day she picked a baby too old.

“Don’t pinch me Granny Jo, your hands are too cold.”

So in church keep your baby. We wouldn’t lie.

If she holds your baby then she’ll make it cry.

 

You can’t leave your kids with her, this gal is tough.

What she did to Porter boys was really rough.

Now you all know she’s said, “Jon’s kids were such brats!”

Sally’s kids were even worse! Wiggly as rats.”

 

My kids all were angels, perfect as could be.

If she’d had our kid’s, this scene you’d never see.

In the back seat they were sitting. Greg was good

Greg told the tale so that’s how it’s understood.

 

Steve and Cole were fighting. Greg in the middle,

Jo reached back. Gave him a bop. Greg! So little!

“Why did you do that Granny Jo? I was good.

“Well….for all the times I didn’t, and I should.”

 

Jon and I were small. Dad took us for a ride.

Bending was a lady, showing her backside.

Darvil had this thing—I think it shoots a pea.

A direct hit. Innocently said, “Not me!

 

Shooter went to Jon—or me—we got the blame,

Traumatized us so, we’ve never been the same.

Now you can see why we both are odd.

T’was that darn pea shooter when he hit the broad.

 

Jo, took Kim and Dee shopping. Never left the car.

They looked in every window, even in a bar.

Kim looked up at Dee and said in a voice not low,

“Why does she go when it’s stop and stop when it’s go?

 

Dal asked Granddaddy to go and hunt some deer.

“I’d like to, but THE BOSS won’t let me I fear.

So he trembled and shook then asked her in fright.

“Oh all right! You can go but only one night.

 

Darvil when young had a hen ready to sit

Brought home a hundred chicks. Hen lost her wit.

She went clear crazy. She’d stagger and cluck

All over the place, a puck, a puck, puck, puck.

 

With Jon’s family, vacationed at Panguich Lake.

They would catch fish, wrap in tin foil to bake.

But a motor they needed and also a boat.

“Can we use yours Mac? Do you think it will float?”

 

It didn’t, you see, they made it tip.

Yet Jon David only got wet to the hip.

In his life jacket he was sitting so high,

When they finally got him, he was still dry.

 

Yet he kept yelling as he floated away,

“I’m drowning, you’ll be sorry you laughed one day.”

Jon David didn’t drown. His cry was just bunk.

And the boat and the motor weren’t even sunk.

 

One motorcycle trip. I, Jon, Lloyd and Dad.

T’was the greatest adventure we’ve ever had.

I didn’t trust Dad for he was a nov -- ice.

He thought while riding, to wave would be nice

 

I said Dad, “Take my bike, but don’t wave at all.

If you wave at folks then you’re likely to fall.”

He got on my bike and took off in a rush.

Was soon out of sight as he went through the brush.

 

We found him soon. We didn’t need a beagle.

There he was again! On the ground! Spread eagle.

For where the road had curved he just went on straight.

He didn’t see the curve till it was too late.

 

By the roadside, three senoritas pretty!

“I didn’t wave! I just looked.” What a pity.

Darvil lay there in the dirt my bike on it’s side.

Now relegated to the truck he had to ride.

 

One day we all got lost, couldn’t find each other.

Lloyd went fast, we were slow, so, we didn’t bother.

Darvil was our tracker, he lost Lloyd in the heat.

Asked, Why? “Hell! He hits ground only each hundred feet.

 

In her house there’s a name on every styro cup.

Old and torn they may be. She.... never gives them up.

Year after year, as her grand kids come to stay.

She gets out those same old cups to use each day.

 

Takes the toast we didn’t eat. Put it in a bag.

Next morning we get it and never dare to gag.

She saves the ice cubes, when you leave them in a glass.

There’s frozen milk on them? “Well, that’s to give them class.”

 

When you’re at Granny’s house, and in her freezer look.

You’d better think twice for you might be too shook.

You know she saves everything. It might just be gross.

So at Granny’s house, never look too close.

 

Then came Dance Festival held in the big Rose Bowl.

From Ojai came LOTS of youth to stay. Oh no!

Someone spoke to Shari, “We all think it’s sick!

In each and every cup there’s a tooth mark nick.”

 

Linda turned to Windy. To our group you’re new.

We all have a story, what are you to do?

“I have a story though I’ve known Jo for hours few.

Who couldn’t have a story then? Tell me, who?”

 

She takes my arm, leads me from place to place.

She tells me I belong—see my pretty face.

For I am Mac’s Debi’s half-brother’s, sweet child.

My eyes are just like Debi’s. Man this is wild!

 

She tells me I’m like family—seems I’ve always been -

Creative like Linda, I guess that makes me Kin.

When you’re with Granny Jo, it all seems so right.

But what I’m hearing makes her seem out of sight.

 

And I am not the only one, thinks she may be strange.

Greg and friends think too, she’s a little out of range.

Jo and Darvil gone, Greg took a friend to Newport Beach.

She left them cold cereal within easy reach.

 

They looked everywhere, up and down, to their right.

Jo asked, “Now what is wrong? I left it in plain sight.”

You two are jas onkies—your thinking’s poor.

It’s in the dish washer—just open up the door.

 

When Saundra was little, Maybe only three,

Sally wanted a photo—Granny said, “Gee!

I’ll put on my makeup—do I look all right?”

Saundra said, “You’re wrinkled,” with a smile so bright.

 

Let me ask, would you say, Darvil’s some vain?

To be called Golden Boy, in the sun he’s lain.

Those chicks at the beach look over at this laddy.

Looks good! He looks rich! What a sugar daddy.

 

That was fine ‘til one day, this had to be stopped.

See my line Darvil said, Then his pants he dropped.

Linda said, “Oh my gosh, I don’t think that’s neat.

Don’t mind to see your line—but just not your seat.”

 

Now we all know Jo is sweet to us and dear.

That she’s very proud of us she’s made quite clear.

Once we thought for a treat we’d go to her ward.

Bishop said, “Not again!” We were in accord.

 

She stopped the lesson when we came one by one.

She bragged on us ‘til lesson time was done.

The President said, “Sister McBride, will you pray?

Can’t go on. You’ve left no lesson time today.

 

So Jo’s words we’ll use to honor them tonight.

They are wonderful, talented, glamorous and bright.

Creative, kind, darling, charming, and so sweet.

Precious to all of us and we think they’re neat.
 

 
  Previous                                                                          Contents Next