|Kathryn Tucker Windham; source of photo unknown|
|Photo from the Tuscaloosa news|
When we lived in Alabama I remember listening to her tell a story about Jeffrey, the ghost who inhabited her house. Her relationship with Jeffrey caused her to be interested in ghost stories, and eventually to write 13 Alabama Ghosts and Jeffrey.
In this video Kathryn, age 91, talks about her first awareness of Jeffrey, but in true Southern style she doesn't get to it until about 3 1/2 minutes into the conversation. She is standing in front of a bottle tree in her front yard. I love her dialect, and her honest way of communicating. She is completely disarming.
Plans are being made for a memorial service. But I think I know what will be inscribed on her tombstone, because she alluded to it in her book Twice Blessed, when she said, “My grave marker won’t be one of those fancy examples of the stonemason’s art, nor will it have a flowery epitaph. I’d like to have some words from one of Jan Struther’s poems:
‘She was twice blessed: She was happy; She knew it.’
And finally, just for the heck of it, an Alabama recipe for Ambrosia, which Kathryn regularly served up:
- 1 (11 ounce) can mandarin oranges
- 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
- 3 bananas, sliced
- 2 cups flaked coconut
- 2 cups miniature marshmallows
- 1 cup pecan pieces
- 1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 1 cup maraschino cherries
Rest in peace Kathryn Tucker Windham; your life was well-lived.
- In a large bowl, combine mandarin oranges, crushed pineapple, bananas, coconut, marshmallows, and pecan pieces. Fold in whipped topping. Garnish with maraschino cherries. Chill for 1 hour or overnight.