ARIZARD-L ArchivesArchiver > ARIZARD > 2005-12 > 1135518536
From: Paula Graves <>
Subject: Re: [ARIZARD-L] Mr. Tincup
Date: Sun, 25 Dec 2005 07:48:56 -0600
Merry Christmas, Bernie. What a beautiful story and beautiful man. It
seems his life is what Christmas is all about.
You and family are in my prayers.
On 12/23/05, Bernie Moore-Knowles <> wrote:
> Hi all
> We will be bringing in the new year of 2006 soon - it always comes around
> just after we celebrate Christmas. This time of the year seems to always
> bring such joy to us and for some, rememberances of those that have passed
> this way once before. Or unfortunately, it happens to be the time that some
> of our loved ones take their last stance on this earth; as we know it.
> This year, my family is losing Mr. Tincup. The doctors are doing their
> very best to keep Mr. Tincup comfortable - but, none the less - he is losing
> his battle for this life.
> Jess Tincup married my sister in 1960. I was young then and do not
> remember anything at all about the day that they joined their lives. I know
> that my parents were not particularly happy about their union - but, they
> did come to welcome him and for forty-five years, Jess has been a part of my
> Jess and my sister; Retta were childhood sweethearts. I asked her once
> what her earliest memory was of her husband and she said, "You know, Joice
> and I were at the movie theatre in Claremore. And when we came out of the
> movie, I looked up and saw this kid laying brick across the street and the
> old doctor's office. And I thought he was the most beautiful man that I had
> ever seen. I was only fourteen years old and Jess was nineteen, I later
> found out. He was dark and had all of these muscles and he was Indian, like
> Mama. I guess he spotted me at the same time, because he quit laying brick,
> wiped off his hands and came over and introduced himself. He smiled this
> wide grin and it was then that I saw he had a tooth missing! He had been a
> fight the night before and he was pretty beat up! But, no matter - I
> thought he was the most gorgeous man that I had ever seen and knew then,
> that I was going to marry him. And I did. Mama and Daddy tried to keep us
> apart for years. !
> He was older and Mama didn't like that too much. And well, he was
> reckless and Daddy didn't like that too much. It took me marrying someone
> else for a short stint and Jess going off to the Navy during the Korean
> War. But, by golly in 1960, we went to Inola and got married."
> I always referred to my brother-in-law as Mr. Tincup. Have no idea why -
> it just seemed to fit better than just plain ole Jess. He called me -
> always - by my childhood nickname; Bunny.
> Last time that I saw Mr. Tincup; my sister was ill and before I moved to
> Hawai'i; I went to Oklahoma, to Claremore - to see my only remaining
> sister. He welcomed me into their simple frame home..........opening the
> front screen door; with that "perfect" smile of his - saying, "Come on in,
> Bunny. Come on in. I guess we'll have dumplings tonight, now." And I'll
> be, folks - if he didn't have his false tooth out and there was that little
> gap in the front of his mouth! I had to smile, leave it to Mr. Tincup to
> make sure his appearance was in tip top shape for Bunny's arrival back
> Mr. Tincup did a great deal for me in my lifetime. He never had much
> money - but, if he had a five dollar bill, he'd give you that and say that
> he had a job to do tomorrow and there would be more for him later. He was
> always there for me when I was working my way through undergraduate. He'd
> give me work on my college breaks; just so it would help a little with next
> semester's tuition. I can't tell you how many Christmas breaks he and I
> would be laying brick. I was the apprentice, of course. Laying the mortar
> and he'd be so fast behind me throwing the bricks up that I wondered if he
> was going to lay me against the house, mortar and all.
> Then of course, it was so cold those days. He would always bring lunch
> and a thermos of hot coffee and when we had the brick just so high, he would
> call out, "Bunny, I think it's cigarette high." We were both smokers and
> that meant it was time for a cigarette break, a mug of steaming coffee and
> ham sandwiches that Retta had made for us that morning.
> But, I can tell you folks that there was one time in my family's life that
> Mr. Tincup was needed and came through, when not one of us had the heart to
> pull ourselves together.........
> On my fourteenth birthday; April 22nd in 1969 - Teresa Marie Krigbaum
> died. She was six months shy of her tenth birthday and she was my
> niece. She was the oldest daughter of my older sister and her husband;
> Joice and Oscar Krigbaum.
> Teresa's death was sudden and we as a family were in total shock. We all
> lived on the same block, there in Tulsa - on North Sandusky Avenue. My
> after school days were spent surrounded by my seven nieces. Joice had four
> girls and Retta had the three - and Teresa was the oldest and really, was
> just like my sister and not a niece, really.
> But, she died suddenly and we all were paralyzed.
> Mr. Tincup came to Oscar and said, "Let me tell the children. Let me tell
> them that Teresa is no longer with us." And he did. I was with him, when
> he gathered all the girls - six in a row - and told them that the angels had
> come that night and told him that they needed to take Teresa with
> them. Teresa was going to be just fine and they needed to know this."
> The next thirty minutes, folks - Mr. Tincup spent fielding questions from
> these little girls. They were all under the age of seven - just little
> tikes - and with every question that they threw at Mr. Tincup, he answered
> with a gentleness that I will never forget. He never once shed a tear in
> front of those girls, folks. Not once.
> So, the angels are coming for Mr. Tincup, folks. And if I know him and I
> think that I do, he is there with open arms. Heaven is making room for a
> Cherokee; Mr. Jess William Tincup, Jr.
> And it will be Christmas, too.
> Bernie Moore-Knowles
> Papa'aloa, Hawai'i
> "I have Indian blood in me. I have just enough White blood for you to
> question my honesty." ........Will Rogers
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