|Doyle, Gertrude Eileen
Doyle, Gertrude Eileen
Dick Lanouette and Gertrude (Gert) Doyle in 1953
On July 22nd, 1950, when she was 44, she married Armand (Dick) Lanouette. Armand (Dick) was 53, a widower and a friend of the Doyle family for many years. Their marriage was destined not to be very long as Dick died 24 Mar 1956. As the years went by, Gertrude became a recluse and died Jan 16th, 1977 in her 71st year. They are both buried at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. Aunt Gert is buried in section 16/343/5/2. Dick is buried in section 3/300/5/6
Aunt Gert was a very special and loving person. She was very much like my mother. In the fact, they were the last two living children born to Grandpa and Grandma Doyle. Cousin Irene is right that in later life she became a recluse and I believe my mom did also, before she died. Both were very quiet people who you might say were loners. Letís go back to what I believe might have been the beginning for Aunt Gert. As Cousin Irene mentioned her mother, Aunt Irene Doyle Clair was her teacher and helped her prepare for her Entrance exam to Loretto Academy. Aunt Irene was also my motherís teacher before she moved to Detroit in 1922. I believe Aunt Irene was also a mother, sister and friend to both of them. Iíve been told that Aunt Gert and my mom were closes by several of my other Aunts and I believe mom may have mentioned something to me about being close to Aunt Gert. Based on comments that I believe mom made, there is no doubt that Aunt Irene was a teacher, friend and mother for Aunt Gert and mom. Grandma Doyle would have had her hands full with 10 kids and it would have been logical for the oldest sister to help out.
Having moved several times in my life time (10 different schools), Iím sure that Aunt Gert and my mom most have developed a special relationship when they moved to Detroit. Life is hard on the new kids in school and at home. Aunt Gert and my mom continued the friendship that Aunt Irene had helped them develop in Canada. I have memories of mom talking about Aunt Gert in Germany, and have since seen it in my nieces (Annie Stary Flodine and Colleen Stary Hilton). You may not always agree with each other but you are there to help support and protect each other.
Both Aunt Gert and Mom loved politics. After Dad died in 1960, Aunt Gert stayed with us for a few weeks and I can remember both of them watching the 1960 Presidential Elections with the same love that guys would watch a baseball game or football game. In 1955, when I was in Detroit I can remember Uncle Dick (Armand Lanouette) taking me to the circus. Mom and Dad said that he considered me the son he did not have. Uncle Dick was a fantastic man, who gave Aunt Gert the love she deserved. When Uncle Dick died, it took the life right out of Aunt Gert. I believed her spirit died with Uncle Dick and her body existed until it finally gave out in 1977.
After Mom (Marguerite Mary Doyle Meehan) died on March 15th, 1961, Aunt Gert and Cousin Irene Hickey (Dadís side of the family) agreed to share the responsibility of staying in Virginia with me until school was out at the end of May. Aunt Gert was the one to stay with me until we moved out of the house in Virginia and started our odyssey to Iowa via Detroit. As with many older women at the time, Aunt Gert could not drive, so I was her only source of transportation when she was in Virginia. I can remember once going to the grocery store with Aunt Gert and getting very upset because she wore a sportís bra that I thought should only be worn under her blouse. Please remember that Virginia can get very warm and humid in the spring and summer. Aunt Gert would never wear anything that was not acceptable and to this day I regret my reaction. She was also very concerned about expenses and would spend a lot of time weighing the merits of a name brand of peas verses a brand that was not very will known but cost 2 cents less. Again, I wish I had learned from her, Iím sure that I would have been a better money manager. Jeannie Drexler Meehan (my wife) is without a doubt the better money manager in our house.
Aunt Gert was blessed to have Uncle Dick for the few years that they had together, but I always wondered what her life might have been like if they had met earlier. In the following picture, Figure 82, Aunt Gert appears to be in Florida on a beach. I believe the time frame might have been 1938 to 1940. I wish she could have met Uncle Dick at that time and if she had, her life might have been totally different.
There is no doubt that Aunt Gert gave me more support and love than I ever gave her. If we ever have a chance to meet in our after life, I would love to tell her how much I love her and how much her support meant to me. Hopefully, I learned from her and gave support to others as she gave to me.
Gertrude married Armand (Dick) Lanouette on 22 Jul 1950. (Armand (Dick) Lanouette died on 24 Mar 1956 and was buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Southfield, MI - 3/300/5/6.)
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