However... every now and then, I'll luck out and she'll share a story from her childhood. And yesterday was one of those days.
Back in January my mother's cousin, Evelyn Kawamura, passed away at the age of 83. I don't think I ever had the pleasure of meeting her, but I vaguely remember my mom talking about her a few times.
While driving home from work, I had the pleasure of listening to my mom reminisce about her childhood and her cousin.
Evelyn and my mom grew up just around the corner from each other in Honolulu. They attended the same elementary school... although my mother is two years younger than her. When they got a little older, they started swimming at the local parks and recreation pool together. A few years later, they had the honor of swimming under Soichi Sakamoto at the Hawaii Swim Club.
That's where Evelyn's swimming career really took off. At the age of 17, she broke the national records for the 300m Individual Medley and 200m breaststroke.
In 1952 she represented the United States at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki, Finland. She won two bronze medals. One as a member of the 4x100m freestyle relay. The other in 400m freestyle.
Later on down the road, she married fellow swimmer and Olympic medalist, Fred Konno and eventually became a teacher. My mother hasn't seen or talked to Evelyn in decades, but within our fifteen minute telephone conversation... I could tell that she was saddened by the loss of her cousin... yet experienced spurts of happiness through reminiscing about the good old days.
I completely understand that. It's the very same reason I started this blog.
I apologize for another non-baseball post. I realize that talking about swimming probably isn't as popular as the World Baseball Classic. However... this was something I really wanted to document for myself.
The good news is tomorrow I'll be attending the GTSM Sports Memorabilia Show at the Santa Clara Convention Center, so hopefully I'll have some new sports cards to write about this weekend or in the very near future.
Happy Thursday and sayonara!