When everyone else in Osceola Mills was poor, Dad's family was poorer. So poor, in fact, that the county tried to take him and his brother and sister away from their widowed young mother.
His mother worked hard as a cleaning woman for the family's daily bread, and the children did too--paper routes, cow herding, chicken killing, whatever was needed. His older brother dropped out of school to work on the railroad with his uncle before he was sixteen.
Thanks to him, Dad and his sister were able to graduate high school. The next step was immediate employment, and Dad's best chances would be in a big city two hundred miles away.
His mother walked him to the bus station. He almost turned back, back to his mother and aunts and uncles and cousins and friends and everything that he knew. But when the time came, he got on the bus.
And always looked back.