Guy Andrew Lyon was my mother’s maternal grandfather. Below are the memories of Generation 1 Members. If you have one to add — please contact me to do so.
By Carmen Schultz
Guy Andrew Lyon was born to Jacob Lyon* and Ann (Rutnour) Lyon*, in Plymouth, Michigan on Nov. 5, 1876. He was the youngest (by 10 years) of eight children, four boys and four girls. He married my grandmother Josephine Agnes Krajenke on Feb. 22, 1903 in Detroit, Michigan. They had two children, my uncle Frank Howard Lyon and Frances Mary Lyon. My brother Noel or my cousin Howard would be so much better at writing about Grandpa Lyon as I’m sure they remember much more than I do about him. I was only 11 when he died on June 25, 1946 at the age of 70. He died in an auto accident as he was driving home. His car hit a tree and they felt that he might have had a stroke that caused him to do this. Since grandpa spent most of his days away from us working in Pontiac or Detroit, we saw him only on Sundays.
He did make the most of those Sundays though. We’d get up early in the morning and he’d drive us to church in Fenton. He never went himself. I remember him telling my mother one time that if he ever entered a church, he was sure it would fall down on him from shock. He was there the moment we got out of church though to drive us back home and as always would surprise us with his famous “3 P” breakfast which consisted of potatoes, pork chops and pancakes. He was great cook and loved to surprise people with this ability. The “3P” breakfast has been carried on as a tradition in our family and also in my brother Noels. Noel, like grandpa is a fantastic cook and everyone looks forward to his meals. Also like my grandfather, he wants no one in the kitchen when he’s cooking. They both were and are the “I’d rather do it myself type cook”.
I remember grandpa either reading the newspaper, sitting by the radio listening to it or playing cards either with others or by himself. I was a bit scared of him, as he was stern and a bit gruff. The first time I stayed out at the lake I was about 4 or 5. I begged and begged and finally everyone agreed that I could spend the night. My parents went home to Fenton and unfortunately about 1 o’clock I woke up and decided I wanted my Mother. I started crying and wouldn’t quit no matter what grandma did until finally to comfort me, Grandpa got dressed and took me home. After that for years every time I asked to stay over, grandpa would say okay but I’m NOT DRIVING YOU HOME!
He loved buying grandma things and each time he did she would say, “Guy, you shouldn’t be spending money on me”. I inherited the beautifully lavish china dinnerware he got her. It has a rich inlay of gold etchings circling each piece and the serving pieces are very distinct. It surprises me that a man had such outstanding taste in something like this and I know even in those day it must have cost a pretty penny. This will go to Terry. Another gift he got her and it seemed to have been her most cherished piece was a lovely brooch that she always wore. Part of grandma’s dressing in the morning is to put on her clothes and a cobbler apron. She had dozens of them that she had made of bright patterned colors with big pockets to carry odds and ends she’d find around the house. You never saw her without a cobbler apron on except when she went to church. Then she’d dress and put on her brooch. My niece Lynn has that brooch now as a remembrance of grandma.
Grandpa used to kid us by saying everyone knew them because when grandpa and grandma walked down the sidewalk they spelled OX. Grandpa was very bull legged and grandma was very knock kneed.
The 4th of July was great fun as that is when grandpa would get down the musket that he had inherited from a relative (Daniel Lyon) who served in the Revolutionary War as a sergeant. In fact mother often said that any of the Lyon women were eligible to join the D.A.R. (daughters of the revolution). It was considered to be “High Society” to belong to the D.A.R. and you could not belong unless one of your ancestors fought in the Revolutionary War to gain our freedom from England. If you check the Internet, you’ll find more information about them. Anyway, grandpa would get the musket down, load it, which in itself was quite a chore and one of the grandchildren would be able to fire it once. Of course once was enough, because it usually set you on your backside and you had a bruised shoulder from its kick. Those things were wicked to fire and heavy to carry.
These are different things I remember about my grandfather. I hope that my brothers and cousin can remember more to tell.
* (EDITED BY OLD HIPPIE – I believe my mother was mistaken by one generation on the parents of her Grandpa Lyon. Click Here for the chart I have on the Lyon Family)
Guy Andrew Lyon
By Ralph Guy Castillo
I remember Gramps from a very young age of around 5, he bought me a double barreled cork gun so I could shoot
the “Goo-Goo Bird” that lived near the outhouse along the driveway near the house. I never knew how the “Goo-Goo Bird”
got it’s name but 70 years later, it was like yesterday when that all took place. Gramps walked me out to the outhouse when it got dark and we shoot that “Goo-Goo Bird”.
I remember Gramps never swam but each year he would have us erect the dock that had been taken down during the winter. He had built saw horses that fit under the dock sections, we would float and assemble all the section to the drop off near the Lilly pad area. They had even built 2 row boats so everyone could enjoy they lake as it was before being developed.
Grampa Lyon made sure we raised the American Flag each morning and lowered it in the evening. He loved all of the
kids even when I poked a hole into his refrigerator when I was charging through the house with a confederate rifle with a long bannet on the end of it. That did end my playing solder with that old rifle.
I don’t remember this but mom told me about me climbing the ladder to the rooftop and every time they would try to catch me, I’d turn and run the other way, Gramps climbed up behind me, and when I turned to run , I ran right into his arms.
Gramps made sure that whenever we were at Runyan Lake we would always have fun things to do. He even built a breakfast nook off the kitchen painted candy apple red table & benches, red is still my favorite color.
Yes, I was very young when we lost Grampaw Lyon, he died June 25, 1946, shortly after that Noel & Willie moved in with Grandma Lyon (Big Grandma) since our Grandma Castillo who was about 4-1/2′ tall was (Little Grandma).
And yes I also miss Grampa Lyon, but enjoy all the great memories he left for all of us.
By Howard Lyon
My Grandfather will always have a special place in my heart. He was the sort of person who would always go out of his way to help another. He not only raised me from the time I was a baby, but also had Noel, Frank jr., Cubby, Betty Jean, (a daughter of his sister Mable) and other children come to live in his home, where they were fed, clothed, and supplied with medical help if needed. In my case he cared for me for eighteen years, as my father never gave my Grandmother and Grandfather a plug nickel for raising me.
Grampa was a very skilled mechanic, who was a master carpenter, plumber, electrician, and a real craftsman working sheet metal. In fact he spent the last ten years of his life working at General Motors Truck & Coach Division, in the experimental lab working on prototype bodies to be used on future trucks.
As a young man he had served an apprenticeship in a sheet metal shop, and was a tin bender expert.
Gramps liked to surprise us kids with unexpected presents. He knew of my love for hunting, so he would buy me magazines like Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, or other material related to out-of-doors life. He would buy Noel and I new flash lights so we could hunt night crawlers at night, or toss a box of shot gun shells on my bed and tell me to keep up the good hunting. Now I want every one to know that this occurred during the depression. Money was scarce, so these little love gifts meant a lot.
When we resided in East Detroit, Gramps & Gram would take other less fortunate kids in the neighborhood up to spend a few weeks at the cottage. It was a rare treat for these children, who hardly ever left the city.
I also remember Grampa’s three P breakfasts just like Noel & Carmen, but one of his specialties was chip beef on toast, which after joining the Air Force I found out was called S.O.S.
Grampa always treated Grandma with respect and love He never left for work with out giving Gram a kiss. He didn’t attend church, but made certain that we always got there. If you missed mass because you stayed at some other kids house for the night you knew you were going to get chewed out.
I had pneumonia three times during my childhood. The third time I was seven years old, and had it so bad that they gave me the last rites of the Catholic church, it looked like I was going to cash in my chips. Grampa found a surgeon who was using a new technique to conquer this dread disease. He would make an incision in the back, take out a piece of rib, and place a tube into the lung. Every time the lung expanded, the fluid would drain into a dressing. This was an expensive operation, and my Grandparents picked up the tab. I remember it took a long time to discharge the debt.
I spent most of my early life living with this man but to this day he remains an enigma to me. I always wanted to tell him I loved him, and wanted to hear the same from him. It seems like neither of us could utter these simple words. What a terrible shame!