Family at Kentucky Lake

Kentucky Lake slides 2I was looking for some appropriate Father’s Day photos when I ran across these shots taken at Kentucky Lake. My green Datsun has 1974 Florida tags, so this must have been the summer of 1973. I bought that car in Gastonia, N.C., just a few days before I left for Florida in January of that year. Brother David, whose driver’s license was so fresh the ink hadn’t dried, was drafted to drive it while I piloted a U-Haul holding all our possessions.

The dealership agreed to have someone man the service department on a Saturday to do the initial 600-mile service, so David and I went out to put as many break-in miles as we could. He was a little uncertain about driving a manual transmission, so I told him, “Just get it in high gear and don’t worry about shifting until we need gas.”

Wife Lila buzzed along in her yellow VW Bug herding us like wayward cattle. She did great until we hit West Palm Beach where she turned right off the turnpike instead of left toward civilization. I managed to honk her down before we all ended up as alligator bait.

A trailer for togetherness

David Ken Mark Mary and LV Steinhoff at Kentucky Lake_29The first trailer Dad and Mother had on the lake was tiny. I don’t know how we managed to stuff six of us in there. We must have had to synchronize turning over.

Trying not to smile

Kentucky Lake slides 13Dad had this funny way he’d stick his tongue out when he was trying not to smile. He’s obviously pulling somebody’s leg, probably Wife Lila’s.

He couldn’t hold it forever

Kentucky Lake slides 14Eventually, the smile would bubble over. Mother’s still trying to maintain her composure, though.

A happy couple

Kentucky Lake Slides 25We had a lot of happy hours on that lake.

Dad died there of a massive heart attack while he was building a sandbox for Grandson Matthew in 1977. I’m sorry he was taken from us so early, but I’m glad it was there and not in some hospital surrounded by beeping machines.




5 Replies to “Family at Kentucky Lake”

  1. Ken, what an awesome memory for you and your family. Love it…… You know where there is a will there is a will referring to the number of people in the trailer….only now do you have questions. Certainly agree about the the sudden death of your father……..

    Thanks for sharing your story of family life………

    Keep enjoying those wonderful memories……

  2. I remember how you loved to drill holes in cars for your assorted antennas and this car was no exception. Wonder, how did you feel pressing that drill bit into that new trunk and hoping it didn’t “skate” all across that new shiny green paint?

    I’m glad you have the photos, but I was a bit surprised to see red pants (which I did not remember) on Dad. Then I saw in another photo they were actually brown (which I do remember)…perhaps your color correction was a bit off at some point.

    Thanks for post and I do remember that if you slept on the top bunk of the beds in the trailer your face was about 6 inches from the ceiling.

    1. I had at least three antennas on that trunk before I traded it.

      Color balance was all over the place. I scanned these from faded color negs, so I had no idea what the original colors were.

  3. Ken,
    I enjoyed your pictures and pictorial memories of Kentucky Lake, a place which holds fond memories for me of my mother, my father and me having good, clean fun.
    Thank you for sharing.

  4. Great pictures of your family and so many memories too.
    Brad and I had a trailer at Kentucky Lake. We thought it was hugh but it was about the same size as yours. And we were good at stuffing people in it to sleep. The youngest often ended up sleeping in the bath tub!

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