A Southern Gentleman and Woman

Written by Renie on December 15, 2011

The young Fergusons

James Thomas Ferguson, my Daddy, passed away in 1996 at 96 1/2 years old. (Only people six and under and those over 90 used the ‘1/2’.) Born in Shreveport, Louisiana, he was a southern gentleman all his life. Ran a cotton business, buying from the farmer and selling to the people or the factories who made the cotton merchandise.

He married my American beauty California Mom, Lorene Denton, in 1935 while on a trip to Santa Diego and Santa Barbara to consider retiring. Fell in love, married, and had to go back to work at Ferguson Cotton Comapany in Shreveport.

Sixty-one years later on July 24th, we held to his southern actions and attitude in our tributes at the graveside funeral service. Had a confederate flag draped on the casket, and a three-piece jazz band play “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “When the Saints Come Marching In,” “Dixie,” and other beloved New Orleans music.

It was a fabulous, appropriate celebration of life. We danced under the small white tent on artificial grass on July 24, a very, very hot mid-summer day, smiling and glowing with perspiration.

The “vintage” Fergusons

Ten years later, we did this again, also in July, for my Mom, without the Confederate flag, but with the same music. She was 97. The only difference was that there were fewer people, and an older generation of grandchildren. We did dance…….and I think I saw her looking down through the holes in the floor of heaven with her eyes twinkling and a big ‘ole smile on her face.

With affection,

Renie Ferguson Steves