May 2, 2011

Coffey/Coffee Cousins' 2011 Reunion

Jim and Bonnie Culley
Another great Coffey Cousins' reunion is in the memory bank!  This was my 18th and, as usual I had a great time meeting new "cousins" and renewing friendships with other "old timers" like myself. Bonnie and Jim Culley, along with two of their daughters and a son were our hosts. Subscribers to the Coffey Cousins' newsletter will remember that Bonnie is the editor.

We met at the Residence Inn at Independence, MO this year.  Some of the older folks tell me that is the second in that state; the first being back in 1989 at Jefferson City.

Most folks who arrived on Thursday took the opportunity to rest up from the trip before activities began on Friday.  On Friday about 30 of us motored over to the Harry Truman Presidential Library where we spent at least three hours with a docent who led us through the maze of halls and rooms, teaching history as we went.  Of course, some of the folks on tour were old enough to remember Harry.  I was but a youngster, barely into long pants when Harry became president.  He is the first president that I remember; mostly his second administration.

I rarely left the hotel except for the tour and a trip to have dinner one evening.  I took a couple of R&R opportunities in my room and, later spent time talking to new cousins about their genealogies.  One or two gave me "assignments" to try and find their lost ancestors.  One has asked for help finding a John Coffey, born 1783 in PA.  Some info has been found but his father remains elusive.

The hotel staff were remarkable!  There was no request too difficult that they couldn't find a way to help fulfill.  A full breakfast was available every morning from 6 to 9AM and Laura, the "breakfast lady" made sure that all of us were filled - sometimes overfilled - and that our coffee pots were never empty.  If you are ever overnighting in Independence I recommend you consider the Residence Inn on South Arrowhead.

The 2012 Reunion is tentatively planned for the Northern Neck of Virginia, perhaps around Fredericksburg.

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