Thanksgiving of 1961 was a time the five Partney children would never forget. My
dad a Kansas City fireman was trained to rescue people. When a turkey fell from a truck
and was wobbling along the road with an injured leg, dad put him in the back of the station
wagon and brought him home. We were all thrilled to have a new pet. We played baseball
in our backyard and Gobble loved to run the bases with us. Our dog Sky, a Scott Terrior
darted from one base to the next with Gobble wobbling behind him.
Sky and Gobble also enjoyed playing in the fall leaves with us. We piled the leaves
as high as we could and jumped in them. Sky ran around the piled leaves barking with
excitement as Gobble limped along behind him.
Thanksgiving Day came with the smell of pumpkin pie and turkey. We waited until
two in afternoon for the turkey to get done and were all starving. Seven of us sat around
the table ready to eat as dad said the blessing. I noticed the turkey’s leg had a big, dark
spot on it. It appeared to be the same place that Gobble had been hurt. “Is that Gobble?”
I asked as dad began carving the turkey.
My sister Susie jumped up and ran out in the back yard. I followed. Gobble was
gone. We came back in and sat at the table saying we were not hungry. My nine year old
brother Robert said, “We all have to understand. Mom and dad are poor so they had to
cook Gobble so we could have Thanksgiving dinner.”
Susie and I began to cry. My six year old brother Rick couldn’t eat. My mother
spoke to my father saying, “Bob, this was not a good idea.”
A few weeks later my parents gave Sky to another family because of allergies. After
the Christmas holidays Rick got so depressed his teacher sent him to the school counselor’s
office. “How many are in your family?” she asked.
With sad big brown eyes Rick sat for a minute thinking. “We used to have 9
counting my parents, but now we only have seven,” he answered.
“What happened to the other two,” asked the counselor.
“We ate one and gave the other one away,” he said.