Ricardo Isaias Zavala comes from a long line of vaqueros — cowboys who worked the ranches of Southeast Texas in the 19th and 20th centuries. That tradition stopped with his grandfather — but in the Zavala family, parts of it live on.
Ricardo's grandfather's name was Vicente Domingo Villa. His family moved from ranch to ranch, looking for work. Most of the ranches were in the scrubland of South Texas, east of Laredo.
Four years ago, Marco Ferreira was riding his motorcycle down an isolated road in Los Angeles when he hit some grout and had an accident.
Though he was wearing a full helmet, leather pants and jacket, Ferreira suffered a traumatic brain injury.
When he woke from a six-week coma, his wife, Wendy Tucker, was there.
"You didn't walk, you didn't talk, and you couldn't feed yourself for seven months," she says during a visit with the 48-year-old Ferreira to StoryCorps in San Francisco. "Since then, it's just been getting better all the time."
After the marriage between James Hanson-Brown and Lisa Combest ended, something unusual happened: Their relationship deepened.
"We got married Jan. 11, 1986, and the minister who married us told me, 'You guys are the best-matched couple I've ever talked to,' " Lisa recalls. "But I guess we were in our marriage for about a year when I started thinking that something was wrong. Emotionally I was supported, but it was the physical side of things."
At the same time, James was trying to figure out what was going wrong, as well.
Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 10:01 pm
One of the worst school disasters in American history occurred 75 years ago, when an explosion killed hundreds of students at a school in East Texas. It was an event that etched itself into the memory of Kenneth Honeycutt, now 83.
"It was an explosion in the school building that led to the death of 300 students and teachers," he says. "It was caused by an accumulation of gas throughout the school building."
In 2010, David Plant was diagnosed with skin cancer. The cancer has since metastasized to other parts of his body, and David is now contemplating the end of his life. So, just before his 81st birthday, he sat down with his stepson to talk about their life together.
As Frank Lilley explains, "David is my stepfather, but I certainly consider him my father."
The two spoke in in New London, N.H. And Frank began with a question.