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Betty Jean Tyo

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S: Betty Jean Tyo


1: Betty Jean Tyo was born on the March 14th, 1923 in Sackets Harbor, New York. Her parents were Leslie Anthony Tyo and Evelyn Marie (Fort) Tyo. Her father was in the military and away at Quartermaster School in Philadelphia when she was born. Upon seeing her for the first time, her father said, "She doesn't look like a Betty. Let's call her Jean," and she has been Jean ever since. She joined older sister, Lucille Evelyn, born October 9th,1921; and later, younger brothers Leslie George, April 4th, 1924; Paul born about one year later, but died at 6 months of age from pneumonia; and Steven F, July 10th,1926, all who were born at Sackets Harbor. | MADISON BARRACKS SACKETS HARBOR, NEW YORK

2: Her father was in the Army and in 1926 the family was transferred to Fort Shafter, Hawaii. The family sailed from New York Harbor on a ship named the "Chateau Thierry" through the Panama Canal, across the Pacific Ocean to the islands of Hawaii. Here, her brother Donald Leroy was born on July 11th, 1927 in Honolulu, and Malcolm Frank joined the family on January 12th, 1929. The family stayed in Hawaii for almost three years. This photo shows Les, Jean, dad Leslie, mom Evelyn with Steve on her lap, and Lucille.

3: The USAT Chateau Thierry, the ship the Tyo family traveled on to Hawaii from New York Harbor. The same ship took them back to New York three years later.

4: Tyo kids in Hawaii. Les, Don, Steve, Lucille and Jean. Malcolm is not in the picture. | A typical house at Ft. Shafter, HI.

5: Les, Lucille and Jean. | Steve, Jean, Lucille with Malcolm on her lap, Les and Don.

6: Jean and Lucille in Ohio. | In 1929 the family was transferred to Fort Hayes, Ohio. They again boarded the "Chateau Thierry" and sailed back across the Pacific Ocean, through the Panama Canal, to the Atlantic Ocean and back to New York Harbor. Brother Les says they either drove to Columbus, Ohio, or took a train. Lucille, Les and Jean went to St. Patrick Catholic Church where they made their first communion on April 17th, 1932 and were later confirmed.

7: Jean is first from the left, Lucille third from the left, with their friends Doris and Dorothy. | Jean, Les and Lucille on the occasion of their First Communion.

8: When Jean entered the third grade in 1931, the family was transferred again, this time to the Panama Canal Zone, because her mother, Evelyn Tyo, was not well. The doctors decided that she would do better in a hot climate, hence the transfer to Panama in 1931.

9: So, back to New York Harbor again and this time they sailed on a ship called the USAT Republic. They sailed through the Panama Canal to the Pacific side where they were stationed at Fort Corozal, Panama. | The USAT Republic at Pier 9 in Honolulu on November 22, 1937.

10: Jean's mother, Evelyn, had suffered a nervous breakdown and was in bed for three months. Her father hired a young girl who was half Spanish and half English to care for the children while their mother was sick. The girl spoke only Spanish to the children. Her name was Felicia. She lived in their home, so the children became very attached to her. Jean attended half of third grade, all of fourth grade, and part of fifth grade in Panama. | Felicia

11: Once her mother was well again, she saw to it that they visited all the points of interest in Panama, such as Old Panama that was ransacked by Morgan the Pirate, and the "Altar de Oro" or golden altar that Morgan and his pirates wanted to steal.

12: Front row: Steve, Malcolm, Evelyn and Don. Back row: Jean, Lucille and Les.

13: The Quartermaster's Picnic in Panama | Leslie Tyo on the left

14: In October of 1934 the family was transferred to Fort Frances E Warren, WY. They again sailed on the USAT Republic from the Panama Canal Zone to San Francisco, CA. They then drove from California to Wyoming. After having lived almost three years in the heat of Panama, the children almost froze before their mother could buy winter clothes for them in Wyoming.

16: The family had a piano in Wyoming and Jean remembers that her mom played all the old songs. Evelyn was very musical, having played the uke in Hawaii and later learning the organ when she retired. | Jean's sixth grade class in Wyoming

17: While living in Wyoming, Jean worked babysitting when she was in the fifth grade. She worked every evening helping with a baby boy and doing laundry with his mother. The woman did laundry for officers at Ft. Warren, Wyoming. The little boy in the picture above is Leroy Cooper.

18: 1936 Plymouth 4 door sedan similar to the one the family used on a trip to New York in 1939. | In 1939, the family took a trip from Ft. Warren, WY to visit family in New York State. Jean's dad bought a new black Pontiac and they loaded it up with the six kids, the dog, the parents and all their luggage. When her dad stopped for ice-cream for the kids, he bought one for Buster the dog, too. The kids would tie a napkin on his collar and hold the cone for him to lick.

19: They visited Evelyn's family in Watertown. Evelyn was deathly afraid of snakes. It was on one of these trips when they were vacationing at their Grandpa Fort's cabin on the St. Lawrence River that their dad killed a water moccasin. He brought the snake up to the cabin on a stick to show his wife, Evelyn. He knocked on the door, she opened it and fainted dead away! | After visiting in Watertown, they headed on to Massena where they spent the rest of the time with their Dad's Uncle Frank Tyo. On the way home from that trip, while crossing the hot plains of Kansas, the dog made an escape attempt by leaping out the window. Jean's Dad stopped the car and they had to go back and find the dog. They then drove to a park with some water for the dog. After that they drove mostly in the early hours of the morning, stopped in the heat of the day, and then drove again in the cool of the evening

20: Altogether the family spent five years in Wyoming, until World War II started and then they were transferred to Fort Lewis, WA. | Jackson Hole, Wyoming

21: Leslie Tyo retired from the Army after twenty-eight years of service. After leaving the military, he became an auditor for the Washington National Guard. They bought several homes in the area before settling in Steilacoom, WA.

22: Jean's father, Leslie Anthony Tyo, was born on October 7th, 1898 in Louisville, NY. His father was George Tyo, and his mother was Catherine or "Callie" (Raymo) Tyo. His parents both died months apart in 1906 when he was seven years old. He and his sister Lillian were then sent to live with their grandparents, Antoine and Sophia (Derushia) Tyo.

23: Obituary for Leslie Tyo's mother: "The funeral of Mrs. George Tyo, formerly Miss Calla Lillian Raymo, occurred from the R. C. Church Sunday and was largely attended. Mrs. Tyo, aged 33, was a sufferer of consumption, patient and loving in her sickness. She leaves a kind husband and two little ones, Lillian and Leslie..." | Lillian Tyo on right holding Leslie Tyo's child.

24: Antoine and Sophia (Derushia) Tyo grandparents of Leslie Tyo. It is unknown if the girl in the picture is Lillian Tyo. | Antoine was a farmer. He and Sophia were born in Canada and came to the U.S. after they had been married. They had been married 51 years at the time of her death. Sophia's obituary says of her, "..each day in her family [she] showed the qualities of devoted wife and by her many acts of teaching her children and grandchildren the qualities of the Divine Master." That Antoine and Sophia took their grandchildren in at such an advanced age speaks volumes about their character.

25: When his grandparents both died within a few months of one another in 1912, Leslie and Lillian were sent to live with their Uncle Frank and Aunt Ida Tyo of Massena, NY. They raised them along with their own sons. At some point Lillian ran away and the family lost contact with her for quite some time. Leslie tried to join the Navy, but was too young. So, he joined the Army when he was eighteen years old. Leslie had great love and respect for his Uncle Frank and Aunt Ida. | Ida and Frank Tyo.

26: Evelyn Marie (Fort) Tyo | Jean's mother was Evelyn Marie (Fort) Tyo. She was born August 26th, 1903 in Stone Mills, NY. Her birth name was Eva Rose, but she changed it when she joined the Catholic Church upon her marriage. Her father's name was Chester Fort and her mother's name was Ruby Scoville. Evelyn had a younger sister, Laura Fort. She also had a baby brother, Albert, who died in November of 1907 when he was just one month old. Her mother, Ruby, just 26 years old, passed away sometime after giving birth to Albert.

27: Bertha and Chester Fort | Chester was a carpenter and built their home in Watertown, NY. They also owned a cabin on the St. Lawrence River and Jean spent several summers there vacationing with her family. Chester also played the coronet in local bands. After Ruby passed away, Chester remarried. His second wife's name was Bertha. She was a piano teacher and taught Evelyn to play piano, and also those impeccable manners.

28: Hope Presbyterian Church | Chester was a member of Hope Presbyterian Church in Watertown. He was a talented musician and newspaper clippings of the time say he played his coronet for local parties and at church functions. He was a member of Bellinger's Band. Chester worked as a millwright and pattern maker at Bagley & Sewall, Taggart Brothers and also at the Dexter Sulphite, Pulp & Paper Company. For the last fifteen years of his life he was unable to work due to illnes. He passed away April 28, 1943 from Huntington's Chorea.

29: This house at 1004 Bradley St, in Watertown, NY is one of the residences where Chester and Bertha Fort lived according to census records. It is unknown if this is the house that Chester built for his family or not. Jean remembers a big wooden bathtub that was used in the kitchen. The picture was taken in a 2008 visit to Watertown.

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Anita Morrison
  • By: Anita M.
  • Joined: almost 9 years ago
  • Published Mixbooks: 4
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About This Mixbook

  • Title: Betty Jean Tyo
  • A book I put together for my mom about her childhood. I should have titled it, "A Tyo Childhood", but I am including all the info and pictures from this book in a Tyo Family History book I am putting together. I hope to have it ready for the Tyo Family Picnic in August of 2011.
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  • Published: over 8 years ago