Monday, August 10, 2009

Claude Purdy Thank you for your Gift Cuz

Rest in Peace My Dear Cuz..He Left here August 3 2009
Hello JazzLovers,
This is a bittersweet day here in Beautiful Bahrain..
Claude Purdy was my 1st Cousin, the only Son of my fathers youngest Brother,I only met 3 of my Fathers Brothers. I knew the oldest Brother ( Who I dearly loved)and Claude's Father, the youngest,( I will leave it at that).Those brothers I truly did not understand, but the oldest was a wonderful person, and I had the chance to spend a couple of great summers with he and his wife.
I didn't met Claude until I was in Jr.High 1957, the year he graduated high school. I t was at his High School Class Play (Boston High) that I first saw him. Claude was the lead and he was fantastic! I was fascinated by him. Oddly enough the reason I was at the graduation was not because he was graduating but because 2 of my Moms Nieces were graduating! (I Told you those brothers were intriguing)
But that night I really amazed by his acting in that play( If anyone remembers what the play was please send it to me.)His energy level was fantastic, then after his graduation I have never seen him ever again, ( Yes I have tried to find him and only found information in 1997)Although trying to find my other cousins I found Eve and she had kept all the clipping of his climb to fame.
Claude became a Famous Director/Actor, traveled to New York, Paris and then on to the Penumbra Theatre as co-founder who was also instrumental in the career of August Wilson, who died October 2005. They were most noted for Claude Direction August Wilson's great plays about African American Culture. They are most noted for the following 9 plays set in different time periods.
( Thank you Wikipedia)

1900s - Gem of the Ocean (2003)
1910s - Joe Turner's Come and Gone (1988)
1920s - Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (1985) - set in Chicago
1930s - The Piano Lesson (1990) - Pulitzer Prize[3]
1940s - Seven Guitars (1995)
1950s - Fences (1987) - Pulitzer Prize[3]
1960s - Two Trains Running (1991)
1970s - Jitney (1982)
1980s - King Hedley II (1999)
1990s - Radio Golf (2005)
I unfortunately Never had the pleasure of seeing any of his work and as I said I have not seen him since 1957. But there is an ache in my heart and I do grieve because I never had the chance to thank him face to face. You see Claude Jr,(As he is known in the family)is who was my inspiration to do better, he was the one that let me know I could, he was the one that let me know there was more out there, I just had to work for it...I did tell him in emails though he never replied I do know he got them and for that I am grateful. I actually sent one the day he died because he was on my mind!!
So Jazzlovers just know life is short and we really need to listen to the beat, and let people who are important to you, that you care.....Love is the greatest gift. If you want love then give love.
And if you are angry or upset about anything or any one !!Remember that on a highway to San Fransisco 50 years from to day who is going to give a damn?
Thank you Cuz..
My Thoughts are with you Jackie( Jacquelyn)...and You Dear Jacqui Shoholm Purdy thank you for the replies...
Lets go out today JazzLovers with a little Louisiana and Katie...It is home...
Keep the beat Jazzlovers
DW Jazzlover...


  1. Thank you for your beautiful words about your brother.
    Let's connect

    Jackie Purdy

  2. Hi Jackie, I have also waited all my life to meet you too!

  3. Hi DW and Jackie,

    It never ceases to amaze me how death can bring folk together. Hello first cousins. I hope we will meet again. Jackie, I am sorry for our loss. You may remember that we all grew up together. It has been far too long since any of us have spoken.

    Cousin Lois Miller Jones
    Merritt Island, FL

  4. One of the positives here is that I am hearing from family members from all over!!
    Hi Lois it is wonderful to hear from you and Ruth.
    I love what you said in your email, I do search for my family because,Knowing where you come from is knowing who you are....
    We as the next generation have all done well...
    I wish I had known all of you growing up.
    Love you all

  5. D. W. are you in the Middle East?