Gloria Margaret Cassidy Jones Haddock

February 7, 1924 - July 24, 1997

 

Gloria - 1977





                                                                                                                                        Gloria Margaret Cassidy was the first child born to Marion Agatha Knell Cassidy and Charles Raymond Cassidy on February 7, 1924. The family was very excited because they thought Gloria was born on her father's thirty-first birthday. Gloria once confided to her daughters that she would have much preferred having her own special day rather than celebrating jointly with her father (they shared a cake). However, it is ironic that after her death in 1997, her daughters discovered their grandfather's birth certificate which states that he was born on February 6th, not the 7th. Neither Gloria nor her parents ever knew.

Gloria was reportedly a very good child. She was quiet and obedient, never causing a moments trouble. In this way she was very much like her father and both of them were polar opposites to Gloria's outspoken, opinionated mother who clearly ruled the roost.
Marion once said that Gloria never argued about anything. If she asked permission to do something and permission was denied, she just said, "Okay" and that was the end of the discussion.

When Gloria was almost twelve, her mother gave birth to another daughter, Marion Sandra (
Sandy). Sandy remembers having to share a double bed with Gloria and hearing complaints about cover stealing and kicking. Sandy is quite sure that Gloria found her to be a nuisance. For some reason, Marion and Charlie attended the Presbyterian church on Wyoming Avenue in Philadelphia where they used to live but Gloria took her little sister to the local Episcopalian church. Sandy remembers going to Sunday school there and thinks Gloria did also. They met afterward and went to church together. Gloria evidently complained regularly to her mother about Sandy's constant yawning in church.

Gloria remembers that her parents had a close circle of good friends and loved to play tennis. She was often dragged along when they played which she found very boring. She also remembers that as a young child in school she was the only one who didn't go home for lunch. Her mother packed her a lunch and she sometimes sat on the steps and ate with the janitor.

Sandy remembers one night when her mother came up to Gloria's room and found smoke coming out of her bedside table drawer. Sandy wrote: "You guessed it, she was smoking. Needless to say, (Mother) was a bit angry and told her if she wanted to smoke to do it downstairs." Gloria matured physically at a young age and claimed she looked eighteen when she was only fourteen. She was very pretty and quite popular with the boys as a teenager. Her mother said there were always young boys visiting on the front porch. Sandy said Gloria had a number of boyfriends who were in the armed forces and she remembers some of the coming to the house in their uniforms.

Gloria was also a very talented artist and majored in art in high school. After she graduated she was hired by the Penn Mutual Life Insurance company to work in their art department and eventually became head of the department. She loved her job and worked there for approximately ten years, until 1952, when she became pregnant with her first child. At Penn Mutual, Gloria particularly remembered working on a series of pen and ink drawings detailing the history of Independence Hall in
Philadelphia. She used the research done by another Penn Mutual employee to create two sets of seven drawings, a job which she found to be very tedious and challenging. At that time, the home office of the company was a large office building located directly behind Independence Hall in downtown Philadelphia and the motto of the company still is "Behind Your Independence Stands the Penn Mutual". One set was displayed for many years in Independence Hall and the other set is displayed to this day (2007) in the home office of Penn Mutual which was relocated to Horsham, PA many years ago. (The original building in Philadelphia still bears the name Penn Mutual on the top of the building.) Gloria's daughter, Kathy, continues to try to talk Penn Mutual into selling the drawings to the family and they have made note of her contact information. Gloria would be flattered to know that the company continues to value her hard work and has the drawings framed and displayed on their main floor. (The other set of drawings has never been located.)
At some point in time, a young man by the name of Robert Erskine Jones caught Gloria's eye. Bob was a pilot in the Army Air Force and when he was overseas during World War II they corresponded regularly. Bob once wrote to his mother that Gloria was "our kind of person". The couple became engaged on
December 26,1946 and were married on July 19, 1947. Gloria was attended by her good friend, Dorothy (Dottie) Hartman and Bob's cousin, Marion Caroline White. Her sister, Sandy, was a junior bridesmaid (she was eleven).

 

 

                                                                       

Gloria and Independence Hall
 1948

At some point in time, a young man by the name of Robert Erskine Jones caught Gloria's eye. Bob was a pilot in the Army Air Force and when he was overseas during World War II they corresponded regularly. Bob once wrote to his mother that Gloria was "our kind of person". The couple became engaged on December 26,1946 and were married on July 19, 1947. Gloria was attended by her good friend, Dorothy (Dottie) Hartman and Bob's cousin, Marion Caroline White. Her sister, Sandy, was a junior bridesmaid (she was eleven).
                                                           

                                                Gloria & Robert Jones  - 1947

 

Gloria and Bob initially lived in an apartment while Bob attended law school but they eventually bought a small home on Ellett Street in Philadelphia. Their first child, Marion Kathleen, was born on December 16, 1952, her first name inevitable since both of her grandmothers were Marion. Gloria and Bob decided to called her Kathy, however. According to Gloria, Kathy was a fussy baby and the obstetrician told her when she became pregnant with the couple's second child that he hoped she had a "mild male in May". Carol Anne arrived on May 12, 1954, not a male, but definitely mild. She was an easy-going happy child right from the start.

When Bob graduated from law school he joined a firm in
Philadelphia. In 1956 the couple decided to build a home in the suburbs as everyone seemed to be doing at that time. Their new home at 413 Huntington Drive was within walking distance of the famous Valley Forge Park with a mailing address of Wayne, PA. The house was a split level with a large yard and a plethora of young families to socialize with. The girls had lots of friends nearby to play with and Gloria and Bob enjoyed many close friendships as well.

Tragedy struck in September 1962 when Bob committed suicide. Gloria, left with two young girls, ages 9 and 7, was devastated. Her girls remember finding her sitting alone in the dark at night crying. Bob had left his family well off financially so Gloria did not have to return to work but because he had always handled all the finances and much of the running of the home, she was overwhelmed. Fortunately, the close friendships forged in the neighborhood stood her in good shape. Several of the men on
Huntington Drive stepped in and for many years helped whenever they were needed.

                                                            

                       Carol, Gloria & Kathy    1963

 

 

 

 

Gloria was very much a homebody and Kathy remembers trying unsuccessfully to encourage her to socialize. She belonged to an organization called Parents Without Partners and received all of their helpful mailings. Kathy begged her to attend the social outings of the group (many were for the whole family) but Gloria never did. Her sister, Sandy, did manage to talk her into taking a tour to Bermuda in June of 1963.

Sandy wrote:

"We spent a night in
New York and went to a show in our hotel starring Eddie Fisher. The next day we set sail on the Queen of Bermuda which took two nights to get there. (Gloria) didn't like the voyage at all and spent a lot of time in bed, although it wasn't all that rough. However, we had 1 1/2 weeks in Bermuda, which (Gloria) did like. On one of our jaunts we saw the posh hotel Cambridge Beaches. Some years later (Gloria and her new husband) went there on their honeymoon so she must have remembered it and enjoyed the place. Our room in an eight story modern hotel had a balcony overlooking the harbor at Hamilton, the capital. Every morning we had breakfast on the balcony, watching all the little boats in the harbor. One day we went to the shops to buy some duty-free things, including the liquor store. One of the salesmen took a fancy to Gloria and the four of us (including a friend of his) went out to a club one night. Nothing serious, but the day our ship left they came to see us off with a bottle of champagne."

Although Gloria never returned to work, she occasionally did freelance artwork. Her daughters remember being impressed with the posters she made. Gloria's passion was oil painting and she usually did landscapes or still life. She occasionally took lessons and always enjoyed being able to take her easel out to a covered bridge or an old barn to paint the real thing. She did several paintings from slides taken on trips to
Europe and attempted a few portraits. She was never particularly pleased with the results of the latter however. With Valley Forge Park practically in her backyard, she did many paintings of the sights there. In particular, she did numerous paintings of George Washington's Headquarters. Each one is different, either because it was done in a different season of the year or because it was done either before or after the National Park Service took over the park. (When that happened, the house was returned to the way it looked during the Revolutionary War. The fence and the shutters on the front windows were removed.) These paintings of Washington's Headquarters are treasured by many members of Gloria's family.

Gloria was never particularly interested in selling her work but one year not too long after Bob's death, she was talked into putting some of her paintings in an art show. She was surprised when she was informed that her favorite painting, a simple blue barn door, had attracted a buyer. What made this news particularly unbelievable was that the interested buyer was Shirley Conway, a well-known actress who was starring on a primetime television show at that time. Gloria was in a quandry because she very much wanted to sell the painting to this famous actress but did not want to part with it. Her decision was to paint a duplicate so she could sell one and keep one. Ms. Conway came to
Huntington Drive to pick up the painting and Gloria and the girls were beside themselves with excitement. Since the check had Conway's signature on it, Gloria made photocopies of the check before cashing it.  When Gloria passed away, her copy of the painting went to her daughter, Kathy. No one remembers if this painting is the original or the duplicate.

About four years after Bob's death, an old friend from her Penn Mutual days, Allen Thomas, fixed Gloria up on a blind date with a coworker at Penn Mutual, Joseph Haddock. Kathy and Carol vividly remember teasing their mother (she had not dated at all since her husband died) about marrying this unknown man. Gloria must have been very nervous and who knows what made her decide to go out with Joe, but he came to the house, a consumate gentleman, and took her off to a local restaurant for dinner. Carol and Kathy eventually put the chain across the house door as was habit, and went to bed. When Gloria and Joe got back they couldn't get into the house because of the chain. They said they tried yelling and throwing things at the bedroom windows but the girls were apparently very sound sleepers. Gloria and Joe went back to the restaurant to try calling the house on the phone but that didn't work either. Finally Gloria remembered that the window to the laundry room wasn't locked and poor Joe had to open the window and climb over the dryer to get in. (Gloria was justifiably mortified since Joe was a virtual stranger and the laundry room was a mess.) Joe was momentarily frightened by miniature poodle, Mini, who was staring at him when he climbed in. (Gloria had neglected to mention they had a dog.) For some reason, this dog, who barked at everything, never made a sound. Gloria said later, "Some watch dog!" Joe let Gloria in and the rest, as they say, is history.

Joe lived in
Haddonfield, New Jersey, nearly an hour away but began to make the trek to Valley Forge regularly. He even got stuck there for three days during a horrific snowstorm that left several feet of snow on the ground. The neighbors later said they debated about helping to shovel Gloria's driveway because perhaps she didn't want Joe to leave! The couple was married at the Valley Forge Methodist Church on February 4, 1967 with Gloria's good friend, Dottie Hartman, once again standing up for her. Kathy and Carol liked Joe very much and his transition into the family at "413" went very smoothly.

 

                                                            

           Joe & Gloria Haddock       1970


Gloria and Joe loved to travel to
Europe and an added incentive to going there was to visit Gloria's sister, Sandy, who had married a Scotsman in 1965 (Gloria was her maid of honor) and lived in the London area ever since. Their trips usually lasted for a couple of weeks. They always booked a tour and planned to spend a few days the Sandy and her husband, also Sandy. Gloria particularly loved visiting the art museums since she was a talented artist herself. When asked what her favorite country in Europe was, she said it was Spain. Unfortunately, the person she told this to does not remember the reasons for this choice.

Gloria and Joe lived in the house on
Huntington Drive until 1978 when they decided it was time to downsize. Kathy was married and living in St. Louis and Carol had just moved to Houston to teach first grade. They sold the house and moved about a mile away to the Glenhardie Apartments (27 Drummers Lane, Wayne, PA). When the complex was developed into condominiums, Joe and Gloria were not interested in purchasing their apartment so they moved about ten minutes away to the Aberwyck Apartments in St. Davids. They lived there for approximately fourteen years. In May of 1997, Gloria went into Paoli Hospital for surgery for an intestinal blockage. Unfortunately, the surgeons were unable to remove the advanced cancer they found. She started a round of chemotherapy but became too ill to move beyond the first dose. She was eventually moved to Devon Manor, a nursing home on Lancaster Avenue in Devon where she passed away on July 24th.

Joe, who was already starting to suffer from Alzheimer's Disease, lived alone in the apartment for approximately another year. At that time, his son, Rich, moved him to a nursing facility for Alzheimer's patients. He passed away in December of 2001.            

 

 

 

 

           

            Jeanette      Gloria            Kathy            Marion C.      Carol      1988