I don’t know why, but it makes me kinda proud that Clyde’s best weapon came from the town where I was born. Bonnie and Clyde entered my life several times one way or the other before the Texas Rangers finally gunned them down.
In February 1934, right after we moved to Rotan, Bonnie and Clyde robbed the National Guard Armory in Ranger. The armory was where Clyde got his favorite weapon, an Automatic rifle. He cut off part of the barrel, got three ammo clips and welded them together so it would shoot fifty-six times without reloading. That’s why Clyde called it his scatter-gun.
Amelia Earhart was another celebrity who came through Ranger. She landed her Autogyro at the Ranger airfield in 1931. It’s a shame that she went missing just six years later and that we still can’t find her.
But for me, the real celebrities from Ranger are Ma and Pa.
I close my eyes again but it’s no use. My seat companion says, “You ain’t done yet, Cono.” Again, I give in to the nudge and open up that old cigar box of things I don’t care to see. I picture that tiny little girl sock, the one that used to be in the box of specials, the one that belonged to my kidnapped little sister.
Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper, a story about my father