Vernon, Last Seen In Hawaii

by Jerry Ratch



Vernon, Last Seen in Hawaii


Dear Bess —

            I go to the First Assembly of God's church. (a Praising Spirit-Filled Fellowship.)  It is in Maui. Dr. James Morocco, Senior Pastor. He has been pastoring the church for over twenty years.

            My, what a big change I am finding in my new life. All I do is sleep and eat. Everyone hates me because they have to work, and I do not have to be picking up cans and bottles like I did for twenty-nine years. They only pay 18 cents a pound. The only work I do is wash my clothes.

            I will not be able to mail this until Dec. 26.

            I sure have put on a lot of weight. I am 190 pounds and my waist has gone from a 32 to a 36. Starting tomorrow I will be going on a thirty day fast. That is what our church people are all doing. If I am still alive, I will write to tell you how many pounds I lost.

            When I came to Maui, there were no vacant seats on the plane.

            They have no tin storage sheds like we did at The Sun Club. They also don't allow any kind of trailers to live in like you and I did. They have no trailer parks here. They never get over 85° F. That is hot for these people. We have no smog or fog.

            I still get up at four in the morning, even though I am not working. I sure enjoy the beach. I stayed for four days when I first got here. I like the way they surf with the wind with a windsurfer. It takes them in the air, and it sure is fun watching all of them, and it is free. The beaches are real clean, and it is real nice swimming — the only fault I have is the nude beach is far away, just like it is from Corona to San Diego.

            I got a raise in my Social Security. It was $569.00 and now I get $636.00 because I dropped my Blue Shield. They will not honor the Blue Shield like they do in California.

            I hope and pray that you and John Laga are able to get your committees. I hope you have no problem going to the doctor, the store, or to get your hair made pretty.

            Someone stole my wallet at the store, so I am not able to drive. I failed the driver's test. I got 17 wrong out of twenty-five. I go to town by bus and it doesn't cost me a penny. It sure is nice when you do not have to drive. My caretaker has my truck. He takes me wherever I want to go.

            I hope you are able to use these free meal tickets. (that are enclosed)

            I am not able to exercise, but I can still do five laps in the pool we have in town, and it doesn't cost me anything to go swimming. All you do is sign your name, and it is Olympic size.

            The doctor I had said that's what I had to do to stop the pain in my arm and shoulder. So, now I don't have to get massages. I go to the beach and the pool, and that keeps the pain away.

            Have a Happy Holiday. May God bless you and lighten your burdens now and always.





            I am kept real busy swimming and going to the store to shop. The first time I went shopping, I bought the same stuff I bought in Corona, and it only cost me five dollars there, and here it cost me fifteen dollars. Bananas are 99 cents a pound.

            All the food is high, and I still am here. I was told I would never make it. It cost me four hundred a month rent. Yours is three hundred and fifty. Everyone seems to have lots of money. They hate me because I tell everyone that I am a nudist.

            I have been to see seven different doctors to see if they can cure my pain, and there is no cure for my pain, even when they pray for me at church and all meetings. The Lord has not seen fit to heal me. I am still able to walk thanks to my mineral ice.

            Happy 90th birthday come February.

            I got a new way to relieve my pain. Bend toes. I bend my toes 100 times in the morning and at night, and it sure is helping to take the night pain away. I had the pain so bad. It was hard for me to roll over in bed. So, if you're in pain, try it out. OK? 

            Tell everyone I said Hello and a happy 2001 to all.

            See Bill and Joyce. They are the people that gave me all the Cat-in-the Hats, or as they say, Doctor Seuss. And now every time I go to the store, you should see how everyone looks at me. They even holler from their cars and wish me Merry Xmas.

                                                                                                            The End.

(Everyone wants my hats.) 





            There are three big holidays. I call Thanksgiving number one. Number two is Christmas, which was a lovely day, and that is my starting of my 40 day fast. Now only 39 to go.

            And the biggest of all three is the New Year. Now I do not know anyone, so I have no friends to tell me what to do. I am a free man.

            I love Maui very much. I have done no work at all since I landed in the state of paradise. All I do is sleep and eat. Go to town on a bus for free it seems every day but Sunday. I got it made in the shade. They have a bus that takes me to church, so what more can one ask? 

            They sure do have a lot of beaches. When I first came here, you could see the beach from my hotel I was living in.

            So, I bet come January everyone would like to see old Vernon get rid of all the cans and bottles at the parties around there.



XMAS DAY. OUR CHURCH will be going on a fast starting on January the second, and they will continue until January the twenty-four.

            Vernon is on his fast today, and if all goes well and I do not die, it is for forty days. So, please have everyone to pray for Vernon. No one knows, only you. So, if all goes well, my fast will end in February 2001. It will be close to your birthday, Bess. It will be on Lincoln's birthday that I will be able to eat again.

            I am 190 pounds and I hope to buy a typewriter. Lou Pongitini has my typewriter, and he would not give me it when I left your state. If I live through all, this will be my last letter with a ink pen.

            Hope and pray you can (read) all that I have wrote to (you) in this whole mess. It is like a puzzle. Best of luck.





            God grant me the serenity to accept things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.

            Have faith and look forward every new day with a smile. Live each day to the fullest. Don't be swept up by the world, but be yourself. Stop and think about life. Take time to be by yourself and bring out the true beauty within.

            Take in all the natural beauty the world has to offer. Learn from the trees, the streams, and the mountains. Live in the sun.

            Hope I did not hurt your feelings with such a long letter.

                                                                                    FROM VERNON





            Nobody has heard from Vernon since.)