Valdie Burkholder and son Rockey

I have a personal favor to ask of everyone who knows and loves my beloved brother, Rockey (see "Rockey Burkholder is Bonners Ferry at its best"). My dear husband, Marty, has been taking my soon-to-be 95-year-old mother, Valdie, and 72-year-old brother/town mascot, Rockey, on road trips through Boundary County.

Taking three, three to seven hour trips per week, for over three months, they've toured almost every single road off of Highway 95, Highway 1 and Highway 2. Mom has added so much color to these trips remembering who lived where, who died where, what happened here, etc.

Marty knows bridges where somebody died, homesteads where a virulent mom and dad had 17-children, where barn dances were held, the best fishing holes, picnic spots, where there was a CCC camp with cute boys, where I puked after drinking too many margaritas, etc.

Rockey, too, has a phenomenal Rain-Man-like memory for people and places.

It was through these conversations that the favor I'm asking for came up.

Rockey told Marty that other than cards we have sent to him for his birthday and holidays, he hasn't received any personal mail since he stopped communicating with a pen pal in his late teens.

Rockey, the town mascot/crier/bridge walker, has been shut in at home for three months. He is on 12 medications daily and ends up in ER 10-plus times per year. As he's at extreme risk for COVID as he's diabetic, has heart problems and has extreme respiratory problems such that he'll be isolating for many months until he gets vaccinated.

Would any of you consider sending Rockey a postcard, greeting card or letter so that he gets a flood of mail? It would mean so much to this blessed child-like brother who asks for so little of family and friends, but who needs the little a lot.

Blessings to all of you. Stay safe.

Rockey Burkholder

6468 Comanche St

Bonners Ferry, ID 83805

(1) comment


Recording an oral history as they travel would make for a wonderful read.

Just a thought.

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