Chapter one: I was born, on September 11, 1946, in Comanche, Texas, just about 9 months after my dad came back from the Pacific. He was in the Navy, and proud of it. He was also proud to be a Texan, so I had to be born in the old home town. Three weeks later I was on a train to Key West, Florida, accompanied by my mother and big sister Gwen. Over the next fifteen years we lived in Charleston, S.C., Norfolk, Va., Dallas, and San Diego, where Dad retired. We moved back to Texas, naturally, where I graduated from South Oak Cliff High School. I went for two years to Navarro College, then finished my B.A. in Psychology at Texas Tech. On September 2, 1967, I married Don Alan Wetzel, who grew up in Houston but whose family was also from Comanche. After we graduated from Tech, I earned a P.H.T. (Putting Hubby Through), working at Goodwill Industries and the Waco V.A. Hospital while Don went to law school at Baylor University. Don stayed one step ahead of the draft board – his lottery # was 26, we knew it was just a matter of time. In Feb. 1970 he joined the Army Judge Advocate General Corps. We were stationed at Fort Eustis, Va., where our first son, Christopher Baylor Wetzel, was born. Next we went to Bangkok, Thailand, where we had lots of adventures, bought lots of cool stuff, and had our second son, Jeffrey Alan.
We moved to Houston in June, 1974. Don clerked for a federal judge, joined Baker & Botts Law Firm for a short while, worked for other firms and for himself. I started graduate school in the Anthropology Dept. of Rice University, and our marriage broke up.
I’ve been lots of places, done lots of interesting things. I met Arlo Guthrie in 1989, and I can say he’s a friend of mine. I have been to Kinky Friedman’s ranch in the Texas Hill Country, and when I see him around he knows my name. I am proud to say that Nancy Parker-Simon and her husband Tony, who runs kinky’s Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch, are good friends. They are two of the finer human beings I’ve ever known.
I did not finish my Ph.D. work, due to funding and personal issues. I started as a student worker in the Fondren Library at Rice, later became a staff member, later still got a degree in Library and Information Science, and 25 years later I am still at Rice.
I love travel, music, specifically folk music and that old time rock ‘n roll, and reading, writing, and reviewing mysteries. I am proud of my sons – Baylor is a computer geek and is working on a Ph.D. in Artifical Intelligence in Minnesota. Jeff is a musician and worship minister at a church in Sugar Land. Sometimes I wonder how 2 kids with the same parents can turn out so different … I am still close to Baylor’s ex-wife Lisa, and I adore their 3 daughters, Ashley, age 13, and twins Amber & Autumn, just turned 12. I love Jeff’s step-daughter Maddie and his wife Ronna too.