Life Sketch of Howard Frost Rawlins
(By Arlie Matkin Bodily Rawlins Matkin)
Howard was born March 13, 1909 in Lewiston, Utah to Jasper Alfonzo and Cora May Burbank Rawlins. He was the fourth child in a family of eight children.
For the first eight or ten years of his childhood he was very sickly. He had pneumonia at least once a year. It was a serious thing in those days and his mother would take care of him. He used to talk about having to sleep out on the old screen porch in the cold weather, they thought that it helped.
When he was in the 3rd grade the teacher and principal wanted to have him and Arminta Hogan skip the 3rd grade and go into the 4th, but his mother thought it best to keep him in the 3rd grade because of his physical health. Arminta went on into the 4th grade. She wasn't happy because she wasn't at the top of the class so her folks had her put back in the 3rd. His mother was glad she kept him there.
When he was in High School he played the Coronet in the band. He was the first in his family to graduate.
While he was still young he fell from a horse and was very badly hurt. They had a white horse named Tops, that had been a race horse. His folks needed something from the hardware store so they called and told them what they needed. He was sent for it on this horse. Someone at the store met him when he got there. When he turned the horse around to go home she thought it was a race. She raced all the way home (they lived 1/2 mile south of town). Just as he got in front of the house he fell off. He was carried in the house and Dr. Parkinson was called. Mae remembers the scared feeling she had. It was a long time before he was up and able to play again. He had a broken collar bone, broken ribs, and a punctured lung. A child now days would be taken to the hospital, but he was cared for at home by a loving sweet mother who took the very best of care of him. When he was a teenager he fell when the horse fell and he had a scar on his forehead. His forehead was split open. He always had a scar after that. He could stand by a horse and hold on the mane and swing himself onto the horses back. Mae thought that it was great, but she could never quite make it like Howard did.
They lived by the old railroad track and would ride the street car over to North Cache High School and then catch it and go home again. In the winter and when it was cold and stormy all kinds of kids would go in their house and wait for it to come, quite often it would be late.
The boys and neighbor kids used to have fun playing out in the old barn. They would swing from a cable that they used to pull the hay up in the barn. They got hurt sometimes. They always rode the calves and they had some pretty good times from what they said. They worked very hard, their dad was unable to anything as he was crippled up with rheumatism and diabetes, but he would tell how and help them as much as he could.
He was always kind and sweet to his mother and when she got sick it was him who she asked for. He was very slow to anger and would wait until he had time to think about it before he'd say anything, by then he wouldn't say much.
In 1939 when he went to get his physical to on a Mission the doctor who checked him said it was a miracle he was alive because of the scar tissue in his lungs. He was ordained a Seventy before he went on his Mission. He went in May 1939 to the Central States Mission. He was a very good missionary. He was released a few weeks early to accompany his companion's body home. His companion lived in southern Utah. It was a great shock to him. He hadn't been sick very long.
I went with him for two or three months before he left and then we went together until November and we were married. We were married during the depression and World War II was raging, money was scarce. I worked in the Telephone Office and he worked for Howard Shuldberg in the winter, breaking horses. He loved horses. He was thrown from one and nearly lost his life again. I remember how frightened I was. We had half of the farm and Lin had the other half. He worked hard to pay of the debts and didn't get any help. He also had to pay each of the others their share. We lived in part of the house, (the two west rooms and used the bathroom when we weren't locked out) later we lived in all the house for a while when Charlene was little then we moved into a house down by Kay the Jap's for a while then we got a chance to buy a sugar factory house for $300.00 and moved it to where it is today. We had horses, cows, pigs, chickens, cats.
We built an upstairs in the house, it was small, only three rooms but was a mansion to us.
We got a chance to move to Heber, Utah and worked on the Wasatch Stake Farm. We enjoyed it down there, but the man he worked with was so foul mouthed that he couldn't take it so after four years we moved back home. While there we made new friends. He worked in the timber for the Sweeneys that summer and he cut his left leg with the chain saw very badly (about 5 inches long) and he had to drive his car back to Heber about 60 or 70 miles. No one could believe it because of how deep it was and that it didn't bleed very much.
One time when we were living in Heber the kids liked to play in the car and it was parked in front of the house on a steep grade on the side of the drive way. Somehow the car slipped out of gear and began to roll to the steep side part. Howard raced across the fields and the road to reach the car in time to save the kids from very serious trouble.
In the fall on 1954 he got a job hauling milk and made good, but a dirty trick was pulled later and the route was given to Smith (we all hated him). He hauled milk for nine years before this happened. Then he got a job testing cows milk in 1962 and with the help of Ann, Beverly and Lyle he did very good.
In July 1955 we started to remodel our house, we built a large living room on the north and a utility room on the back to that made us a lot more room.
One time after Charlene and Sherm moved back to Snowville, Utah, we decided to celebrate all the birthdays in April so we all got ready and took off not even the kids knew where we were going, it was to be a surprise. We had made plans to meet Charlene and Sherm down at the Tropical Cafe in Brigham City, Utah. On the way we had trouble when a rear wheel came off the driver's side of the car and each time he got it jacked up the jack would slip. Finally he sent Ann and Beverly over to see if they could find someone to help us. This was down by Manuta and it was pitch dark. It just happened that they went to a place and the man ran the service station so he came and helped us get on our way. It was awful no one knew where we were going and had no way of letting Charlene and Sherm know what had happened. When we got there they were almost ready to go back home. After we got our selves back together again we had a very good time. We never went anywhere again without telling someone.
He knew the scriptures and never had to search them.
He had a bump on his forehead and when Dr. Scablund took it off it was a fatty tissue and had he known he wouldn't have touched it, it made him very sick and was an awful ordeal.
On March 4, 1965 was the beginning of the end. A little girl ran a yield sign and hit him and Lyle. It broke his jaw in four places and his left hip was shattered and he also had internal injuries. He went through two terrible operations each lasting 7 or 8 hours, one on his hip and the other on his jaw. His jaw was wired shut and he was fed through the veins. Saturday March 13 was his birthday and he had got to have a milk shake and could get a straw in his mouth. He was unable to talk and he seemed to have so many things he wanted to say. On March 14, at about 8:05 in the evening a blood clot hit him and he was gone. I knew it was the will of the Lord after all he had gone through. It was hard to accept but I knew that I had to go on, which I did. I was glad I'd had him for that many years and a lot of sweet memories to think about.