Sometimes genealogy discoveries can be undesirable, embarrassing, and even repugnant. With that said, it almost sickens me to report that I just learned that I am related to Bonnie Parker of Bonnie & Clyde gangster infamy.
I would like to think that any normal person would regret a kinship to this despicable murderer but it is even a heavier burden for me …. You see, I am a retired Texas police officer and my father was a former Texas Highway Patrolman from the 1950’s. When he attended the patrol academy in 1953 the instructors still talked about the 1934 Barrow Gang killings of two Texas Highway Patrolmen near Grapevine Texas and how Bonnie personally is alleged to have “finished off” one of the young patrolmen. It was a crime so heinous that the head of the Texas Department of Public Safety immediately offered a $1,000 reward for “the dead bodies of the Grapevine slayers” — not their capture, just their bodies! Dad so despised the pair that I (still in high school) was forbidden to see the 1967 film, Bonnie and Clyde, starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway.
At this particular point in time, I cannot specifically detail my relationship data to Bonnie Parker but I am informed that the proof has been verified with DNA evidence. When the family individual names are available, I will post them accordingly to my online tree.
Someone once said, “You can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family!” How sadly true …………
An Addendum …. I’ve long been aware that I was related to the Woodson family who arrived on the Virginia coast a year before the Mayflower made the trip. Well, I’ve now confirmed the relationship which is the ‘good news’ … unfortunately (and this is the ‘bad news’), being kin to the Woodson Family means I can now identify a new 6th cousin 4x removed as one, Jesse Woodson James. Obviously, we all know this individual as the infamous outlaw, Jesse James! This plot just keeps getting better because along with kinship to Jesse, I also can now claim his outlaw brother, Frank James …. and, hopefully I am wrong but I seem to recall that Jesse & Frank were kin to the Youngers, the Daltons, and to Johnny Ringo ….