I tell stories inspired by the lives around me.
In my family’s photo albums there are pictures of James Francis Kearns, my grandfather. He died before I was born, but those pictures reveal little details about him. He was the waist gunner on a B-17 nicknamed “Miss Fit” in the European theater of World War II. His friends called him Red, the color of his hair before he went bald. After the war he came home, settled in Savannah, and raised a family of three that included my mother. He worked in a paper mill for the rest of his life. He sometimes wore a comically terrible toupée to cover his baldness.
When I see those pictures of him, part of me wonders if sometimes the people we miss most in life are the ones we never met, and all of me wonders what his story was. I wonder what most people’s stories are. Everyone has one. Miss Fit Pictures tells them.
For more on me specifically, this article is a decent summary.