Delma Lucille Hebbe
The Children of William and Mattie Hebbe:
Delma Lucille was born 11 October 1904 near the community of Potter,
Garfield County, Oklahoma. She died 6 December 1919 near Dover,
Kingfisher County, Oklahoma. Based on the number of postcards
sent to her she touched several lives in her brief fifteen years. Those
who knew her well, such as her sister Irene and sister-in-law Fern, a
half-century after her death often spoke of her as if she had only
recently left them. [D3] Clearly, Delma's death was a traumatic event
for the Hebbes. One of the last photos taken of her appears
above; additional photos are here. She
had juvenile diabetes at a time when little was about the disease,
its cause or how to control it. Niece Glendon Hebbe Starr
recalled stories of Delma going to the attic to snack on pure sugar.
Had Delma lived another four or five years, the new availability of
commercial insulin might have saved her.
She attended classes in Hennessey, rather than Dover, and graduated
with the Eighth Grade Class in 1918. It appears she was a B+ student.
She had private lessons in piano. (See school documents here.) A letter to aunt Lida
written six weeks before Delma died shows her proficiency in writing a
formal letter. Among her keepsakes is this essay,
apparently a school assignment, titled: My Favorite Place :
One mile to the north of Dover on the right of the
road leading to Hennessey, you will find a Cedar drive leading to a
large two story house painted white, surrounded by large beautiful
trees and lawn.
Just a few feet to the south
stands a tall windmill that pumps water into a moss covered tank where
the horses and cows come to quench their thirst. I love to watch them.
Also the fish playing in the water. When the tank gets full, it flows
on down the hill and irrigates the garden.
To the north lies the wheat
fields that are very pretty in the winter time. To the East is
the woods. I love to take a book and stroll out and sit under the shade
and study Mother nature – Watch the cows as they feed upon the
grass and the squirrels as they hop from limb to limb and listen to the
song of the birds.
This place is my Home and Mother is the Queen.
William and Mattie made sure that their youngest child would have a fitting funeral. The memorial record and the family’s hand-written thank you note are indicative of the era.