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Happy-Go-Rickey: 1960

Happy-Go-Rickey: 1960

    UPDATE: It's October 2, 1960, and the boy is "doomed youngster" Rickey Stowell.

In a sequel to this photo, we're back in Richmond, California, circa 1960. Several 3-packs of "100% Combed Cotton Boys' Briefs" are being handed over. There must be a story here, but we don't know what it is. 4x5 acetate negative from the News Photo Archive. View full size.


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I understand

In 1967 my son was born with the same health issue and prognosis as Rickey. We were told he wouldn't live long enough to begin first grade. He made it to his 35th birthday before the barely functioning kidney was removed and he went on dialysis. Shortly after his 47th birthday he received a donor kidney.

He just had his 55th birthday and he is doing OK.

The Patch

I'm looking at that patch on the officer's shoulder. Is he with the Angel Police or what?

Rickey Stowell 1952-2009

George Ferencz and other commenters reveal the story behind these photos on our Facebook page. The year is 1960 and the boy is "Doomed Youngster" Rickey Stowell.

I wonder as I wander

As my eyes moved over each face and fluttering hand in this photo, I made special note of three things. One: The lady whose face is partially visible in the top left corner appears to be crying. Or perhaps only perspiring. She even has a tissue crumpled in her left hand, while I'm pretty sure that's her right hand resting on the grinning boy's right arm. Two: The little blond girl whose eyes peek just above the stack of briefs may be thinking something along the lines of, "George Bailey, I'll love you till the day I die!" Three: The police officer needs a good dentist.

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