Cheryl wrote the following email to a friend to explain the history and background of whoopadiddee:
Last year was the first time that I and members of my extended family decided to participate in the fund raising for the Sunflower REV IT UP festivities. I had been attending the yearly symposiums for at least 10 years. I thoroughly enjoy the symposiums… I sincerely hope that you bring those back when the COVID-19 virus goes away. I always learn something new regarding Parkinson’s Disease… and I always meet many kind and generous people. Anyway, last year, my sister, Janice, was suffering more than usual in her battle with PD. So her youngest son decided to bring her to Cincinnati so that she could take advantage of all the activities and, perhaps learn some things that would help her. Janice and her family lived near Tampa, FL, so this was not an easy trip for her. But Jan stayed with our other sister, Nancy, and we all took turns helping with transportation, food, etc. When it was time for the symposium, some of the younger people in our family (we have a real large family and extended family — and all but a few of us live in the Greater Cincinnati area).
Well, suddenly many of the younger family members… especially teenagers and young adults… disappeared for a short time. Now I’m going to pause here for a minute to give you some additional data. A few weeks before the symposium, I received a couple of phone calls from my daughter, Anna. Anna is a high school teacher and she is very talented. Another part of this story is the fact that my beloved Mother died in April 2018. So behind the scenes, Anna was asking all kinds of questions and being very secretive. For instance, Anna wanted to verify that her Grandma’s favorite was bright red (it was). Anna asked a lot of questions — she has always been that way. Finally, I could stand it no longer and I asked Anna what she was up to.My Mom always liked to take pictures, especially of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. We all knew this. We celebrated Mom’s birthday every year, and we rented a hall in the St. Bernard Municipal Building for this celebration. Our Dad died of lung cancer when he was only 54 years old, but many of our cousins, aunts and uncles from Dad’s side of the family as well as from Mom’s side of the family came to Mom’s party every year. So we had a big celebration for Mom’s birthday every year. We usually had over 100 guests at that party. And when she was still feeling pretty well, she would go around the hall taking photos of her family. At the time of her death, Mom had 6 children, 20 grandchildren, 30 great-grandchildren, and several great-great-grandchildren. Of course, there have been several more babies born in the last few years — I’ve lost count!
Now, back to the t-shirts. Anna took the information that I gave her and went to a t-shirt shop and had those t-shirts made. Torbeck was Dad’s last name — so that explains the name on the back of the shirt. Now for the Whoopadiddee! As any good photographer knows, you need to get everybody to smile for the photo. So when my Mom was ready to take a photo, she would yell (or she would get someone with a loud voice to yell) “ONE… TWO… THREE… and we would all yell Whoopadiddee! And it worked every time, because it’s hard to say Whoopadiddee! and keep a straight face.
So there you have it!! I think it’s a great story and, best of all, it’s true. I loved my Mother and I miss her every day.
As a side note, last year, when we were distributing those t-shirts, a channel-5 reporter, Richard Chiles, was walking around Yeatman’s Cove with his photographer, looking for a story. As he came upon our group, he asked us about the t-shirts, and we explained. He thought it was a nice story, and it became part of his report that day.So you just never know what might happen when you begin to tell family stories…
There you are, Allison. You might have a use for our story some day. It’s all true.
In her own words, this is Cheryl’s story of the whoopadiddee. I often tease her about writing an epistle instead of an email but that is her style.
Whoopadiddee for Parkinson’s and team SMILE!