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Randall Davis Barfield

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Ann Dunham: Busy serving others and educating her kids
By Randall Davis Barfield
Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Rated "G" by the Author.

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Stanley Ann Dunham was born on an Army base during World War II in Kansas, USA, on November 29, 1942. That’s because her father, Stanley, was in the US Army at the time. Ann would live to be nearly 53 years old. Her mother and father worked at different jobs in different states. When Ann was more or less 13, she started studying at Mercer Island High School, near Seattle, Washington. She was a smart student and learned there to challenge many traditional beliefs. Later, the family ended up in Hawaii and stayed. Ann began studying at the University of Hawaii. While there she met Barack Obama Sr., an African student from Kenya, who she married in 1961. They soon had a son, Barack Jr.  Ann stopped studying for a while, but later she would continue, even with a baby.
Barack Sr. got a scholarship to Harvard University. He went there to study economics. After that, he never came back to live with little Barack and Ann. Instead, he went back to his country and began working. He started a new family in Africa. Later, in 1982, he was killed in a serious automobile accident. Barack Jr. was about 21 years old then.
Ann got married again. Her second husband was Lolo Soetoro, an Indonesian. He and Ann had a daughter in 1970 who was named Maya Kassandra. Maya would one day return to Hawaii and teach high school there.
Ann eventually visited and lived in more than 8 countries. She was an anthropologist. They study humans and human culture. In Indonesia Ann was one of the first people to try to get bank loans for poor people struggling with small businesses. One time she worked for the Ford Foundation. Service to others was what Ann thought was important in life, according to her daughter, Maya. A good education for Barack and Maya was also very important to Ann. Many times in Indonesia she woke little Barack up before sunrise and gave him the English lessons he couldn’t get at his school.  She also helped both kids with their homework because she had studied mathematics, among other subjects.
Ann worked happily in Indonesia for many years. She was always interested in village crafts and industries. However, in 1994 she discovered she was sick. She returned to Hawaii so doctors could check her. Now she was home again with her mom. Sadly, Ann died in November, 1995, 3 weeks before her 53rd birthday. She had earned a total of 3 university degrees. She was Dr. Ann Sutoro. Barack Jr., now grown, once said the values his mother had taught him continue to be important in his life. He and his sister, Maya, went to a cliff and scattered Ann’s ashes into the Pacific Ocean. Nearly 13 years after Ann’s death, Barack Jr. won the election (November 4, 2008) to be the 44th President of the United States of America. How happy many people were in Kenya, Indonesia, and in the Americas. Some of them danced and sang.   

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Reviewed by Bonnie May 11/12/2008
Thank you Randall, I knew some of this but not nearly enough of our new Presidents past. I feel I know him a little better thanks to this beautiful write. Love and hugs, Bonnie

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Randall Davis Barfield

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