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Grandpa, Were You Young Once?: A look at who we were, what we did, what we learned and how times have changed for our grandkids Paperback – Large Print, April 11, 2012

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 253 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 11, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1468089706
  • ISBN-13: 978-1468089707
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,390,503 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

The author, referred to as Old Bill, having lived seventy years has a broad beam both anatomically and in experience regarding memories of the golden years. This is Old Bill's third book, but first on this subject. Old Bill has taught many senior courses in "Writing and Organizing Your Memories" at Senior Centers, YMCAs and other organizations. These courses produced three things. First, was the absolute joy on the face of seniors as their personal memories came rushing back. Secondly, Old Bill learned more from the seniors than he imagined and some of the audiences special "moments" are incorporated in this book. Third, he learned that organizing and prioritizing memories is the biggest stumbling block for most seniors-who have hidden away, some amazing stories that need to be shared. Inspiring memory telling is one reason for Bill's book; Bill believes that helping seniors recall and tell their stories helps their current family and generations yet to come. Old Bill's free website,, has many stories that seniors contributed that help jog senior memories and can even help with accuracy. The website also provides a collection of tips on writing memories that can help the reader. These "tips" were developed in the course of the seminars and focus on organizing personal memories. Old Bill believes that hidden in our memories are the enduring values and lessons we have learned in a lifetime and the hope for our children's future.

More About the Author

About the Author
Old Bill, having lived seventy-nine years, has a broad beam, both anatomically and in life experience. Over the years I lived on both coasts of the U.S. and in the heartland, enjoying both small town life and the bustle of large cities. I also sprinkled in several years of working and studying abroad. All of which emphasized the incredible changes we have seen in our lifetime and how difficult it has become for us to relate to the younger generations, who think it has always been this way. They seem to think that we were never young, never faced these same issues or felt these same emotions. Of course the names and shapes of people and things have changed, but the human drama is pretty constant. This book is my answer; it is a grandfather's use of his memories to debunk "old-fashioned" and emphasize the importance of life's basic values- but in a fun grandfatherly way.

The "Grandpa, Were You Young Once" book project started quite simply, nearly five years ago, an idea born of the desire to give some of my success back to the community. The original idea was to help seniors get more use out of computers by creating information, formats and tools that they could relate to and find useful. In the course of the lectures I was overwhelmed by the uniqueness of each senior's life and the richness of stories hidden in most people's minds. In one class I had an RAF fighter pilot from WWII who had never talked about his experiences. In another I had a retired principal from one of the toughest schools in California, but the most interesting might have been a retired cleaning woman who had put three kids though college. Each one had a unique story and lessons of living to share that should not be simply lost in time. They were the stories and values that we learned and that future generations need, unless they want to learn them the hard way too.

From this experience came my "Grandfather" book, the third book I have written and surely the one that will bring the most pleasure; an easy guess, as both prior books were textbooks. The stories and examples in the book are my personal examples but they are simply tools to organize and trigger a larger number of the reader's unique memories. The book also allows room for the reader's notes to be added and then the entire book becomes a family legacy, or if the reader prefers, simply a wonderful source of entertainment.

This book is who we were, what makes a life a life, and the values and lessons learned which created the abundance our children enjoy today. We learned many lessons the hard way. Hopefully by passing on our memories, we can help our kids avoid the same pitfalls we faced and teach them to enjoy the truly wonderful moments along the way. At a minimum, I hope the book will make the reader feel better about today.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
William C. Gould is that magic age of 70, a time when reflections on the past take on a special significance. But Gould has done something about that state of reminiscence and has been working with Senior Citizen groups, offering insights and appreciations for the Golden Years that are too often fraught with concentrating of the failing of the physical body and not enough time on treasuring the beauties life has offered that should indeed be shared with progeny. He also maintains a website to offer adjuncts to memory preservation and sharing that is as fine a psychological exercise as therapy for the approaching dementia.

The book is rich in `remember thises' and `don't forget that's' that make the book as entertaining a trip back to the past as any before us today. It is phrased as a conversation with a grandchild who wants to investigate what Grandpa did as a kid, the tings he loved in food, movies, vacations, fears, toys, clothes, then a section of what school was like back then - an opportunity for some philosophizing about current modes of education/computers/social media, and finally an honest plea for Grandpa to relive the Good Old Days - the stuff of memories that prove so important to children who desperately need a connection to the past - both recent and `ancient'; what was the military like, jobs, cars, courtship and marriage and the entry of the children who were then to proceed to repeat the cycle.

And perhaps that is what makes this so very accessible and simple book so warm. This is a look at the past with the added techniques of the future to reevaluate it. There is a lot of encouragement and support in this book and one that should be enjoyed alone before passing the experience on to grandkids.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ezed on September 6, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book did what it must be intended to do. It brought you back to the various stages of your own life and let you remind yourself of your favorite toy or activity. From your earliest memories to your young married life, it let you relive some of the great events and moments of your life. Read it slow and enjoy the memories.
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