Continuing memories from Thanksgiving, the Streicher family recalls “The Gravy Train”.
It started about 17 years ago when my niece Alexandria needed service hours for her confirmation. My mother-in-law Jean Streicher helped with the Thanksgiving dinner at St Mary’s for many years and suggested Alex and the other 3 youngest grandchildren to help. Jean made a morning of it. She picked them up on Thanksgiving morning, took them out for breakfast, they attended Mass, and then worked together making gravy. Jean would get the water boiling and the kids would make sure it was lump free. For the next few years, the others also needed service hours, so the tradition started. Over the years the kids were not always willing, but they knew it was important to their grandma and they had fun together. They called themselves the Gravy Train.
As the years passed and Jean wasn’t able to help as much, her 4 grandkids made sure the tradition continued and picked up their grandma for breakfast.
Jean has since passed and the kids – maybe not all of them – have continued to make gravy each Thanksgiving, even pulling in their new spouses.
Helping those in need was always a passion of Jean’s and she instilled that in her grandchildren. They cherish the memories of those Thanksgiving mornings and making gravy.
Celeste Streicher, August 2023
The original Gravy Train Crew: Samantha Zawodni, Jean, Alexandria Zawadni & Mike and Sabrina Streicher (circa 2015)