1928—Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic, Henri Matisse painted “Seated Odalisque,” Jack Sharkey became world heavyweight boxing champion, Herbert Hoover was elected president of the United States in a landslide victory over Al Smith, George Gershwin wrote “An American in Paris,” Sonja Henie won her first Olympic ice-skating gold medal, the country’s Number One pop song was “Makin’ Whoopee,” the Jazz Age was drawing to a close—and my parents were divorced, after 15 years of marriage.
I was six years old. At the time, I was devastated.
I loved both my mother and my dad very much.
I remember my dad, Byron Albert Mayo, as a fun-loving man of integrity and good common sense – with a joyful Irish sense of humor.
When my mother left him and filed for divorce in the summer of 1928, he was head timekeeper for a Portland, Oregon, construction company.
At that time, my mother, Dellavina—everyone called her Della—was a vivacious, ambitious young woman. She wanted more. Much more. With the divorce, she soon discovered she had settled for less.