I lived down the street from Gail in east Whittier when we were children. I stayed at her house when her mom, Peggy, was my baby sitter after school for a year or so as my mom worked. I was the age of her younger sister, Mary (called Linda at the time) but was friends with all three Bonfanti kids. Gail was always sweet and kind and beloved by all. As she was three years older, I didn't get to hang out with her individually much, but one exceptional day she and I were playing at my house. We were perhaps 8 and 11. It was nearing dinner time, and we were having my favorite dinner, Anderson's Spit Pea soup. I asked my parents if Gail could stay for dinner, and she called home to ask hers. All said yes, and I was excited to have this special guest for dinner.
I was telling Gail how great the soup would be, with its little tiny bits of bacon. Well, it was a Friday in the 1950's and the Bonfantis were good Catholics. At the mention of "bacon" Gail became concerned about eating meat on Friday. I told her it was just a tiny bit, but she called home for guidance and didn't stay. I was very disappointed, but respected what she did.
Gail was perhaps the nicest person I've ever known. I doubt there was anyone who didn't like her. Not having seen her in over 50 years, I was happy to catch up with her on Facebook a bit near the end and see that she remained beautiful and a wonderful person all her life.
Well, even though she didn't stay for dinner that day, it must have made an impression on her - he made split pea soup (w/the bacon!) throughout my childhood. :) Thank you for sharing that story!