Anna Marie Hile was born December 3, 1916 to Warren (1866-1953) and Theresa Rettig Hile (1887-1962) in East Brady, Pa. Her maternal grandparents were August (b 1847) and Barbara Rush Rettig (b. 1847 in Pa). August was born near Hamburg Germany and came to the USA accompanied only by his brother, also a teenager. August landed in NYC and enlisted in the army. At the end of the Civil War he got a job laying railroad track in Western Pa where he met Barbara. Theresa was the fourth of their six children. AM’s paternal grandparents were Simon (1831-1912) and Rachel Layton Hile (1843-1918). Simon was shot in the hand in the Civil war. Warren was the third of nine children.
Warren tended the draft animals that hauled coal out of the mine. He played the fiddle (hence the nickname “Cloggy”. He wore starched white shirts. Theresa raised the children, baked, cleaned and took in laundry. They never spoke after their last child was born though they shared a house and she cooked and cleaned for him. AM was sixth of eight children. Her sibs were:
- Merrill (1903-1975) Married Mary Kelly and had Nat and Mary Theresa
- Agnes (1905-1966) married Paddy McLaughlin and had Paddy and Terry
- Frances (Hank)(b. 1907) married Cora Sayers, then Nellie Wilson with whom he had Elizabeth (Bunny), Tom and Chris, and then Phyllis Snow with whom he had Tim
- Rosalie(1911-1995) who married Guy Bish and had Jeri, then Ray Peck with whom she had Tim and Ginny
- James (1913-1951) never married. Bomber gunner in WW II. Died in auto accident
- Anna Marie
- Elizabeth (Bessie) (1919-1943) Never married. Died in Bicycle accident
- Aldine (1930-2015) Married Tom Lipinski
Guy Bish, Rhody’s husband, introduced George and AM. They eloped to West Virginia in October of 1936. They rented a farm in West Sunbury and George worked in the Annadale limestone mine. Mike was born in 1937, then Robert (Buddy) in 1939. Buddy died within a year. John was born in 1940. They lived there six years until George took a job at Koppers and got drafted. AM moved to an apartment in East Brady which was overrun with mice. So she moved to the apartment above Pete Henry’s garage for a year or so till George got home. They then bought an old McClain house on E. First St. for $4500. The house needed considerable repair and updating. They worked on it the rest of AM’s life. The coal stove in the living room was replaced with a coal furnace in the basement. The kitchen was redone. New water system was put in. A new room and bath were added. House was scraped, painted and reroofed. AM made a wonderful home from that old house. Mary Anne was born in 1946, Dennis in 1948, Joseph in 1950, and Andrew in 1954. AM took pride in her appearance and kept herself trim and attractive.
AM life was taken up caring for her husband, kids and house. Yet she managed to keep up various friendships with family and other women. She seldom went anywhere with friends. They came to her, or they talked on the phone. She didn’t socialize with George because George’s friends were either workmates or dog enthusiasts. She was never accepted by George’s family so her visits there were short and formal.
She did have a job at the school correcting papers. She liked to read and encouraged her kids to read. She was almost obsessed with having her kids get a college education and get out of town.
She was a good baker; bread, cakes and cookies being her specialties. She was a meat and potatoes kind of cook. Always lots of nutritious food. Nothing fancy.
AM was not overtly religious though she did attend Mass regularly and saw to it that the kids attended catechism, etc. She encouraged some of them to be altar servers.
When she was diagnosed with breast cancer about age 46 she underwent extensive surgeries and brutal radiation as the cancer would go into remission then appear somewhere else. She had some good years after the diagnosis and traveled to visit her kids.
She died at her home of 30 years in 1976 at age 60.