Family Memories Revisited

Memories of Ab & Nina
Vic Vacquier

	I'd love to hear any stories you might 
	remember about Ab Bonine.  I have a website 
	on the family ancestry.  I have included a 
	'memories' revisited section, and I'd be 
	appreciative of any memories you might like 
	to share.  I'd love to hear more about the 
	time back then.
	Ab was my grandfather.  I was three in 1955, 
	so I don't remember too much about that time.

	Well, I was 14-15 years old in the summer of 
	1955. My father's graduate student at Socorro, 
	Paul Kintzinger, married Molly Jane Summers 
	in the summer of 1954, and that's how my family 
	came to know the Summers. Henry Lee and Clyde 
	Summers and their 5 girls lived 5 miles south 
	of Ab and Nina. They had homesteaded there in 
	the early 1930s when it was very wild. My 
	father and I went deer hunting on the Summers' 
	Ranch in November 1954 and I shot an enormous 
	buck which Bonny Lee and Evelyn Summers packed 
	out for me back to the ranch house.  I was 14 
	and I remember that Ab and Nina came to dinner 
	and that Ab was full of life and really a good 
	time to be with.

	The summer of 1955 I came back and worked for 
	Henry Lee Summers and we would see Ab and 
	Nina about every week for Saturday night dinner, 
	at either ranch. I remember at the end of the 
	summer all the neighbors got together and rounded 
	up all the Bonine cattle and did the branding 
	routine, with the men working the cattle and the 
	ladies making a fantastic lunch and dinner. I 
	don't remember any of the names of the other 
	neighbors. Etched in my mind is the picture of  
	two brothers, about 70 years old, big, straight, 
	men on light colored horses, almost like twins, 
	with their 30/30s under the saddle, their blue 
	bandanas and big white hats. Henry Lee Summers 
	rode a horse named Punch, that he would not let 
	anyone else ride. The two old brothers, H.L. 
	and I were a team, chasing the more wild 
	individual cows and calves back to the ranch.  
	It was a real blast of a good time for a 15 year 
	old kid. Jim McCord had given Punch to Henry Lee. 
	Punch was a giant pinto with an ill temper. The 
	McCord's lived about 10 miles to the northeast of 
	the Bonines. I remember the good humor that Ab 
	and Nina were always in. But that's about all--
	-- I'm 61 now and much of that memory is gone.

	As I remember, Ab and Nina had children in 
	Albuquerque who would come out to the ranch 
	often.  Then, around 1956,1957--Ab and Nina sold 
	out and moved to Alamosa, Colorado and bought a 
	farm. (I might have this all wrong). Anyway, I 
	know they left the ranch 35 miles north of Pietown 
	and moved to a farm in Colorado.  I believe that 
	the King Ranch bought the Bonine Ranch.

	I saw The Summers in 1957 when I was moving to 
	San Diego and stayed with them one week. Then 
	again, 16 years later, I stopped by for a week 
	in July 1973 with my bride. Henry Lee, Clyde and 
	Elaine and Evelyn's daughter were there and we 
	took a lot of pictures which I have on the wall 
	at home today. I never saw any of them again.  
	I heard from Molly Jane Kinsinger once in about 
	1985, she had divorced Paul and lived in 
	Albuquerque. She and Paul had lived in Los Alamos 
	for years and Paul had worked at the lab and Molly 
	had worked at the newspaper. In 1992 I ran into 
	Paul completely by accident at Cochiti Pueblo and 
	he was living there at Cochiti Lake in retirement. 
	He told me that Henry Lee Summers had died a few 
	years before and that one of his daughters was 
	singing in New York City.

	In the summer of 2000 I passed by Pietown and 
	found the old cemetery in back of the old gas 
	station. There I found the grave of Henry Lee 
	Summers, he had died at age 80 in 1990. His mother 
	and father were also buried there (I remember them). 
	That's about the end of my story.  Sorry I can't 
	tell you more about the Bonines.  The Summers girls 
	could tell you more stories and people in Pietown 
	might know how to find them. 

	Sincerely,   Vic Vacquier

    Thank you, Vic.  It's always nice to hear about my 
    grandparents from a different perspective than my own.  
    You're right that they sold the ranch and moved on to 
    Colorado; however it was to Bayfield.  How nice it can 
    be to revisit the past.  Sincerely, Lynette