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People Break Down The Strangest Stories They Ever Heard From Their Grandparents

Reddit user SWTmary asked: 'What are the strangest stories you've heard from your grandparents?'

grandmother teaching two grandchildren in the woods
Nikoline Arns on Unsplash

Our elders have wisdom to impart from the lessons they've learned from life.

But some of them also have really interesting stories to tell. They might be your grandparents now, but they were kids, teens and young adults once too.

If you think of all the crazy things you've done, chances are your elders have done similar things, too.

Reddit user SWTmary asked:

"What are the strangest stories you've heard from your grandparents?"

Happily Never After

"My grandfather was best man at his friend's wedding. The friend came from money. The bride came from money."

"One of the bridesmaids (the bride's cousin, who happened to come from a poor branch of the family, and who was looked down upon by everyone...including the bride) interrupted the wedding."

"She asked to speak with the groom. The groom then called the wedding off. Apparently they had been having an affair for years and she waited until the wedding to tell him she was pregnant."

"The groom wasn't too broken up about it (since he could barely stand the bride) until the next day when he found out she was NOT pregnant."

"Don't know what happened after that but, about a year later, this guy asked my grandfather to be best man again. This time for his wedding to his ex-fiancee's money-less, wedding interrupting cousin."

"Most of the bride's not money-less family did NOT attend. But they are still happily married to this day."

~ _hootyowlscissors

A Last Hurrah?

"My grandpa took a girl out on Saturday night, made a date for the next Saturday."

She got married that week and didn’t tell him until her husband met him at the door."

~ Sad_Confection5032

Lend An Ear

"My granddad only had one ear."

"When I was little, he told me he’d been eavesdropping at a door when he was young, and the door got slammed on it."

"He told that’s me why it was important to never try to eavesdrop on others, because bad things could happen."

"I. Was. Horrified."

"I learned much, much later that he’d had it amputated due to skin cancer."

~ Readsumthing

Kindness Counts

"My grandparents were from Algeria, Africa during the Algerian war. Being French, they were caught between a rock and a hard place; being kicked out of their home and told to go back to France, while the French government and its people wanted nothing to do with the 'Pieds Noirs'."

* Pied Noir: a person of European origin who lived in Algeria during French rule, especially one who returned to Europe after Algeria was granted independence.

"Anyways, the story my Grandma told me: during the years leading up to the war, she had a neighbour who she would regularly look after their children for, and even cook meals for them."

"When the war happened and they were forced to evacuate, she found herself caught in an alley, pregnant, and with her 2 infant sons at gunpoint by a group of militants. She closed her eyes and hugged her children when she heard 'Stop! It's Madame Poulet!'."

"It was her neighbour that had recognized her and stopped her from being executed on the spot. She was then told to leave and never come back or 'she will not be offered the same mercy'."

"I'll always be thankful that my grandma is the sweetest, kindest person I've ever known, and it saved her life (and by extension, mine!)."

~ Titmonkey1

Battle Scar

"My grandpa had this elaborate story about how he ended up with a giant pit of a wound on his foot."

"He claimed he had gotten shot in the foot at boot camp and never deployed."

"After he died my grandma told me that when he was 7 he was climbing around the laundry room like a feral monkey child and jumped on a pair of pants with a pencil in the pocket. The pencil went right through his foot."

"God I miss that ridiculous old man."

~ awkwardlyherdingcats

Family (mis)Fortune

"When my grandmother was dying my mom and aunts were going through pictures with her trying to get accurate dates and identities of people in the photos(grandma stayed very cognizant until the very end)."

"There were several pictures of her and her many siblings being held by two women no one recognized and grandma said 'oh those were our governesses’. And went on to tell how our family was rich rich, like aristocratic rich, and owned a large fancy hotel in San Francisco where my great grandfather ran the family business from."

"This was also during the time when people didn’t trust banks so the several million dollar fortune we had was held in cash in that hotel, which burned down, and we went from rich rich, to poor real quick."

~ styrofoamladder

Hammering The Message Home

"My great-grandfather had half a pinkie on his left hand, and he told all of us kids it was because he liked to use his pinkie to sop up leftover syrup from his pancakes, and he'd eventually worn the finger down to a nub."

"This made perfect sense to us, since we'd all seen him do that after eating pancakes."

"The truth was, when he still had his blacksmithing business, he and his son were working at the anvil and my great-uncle accidentally brought a sledgehammer down on Papa's pinkie."

"Uncle Wayne felt bad about that until his dying day, but Papa loved the story he got to make up about it."

~ EducatedOwlAthena

Stolen Childhood

"This is a story from India during mid 1920s."

"My great-grandfather, after the death of his wife, married again for the sake of his daughter. The girl he married was 11 years old when he was in his 40s."

"So he basically married a girl who was younger than his own daughter."

"This second wife of his would go on to be my great-grandmother and she lived with us briefly during my childhood so everyone knew her history, her story."

"The favourite question directed at her was 'How the heck would you marry someone 40+ when you were 11' to which she'd say 'At 11, I didn't even know what marriage meant, I was just a little girl playing on the streets until I wasn't'."

~ ChattyBot7

Pulling Your Leg

"My grandfather was missing half a leg. He had a prosthetic, but back then they weren't so good and he was heavy, so he was usually chair bound."

"He lived across the country from us and died when I was young, so I only remember meeting him once.

"But, I clearly remember being barely taller than his fake half leg and 'walking' it around the house for fun."

"He shouted to my mom, 'Hey! Your daughter is pulling my leg!' I was so proud that I was strong enough to do so, but my mom just laughed her a** off."

"Took me years to figure out why."

~ Evangelynn

Old Blood And Guts

"My grandfather was in the same hospital ward/room when General Patton slapped a soldier."

"The soldier was in the throws of a violent PTSD episode and was physically fighting a nurse. When Patton slapped the soldier, it snapped him out of the flashbacks that he was having and brought him to his senses."

"The soldier later apologized to the nurse he was fighting and thanked Patton for helping him."

Was what Patton did the best way to handle someone in that soldier's situation? Probably not, but it was all he knew to do to stop the nurse from getting hurt."

~ shadowdragon1978

All That Glitters

"During major holidays my entire family would always visit both sets of my grandparents in Southern California where we were all from."

"And every holiday we'd sit down and break out the old family photo albums and check out all the cool photos of my grandparents and parents growing up. And my mother's mom would sit with us and provide some backstory behind each of the photos, etc..."

"It wasn't until I was grown up, visiting during one of the last holidays they were alive, we broke out the old photo albums I hadn't seen in years and I realized many of the people in the photos were famous actors. Many of the photos of my mother and uncle were with famous actors on movie sets."

"John Wayne, Cary Grant, Rock Hudson, Bing Crosby, etc..."

"So I asked my grandmother about all these photos and she simply said, 'Well, back in those days I did some work just to pass the time while your grandfather was building ships for the Navy'."

"Turns out my grandmother was a Hollywood actress and for some reason, it was just never made to be a 'big thing' that we talked about. I was incredulous."

"Like, 'WHAT‽‽'."

"And she said, 'Darling, it was just a moment in my life, but it was never my life'."

"I learned to deeply respect that woman, she taught me that perspective was so much more important than chasing all that glitters."

~ ksozay

Let There Be Light

"I remember my grandfather telling us about his childhood and about the day the family home first got electricity."

"They just had one light wired up in the living room, but he said it was like magic."

"Flipping a switch and there was light. No more lighting lamps or trimming wicks, just bright light whenever you wanted it."

"We've come a long way."

~ LovesMeSomeRedhead

Marriage Mystery

"My family has a conspiracy theory surround my grandparents wedding."

"The 'official' story goes my grandparents met in their hometown and fell in love. Very shortly after, my grandfather was drafted for the Vietnam War.

"He served, returning home a about a year later. They got married in 1971 in a big ceremony surrounded by both of their families."

"Happily ever after."

"Four and a half decades later, when they were both retired, with grandchildren and great-grandchildren, grandma got drunk and told her daughter, my aunt, stories about how her and grandpa met and fell in love, when a weird thing happened."

"She insisted that their wedding was before grandpa went to Vietnam, not after he got back. This was obviously wrong, since grandpa is wearing his uniform in their wedding photos, but grandma was adamant that drunk evening."

"My aunt thought it was odd, so later, when grandma was sober, asked her about their early relationship again, and grandma mentioned a trip to Hawaii right before grandpa left for Vietnam."

"The theory goes, grandma and grandpa eloped in Hawaii right before he shipped out to Vietnam and they never told anyone. When he got home they threw a big wedding and pretended nothing was amiss."

~ I4mSpock

Medical Advances

"My grandfather was one of the earliest people to receive penicillin."

"His GP [doctor] freaked out when he had a hand written note from Alexander Fleming."

* In 1928, at St. Mary's Hospital, London, Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin. On February 12, 1941, a 43-year old man became the first human recipient of penicillin. In 1945, Alexander Fleming, Howard Florey and Ernst Chain were awarded the Nobel Prize for their penicillin research.

~ drsthdtnhy

Thrown A Curve

"I have the story of Aunt Judith, which was told at every family gathering. Aunt Judith was my paternal grandfather's aunt, and a very tall, extremely curvy woman."

"She never married, most thought it was because men found her intimidating. I personally think she might have been gay or ace, but either way she lived alone her entire life."

"She was an extra grandma to my dad and his five siblings, and when she died, the entire family helped to tidy up and clean her apartment."

"And they found ginormous hip and breast pads."

"Aunt Judith was not, in fact, an extremely curvy woman. In fact she was stick thin, and apparently not happy with it."

"No one had ever seen her without the pads. No one suspected a thing. It kind of became a family legend, because they were all just so flabbergasted by it."

"So yeah, basically my Aunt Judith was an afab drag queen full time."

~ CoffeeBeanx3

The one about getting electricity in the house really resonates.

Some day soon it will be Gen-Xers talking about the birth of computers, the internet and cell phones.

So what stories did your elders pass on to you?