What I Know

What I Know About James Gaylord York

James Jimmy York with mother and aunt. Jimmy with his Mother and Aunt

Below are pieces of the story of my mom, Patsy, and my biological father, James (Jimmy) Gaylord York, as shared with me by my mom.

In the first part of 1956 my mom left her abusive husband and drove to Grand Junction, Colorado, where her father lived. She got a job as a waitress at Gay Johnson’s Restaurant in Grand Junction. She met my father while waiting tables in June or July 1956.

James moved from Kentucky (or possibly Tennessee) and was working in Grand Junction with his father, who contracted out in sheetrock and plastering. He also lived with his father in Grand Junction.

He had been recently divorced from a woman named Liz, probably short for Elizabeth. He and Liz had a son that was born early to mid 1950s and remained in Kentucky/Tennessee with Liz after the divorce.

Around September 1956, when mom was about three months pregnant, she and James were in Dayton, Ohio. At one time my mom told me that because of a threat my grandmother made to have her baby taken away from her, she left James and went back to her husband.

Patsy Marie My Mother Patsy at 16

James did not know that she was leaving, but did know that she was pregnant. Mom thinks that he may have went back to Kentucky or Tennessee, where she thinks he had family.

My aunt told me that he called her after I was born and knew he had a daughter.

Additional items that my mom shared:

  • Birthday may have been in February
  • He was born late 1920s to early 1930s
  • Thought he was born in Murfreesboro, Tennessee
  • Black hair
  • Eyes were probably blue
  • Around 5’8″ tall
  • May have served in the US Navy in the early 1950s
  • His parents were also divorced
  • His father may have been named James

If anything sounds familiar, please email me at joann@joannsworld.com.