Family finally gets together after years of trying

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 10, 2003

There were hugs, tears and smiles &045; all the things one expects from a family reunion. It just took 25 years for it to happen.

Mike Hanson of Northwood, Iowa, was reunited with all three of his daughters at one time Saturday. The foursome had not all been together since Hanson and their mother divorced 25 years ago. Hanson, a truck driver and broker, then moved to Beaumont, Texas, and it wasn’t until 1991 that he relocated to Iowa.

But it was a wish for Hanson, who has suffered from vascular disease, congestive heart failure and now adeno carcinoma, which is in his lymph nodes, spine and ribs. And when he asked for a reunion, his daughters couldn’t say no.

Email newsletter signup

Sandy Farnes lives in New Richland and Terri Hanson lives in Cosmos. Angie Paczkowski came from Reno, Nev., for the reunion. She was staying until Tuesday.

&uot;It’s a quick trip, but it’s worth it,&uot; she said.

&uot;It wasn’t that we didn’t want it to happen,&uot; Hanson said of previous attempts to get together. &uot;Something just always kept it from happening.&uot;

The last time, Angie made it, but Terri was sick. &uot;It’s always been something,&uot; Hanson said. &uot;The kids just grew up too fast.&uot;

This reunion was to include a family portrait, as well as a four-generation photo. At age 58, Hanson is a great-grandfather. Terri’s daughter, Deserae, has a 7-month-old daughter, Jazmine.

After that, they planned a family dinner as well as games and just time to reminisce for the family, which also included Sandy’s son and Angie’s son and daughter, as well as Mike’s wife of one year, Connie, and Terri, Sandy and Deserae’s significant others.

Sandy said her father’s illness has been &uot;a reality check for all of us.&uot;

&uot;Family’s a huge thing,&uot; she said. &uot;I wish there would have been more of these along the way.

&uot;It just goes to show, it’s never too late.&uot;

There will be more reunions in the near future, Mike pledged.

&uot;But next time, they’re all coming to see me in Reno,&uot; Angie said.