This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Larry Robert Royston (1960-2017)

In the spring of 2005, I answered a question posed on a blog called "Love and the Happy Cynic".  I was flattered when I got an answer--I mean, bloggers were BMOC, with thousands of followers, right?  But this guy actually wrote back, and wanted to talk.  Turned out he lived in a little town in Georgia with his wife Jan.  He'd grown up in Hawaii, knew tons about European history, was well read and very funny, and had young-onset Parkinson's Disease.

That was Larry, the co-author of Hesch History.  We emailed and chatted most days, tried to make each other laugh.  We often discussed books or the news, as you do, and one day he asked what I knew about my ancestors.  I vaguely recalled a story about a great grandfather falling out of a wagon and dying three days later....I thought he was German, and that he lived in Buckman, Minnesota.  That was about it.

So started an adventure that kept us both interested for years.  HH began in January 2009, and it's now over 1300 posts.  We tapered off in the last year, partly because of Larry's PD, but mostly because we ran out of new sources to tap.  He was an inspiration, zeroing in on small facts that turned into days of fun research (Francis DeVivaldi, Uncle Math's Diary, the Olympic, among tons of other topics).  Because of Larry, I went to Europe to find the places we discovered (and because Marion persuaded me ☺ ).

It's been a wonderful twelve years, knowing Larry.  I'm heartbroken that he's gone.  I've lost a dear friend, and honestly, he loved knowing more about our little family than you do.
Rest in peace, dear friend.
I'll miss you always


  1. I'm so sorry to hear this and I'm sorry for your loss. I know how much he added to your life.