Friday, June 12, 2009

The Keeling Curve (an Arkansas version)

If you have done much reading on global warming, or have seen Al Gore's movie on the subject, you have probably heard of the "Keeling Curve" , which Wikipedia explains this way: " A graph showing the variation in concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide since 1958. It is based on continuous measurements taken at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii under the supervision of Charles David Keeling. Keeling's measurements showed the first significant evidence of rapidly increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. Many scientists credit Keeling's graph with first bring the world's attention to the effects that human activity were having on the Earth's atmosphere and climate." The Keeling Curve first caught my attention because Keeling is my family name. As a teenager, I had wanted to be a marine biologist, and applied to the Scripps Institute in California for a high school summer science institute they sponsored. Although I was not accepted for their program, forty years later, I visited Scripps Institute for a tour of what I had missed out on. It was there during the tour that the guide pointed out a certain researcher's office, and said it was the office of the famous Dr. Keeling who published the Keeling Curve data. I questioned the tour guide, saying "Did you say Keeling?" and if so, how does the professor spell his last name? The tour guide confirmed it was the same spelling as my last name. Voila! It all made sense now----I had been rejected into their program back in the sixties because they already had a person named Keeling on their staff, and couldn't take on another one, without risking charges of nepotism. (Of course, all this is speculation on my part to justify my rejection from their school! LOL!)

But the reason for this post about the "Arkansas Version" of the Keeling Curve is to recognize the passing of the last member of a generation of Keelings that were the children of W.A. and Berta Keeling who lived in the Locust community of northwest Arkansas. Their youngest child, and last surviving sibling, Warren G. Keeling died June 5, 2009, at the age of 87. The photo above shows the adult Keeling children (Joe, Helen, Paul, Lester and Warren G.) with their parents. They were raised on land homesteaded by Franklin R. Keeling beginning in 1862. I feel as though I received a "generational blessing" by being born into the Keeling family, and want those who come after me to also feel as though they have received a generational blessing. So , in closing, I will quote Psalm 71:18Posted by Picasa: "Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come." Miles of smiles, and GENERATIONAL BLESSINGS! Tricia