Carol Alldredge Beebe was born December 16, 1941 in Long Beach, California, the eldest of seven children born to Leroy Romney and Larita Williams Alldredge. In 1943, the United States Government requested that her family move to Maryland, so that her father could work for the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism in the Carnegie Institution. In 1945, Carol contracted polio, a disease that would greatly change her life. Her parents, devoted to helping Carol lead a normal life, sent her to Warm Springs Foundation for three to six months every year until Carol was twelve years old and able to walk with the assistance of leg braces. As Carol battled with this disease, she found great comfort in music. She was very involved with social, religious, and academic activities in college. Besides attending assemblies and dances, Carol worked as the Assistant Director for Brigham Young University Choral and served as the Stake Music Director. She also directed a musical called, Papa and the Playhouse, in 1963. Each summer, Carol lived with her family in Maryland, helping her parents and working in a building next to the Pentagon. In December 2963, Carol moved to San Francisco with some friends. While attending church, Carol met Walter William Beebe, a serviceman just out of the army, and stationed at Fort Ord, California. They were married April 13, 1965. While her husband worked as a designer with Sweet's Catalogue Services, Carol worked at the Crocker- Citizen's Bank and took part in the Oakland Temple Pageant. After the birth of their first child, Carol and her husband moved to Pacifica, California, where Carol taught piano lessons and gave birth to two more children. In 1972, she joined the San Mateo County Chorale Society. Carol and her family moved to Boulder, Colorado in 1977, when her husband started his own designing business. Carol was very involved in the community as a member of the Citizen's Advisory Council and piano teacher.
This collection contains Carol's certificates, medical documents, letters, photographs, and a twenty-seven page autobiography written in December of 1977. Besides containing Carol's memories of childhood and adulthood, this autobiography gives information about her father. Carol's father was an inventor and scientist for the United States Government. In 1945, her father worked for the Naval Ordinance Lab and he developed an air- borne magnetometer. As a child, Carol never realized that many ways in which her father contributed to science, thinking only of his qualities as a father. Carol also has wonderful memories of her mother, who was dedicated to helping Carol recover from polio. When Carol first contracted polio, her mother stayed with her for fifteen hours a day at the children's hospital. Although Carol was initially paralyzed, two months of rehabilitation and sever Priesthood blessings helped Carol to be able to sit up. After her first stay at the institution, Carol came home encased in steel from the armpits to the toes, but with the ability to stand and walk. Each time she went to the hospital,Carol faced surgeries, body casts, and months confined in strange positions on a bed. She has few memories of these experiences because she later blocked them from her memory. However, in this biography Carol writes everything she can remember, including the times when she felt afraid of the dark. These only intensified when nurses threatened to put her in the 'dark room' if she misbehaved. She also remembers being very homesick and annoyed at having to stay in a metal crib, surrounded by other patients. When she was older, she got to move to a room with only three other patients. At night, these patients would throw popcorn onto the floor to watch the mice come out from their hiding places. Besides the memories of excruciating pain, fear, and loneliness, Carol remembers happy moments at the institute when she attended a weekly movie, watched a circus from the window of her room, played games with the other patients, and received packages from her family. She also enjoyed having tutors come to the institution to help her with school work. She writes, 'I had a good childhood if you don't count the people that stare at you and the kids that point and ask questions and make fun of you because you are little and different and the ignorant adults that look right through you or try to walk around you.' Carol's confidence grew as she made friends and found success in music, secretarial work, and being a wife and mother.Also see BX 8670.07 .B39a (AME)