I sum up the next few years now, seeing as I am running out of time so very quickly.
The honeymoon was amazing, of course. We returned home nearly a month later. Only nine months later did Catherine give birth to our first child. Caledon Hockley Jr. He brought so much joy to our lives. Melissa helped in every way she could.
My father passed on the next year. I inherited his millions of course. I won't lie money always seemed to make things better. I showered Catherine, Melissa and little Caledon with everything they wanted. Everything was perfect.
Catherine and I never fought, like everyone thought would happen. In 1920 I got the news that Rose had a starring role in a motion picture show. I was so very proud of her, as was Catherine.
Jack became known for his art worldwide. He and Rose led a rich life from what I gather. I never saw them again after we returned from our honeymoon.
In 1924 Catherine and I were blessed with our second child. Madeleine Dawn. She was beautiful, just like her mother. Melissa moved out of our home. Marrying a wealthy man, by the name of Paul Smith. He owned part of the railroad.
For five more years Catherine and I lived in what seemed a magical fairytale world. With our two children. Filled with yachts and galas. All the fine things in life. Making each day count, as Jack had so appropriately put it.
It wasn't until this year, 1929. That I once again learned what emptiness and despair are. This past August, Catherine became very ill. Her heart was older than she, obviously. I got her the best doctors money could ever buy. I stayed by her side at the hospital. Holding her hand as the life slowly faded from her.
Oh, how my heart ached for her then. As it does now. I lost my soul mate there in that hospital. My life, my love. My Catherine.
I asked myself, "Why?" hundreds of times. Never did I get an answer.
After her funeral, I returned home. Which now seemed so completely empty. My children were a great comfort. I know that, and I'm thankful I had them.
I went on, trying to salvage my life, though it seemed like it had ended.
Only days ago, did I receive the news I couldn't handle alone. A day I feared would come. And without Catherine, I didn't have the strength to face it. To accept it.
My lawyer informed me of the stock crash on Wallstreet. My money gone. I had nothing. Only my children. Which I didn't know how to take care of now. October 30, 1929 was the date he told me.
It's now November 5th. Nearly a week. I am already feeling the loss. I can't take it. I've sent the children to stay with Melissa. They can't be here now.
As I walked home this morning. Before I wrote down my story for you, I spotted a man on the street. He sold stolen merchandise. A thief, and poor excuse for a human. I approached him, handing him all the money I had with me. This wasn't all the money I had. I still had some. But I couldn't handle being poor.
He handed me the silver, pearl handled pistol. It lays here on my desk as I write this to you.
I pray this finds someone. So you'll know my story. Know my life, my loves. I leave you with one bit of advice. Money does not make the man, but it can easily break him.
Search for you love, forget about money. Even if you feel you have more than you'll ever need. It could easily disappear before your very eyes.
To my darling children, I love you so much. Mind Melissa, she'll take excellent care of you.
To Jack and Rose, wherever you are. You'll never know what either of you has truly meant to me. I wish you all the luck and happiness that you both deserve.
To anyone reading this. Live each day to it's fullest potential. Never pass up a chance to live, to love, and be loved in return.
I leave you now with the best words ever spoken to me. I didn't see it when they were first spoken. Now I do.
'Take life as it comes at you. You never know what hand you're going to get dealt next. Life is a gift, don't waste it. Make each and every day count.'
November 5, 1929