Goble-Kleeman Fund for Young Children

Growing up, my grandfather, Radus T. Goble, had a profound impact on my life. I was five years old when my mother died and my brother and I went to live with my grandfather and grandmother, Addie. They were kind and generous people who gave us a warm and wonderful childhood. Money was tight, but we never went hungry or did without anything we needed. The values they instilled have had tremendous influence in my life. One of the stories I heard most often about my grandfather was when he owned a butcher shop in Cannelton. It was during the Depression, and people all around were suffering. When kids came into the shop with their parents, Grandpa could tell they were hungry but knew they didn’t have enough money or food to feed themselves. Grandpa hated to see anyone suffer, especially children, so he often didn’t charge for the meat they so desperately needed.  Eventually, his generosity as well as the collapse of the economy cost him his business, but he just couldn’t stand to see children go hungry. By the early 1950s, when I was about eight or ten years old, things had turned around for my grandparents. Grandpa was county recorder for Perry County. The courthouse was in Cannelton back in those days. One of my fondest memories during that time was when grandpa allowed me to come to work with him on Saturdays. It was a very special treat for me. He’d finish work by noon, and his brother, “Big Curt,” would come pick us up in his big black Packard. The three of us would drive to the A & P store on Main Street to pick up day old bread, donuts, canned goods and other nonperishables. After loading up, we’d drive out into the rural areas, where kids from miles around would come running at the sound of that big black Packard to see what kind of treat the Goble brothers were bringing that day. How fortunate I was to grow up in a home with so much caring and generosity! My grandfather’s love of people, especially children, made its way into the fabric of my life, which led me to a career working with children and families. During my years at SIRS (Southern Indiana Resource Solutions), I saw first-hand what a remarkable difference it makes for children to have intervention and education in their earliest years. After my father passed away and I learned more about the Perry County Community Foundation, I thought, “Here’s a way I can honor my grandfather and my father, who both loved Perry County and believed in its future.” At the same time, my husband, Regis, and I could do something to benefit young children. They are the future of our community and they are extremely important to Reg and me and were to my grandfather and father. So we established the Goble-Kleeman Fund for Young Children to acknowledge the powerful impact our families had on our lives. My grandfather was a wonderful man with a kind heart, important values and great deal of humanity. Every year, in our family’s name, the fund’s grants are used to support programs that help young children. It gives me great joy to know that my grandfather’s values and kindness and my father’s generosity live on through this fund.                                              

-Kaye Goble Kleeman