Legacy & Dedication

On my author's site: Undawnted, my writing may be fun and entertaining as well as at times serious and educational, but my writing is also geared toward a greater purpose.

I would like to leave an interesting and thought-provoking legacy. If we do not know the past, we are doomed to repeat others' mistakes.  History and genealogy are the main aspects to a legacy of knowledge, introspection, and understanding.

To know one’s place in history is a fundamental source of perspective. We must embrace who we are and where we come from. Only from knowledge can we lead from a place of strength. Genealogy is that foundation in human evolution.

My Aunt Vonnie and I had many a conversation about how the history of one’s family should be honored, recorded, and preserved. Before I fell catastrophically ill with Environmental Illness that has now disabled me for life, I was her sounding board. I was the Executor of her estate. With her passing I had been Trustee for a few moments before someone else was given the job due to the severity of my health condition at that time.

Unfortunately, the job fell to someone who was ill-equipped to handle such an important role. Instead of adhering to the Trust’s documents and what my aunt prescribed as part of the job, the new Trustee ignored verbal and written contractual agreements that should have safeguarded my physical and monetary inheritance, but did not.

My Aunt Vonacile Balle enumerated her dying wishes for which I have not changed those conversations in the decade since I was a party to them. I, as the steward and beneficiary of her Trust, would receive half the items of her home and property. Items I was supposed to receive in their entirety were genealogy photos, stories, and other information, but instead the Trustee gave that knowledge away to others who even illegally distributed those items on the internet.

My aunt's belongings were confiscated by the Trustee and never surrendered to this Beneficiary. The items in question range from family heirlooms, jewelry, antiques to basic household items. To date, I have never even seen a spoon from my aunt's home. I am heartbroken.

The Trust was not simply a document for gain; the Trust was to create a legacy for future generations. My writing skills were the instrument my aunt implemented to carry out the tasks she could not do herself.

She had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Come hell or high water, which I believe I have lived through both, her legacy will be upheld to the best of my abilities. I may be in an uphill battle, but my time is far from over. I do not know how long I have on this Earth and I will continue to create a legacy my aunt would be proud of.

To that end, I have devised a twofold solution: nonfiction and fiction. In the stories that use family names, places, and events, I will dedicate that information at the end of my novels. I would have showcased family heirlooms in my descriptions but alas I cannot now fulfill that wish. As the role of historian and educator, I have added a Family Genealogy link to my booklet works. Each branch of the family that I can research and document will receive its own treatise.

For today, I dedicate Our Rugged Individualism and Undawnted to my aunt. I do not know where you are but I hope you will approve of the new mission created from the ashes of the old. I appreciate everything you have done for me and future generations of our clan. 


Rita Vonacile “Vonnie” (Chisum) Balle
January 20, 1928 – November 4, 2009

If I ever find a picture of my aunt, I will post it here. So much has been taken from my aunt’s legacy. I hope that someday those people will realize that they have interfered with the legacy and dedication of a wonderful woman.

Aunt Vonnie, here's to you!