Rosalie Broussard found her self pregnant a week after turning sixteen (see song “Jenny or James“). Though her boyfriend wanted her to have an abortion, and even offered her the money, she refused, because Rosalie had a naive understanding about what having a baby really meant, and also because she just didn’t like the idea. However, she eventually realized she couldn’t handle the responsibility and when James was three she handed him over to her father and his second wife, MaeAnn.
When Rosalie was twenty she left Vivian, Louisiana and married Tully Tate, a man she met while waitressing at a truck stop. They had twin girls and lived in Mobile, Alabama. But Rosalie never could make peace with domestic life and would run off from time to time, ech time Tully would find and bring her back home (see song “What Tully’s Done“). But eventually he grew tired of chasing after his runaway wife and Rosalie finally left that family as well (see song “Rosalie“).
Mike and MaeAnn dearly loved James since they saw that his mother had not shown him the natural love of a mother. But James still felt an emptiness which was only relieved when he played catch with his grandpa.
JAMES (F.D. Leone, Jr.) James was Wednesday’s child, full of woe His mama left when he was just three years old Rosalie was only sixteen when she had him Left him with her parents; he was raised by them James grew up wondering if he’d done something wrong That made his mama leave him at his grandpa’s home His father was a shadow, a name that wasn’t said But Mike and MaeAnn did their best When James played catch with Mike For a little while everything seemed alright A peaceful feeling settled in with the dimming light On those summer days when James played catch with Mike He overheard bits and pieces about his mama’s life She was living in Mobile, a truck driver’s wife At Christmas she might visit but wouldn’t stay too long Gave James some toy he’d long ago outgrown MaeAnn said he had twin sisters in Mobile James really hoped that they had a better deal But soon Rosalie would run off from them too It seemed that’s all his mama was cut out to do When James played catch with Mike For a little while everything seemed alright A peaceful feeling settled in with the dimming light On those summer days when James played catch with Mike © 2019 Frank David Leone, Jr./Highway 80 Music (ASCAP). The songs and stories on the Highway 80 Stories website are works of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.