An excerpt from biographical writings of family stories.
|Getting a driver's license was very easy in 1917, so Marcie only had to show up with the car and pass an eye exam to get one. The purpose was to take the family on weekend drives which became a pleasant diversion from work and chores around the farm.
Over a short time, his wife Mae became increasingly unsure of her husband's driving ability. Unsureness eventually became apprehension and finally became panic one Sunday. Marcie, cigar in mouth, was confidently grinding and clashing gears and blissfully unaware of the unease of his passengers.
Grandmother Sarah, 12 year old Quentin, and Mae were quite panicked as Marcie found his control of the car evaporating. He tried to negotiate a nasty curve around a section of road in the Jersey Palisades, barely missing the edge of the drop off.
Hearing the alarmed cries from his passengers, he finally resorted to the hand brake and brought the car to a lurching halt at the edge of the road. There was a 150 foot drop down to the Hudson river.
Sensing that his passengers would turn from panic to outright revolt, Marcie decided to play it cool and in the brief seconds of shocked silence that followed, he sat back and casually lit his cigar. He was not disappointed with the blast of outrage protested by his passengers and the threat to blow his hat off.
Mae’s panic over this situation turned to resolve. She took driving lessons and Marcie resigned to ride as a passenger on future family drives.