Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Felix Paden

After receiving an unexpected photo of my great uncle Felix Paden, who was a policeman in Detroit, I started searching and turned up a bunch of old newspaper stories about him.  I thought I would share the pictures, and since I have enough information to do a biographical sketch, here it is.

Felix Vester Paden was the third of seven siblings born to David Leroy Paden and Minnie Viola Gardner Paden.  The family lived in Mynot in western Colbert County, Alabama.

In June 1929, he married Lydia Bendall, an Alabama native.  They must have moved to Detroit at this point because he appears in a news story there in August.  In the 1930 census, he is listed as a patrolman.  They had one daughter.  Felix and Lydia divorced in 1934.  At the alimony hearing, he argued with the judge to ask him to raise  his payment (to the great astonishment of the news writer).
In 1948, he married Marion Law, a Michigan native, They traveled to Alabama to get married before returning to Detroit.  He retired from the force in 1951 and they remained in Detroit until his death in 1972.  Marion moved to Virginia and only died a few years ago (2011).  Felix and Marion had one daughter.

[Daughters names omitted for privacy; I don't know their whereabouts.]

There are some quite interesting stories about his activities.

* A thief pulled a gun on him, which he wrestled away.  Then the thief pulled a second gun on him and Felix shot him.
*He was made an honorary member of the Sioux Indian tribe.
*He was responsible for providing baseball uniforms for neighborhood youth.  I am amused to see one of the teams seems to be named Padens.
*He helped raise funds for a bedridden boy to buy a television set (when they were brand new).
*An arrest in an organized crime case.
*He testified on behalf of someone accused of being a Communist.

It's interesting to see how my relatives' lives were touched by things I know from history, like the Red Scare and the 1930's organized crime.

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