Montana 1948 by Larry Watson Essay

585 Words 3 Pages
In Montana 1948, written by Larry Watson, the events that took place irrevocably changed David Hayden’s life in several ways, both good and bad. The novel Montana 1948, is written from the point of view of
David, the son of the Mercer County’s sheriff, Wesley Hayden and features many events which are indelible from his memory.

The death of Little Marie Soldier, David’s housekeeper, was the first event, which would ultimately change David’s life. After her death,
David experiences great discomfort in his own home, as he believed that there was “death in the house” and that “every door seemed to require a bit more effort to open and close. There always seemed to be a sound – a whisper – on the edge of your hearing, something you
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This eventually changed David so that he no longer felt that he “didn’t fit his ideal of what he should be.”

David’s knowledge of his Uncle Frank’s crimes, especially the murder of Little Marie Soldier, also permanently changed his life, as after that he could no loner think about Frank in the same way. Originally,
David expressed great admiration for his uncle, “the war hero,” saying that compared to his father, who was impressive, was everything that his father was “and more.” Conversely, after the revelation of Frank’s crimes, David could no longer “continue thinking” of Uncle Frank “the way he always had,” saying that the “charming, affable Uncle Frank was gone for good.”

While this change was dramatic, the greatest change that irretrievably changed David’s life was the death of his once beloved Uncle Frank.
The effect of his death affected the entire Hayden family, producing a division between David, his mother Gail and his father Wesley, and his
Grandparents Enid and Julian and his Aunt Gloria. This division affected David to such a great extent that he cried as he would “never see his horse, Nutty, again”. The division in his family is evident when, at Frank’s funeral, each faction stood on opposite sides of the grave and “not one of them would dream of leaping across it.” This remark made by David shows that there was a clear dissection between himself and his parents, and his
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