I’m Jesse VonAtha. That might like a strange last name, and yes I hear that all the time. Which is perfectly OK by the way.
Let me explain where my name came from. My grand parents moved from what is now the east of Germany to the United States. My grandfather could not get much work in Europe back in the day, so he figured he’d try his chances in the New World.
Together with his fiancée he got on a boat in Rotterdam the Netherlands and sailed across the Atlantic Ocean, to arrive at Ellis Island, as so many of the immigrants did. They were granted access fast and they settled in New York City, because they didn’t have any money and they didn’t know where else to go anyways.
He started working as the helper of a hairdresser at first. But eventually started his own hairdresser parlor. Not that he knew how to cut people’s hair, but his first American (actually Italian immigrant) boss taught him. And he was a quick and eager learner.
You might wonder how I know all this, well it’s because he told me his story so often when I was a little boy. So I remember pretty much ever detail of it.
So to make a long story short, my last name is German. It should actually spell Von Atha, but I guess the immigration officer at Ellis Island back in the day, didn’t know that last names could consist of more than one word…
Eventually my grandparents established themselves and they got kids. One of them being my dad.
My dad had much more opportunities than his dad had ever had. I guess that’s the German spirit: make sure you teach your children well and make them work hard.
My father would always say, “no body ever died of working hard”. It’s strange how history repeats itself, because I keep telling the same thing to my kids. Am I getting old?
I am actually the first child in the family that finished his University degree. I’m sure my grandparents would be very proud to have known this.
At this moment I live in wonderful Texas, close to Austin. I love it there I must say. Although summers can be really hot and damp, winters absolutely compensate this. Especially when I see these horror TV images of snowed-in airports at the East Coast.
So I live in Austin Tx, together with my beautiful wife Linda and our two kids, Jason and Gerald.
I busy myself with my family and the homework of my kids. The homework thing is always a good brain crunch exercise for me. And of course my job. I’m an engineer at an oil industry related company. It’s a nice job, and I can’t complain about the workload it brings with it.
It gives me plenty of time to devote to this website. So, I hope you like what you find on this site. I’ve put some hard and long hours into it, and I hope it pays off. Let me know if anyting is missing.