By MELINDA WILLIAMS
Posted May 7, 2013
At long last Dr. Milton Brockmeyer’s train set layout is out of the basement of his home and on display for the world to see. But the fact it survived to make it to public display apparently is a wonder itself.
The late doctor’s son, Wally, had the audience rolling with laughter Saturday as he recalled how he came to be banned from the family’s basement as a teenager.
Brockmeyer said the saga began when one of his friends showed up at the family home, carrying a spider monkey in a cage.
He explained that since the late doctor was somewhat known as the “Dr. Dolittle” of Pulaski, it wasn’t uncommon for people to show up at their house with injured birds and other animals, which his father would nurse back to health.
So when the friend asked if he would like to have the monkey and would his parents mind, Brockmeyer told him, “I’d love to have the monkey.” He said they already had an alligator, so why not a monkey, too.
His parents were at a church meeting so he told his friend, “I’ll put it in the basement and let you know. When they come home, I’ll surprise them.”
“When they came home, I surprised them,” Brockmeyer said. “I told dad ‘Come on downstairs I want you to look at something.’ Well we went down in the basement and it was like King Kong had hit New York.”
He said the monkey had opened its cage and gotten out onto the train set layout. “It was running up and down and taking buildings and doing this” he mimicked the monkey throwing something down. He said the monkey had torn everything apart.
“That’s the maddest I ever saw daddy in my life,” Brockmeyer added. “He caught the monkey. He put it in the cage and he took it to the front door and set it outside.”
He said he didn’t think that was much like a Dr. Dolittle so he told his father, “The monkey will freeze to death.”
“Daddy said, ‘Don’t ever bring that monkey in this house again,’” Brockmeyer added.
He said he took the monkey back to his friend’s house but they weren’t home so he put it in the shower and closed the shower door.