Reporting from the Northern Neck of Virginia
My father's family landed in 1942 Los Angeles as if by immaculate conception, unburdened by any past.
Growing up, I knew all about how my mother's grandparents came to California from southern France and Sweden. But my dad's side was a mystery.
All I heard were a few stories about my grandfather as a youth in Hannibal, Mo., how he found a tarantula in a shipment of bananas at his dad's corner store, how he and a friend once rode motorcycles out west. But no one talked about Mozingos further back, or where they came from.
I might never have given the subject any thought except for a strange word: our name. All...