Tatu Family History & Genealogy

Updated Apr 16, 2015

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Frank Tatu Thanksgiving at the White House

We had recently returned from Bangkok, Thailand, having been overseas with the State Department Foreign Service for 13 unbroken years. Two of our children were born abroad, Robin in Hong Kong, Anthony in Manila. I started work at the Department in Washington, September, 1970.

A few days before Thanksgiving somebody from Personnel was soliciting loudly in the halls, "hey, who wants to go to the White House for Thanksgiving tonight." Confirming that children could be included, I thought it would be a good experience for the kids, and stepped forward. None of my colleagues within earshot commented, or even cracked a smile, it was as if they hadn’t heard.

We had fresh memory that during our diplomatic assignments abroad, we were accustomed to being invited to high-level occasions, so this did not seem untoward.

I phoned my spouse, Marian, and asked her to get dressed and dress the kids. Then I drove all the way out to Springfield, a distant and difficult suburb of Washington, to pick them up.

Driving back in towards the White House, I briefed everyone on how to comport yourselves. "When President Nixon shakes your hand, Robin, remind him that you met him in Thailand. When he visited there and you were one of the Girl Scout greeters.."

In my own mind, I began rehearsing a briefing on the situation in Thailand and Southeast Asia that I thought would interest the president.

When we arrived at the West Gate I proudly displayed our elaborate invitation, and the guard, unhesitatingly waved us through. We hurried up the walk, for it was rather chilly, and I was curious to note a large crowd of people behind a rope just beneath the south portico.

A guard approached and began hustling us behind the rope! "But, but.." I sought to protest, displaying the invitation. The case-hardened guard didn’t react a wit, just continued pushing, unsmilingly.

Eventually President Nixon emerged, and began a speech on the porch. It seemed that, with their own personal funds, the Nixons had installed holiday lighting on the back porch Mrs. Nixon would inaugurate it. At that point Pat Nixon came out, and grandiloquently turned on a light switch. TV news cameras roared.

That was it.

It became obvious. We and the others had been invited merely to provide a crowd for the benefit of a "photo op." Nobody warned me, but I was later to learn that this was frequent practice.

As we began to shuffle out, freezing.

Nixon took the mike again and said "we would like to have you all in, but it is obviously impossible."

Disconsolately we made our way home, unfed ("don’t eat too much" I had admonished on the way in). I silently wondered why it was "impossible." I have always counseled, however, that every misadventure makes good anecdote.
For weeks thereafter we delighted in inviting befuddled neighbors over to watch Maian turn on the porch light.

FJTatu
(c) 2001
Dec 01, 2002 · Reply

Tatu Country of Origin, Nationality, & Ethnicity

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Tatu Meaning & Etymology

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Tatu Life Expectancy

According to our database of 93 people with the last name Tatu that have a birth and death date listed:

Life Expectancy

69.6
years

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Famous People named Tatu

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Most Common Tatu First Names

According to our database of 307 people with the last name Tatu that have a first name listed, these are the most common first names:

  • Jean 8.8%
  • Marie 7.5%
  • Philibert 3.9%
  • Jeanne 2.9%
  • John 2.6%
  • Joseph 2.6%
  • Charles 2.3%
  • William 2.3%
  • Claudine 2.0%
  • Claude 1.6%
  • François 1.6%
  • Pierrette 1.6%
  • Fran‡ois 1.6%
  • Pierre 1.3%
  • Marguerite 1.3%
  • Philiberte 1.3%
  • Catherine 1.3%
  • Suzanne 1.0%
  • Albert 1.0%
  • Humbert 1.0%
  • Jacqueline 1.0%
  • George 1.0%
  • Benoite 1.0%
  • Robert 1.0%
  • Antoine 1.0%
  • Margaret 1.0%
  • Alexis 0.7%
  • Antoinette 0.7%
  • Eugene 0.7%
  • Floyd 0.7%
  • Jacques 0.7%
  • Gabrielle 0.7%
  • Kenneth 0.7%
  • Gladys 0.7%
  • Françoise 0.7%
  • Leo 0.7%
  • Benoit 0.7%
  • Louise 0.7%
  • Mary 0.7%
  • Paul 0.7%
  • Anna 0.7%
  • Frank 0.7%
  • Rose 0.7%
  • Harriet 0.7%
  • James 0.7%
  • Nick 0.7%
  • Francis 0.7%
  • Katherine 0.7%
  • Pierre-fran‡ois 0.3%
  • Pierre-marie 0.3%

Tatu Pronunciation & Spelling Variations

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