Gunnar is Jacqueline’s maternal grandfather. He and his wife Georgiana live in South Carolina. He is a jovial spirit and enjoys maintaining his vegetable garden in his spare time. He has a close relationship with his grandchildren (especially Jacqueline), who live with him for a time and visit every summer after they move to New York. Gunnar frequently takes them out for ice cream, asks for their help gardening, and tells them stories. For most of the memoir, Gunnar works at a printing press. Later, he falls ill because of his lifelong smoking addiction. While Mama and the children are living in New York, Gunnar dies, and the family returns to South Carolina to attend his funeral.