Nanny and her brother Lester and his wife Ada would almost always bring Louise up to my parents house for Easter. My Mother, Myra Wagaman Riley nee Wike, would make a big Easter dinner. Mom would color eggs for baskets and make a dozen for hiding. I loved hiding eggs. We were lucky if we found 9 out of 12 eggs.
By Milton Long
A tank BN is made up of three medium and one light tank companies, a Headquarters Company and a Service Company. Service Company was responsible for the maintenance, and supply of all vehicles in the BN. In combat this would mean providing gas and ammo to the combat vehicles including anything attached to the BN. In Service Company we were divided into two groups, those with the job of supply and those with the job of maintenance.
Mines were not the only thing lying around. The area was full of dead Americans, mostly very young and just off the boat. When the Bulge started everyone was shoved into action. Kids just coming over were sent into the line, I found out later that the ASTP program was closed and they were sent over. Right by our tent was a young kid lying in the snow and up the road, in a woods no one dared go in, were quite a few dead.
By Joe Mayfield
My ancestors were hunters and trappers going back to 1693, therefore it is easy to understand why all the men in the family have always had a strong desire to have well trained hunting dogs. A good hunting dog is treated differently than a house dog, hunting dogs are not pets, they have an intended purpose and the purpose, of course, is to supply game for the table, be it rabbit, squirrel, quail or deer, the most common game in Alabama.
By Joan Grimes Kowalski
She is part of my very first memory
There were so many things she could do.
The best thing of all was that she’d let me help
And find time to talk to me, too.
I’ve helped her hang paper, upholster a chair,
Garden, clean, cook, can and bake.
She made glass wind chimes, and how she could sew!
One bright morning a couple of leery-eyed young airmen knocked on the door of my room to complain they’d found bedbugs in their bunks and considered it a profane intrusion. I concurred and checked the rest of the rooms. Indeed there were bed bugs in some and whether they were imported from a G.I.s occasional trips south of the border for rest and relaxation diversions, or home grown, we couldn’t determine.
For all of us who are 50 or older — even those of you younger than 50 will appreciate the following:
No nursing home for me. I am checking into the Holiday Inn! With the average cost for a nursing home per day reaching $188.00, there is a better way when we get old & feeble.
I have already checked on reservations at the Holiday Inn. For a combined long term stay discount and senior discount, it's $49.23 per night. That leaves $138.77 a day for: Breakfast, lunch and dinner in any restaurant I want, or room service. Laundry, gratuities and special TV movies.
No one can imagine how much damage air raids cause, until they actually see the result. When you see a place that has been leveled for blocks and blocks, you begin to realize what it must have been like. At that point, when we reached Kure, I could see why the Japanese surrendered. We were only twenty miles from where the atomic bomb hit.
Billy was goofing off talking to his corporal friend in the company office and in walks a tall handsome officer, a picture of sartorial elegance with his splendid uniform and leather accessories. A stunning private ATS girl, whose natural attributes would be apparent covered in a potato sack, followed him. You might say that they looked like Barbie and Ken, because that's what they did look like and they deserve those names for the rest of the story.
By Linda Clark
This past Monday, my very dear, close friend, who is like a dear sister to me, called me and said that her husband had passed away from a stroke. This was a shock as I had a recent phone call of her dying of cancer. Anyway, we got to talking about the old days over the phone. She needed someone to talk to.
By Pat Collins
February 26, 1893
It was a cold day in February, 1893. Martha Jane Collins had started her labor early in the morning hours, but she still had plenty to do. She had to get in the wood and kindling to get a fire started, get the children up and dressed for school, feed them, fix their lunches and get them off to school. With some luck-she might be able to get all this done before the baby came.
The ships loudspeaker, that reminded Billy of the offensive Irish Sergeant Major from Catterick Camp, announced that they were looking for a barber. Interested parties with hair cutting experience should report to the manager of the hairdressing shop - the chance of making money was not lost on the young opportunist.
Falaise Gap. We were set on a sloping field about two hundred miles from the road. When the Gap was closed we saw truck loads of prisoners being hauled out. I remember the funeral services for Sgt. Roy. We went over to Headquarters battery. The service was like one that would take place at home except it was held outdoors in a small clearing in the forest. It struck me as being ironic that we could hold a service like this after all the dead we had seen before this who were disposed of like so much garbage.
The village that we stayed in while we were there was shelled the morning that we landed, and most of it had burnt completely flat. One native woman cooked a ton of food for us. We had fried chicken twice while there, which was a treat, and a thanks at the same time. Then one of the boys bought a pig and they cooked that while we were there.
We flew our 24th mission on New Years Day 1945, and from our 14th mission on, we Led or Deputy Lead in the formation of our 36 plane formation. It was a position in formation we thought and considered to be safe. At least better than tail end Charlie. We were flying Deputy Lead on January 6, 1945, target railroad marshalling yards was our primary, Duetz Bridge, Cologne, Germany our secondary target.
The whole time that we were on the front it rained, day and night. So, I suppose that did not make it any easier. They told us that it would probably rain for at least two more months. I was wet and scared, dug into a little three foot fox hole, and seeing my first action of the war. One of the two other boys whom I came into this outfit with were wounded on the front. He was only a few yards away from me when he was hit. It was just an arm wound, so he was all right, but it definitely indoctrinated us into the combat life.
In 1950, Elizabeth McCaughen was 23 years old, a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, where she earned her Bachelors in Psychology in 1948, and was currently enrolled in the Masters program at the same University. 29-year-old Harry Blagbrough was working for the Fish and Wildlife Service. Little did these two young people know that their paths were about to cross, and that neither of their lives was ever going to be the same again.
There were six of the black, eight week old pups in the cardboard box when we looked inside. All the pups looked fat and healthy except one. For some odd reason, his tail was only a stub and he was clearly the runt of the litter. He apparently didn’t realize he was small as he bulled his way right up to the front of the box, so he could get his fair share of our attention.
Hello, Miss Thuerk, he said with a smile. If you’d like a ride home, Ill be getting off work in five minutes. That’s my car across the street. He nodded toward his blue convertible, a 1934 blue Buick Roadster. Go ahead and sit in the car. Thank you. Adeline climbed in and admired the car while she waited. Johnny Sundblad drove her home without much conversation, but a week later he came into the Royal Blue and asked Charlie Thuerk if he could take his daughter to a movie theater that night.
In the 30s young men and women courted by seeing each other in church, or attending a church singing, or it might be dinner on the ground after a revival, but always in public, never going somewhere alone. Young men living in the country had to walk everywhere, their family’s mule had to rest so as to be strong for plowing the next day.
We landed in Papua New Guinea on August 16th, and I got my first glimpse of the jungle, and jungle life. The natives there were, in our Western eyes, uncivilized. These people looked exactly like exotic pictures that I had seen when in school. They wore very few clothes and always carried bamboo knives. The jungle was thick like pea soup and hilly, and there was grass that grew eight feet tall!