1944-46, Surviving World War II as Family

Does anything change life more than a major war? It certainly uprooted us as a family. In 1944 Dad was drafted and sent to training out of state and then to Europe while Mom, Jerry and I moved to Fort Smith to live with Grandmother (Mom’s mother), living in a crowded house that had a boarder that Grandmother needed to pay bills and we lived off her vegetable garden, hen house, and with help from ration stamps for many rationed items.

This is the first time period that I can actually remember some things, like the details of Grandmother’s house, her porch swing, that man who rented a room, and the time I locked myself in the bathroom and couldn’t turn the key to get out – panicking until either Mom or Grandmother gently talked me into sliding the key out of the door and sliding it under the door to them so they could open it from the outside. Big deal for a 4-year old!

Then in 1946 when Dad returned from the rough and tumble of war he came into Grandmother’s living room and sat down on the coffee table (they had stronger tables in the army) and of course it crashed to the floor. I remember being unsure about how to react to that accident – with seriousness or by laughing, which some of the adults did.

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“Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.”

~General Douglas MacArthur

¡Pura Vida!

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