In the United States today is Veteran's Day, In Canada it's Remembrance Day.
I am sitting here at my desk this chilly morning, with my cup of coffee and the radio playing in the background, looking thru my Great Aunt's scrapbook of WWII...all I need is a big fat cat to sit on my feet to keep them warm, but my cat is not fat and she's outside. (what good is she, I ask you!?)
My Great Aunt Lucille, kept a scrapbook from WWII. Her husband, my Great-Uncle (my grandmother's brother) had enlisted in the Marine Corp, even tho he was an "old" man at the time...32. He was older than most of the troops, and they nicknamed him 'Dad', but they all loved him and looked up to him. (He was older, after all).
I have no great stories to tell, (and no recipe or book talk) but in honor of Veteran's Day, I wanted to post some things from the scrapbook and say "thanks" to all the Veterans of all the Wars.
Even if one subscribes to the theory of this song "War" by Edwin Starr
( War! huh-yeah
What is it good for?
Uh-huh ) Circa 1960 something........
......one can still appreciate and be thankful and proud that young men and women do serve their countries. We would be nothing without them.
All the men in my family were in the Marines. In my memory at least. It began with my great-uncle Bunk (this is his scrapbook we're talking about) and filtered on down to my dad, his cousin and my brother.
I was born in Camp Pendleton, CA, on the Navy Base while my dad was in the Marine Corp. My mother sang the Marine Corp Hymn to me as my lullaby.
It wasn't until I was an adult, about 10 years ago, that I found out Aunt Lucille had kept a scrapbook....I took it from my dad promising to "fix" it...to preserve the yellowing papers and brittle letters. I have not given it back. (Great! Now, he'll read this and remember and want it back)
Just some memories of WWII
My Great Aunt Lucille circa 1943
My great-uncle Bunk (Joseph Howard)
A War ration coupon book
And a letter from my dad's cousin Sam, to his Uncle Bunk
(please remember when you read "bring me a Jap home" that it was a different time in history. And for the sake of full disclosure, we are now a very diverse family and have many varied ethnicity's in our blood, including Japanese and Mexican, as well as German and Irish)
A menu from Christmas 1944, somewhere in the South Pacific
They get chilled tomato juice and beer.
And on the back...it lists Christmas services for all Protestants and Catholics
and singing on Christmas Eve in all theaters*
*according to the military dictionary
theater is — The geographical area for which a commander of a geographic combatant
command has been assigned responsibility.
A theater, or theatre or seat of war is defined as a specific geographical area of conduct of armed conflict, bordered by areas where no combat is taking place
You can't really see this, but it states in bold caps
CAROL SINGING IN ALL THEATERS ON CHRISTMAS EVE
(I wonder if that was an order?)
The commanding general writes a Christmas note to all his troops on the menu:
My Great Uncle sent the menu as a letter...(which it looks set up for the Marines to do)
he address Lucille, his wife, as "mama".
I will end with a couple of telegrams sent when Uncle Bunk came home.
The War ended in Europe in May of 1945 and in the South Pacific in September of 1945, these telegrams are dated Dec. 1945, when he finally made it back to the base in San Diego.
He was finally on his way home.
(Spoof is another Great Uncle---the family was big on nicknames)
Both telegrams are to my Great Aunt Lucille, one from her brother in law, Spoof, one from her husband Bunk.