Daddy always lamented that he was sorry he was not old enough to have served in WWII like his older brother Bernard and his sister’s husband Clayton. He would serve his country though in a different way. As a teenager he served locally as a plane spotter. As part of the observance of the 50th Anniversary of the end of WWII our local historical society did an exhibit that included stories about York Countians and their lives during WWII. Daddy had loaned his arm band that he wore as a spotter. It is pictured here along with the tag from the museum exhibit. I was happy that he loaned them this as they encased it in archival covering to help preserve it.
During daddy’s final months he was in and out of consciousness. When he was awake it seemed he spent a lot of that time reliving or retelling things from his younger years. Knowing stories of his past helped me understand what he was talking about when to others it may have just seemed like the ramblings of an older man.
I visited him daily and each evening I would call in to talk to the nurse to check on him. One evening I called she was with him and they had the tv on for him. She said he kept repeating numbers and letters. I asked her if there was a war movie on and she said yes. She said there were images of planes flying when he would do this. I told her about my dad being a plane spotter and I would bet that is what he was doing when he saw these planes.
Daddy was always so proud of his big brother, Bernard. Uncle Bernard did not talk a lot about his war time service, but we do know his unit saw some of the heaviest fighting in Europe and they were part of the liberation of Concentration Camps.