A Scary Tale

Image borrowed from a friend in Ireland, a crevice in rocks in County Tipperary.

Years ago my sister Ruth and I were enjoying an expedition to Lynn Beach and the rocks at adjoining Nahant. We had our dog Duchess with us. We were having a wonderful time clambering over the rocks when suddenly Duchess disappeared. She had accidentally fallen down a crevice similar to the one pictured above. She was wedged far below where the wedge narrowed sufficiently to stop her fall. We were so alarmed!! And scared!! Duchess looked up at us – such pleading in her eyes. We felt so helpless as to how to rescue her. Call the fire department? This was long before the days of mobile phones. But we didn’t have too long to wait – a very helpful member of the public managed to get down to the area near the bottom of the crevice and he somehow helped Duchess get free and she returned to us unscarred by her adventure. We were so happy and relieved!!

A photo of Duchess, part Collie, part St. Bernard. (with my brother Bob)

Battleground Pacific Book Review

Inch High Guy


Battleground Pacific: A Marine Rifleman’s Combat Odyssey in K/3/5

By Sterling Mace and Nick Allen

Hardcover in dustjacket, 330 pages, illustrated

Published by St. Martin’s Press, May 2012

Language: English

ISBN-13: 978-1-250-00505-2

Dimensions: 5.7 x 1.3 x 8.4 inches

Sterling Mace grew up in Queens during the Great Depression. After the attack on Pearl Harbor he failed the U.S. Navy eye exam but was able to bluff his way through the second time and was accepted into the Marines. He was assigned to the 1st Marine Division, 5th Regiment, 3rd Battalion, Company K. When he joined the 5th Marines they were rebuilding on the island of Pavuvu, after having fought at Guadalcanal and Cape Gloucester. His first combat operation was the assault on Peleliu.

Mace was a BAR man on Peleliu, an island which had no natural source of fresh water but an abundance of heat…

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The First European To Visit Maui Hawaii

Today is November 26. In The Daily Chronicle (the in-house newspaper at Ida Culver Home Broadview – the retirement community where we have “retired”) – I read that on November 26, 1778 Captain James Cook became the first European to visit Maui. Needless to say, many Europeans, North Americans, and other people from all over the world have visited Maui. And some have settled there – my mother is one of the people who moved to Maui from New England in the 1960’s. In her 50’s, she was responding to a job advertisement for a librarian – a librarian to work primarily in the bookmobile of the library in Wailuku, Maui. She went in 1966, liked the job and the island and decided she wanted to stay permanently. She had a house built on Pio Drive and lived there for more than 30 years. She is buried there in the Garden of Remembrance at the Church of the God Shepherd.

My mother as a young girl with her sisters and their father in Omaha Nebraska. My mother is about 12 years old – the girl on the right

Where Did They Come From?

I have been tracing the origins of some of my childhood neighbors. I use ancestry.com, U.S. census records for 1940 and earlier, naturalization records, and other publicly available documents.

Following are examples of my findings:

A good friend of mine in high school had a grandmother living with the family. The grandmother did not speak English. She only spoke and understood Greek.

The parents of another classmate immigrated to the U.S. in the 1920’s. They recorded on their immigration form that they spoke Yiddish.

My near neighbors spoke German.

Another neighbor listed in the 1940 Census that she had been born in Sweden.

Another neighbor identified the German speaking part of Switzerland as her homeland.

Italy was identified as the home country by a number of people.

And Ireland was also identified by quite a number of people.

England was also favored by some.