I acquired “Ken’s Men, Against the Empire, volume I” during this pandemic of ours and when I reached the story of Bootless Bay, I couldn’t get it out of my mind, so I decided to share it with you all. I thank the research of Lawrence J. Hickey and the IHRA for over 373 pages of unforgettable stories, plus a sneak preview of Volume II. I can’t praise this organization enough. I recommend you all try at least one of their books.
Del Ray Echo Hawk
Rescue from Bootless Bay
As men fought on the ground in New Guinea, the 5th Air Force was in the sky above them. The B-24D, the “Ben Buzzard”, 43rd Bombardment Group/64th Bombardment Squadron, with Lt. Stephen Blount as pilot, could be heard over the radio at Seven Mile Drome as they returned in violent weather over the…
From a very early age I was interested in weaving, and particularly in rug weaving. So my childhood efforts in this direction consisted of making pompons which I sewed to a piece of canvas with a printed pattern. A pompom rug. Then there were the latchet hooked rugs, again with a preprinted pattern. And finally I moved on to braided rugs. All this was in the 1940’s and early 1950’s.
Then came a gap – many other activities took precedence. College, graduate school, first jobs, etc. Knitting was about the only textile/wool craft which appeared sporadically.
Late in the 1960’s I married and before long I was the mother of 3 young sons. Our young family went to St. Lucia in the Caribbean for 2 years. A magical island. It was customary to have a maid and this left me free to do ……..what? I turned my thoughts to craft work – I could obtain canvas and a hook but not the appropriate yarn. I turned to sewing, with a new sewing machine. And embroidery on a printed canvas. But I wanted to finally learn to weave.
So our next overseas adventure was to Fiji. I had time in Dublin (our home in between overseas assignments) to get prepared. I saw a box containing a child’s weaving loom made by Spears. It was high up on a shelf in Nimble Fingers, a toy shop near us in Stillorgan. If I recall correctly it cost about 5 pounds?? Really very inexpensive and just the thing to ship to Fiji along with our other belongings.
(A side note here – Nimble Fingers also stocked the precut packs of wool for making a latched hooked rug. These supplies were not prominently displayed. One had to sort of root around, which I was happy to do!)
So when we arrived in Suva, Fiji, survived our struggles with the epidemic of dengue fever (not nice), unpacked our belongings – I began to weave. Tiny beginnings but I soon progressed to a 4 shaft table loom and then a floor loom. And with a floor loom I could actually weave rugs. At last!
Today in reading an item in Newspers.com I stumbled across a newspaper article from the Hartford Courant, October 1950. It was an account of my sister Nan’s wedding to Robert Whitney Richardson of New Britain Connecticut. Oh the memories! The Reverend Richard Bennet officiated. The bride was given in marriage by her brother Robert Dana Miller. The bride wore…………… Her sister Ruth was the Maid of Honor. The ushers were ________ and Mr. Elie Rubinsky of Beirut Lebanon.
Elie Rubinsky was a boy friend of my sister Ruth. She and Nan had met him on the ship (the DeGrasse) when they were returning from their 2 month long trip to Europe April to June 1950. Elie was strikingly handsome. Sometime in the winter following the wedding he and Ruth took me with them on a weekend skiing trip to Mt. Belknap near Laconia New Hampshire. We stayed with Aunt Rena and Uncle Clarence who had sold their farm and were living in Laconia. The skiing was wonderful but poor Ruth fell, and fortunately she didn’t break anything but had a very painful bruise.
Naturally I couldn’t just break off at home and come back to camp without leaving a little something behind me to remind you all of the few days I spent with you. But now I find I must have the very article that I left at home. It seems that the G.I. procedure is that every soldier wears what is commonly known as dog-tags. So if one of you good soles (not a typo) would be so kind as to locate the missing articles and send them to this address before they Court-Marshall me – I sure would appreciate it.
My furlough ended on Monday at midnight. The Jeffersonian was only 8 hours late – forcing me to miss two connections out of St. Louis. Naturally I was slightly AWOL !! Only 12 hours late coming in. But in the eyes of the C.O…
I have been doing a bit of research on my childhood neighbors. A large family, the Fahey’s, lived just around the corner on Essex Road. There were 7 children ranging in age from that of my older brother and sisters down to a girl just 3 years older than me. They were a friendly outgoing family and I played with the younger members occasionally. They had a basketball net in their driveway and games of basketball occurred fairly regularly. Thanks to Ancestry.com I have been able to gather some new, and old, information about the family.
The family have all passed away now. My particular friend and the youngest of the 7 children passed in 2017 at the age of 84. She married in 19?? and had 7 children. The family lived in Acton, another suburb of Boston.
The father died of a sudden heart attack in 1955 (just 6 years after my father had suffered a similar fate).
The mother was a graduate of Radcliffe College and taught for a while before she married.
I am trying to include a newspaper clipping of the marriage of the mother and father in 1922, almost 100 years ago. Watch this space.
… there is an old Marine poem… it says: ‘When I get to heaven, To St. Peter I will tell, Another Marine reporting sir, I’ve served my time in hell.” ______ Eugene Sledge, USMC veteran of Peleliu & Okinawa
I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze
A young Marine saluted it, and then
He stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He’d stand out in any crowd.
I thought, how many men like him
Had fallen through the years?
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers’ tears?
Hardcover in dustjacket, 328 pages, profusely illustrated
Published by Monogram Aviation Publications April 2000
Dimensions: 12.5 x 9.2 x 1 inches
Robert C. Mikesh is a name known to all aviation enthusiasts. A former USAF Officer, he was the Senior Curator for Aeronautics with the U.S. National Air and Space Museum. Fortunately for modelers and others interested in aviation history, he used his unparalleled access to surviving examples of Japanese aircraft to document them from a unique perspective – the cockpit interiors and crew positions.
This book is exceptional for its presentation and its thoroughness. Included are examples of nearly all aircraft types operated by the Imperial Japanese Navy and Air Forces during the Second World War. Each type receives a brief introduction, and then the reader is treated to several photographs and illustrations documenting the interiors and equipment. The photographs…
This week I will be posting letters written in July of 1944. Lad and Marian are awaiting Lad’s move to an Embarkation Camp and Marian’s drive to Trumbull. Dan is in London following the hustle before D-Day and Ced is still in Anchorage, working at the airfield and gaining flying time towards his Pilot’s license. Dick is in Fortaliza, Brazil coordinating things between the Army and the local workers and Dave continues at Camp Crowder, receiving more specialized training.
Marian (Irwin) Guion
Pomona July 17 ‘44
Dear Dad –
Things are still pretty much “on ice” as far as we are concerned. If the Army knows when we are going to move they are keeping it a deep dark secret. But knowing the Army, we are mighty suspicious.
We have been trying to tie up all the loose ends so that we can move on a moment’s…
Raise your hand if you remember the Enniskerry Pottery. As one traveled south from Dublin out through Dundrum to Enniskerry and drove or cycled (or walked) down the final hill, this little shop/craft studio was located on the left hand side of the road just outside Enniskerry Village. (Just before the left turn to go to Bray). Enniskerry Pottery, run by 2 young women, Month Parkes and her friend, whose name I can’t remember. A cosy little studio/shop. Eventually it closed, remained abandoned, and was torn down. Sadly, Monah was an early victim of cancer.
Years ago I lived in St. Lucia in the West Indies. It was idyllic for our young family with 3 little boys. I took up sewing and also embroidery. I had a pattern on canvas and created a large picture using different embroidery stitches. I spent many an hour with my neighbor and good friend Mary Moore chatting away and working on my stitches while our young children played. It was a steep learning curve. Anyhow I eventually finished this large piece, which was a rather charming picture a girl on a swing. I had it framed. What to do with it?? In due course we returned to Dublin and I tried to sell it. I had it for sale in the Enniskerry Pottery – date 1974/75.
We weren’t back in Dublin for very long. A few months after our return from St. Lucia, we went to Fiji, really on the other side of the world. And that was the last I heard of the Enniskerry Pottery and my lovely wallhanging, the girl on a swing, outlined by embroidery stitches. I didn’t even have a photograph of the embroidery or the Enniskerry Pottery.
I actually do have the embroidery book I purchased in St. Lucia – it is sitting on my shelf right here at Ida Culver Broadview. That book is full of memories!