Monday, May 29, 2017

Our Memorial Day

We made our annual visit to the Odd Fellows Cemetery, cleaned headstones and trimmed up a bit. Neighbors were there and we had a nice long visit.

O.T.'s marker. He and some friends decided to be Marines and they all went to a recruiting station. O.T. was the only one they took! O.T would not talk at length about the war, but we picked up some of his memories over the years. It seems odd that people you never knew become ingrained in your memory.

I never could get O.T. to tell us who all his buddies were in the snapshots he had. This one was taken after Bougainville, with Guam and Iwo still ahead of them. I think O.T was the only one to come home unscathed. Most of the guys he knew in his photos were killed or badly wounded.  He never wanted to go to reunions.

O.T. at twelve years old, on your right front. Brother Maurice behind him was a SeaBee. Ray, at left rear worked in defense industries in California. Alfred (Dutch), between Ray and Sister Dorothy died of appendicitis before the war.  Donny, the little guy between the parents, served on a seaplane tender in the Pacific. Lloyd, front left, served in a gun crew on the U.S.S. Colorado.

Lloyd suffered burns when the Colorado was hit repeatedly during the shelling of Tinian in June, 1944. He was evacuated to Saipan, where he passed a week later.

Lloyd was returned to St. Jo after the war, where he is buried next to his brother Alfred. O.T. would decorate his grave with peonies every year for Memorial Day until he left St. Jo. We haven't been to St. Jo to visit O.T.'s brothers' graves in many years, but we remember them every year.

1 comment:

Merle said...

Went to the cemetery to pay respects to my ancestors. Saw some friends & relatives who were younger than me - much to think about there.

While walking around, I discovered several Civil War vets, and a number of other stones too weathered to read.

Now sitting at home alone, pondering.