Posts Tagged ‘letters’

WITH LOVE, ON VALENTINE’S DAY

February 14, 2018

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I like to imagine that these two photos were snapped on Valentine’s Day, but I really have no idea. At least, thanks in part to the letters they wrote each other during their service in WW2, I know that Helen and Frank were deeply in love when these pictures were taken. They were newlyweds, separated for months at a time, with only their letters and prayers to keep them together and in love. My parents remained deeply in love for the 52 years of their marriage. This is the last day to purchase the e-book of their story, WITH LOVE, WHEREVER YOU ARE, at the sale price, $2.99.  But don’t go away. I have more photos to share.

WITH LOVE, IN FRANK’S UNIT

February 12, 2018

camp visit (2)

Toward the end of the war–and the end of the book, Helen pushed her way onto a bullet-ridden service airplane with 13 French soldiers. Everyone was waiting for the Germans to surrender. And then soldier-doctors and many soldier-nurses would board ships to the Pacific to continue to fight until the Japanese surrendered. Helen determined to see her husband before that happened. Frank had been moved to an outpost in Entzheim, France, and the couple arranged the miracle rendezvous at the eleventh hour through code letters. She spent several days there, even accompanying him on a rebuilt motorcycle to do patient rounds in villages. From later letters, I learned that Helen was quite a hit with Frank’s buddies.

WITH LOVE, FRANK’S PHOTOS

January 25, 2018

write table vittel fr (2)

My last post showed a picture Helen sent to Frank. On the back of that photo, Helen wrote: “Don’t miss the background–someone always close.” The background showed her pictures of Frank. I wish this photo were clearer, but it’s evident that Frank had the same idea. On the back of this photo, he wrote: “my writing table.” The last years of Mom’s life, first in Missouri, then in Ohio with us, on her dresser she had pictures of Frank. And on the window ledge beside her bed sat their wedding picture, the framed photo above, on the right, the couple in their Army uniforms on their wedding day. It was the last thing she saw every night. I’m looking at it now, as it’s on the wall just to the right of my computer screen.  What special pictures do you keep close?

Lt. Dorothea Engel

October 26, 2017

scan-of-aunt-dot-in-the-army

When the nurses escaped the Japanese invasion on their island in the Philippines, they were taken to Australia to recover enough to be shipped back to the U.S. Almost immediately, Aunt Dot started writing letters to every officer and politician, begging them to help her find her husband, “Boots,” who had disappeared on the “Death March of Bataan.” She got little cooperation from the Army, who declared Boots dead, after having listed him initially as missing in action. The Army listed Dotty as a widow, but she refused widow’s pay because she believed her husband was still alive. And she continued her calls and letters to the powers-that-be. While she and the world awaited the end of the war, Dotty kept writing her brother, Captain Frank Daley, M.D., and her new and as yet unseen sister-in-law, Lt. Helen Eberhart Daley. Several of those letters appear in WITH LOVE, WHEREVER YOU ARE, and it’s easy to see Lt. Doreathea Daley Engel’s determination and love.

WITH LOVE, HELEN EBERHART DALEY

September 19, 2017

Ohio Mom

This is my mom from 2009, Helen from WITH LOVE, WHEREVER YOU ARE. She was as lovely then as in her WW2 days. We convinced her to come live with us in Ohio, and to leave Hamilton, MO, her home with Frank, my dad, for 60 years or so. It wasn’t an easy battle with this feisty gal! But once committed, she never complained, but looked for new ways to share the Spirit that lived inside her and touched everyone she met. Those last 5 years were my best with my mom. I pumped her for war stories, never mentioning the stacks of letters secure in the Army trunk and untouched since 1945, letters she and Dad wrote as newlyweds on different war fronts, letters I wasn’t allowed to open until she joined Dad in heaven.