The Perils of War  

World War II

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The Perils of War..

MY husband, Wayne attended a WWll seminar a couple of years ago at the Burlington, School in far north central OK . It was for the whole community. I saw kids and adults both with tears streaming down their faces as well as the old vets who were crying while telling their stories. Some  told their stories for the first time. It lasted 3 days. Wayne even told a sad story that I had never heard before that he had bottled up for 50 years. It was  when his ship and crew shot down 22 American planes during a mishap in W.W.II, The Army Air Force sent planes over their Attack Cargo Ship in a pitch dark blackout in a silenced radio time.  I had no idea he was carrying such baggage. Wayne was a fire control man and I am sure a good one,  he was one who told the men at what range to shoot.  I did find out more later,  by being his Navy Reunion Sec from a guy who was one shot down and writing a book.  He wrote to me wanting to know about the involvement of the USS Andromeda's of the mishap. He told me none were killed,  just downed and stranded on the ground. The story was that the AF asked the Navy permission to fly over them during this black out and air raid alert.  the Navy told them it was too dangerous, due to the conditions stated above. After several communications the Navy finally agreed for them to do it with special regard as to the time when they would fly over. As the story continues.. The AF got lost and ended up over  Italy and then flew back at a different time from a different direction,  so with no communication, pitch black darkness and no visual contact,  the Navy thought they were the German AF and shot at them,  downing the 22 planes.  The Navy never did tell them what they had done.  6 months later,  the USS Andromeda picked up some of the crew that had been shot down for transportation to another location, only then did they learn of the mishap. This is just another perils of war story.

Lois Caywood Guffy
Byron Oklahoma.

Hoarding ??

"Hoarding" is a harsh word to me. I was 10 years old when WWII began and I plainly remember my Mom using ration stamps with much concern and care to buy sugar, shoes, gasoline, tires and other rationed things for our family.I  feel my mother was thrifty and wise to "hoard" the extra sugar and deserved a reward of some sort for the way she untilzed it. There were months when she had extra sugar and then times she was short. She carefully planned the use of her stamps so they would last through the month or until you could get more stamps. Sometimes she had a little sugar left over,  but still  got more when it was available and this continued on until she did have an emergency amount left. I call this being  wise. I can remember her  burying the extra sugar in large jars in the dirt floor of our cellar. The reserve sugar was sometimes used for a seldom reward of sinful desserts, like a cake or pie... nothing extravagant. She canned during the garden season with dad's help from a large garden that she and dad  put out each spring. We would have vegetables, fresh in summer and canned for the off season months and  enough to get us through winter. We would let the tomatoes set on the vines until just before the first frost or freeze,  then we picked all of that was left to ripen later. We wrapped them in newspaper and spread them out in a flat box,  placed them is a dry place to ripen.  Her favorite place for storage was under the bed. We often ate tomatoes until almost Christmas. Squash and pumpkins were stored there too if not placed in the cave/cellar. Cabbage was hard to grow in Oklahoma, so mom bought heads of cabbage, shredded them and placed that in a big stone jar to ferment along side of other crock jars full of cucumbers set in brine (Salt)  water and sprigs of dill for dill pickles. Mom was one of these "waste not , want not" people.  She did not to buy
much at a store during that period of time. Back then, women didn't plan the day's meal on what they picked up at the store that day.  We have gotten so used to jumping in the car and going to the store when we want something for cooking.  Back then if you did not have an ingredient that you could not adapt to the recipe,  you just waited until you did. One cooked what was on hand . There were many large families back then and the women  canned in large quart or one half gallon jars according to how many they cooked for and type food needed.  When the families got smaller they used pint sized jars. Not much was wasted. We should be so lucky to have "times" like that when their was more family and neighborly togetherness.  Yes, I should be as wise and thrifty as my mother was and I feel my children should be as wise and thrifty as I was raising our large family. 
I am sure they will tell their children the same.

WWII Memories

There are so many so many memories for me of W.W.II when many of my male family members left young wives and children behind. One uncle never came home until after the war, in a box.  He left two young children and a young wife behind. He  was 34 years old forever. We lost 2 of our closest young neighbors,  two weeks apart,  brothers that I went to school with.  Another young boy, two miles away, was killed as well.  One never forgets the lives lost , so we may live as we do today.  In 1971 Wayne JR called home from Viet Nam one day and I knew the minute I heard his greeting of "mama" that something was terrible wrong.  He had just heard about  the head shot completely off of a buddy pilot. The feeling of helplessness was more than I could hardly
bear. Wayne got $75.00 per month for his Navy pay back in 1943. Many of these men left good jobs and lost time climbing the corporate ladder, when some stayed behind (like a person I will not mention) and reaped the windfall of those fighting for our very lives.   Not fair !
There will never be a right answer for all of this. It is only human nature to find someone to blame.  No one person is to blame,  but ask ANY military man how they feel about our leader and you will get the same answer 99% of the time. When we attended Kent's  graduation at West Point in 1993, Clinton was the guest speaker. Many of us were embarrassed as he was Booed royally.  I am not saying that was right but it exemplifies what was felt. Yet , after the graduation exercises he mingled with the crowd and approached Danny and shook his hand and chatted with him a bit. Everyone has some good in them, if you
just look for it, (even me lol ) 1999

 Lois Guffy, (USS Andromeda Navy Secretary of 10 years)