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Old 01-24-2008, 11:06 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally posted by CleatMarks on 01-24-2008 at 08:01 AM
Maternal Grandfather was a Master Diver who dove on the rescue of the Squalus. He was from Tennessee and ran way with his 8 year old sister when he was 14 years old because they were being abused. He joined the Navy at 14 by lying about his age and was pulled out of retirement twice to train divers during the wars. He raised his sister and put her through college. If anyone's seen "Men of Honor", Chief Sunday (Robert D) was pretty much my grandfather (without the heavy drinking).

Maternal grandmother is from a very prominent family in NH. I think she was always a housewife/mom. I have no clue how she ended up with my grandfather with no real formal education but they loved each other.

Paternal Grandfather was a Italian Sniper in WWI and came to this country in 1918. He landed in New York but heard there was work on the railroad in MA so headed up and settled in Leominster on French Hill. His main job was working for the gas company but he worked as a ditch digger and various other jobs. He was also an excellent farmer.

Paternal grandmother was a shrewd woman. She used to run a Sunday kitchen out of her house where she would serve pasta, beer and wine. She would charge a little money for it and she saved it. She put 9 out of 12 kids through college with that money.

Interesting about the Master Diver. When I served in the Navy, I served on an ASR like your grandfather may have been on. The Falcon (ASR-2) was the submarine rescue vessel that worked the Squalus incident. I served on a different ASR, one of the class of ASRs built during WWII. I did the 800 foot plunge in a Diving Bell, in fact.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:07 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally posted by *mikiemo83 on 01-24-2008 at 10:26 AM
How many here could get there GrandFathers to talk about their service time? Neither one wanted to talk about it in my family but put them in a room of Vets and they got all chatty
My PG did not serve in WW I. As a teen during that time, he was the primary provider for his mother and siblings. Also, he died before I was born. My MG, who I posted about above, never spoke about his service. The stories were gathered over time by my mother. Much of the documentation to support some of the stories was found on a Canadian military site (can't recall which one).

My dad never spoke about his time on Okinawa. It wasn't until just a few years before he died that he started talking about it and then, only in general terms. My wife's dad (who died before I met her) told her many stories and her mother, who's town was constantly bombed by the Soviets, has given a detailed history of that time. My daughter has recorded it.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:12 AM   #48
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Quote:
Originally posted by *mikiemo83 on 01-24-2008 at 10:26 AM
How many here could get there GrandFathers to talk about their service time? Neither one wanted to talk about it in my family but put them in a room of Vets and they got all chatty
Its a surreal thing. I doubt many have the words that can keep it real and make it bearable to people who have never been there. When you watch a true war movie like a saving private ryan or a flags of our fathers, could you imagine what that was truly like in realtime? Your jumping off a boat not know if you are in a machine gunners sights...Unreal.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:16 AM   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by LVent* on 01-24-2008 at 08:12 AM
Its a surreal thing. I doubt many have the words that can keep it real and make it bearable to people who have never been there. When you watch a true war movie like a saving private ryan or a flags of our fathers, could you imagine what that was truly like in realtime? Your jumping off a boat not know if you are in a machine gunners sights...Unreal.
My best friend's father was a navy corpsman assigned to a Marine Division, and ended up in the first landing wave on Iwo... His cousin was a marine in another division on Iwo. Her father was wounded, but survived. Her father's cousin didn't make it off the island. It wasn't until after her father died over ten years ago that she understood the enormity of what he had done, and what he had went through. He was proud of it, but he didn't talk about it.

When I was in the navy, I'd often go to the legion hall, buy some of the old guys drinks, and just sit and listen to ther stories they had to tell... Them guys are dying off left and right, and IMHO it's an end of an era, and tha'ts kind of sad :(
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:41 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally posted by Claremonster on 01-24-2008 at 11:16 AM
My best friend's father was a navy corpsman assigned to a Marine Division, and ended up in the first landing wave on Iwo... His cousin was a marine in another division on Iwo. Her father was wounded, but survived. Her father's cousin didn't make it off the island. It wasn't until after her father died over ten years ago that she understood the enormity of what he had done, and what he had went through. He was proud of it, but he didn't talk about it.

When I was in the navy, I'd often go to the legion hall, buy some of the old guys drinks, and just sit and listen to ther stories they had to tell... Them guys are dying off left and right, and IMHO it's an end of an era, and tha'ts kind of sad :(
It is an amazing thing to think about what those guys went through.

You are right it is an end of an era. You got people who are thinking they are tough, they are hard. They aint shit compared to what some of those old timers lived through.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:44 AM   #51
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My paternal Grandfather was an ornithologist who taught Biology at Bowdoin. His most famous student was Alfred Kinsey.

My maternal Grandfather taught Physics at Exeter. He grew up in Lowell, where he was the second person to own an automobile in that city.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:49 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally posted by LVent* on 01-24-2008 at 08:41 AM
It is an amazing thing to think about what those guys went through.

You are right it is an end of an era. You got people who are thinking they are tough, they are hard. They aint shit compared to what some of those old timers lived through.

Yup. She and I are hoping, one day, to do one of those MilTours that go to Iwo. It's pretty important to us. And yeah, it's unfortunate, but seems more and more "men" are not expected to be "men" anymore...
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:50 AM   #53
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Also, I have to add that one of my great-grandfather's was drunk, and fell off a bridge into Quechee Gorge, and died. That was probably the most impressive thing he accomplished...
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:55 AM   #54
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Quote:
Originally posted by Claremonster on 01-24-2008 at 11:06 AM
Interesting about the Master Diver. When I served in the Navy, I served on an ASR like your grandfather may have been on. The Falcon (ASR-2) was the submarine rescue vessel that worked the Squalus incident. I served on a different ASR, one of the class of ASRs built during WWII. I did the 800 foot plunge in a Diving Bell, in fact.
My grandfather donated his diving log on that dive to the museum about 15 years ago. He served for years under Momsen.
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:56 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally posted by Claremonster on 01-24-2008 at 11:16 AM
often go to the legion hall, buy some of the old guys drinks, and just sit and listen to ther stories they had to tell..
I agree, it is too bad we do not spend time learning from the elderly, I go visit my Dad these days, He is in rehab trying to get his legs back under him, and I sit and talk to all the patients. I think I can learn more from listening to them for a couple hours than I could reading for a week.

it is a shame that elderly are pushed to the side, these men and women gave their all so we can live in the world we do with the luxuries we have and many times they are just forgotten, shoved into a corner to look out the window as the world passes them by
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Old 01-24-2008, 12:00 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally posted by CleatMarks on 01-24-2008 at 08:55 AM
My grandfather donated his diving log on that dive to the museum about 15 years ago. He served for years under Momsen.

No kidding? The guy that invented the lung? Sweet It's interesting that I was in the navy in the late 80s, and our submarine rescue technolgy hasn't changed since WWII...
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Old 01-24-2008, 12:02 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally posted by *mikiemo83 on 01-24-2008 at 08:56 AM
I agree, it is too bad we do not spend time learning from the elderly, I go visit my Dad these days, He is in rehab trying to get his legs back under him, and I sit and talk to all the patients. I think I can learn more from listening to them for a couple hours than I could reading for a week.

it is a shame that elderly are pushed to the side, these men and women gave their all so we can live in the world we do with the luxuries we have and many times they are just forgotten, shoved into a corner to look out the window as the world passes them by

My stepfather was an alcoholic, and so as a kid I spent a loooot of time at the VA up to White River, and so I got to talk to a lot of the old guys up there that were kind of "warehoused". After a while, they were always asking where I was, and when I was coming back, so as I got older I made it a habit to go up there just to talk to people because they didn't have anybody.
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Old 01-24-2008, 12:09 PM   #58
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As an aside, the navy has always had cool naming conventions, but some of the older ship names in the salvage fleet are cool.

I mean, what sailor wouldn't have wanted to serve aboard the USS Snatch?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Snatch_%28ARS-27%29
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Old 01-24-2008, 12:20 PM   #59
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Edmund Seib was born in 1896 on the second farm that his grandfather established after coming to the U.S. from Germany in 1861. He enlisted to serve in WWI and was in Florida waiting to be shipped off to Europe when the war ended. He never left the states. He became a cloth-cutter for Chrysler and eventually worked his way into management while still working the farm. He married Clara Dewes (b. 1897) and they had eight children; the seventh (interestingly enough the only one born in a hospital) of which died at only a few weeks old. My grandfather died on Pearl Harbor Day, 1974: almost three and a half years before I was born. Grandma died in 1991.

Donald English was born in 1904 in a small town in Southern Illinois. His father left his family and moved to Grand Island, Nebraska, leaving his wife Sarah to raise three girls and a baby boy. After eighth grade my grandfather went to work odd jobs in the Whiting/Hammond/East Chicago area. After a few years he moved back home and met Eileen Clark (b. 1905), a young Catholic girl who was determined to enter the convent even against her own father's (a stout Irish railroad worker) wishes. Donald would send letters to Eileen while she was at school, but would include secret messages written in lemon juice. My grandpa eventually got the drift that she wasn't interested and besides, he was Presbyterian. He started working for a man named Ollie DeLiel in Vincennes, IN in his department store and took what he learned there and became a manager for J.C. Penney. Ollie also sponsored my grandpa when he decided to become Catholic. Meanwhile, Eileen had decided to forego her journey to become a nun and the two met again not long after. This time around she was very much interested and they got married and had five children. The third, Mary Catherine, died at the age of six: one year before my mother was born. The family moved all over the Midwest as my grandpa was put in charge of different stores: Minneapolis; South Dakota; Kansas City; and Union, MO. In addition to being a homemaker, my Grandma English served as, of all things, a substitute English teacher. He retired from J.C. Penney and moved back to Vincennes to start his own children's clothing store. It was while they were in Vincennes that my mom met my dad at a workshop for CCD teachers. My grandmother died on the Feast of St. Joseph, 1978: 33 days before I was born. My grandpa died in 1989.

My Great(x12) Grandmother (through the Udny/Uldneys) Matilda Corgon was the bastard daughter of a Bishop.

My Great(x20) Grandfather (through the Gray-Beauforts) was Edward I, 24th King of England and Hammer of the Scots.

In a strange twist of fate, my Great(x21) Grandfather (through the Bruces) was Robert Bruce I, 31st King of Scotland.

My Great(x39) Grandfather (through the Gordons) was some dude known as Eochaid IV the Venomous of Argyll.

My Great(x40) Grandfather (through the Clares) was Sveide: also known as Sveide the Viking. He was a Norse King born about 760.
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Old 01-24-2008, 12:25 PM   #60
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My wife's father served in WW2 and was a member of the honor guard from Truman when he went over to Germany after the war. Prior to that, he was part of (although never confirmed by him) Patton's troops.

He didn't discuss his service at all with the family, but when we talked by ourselves, when he came over to the house, there were hints of his service. He always said that the best sight he ever saw a line of tanks moving through the French countryside. With that and his comment when we watched "Patton" one night lead me to believe he served under Patton.

His comment, "This movie is okay. Patton was a tougher SOB."
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