In 1945 after my parents graduated from high school, Mother said good-bye to her family in Fredonia, KS and left to make her own way in Wichita. At the same time, my father was drafted into the Army and left his home in Wichita to fulfill his duties on the Aleutian Islands of Alaska. In these photos he is on the right; his face - even as a young man - so familiar to me, his smile reflected in my own young son's face.
There in Alaska along the shoreline, he and his buddy found an old boat and seeing an island in the distance, decided to row out to it. Using an old board for an oar they began their journey, but after some time discovered that the island was a lot further out than they'd originally thought. Anxious to get back to base, they turned the boat only to discover the tide had turned as well. Rowing frantically they were finally able to make it back to shore safely and unseen. Later that night word got around that the Coast Guard had been alerted to two men adrift on the sea....and he was asked, had he seen any sign of them while he was down on the shore?!
Daddy came home a year later and went back to his job at McKesson's. My mother still remembers hearing his voice as he came into the office where she worked, and he remembers seeing her in the back room running the mimeograph machine.
That was their beginning....