Aug 14, 2010

The War Bride

I would like to share with you a movie about an English war bride who married a Canadian soldier.  It will give you some ideals as to what many of the thousand of brides had to face.  The loneliness, language problems, tears, missing family and friends back home, city life, dancing and drinking, parties, and much, much more.  Dealing with his family, his problems, his drinking, in many cases.  The War Bride

Aug 9, 2010

Czech Republic Remembers American Sacrifice during WWII


Have you ever wondered if anyone in Europe remembers America's sacrifice in World War II? There is an answer in a small town in the Czech Republic. The town called Pilsen (Plzen)

Every five years Plzen conducts the Liberation Celebration of the City of Pilsen in the Czech Republic. May 6th, 2010 marked the 65th anniversary of the liberation of Pilsen by General George Patton's 3rd Army.

Pilsen is the town that every American should visit.

Because…..they love America and the American Soldier...

even 65 years the thousands

the citizens of Pilsen came to say thank you...

lining the streets of Pilsen for miles.
From large crowds…

To quiet reflective moments…

Including this American family's private time to honor and remember their American hero.

This is the crash site of Lt. Virgil P. Kirkham, the last recorded American USAAF pilot killed in Europe during WWII. It was Lt. Kirkham's 82nd mission and one that he volunteered to go on.

At the time this 20 year old pilot's P-47 Thunderbolt plane was shot down, a young 14 year old Czech girl, Zdenka Sladkova, was so moved by his sacrifice she made a vow to care for him and his memory.

For 65 straight years , Zdenka, now 79 years old, took on the responsibility to care for Virgil'scrash site and memorial near her home.

On May 4th she was recognized by the Mayor of Zdenka's home town of Trhanova, Czech Republic, for her sacrifice and extraordinary effort to honor this American hero.

Another chapter in this important story.....the Czech people are teaching their children about America's sacrifice for their freedom.

American Soldiers, young and old, are the ''Rock Stars'' these children and their parents want autographs from..

Yes, Rock Stars ! ... As they patiently waited for his autograph, the respect this little Czech boy and his father have for our troops serving today was heartwarming and inspirational.

The Brian LaViolette Foundation will established The Scholarship of Honor in tribute to General George S. Patton and the American Soldier, past and present.

Each year, a different military hero will be honored in tribute to General Patton's memory and their mission to liberate Europe.

This award will be presented to a graduating senior who will be entering the military or a form of community service such as fireman, policeman, teaching or nursing, a cause greater than self. The student will be from one of the five high schools in Pilsen, Czech Republic.

The first award will be presented in May 2011 in honor of Lt. Virgil Kirkham, that young 20 year old P-47 pilot killed 65 years ago in the final days of WWII.

Presenting Virgil's award will be someone who knows the true meaning of service and sacrifice... someone who looks a lot like Virgil…

Marion Kirkham, Virgil's brother, who himself served during WWII in the United States Army - Air Corps. !!!

In closing... Here is what the city of Pilsen thinks of General Patton's grandson. George Patton Waters (another Rock Star!) we're proud to say, serves on Brian's Foundation board.

And it's front page news.. not buried in the middle of the social section..

Brigadier General Miroslav Zizka - 1st Deputy Chief of Staff - Ministry of Defense - Czech Armed Forces.

So please join this amazing journey…

Come visit Pilsen in the Czech Republic during the first part of May 2011, it may also be a life changing experience for you.

And please share this email with your family and friends and ask them to do the same.....every American should hear this story.

Apr 19, 2010

Claudette Pfingston commented on your post:

"My Mother told me she breast fed a lot of the other mother's babies, because the other mothers were so sea sick. My Mother told me she didn't get sea sick and had a lot of breast milk. - Claudette

Doris Galentine commented on your post:

"I didn't get seasick , we used cloth diapers when we came over, and had to wash them, my daughter was 15 month old and every morning the steward would take her to the kitchen and she would come back with cookies or friut, one day he told me I looked a little green but I didnt get sick."  -Doris

Apr 15, 2010

Dealing with babies on the ships.

Can any warbride tell me about how you all managed your babies on board ships, please? I'm writing a book about women on the wartime seas and would love to know how did you cleanse the bottles, launder the diapers, cope with nursing a baby if you yourself were seasick, and make up the formula in hygienic conditions?

In talking about the Argentina's January 1946 voyage from the UK to the US, The Argentina ‘s Lt. Col. Lyle commented that laundry was one of the trip’s problems. Practically all of the 18,000 disposable diapers were used up-on the 170 babies.

This statistic enables us to do some interesting speculation. If there were indeed 170 babies rather than babies and potty-trained children on board then actually each one used 105 nappies on the nine-day trip or eleven a day. Babies are usually changed 6-10 times a day. So maybe some mothers salted away the nappies for future use.

As for laundering terry toweling nappies a ship full of 100 babies would need to process 1200-400 nappies (two day’s supply to allow for drying time). It was surely a logistical nightmare. Not every ship had a laundry; few had endless supplies of fresh rather than salt-water and none were used to supplying such a quantity.

There were three problems soaking to get rid of stains and any remaining faecal matter; boiling to get them, Enviably white as well as reduce bacteria; and a drying time of at lest two hours. Most nappies were 24inches square (61cms)-so 400 would have required 4-800 feet of clothes line, almost a mile. Perhaps one good thing about sailing on a troop ships was that they had massive cooking pots which could now boil nappies instead of potatoes?

Thank you. Dr Jo Stanley ,

Apr 8, 2010

World War II War Brides Reunion Set

I'm sorry that I having been keeping up with my blog, but I was in Florida taking care of my very sick mother, Louise.  She is doing great now and back in her home.  I must say these war brides are a tough bunch.  Mom was giving a week to live, but she would not have anything to do with that.  She has a reunion to attend in October and she plans on being there.

I hope you will find the time to join us here in St. Louis for our next reunion.  It will be held at the Airport Hilton on October 6 - 10.  You can stop by the Hospitality room anytime. It is open to the public. Check out the displays and visit with our members.  If you would like to join us and all the actives please email me for more information.  We will have the following activities.
Welcome Reception Dinner, War Babies Meeting, My Stories taping, Annual Buiness Meeting for members only, City Tour, Sing-a-long, Tour of Historical St Charles, MO, Banquet Dinner with program and dancing, National Anthems Sungs, Farewell Breakfast.  Here's a picture on the 2009 reunion in San Francisco, Ca.