Tag Archives: A military man remembers his life.

Fred Remember~Part 8

14 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

From Lucerne, we put the car on a train, and rode in one of the passenger cars in 2ndclass coach of the same train.  We went though a 12-mile tunnel that made several complete spiral turns as we changed elevation (St. Gotthard Tunnel).

 

Gotthard tunnel: World’s longest and deepest rail tunnel – credit Google Search and BBC News

 

The train started in the German-speaking part of Switzerland, and exited in the Italian-speaking area, near Lugano.  I was amazed to see palm trees growing in Switzerland (all over Lugano)!

In the summer of 1948, I attended a summer camp (Yank-in-Switzerland), while my Dad was assigned to Trieste, Italy.  It was a two-week camp in the mountains at Lenk, and two weeks on the lake at Oberageri.  It was organized and run by former U.S. military men.  I took a train from Trieste to somewhere near Venice.  I met up with others going to the camp, and went on to Switzerland.  After two weeks in Lenk, we stopped at a fair in Thun, then on to Oberageri, Canton Zug. There was a Lake Oberageri, where we went swimming.  They had a boat from the camp that “led” us out, then we swam back to camp.  In the nearby town of Altdorf, I remember the presentation of the William Tell pageant.  The actor playing William Tell actually shot an apple off the head of a child actor with a crossbow and arrow.  I also remember getting ice cream cones for 3¢, and getting apfelsaft (apple juice).

 

 

This little log house/bank was a prize I got during the camp.

 

 

 

The beanie/cap and this pennant are from my time in the summer camp.

Most of the time while we were living in Trieste, we lived in downtown – or near downtown – on via Carducci Street, number 2.  Our apartment was on the “mezzanine,” and it looked out over the main street, via Carducci, which began just a block or so away from there.

 

They lived “under the arches” of this building

 

On one side was the piazza Oberdon, which we could see through our den window. Our apartment had eleven rooms, which I think had been an office complex at one time.  As I recall, it did have two bathrooms and a real long room, which functioned as a kitchen.  I think it had at least four or five bedrooms, so each of us kids had our own room, plus the den.

 

Living Room quarters, Trieste

 

I remember getting very well acquainted with one of the men there who was sort-of a building manager or care-taker.  I think his name was Mario.  I even went out fishing with this guy a couple of times.  He was a really nice guy, and spoke pretty good English.  By this time, I spoke pretty good Italian, since a lot of my friends were Italian.

Right around the corner from our apartment [in Trieste] there was a shop that, among other things, sold used postage stamps.  By this time I had gotten interested in stamp collecting.  I remember going there frequently to buy stamps fairly inexpensively.  But I remember walking pretty much just all over the town – and this was a city of 350,000 people.  So it was pretty big.

When we arrived in Trieste, I was eight years old, and when we left, I was 10.  I used to walk the mile from our apartment to downtown, which was probably eight or ten blocks to the port area.  I also walked a couple of blocks away, and there was a funicular, or cable car [actually it was a cog-train] that went up the side of the mountain to a place called Opicina, which was sort-of a suburb of Trieste, but it was about 1,000 feet above, with a steep escarpment.  I had such fun riding up there, not knowing that the last five or six months we were in Trieste we actually would move up to Opicina and live in a villa – a 16-room villa!  It had a wall around it, that was 15-feet tall – and it had six bedrooms and five baths, actually servants quarters – the whole works, and my Dad was only a Captain!  My how things have changed!

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Fred Remembers~Part 7

7 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 Sometime later, we drove down through Belgium.  I honestly don’t remember where we stopped. But just on the other side of the French/Belgium border, we stopped at a French restaurant.  I think it was part of a fancy hotel there.  Dad had talked to the Maitre d’ there, and they set us up at one of the real fancy dining tables, and brought out a huge tray of filet mignon, and huge heaping trays of french fries.  I’m sure we had other things, but those were the only things that I remember.  I remember the filet mignon was so tender, you could cut it with a fork.

From there, we went to Paris and we stayed in a hotel, the Hotel de la Paix.

 

 

We did take a tour out to Versailles,  and I remember being very impressed with the Hall of Mirrors;

 

Versailles – Credit Google Search and By G CHP, CC BY-SA 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=72739008

 

Hall of Mirrors – Credit Google Search and By Photo: Myrabella / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15781169

 

 

Later we rode one of the elevators up the Eiffel Tower.

 

A much later picture – Judy, Karen and Janet – 1981

 

I remember being surprised that it was a two-stop trip.  Partway up on one big elevator we stopped, then we got on a smaller one that went the rest of the way.  I just remember it was a beautiful view from the top.  We also walked around the Arc de Triomphe –

 

In the setting sun – 1981

 

and at the time we were there, there weren’t too many cars around on the Champs Elysees.  We also toured the Louvre.

 

The Louvre and small arch – 1981

 

From Paris, the next stop was Neuchatel, Switzerland, on Lake Neuchatel, in the French-speaking part of Switzerland.

 

Lake Neuchâtel, Switzerland.Martouf – Credit Google Search

 

Sometime between Paris and Neuchatel, I had come down with a rash, and when we got there, and got settled in the hotel, they called a Swiss doctor, and he diagnosed me with German measles.  The first thing the doctor did was close the curtains in the room to make the room dark.  That cooped me up in that room, and the doctor said, “You’re stuck in the bed for the day.”  While I stayed in bed, the others went out to see the sights.  Because I stayed in bed, the spots were gone in a day-and-a-half, and I was able to continue my tour.

After we left Neuchatel, we went on to Lucerne, and Emily came down with the measles.  Emily, being a little bit more rambunctious than I was, decided she didn’t want to be cooped up in bed, so she insisted in going with us everywhere.  As I recall, it took her a week to get over the measles, where it took me a day-and-a-half to get over it.

I remember being very impressed with Lucerne – it’s still one of my favorite cities.  We walked across the old covered wooden bridge, which is still there.

 

Covered bridge on Lake Lucerne – credit Google Search

 I remember going to an unusual place – I guess it was out of the way – it was in kind of a base relief in large rocks.  I remember some lions and some other animals in there. It had been dedicated to the Swiss guards that guarded one of the popes.  Wikipedia states:

The Lion Monument, or the Lion of Lucerne, is a rock relief in Lucerne, Switzerland, designed by Bertel Thorvaldsen and hewn in 1820–21 by Lukas Ahorn. It commemorates the Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution, when revolutionaries stormed the Tuileries Palace in Paris.

 

 Credit Google Search

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

 

 

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

The Beginning

27 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES
Judy Wills

 

I would like to preface this post by saying that I am going to do a series of posts written by my husband, Fred. He has had a most interesting life. At one time, a few years ago, we sat down and he dictated his thoughts and memories, and I typed them up. Some of them are in a bit of a random order. I have pictures to go along with a lot of it.

I must also tell my readers that, at one time I asked Fred’s mother if they had pictures of all their life adventures. She informed me that there were none. Big disappointment! However, on another visit to their house, I was snooping around and found….four full albums of family pictures!! Surprise!! I brought those four albums home with me and scanned them all into the computer.

At one time, I asked Fred’s parents to write their memories. Fred’s dad put up quite a resistance, insisting that “in five generations you have a million people!” But I finally got them to understand that I only wanted THEIR memories – not all those millions! What came of that was a wonderful “Memories” book. I made copies for all of their four children and nine grandchildren.

 

Charles and Kitty Wills – Fred’s parents

 

All that to say, that Fred’s story needs to be told, and here it is. I will also be inserting comments that I know about this family, as well as some of the tidbits that Charles wrote in the Memories book. Enjoy!

FRED REMEMBERS

I remember being at Grandma Wills’ home in Ocean View, New Jersey. She had a big yard with a gazebo, and evergreen shrubs were around the gazebo. The back yard was about 100’ out – a large field.

 

 

The gazebo

I remember there were lots of potato plants, and I remember picking bugs off the potato plants.

I remember she had a big kitchen. I remember sitting at the table, snapping and stringing green beans.

Near the barn was the outhouse – it had 3-holes – the middle one was small, for the children.

I remember the barn – the left side was a single-car garage-type, with boats, duck decoys, and a work bench. The other side had a 2nd floor loft for storage.

I remember visiting Uncle Melvin’s home. [Judy’s NOTE: Fred’s dad was the middle child of five – three boys and two girls] It was down the street and the other side of the street from Grandma’s. It was two-story, with a porch in front, and was newer than Grandma’s. Behind the house was a big field with HUGE, sweet blueberries.

I remember that north of town there was a pond. Dad (Charles) said he and his brothers and sisters used to swim in it. In winter, it would freeze over, and they would ice skate on the pond.

 

Melvin ice skating

I remember a one-room schoolhouse, a general store, and a gas station. I remember my First Grade in Ocean View. It was in the same one-room schoolhouse where Dad went, and I had the same teacher Dad had for HIS First Grade. There were six grades with one teacher when I went to school there. There were eight grades when Dad attended.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

 

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.
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