Today 51 years ago, my parents were married in Staten Island, New York, their hometown. Sadly, they were only together 39 years before diabetes took my mother.
My dad jokes that he & my mom only had a handful of dates before they were married (although they knew each other for years attending the same high school). There wasn’t much time for dating at the Naval Academy!
They had 4 daughters together & lived the military life until settling down in Texas. They had some great assignments spending most of the time in Spain, Puerto Rico & Florida (what a tough life!)
I searched & searched for a picture of them together. My dad was the camera guy, so there are lots of pics of my mom & sisters, less of them all together & a handful of just the two of them. This is them at the Cortijo de La Plata in Spain in the early 70s. I love this picture of them together.
Some crazy & notable facts about my parents:
- We still have my mom’s ID tag that the New York City Schools assigned every child during World War II.
- My dad remembers ration cards & his mom trying to get enough meat for the week.
- My mom loved baking. One time in high school she told her mom she had dinner covered. Turns out her plan was pies, cookies & cakes.
- My dad was on duty when the USS Thresher imploded- he was the officer in charge that evening & was one of the first people to see the debris when they weren’t sure if the sub had been attacked.
- My parents lived in Spain under Franco’s rule. When I asked my mom what this was like. She simply answered “You just didn’t walk around at night.”
- My dad always made it home for Christmas. No mater where in the world his ship was- he always came home for Christmas. Every. Single. Year. From 1961-1981.
- Church was hugely important to my mom. When they moved to a new station, I wouldn’t have been surprised if she’d found a church & joined it before the moving truck came to deliver the furniture.
- Their first “non-east coast” assignment was when my dad went to grad school at Texas A&M in Bryan, Texas. The New Yorkers in them were amazed that people could be so nice & trusting. Thus, they wanted to settle in Texas.
- My mom paid for nursing school by working at the Singer Sewing Machine factory in New York City. Her minister connected her into a man who needed a summer secretary. She always said you could make good contacts at church!
Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad!