Saturday, March 22, 2014

Jack & Sherry Off on another Adventure

(The Biloxi light house made it onto a stamp)
Everything we owned easily fit in the trunk and back seat of the 1953 Plymouth.  We said our goodbyes to both families and head South, remember no interstates, we drove right down Peachtree St. in Atlanta. we stopped to say hello to Cousin Ken and his wife Rachel. Ken was nearing graduation from Ga.Tech and lived right off Peach Tree.
After a short break back on the road to Biloxi. I pronounced it “buh-lock-see learned it was bullux-see”.  I had been raised in the Church of God, so we contacted Brother Matthews (In our church most folks first name was Brother or Sister, LOL), local pastor and he helped us find a place to live. It worked for us, a small one bedroom place, right down town Biloxi and about 2-3 blocks off the beach.
At that time Biloxi was an Air force and  fishing town. No Casinos and the cost of living was reasonable.   I reported to the 3380th Air Base Group and was assigned to the Crash Boat section. There was two 63 foot boats and one 65ft. There was an outpost on Ship Island and my job was to keep radio contact with the Island. I was finally issued some uniforms, and told when and where to report.
I joined as a radio Operator, Airman second class, low man on the totem pole. With the help of my sweetie the uniforms were starched, my shoes were spit shined, I was SQUARED AWAY, I looked military.
Did you  ever see McHale's Navy? That is what it looked like I reported into. I had just left the Marines. I was shocked. Shorts, dungarees, no hats, some wore Navy white hats. I was shocked but fell in love with the loose attitude. I took a lot of good natured kidding about how I looked. When learned my schedule and duties I WAS IN LOVE, 2days on and 3 days off. Of course the 2 days were 48 straight, but after 4pm Sherry could join me to fish off the pier or watch TV, every one else had gone home.
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Biloxi had some draw backs. The most mosquitoes and cockroaches I had ever seen. Like most everyone else we had no A/C. But we were meeting folks we would be friends with for the rest of our lives. I worked with some great guys, and with my three days off we could learn the area and just enjoy ourselves, Sherry was getting more pregnant. (She says she felt ugly, but to me that girl has never been ugly)
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(This is the building I worked in, an old plywood building, That is my girl!)
But a little rain must fall. Sherry learned her mother had had a heart attack. She was going home! She took the long bus ride back to Belmont and stayed to help her mama as much as she could. Of course her sisters Lennie and Colette were right there, Colette had taken her mom home with her to make it easier. Susie recovered, and when Sherry felt comfortable My mom and Dad brought my bride back.
I knew Sherry wanted her mom near her when the baby was born.
Nite Shipslog
PS: Sherry’s mom was only in her mid 50’s when the heart attack occurred. To be honest, that was our first introduction to the possibility of death of a close loved one. AND IT WAS A SHOCKER! When you have them, you think your parents will always be there.
1958 Fiat  (rose)1958_Metro-sept251958Cadillac-a1
CARS OF 1958   OOPPPPPPPPPSSSS. Caught red handed by my friend Louis, the Caddy is a 1955 not a '58 (But she is pretty ain't she!  Thanks Louis......


Woody said...

Good Entry, I bet you were surprised at the transition from Marines to Air Force, I graduated with 2 fella's that went to Biloxi in 1965 and were stationed there, they hated it. Woke up at 3am to howling wind and blowing snow, 22 degrees, now at 1530 it is 32 and sunny but lots of snow!
Take care you 2!!!! enjoying the Posts as usual!!

Mevely317 said...

Gosh, it feels great to slow down and feel the rhythm of your words again.
You're SO right, Jack about coming face-to-face with our loved ones' mortality. Just the other day a colleague shared something I thought was profound: "I miss feeling safe; you know, when everyone I cared about was alive."

PS - After all these years I just found out, I've been pronouncing Biloxi erroneously! Thanks for setting me straight! :)

betty said...

That would be a scare to get the news about Sherry's mom's heart attack! Glad to hear that she was okay though! Sounds like Biloxi, minus the bugs, was a good place to spend some time!


Chatty Crone said...

It is hard when you are not home where your parents are sick.

Two military careers plus.

And I don't like bugs - especially those big cockroaches - You have to be brave for those buggers.

Paula said...

Still enjoying your story.


Coming face to face with mortality is frightening for sure. I hate bugs. I've seen them pretty big in Florida too.