Sunday, August 17, 2008

They don't make 'em like they used to

My dad was one of five boys born to Millard Fillmore and Ila Rowell Green. Their mother died very young and my grandfather was left to raise the boys on his own. The youngest was a year old when his wife died. He re-married once but soon discovered it was a mistake and divorced the woman.

The boys grew up in a tough time, my dad graduated from high school 8 months after the start of the depression. Somehow my grandfather knew the local bank was about to fold and pulled out his money in time but money back then wasn't worth a whole lot.

Four of the boys enlisted in the service. My dad made it his career but for his brothers it was probably for survival.

Two of the brothers died in the 1940s, one during the war and one soon after it ended. My grandfather had also lost a brother (who was run over by a train) and all three of them were buried in the family plot he bought when his wife died in 1915.

The matching markers he put on the four graves were made of concrete and had their names and dates molded into the block. After fifty plus years of exposure the concrete had worn away and was no longer legible. Someone had replaced the marker on my grandmother's grave with a marble column in the 1970s.

I contacted the VA and obtained new markers for my uncles. Since they were veterans and their graves were no longer marked the VA sent them at no charge. On my to do list is to obtain a marker for my great uncle.

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