In honor of D Day, I’m re-running this post about a WWII vet who met his sweetheart in an Arkansas diner. – RDK
I sat in the “family section” at my great-uncle Charlie’s funeral listening to the minister narrate his life story. Long-time members and family friends filled the pews to extend their regards and say their last goodbyes. Uncle Charlie’s history about his veteran status in World War II, his commendations and a letter from his commanding officer were detailed. He had served on several islands, and was on Midway when the Japanese attempted a takeover. Evidently, two islands made up “Midway,” and Charles was on the Sand Island portion when some pretty heavy action took place. He was also stationed on Russell Island which was bombed so frequently Charles got conditioned to the warning sirens and sometimes slept right through all the noise and chaos.
I hadn’t known about the honor, valor and courage my Uncle had shown during WWII. I quietly listened while trying to soak in the details, but some of the language of the various battles and specific missions were foreign to me. I was mentally making a note on “books covering WWII to read when I finished school,” when a love story began to unfold from the pulpit. My ears perked up as the minister began sharing anecdotes about how Uncle Charlie and my Aunt Audry met. I grinned…my Uncle was a schemer! A few weeks after I returned home, I wrote his daughter and ask for permission to share the story of how they met. My cousin not only granted permission, she sent me a few photos. Cue a small-town Fayetteville, Arkansas scene. The year was 1950…. Continue reading Love Stories with Oklahoma Roots: Charles and Audry Coward