June 16, 1943. Duluth, Minnesota. He was almost twenty-two. She was twenty. World War II raged in other parts of the world, but for one day, the war was forgotten for this couple. Glenn was stationed in Duluth after enlisting in the Coast Guard. Marge had hopped on a train in Carey, Ohio, to meet Glenn and marry him. They spent one night together and then Marge headed back to Ohio, back to a job so she could save for their future, and back to her parents to explain where she had been. Marge’s little sister, Burdeen, covered for her while she was gone.
It was a bold move for a small-town farm girl from the Midwest. Was this her first trip out of state? Quite possibly. And it was a doozy. She was a spunky girl, but running off to get married so far away was pretty amazing. Eventually, Marge returned to Duluth, found a job as a waitress, and began her life as Glenn’s wife until 1945 when they discovered their family was expanding. Again she left for Ohio to await the birth of their first child.
And then… the war was over, Glenn came home to Ohio. They worked hard and raised two children, my brother and me. They were married sixty-two years when Marge passed away in 2005.
Wow how wonderful that the letter was kept. How brave of your mother to marry your father knowing he might not return from the war. Life was so different in those day – I love your dad’s comment that the ceremony was short but that marriage lasts a lifetime ❤️
Isn’t it wonderful that you have that letter and so much knowledge about your parents’ early years together! After my mother died (in 2012), I found a bundle of letters from my father to her, written before they were married; I’ve read and reread them several times and gained such insight into who they were as young people. I think, generally, we don’t always think of our parents as having a life before we were born, so having these kinds of documents makes them absolutely invaluable. Thanks for sharing this beautiful story.
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I just recently found this letter after my Dad’s sister passed away. She had saved all the letters. So glad I was able to find out little bits and pieces about them. There are more to read and I am hoping more stories will come from those. Thanks for commenting.
After finding Mom’s letters, I did some more digging into the family ancestry and discovered some amazing ‘connections’ that no one in our family was aware of. I just wish I’d asked Mom and Dad more questions about their past (something I didn’t really think about until they had passed on). I’m putting my own ‘history’ together (photos and narrative) to pass along to my boys so they won’t have any ‘lingering questions’ after I’m gone.
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