Wednesday, December 7, 2016

93. December 1947 and 2016 Connected

Two events that took place in the Gettysburg National Cemetery sixty-nine years apart are linked to each other.

On December 11,1947, the Gettysburg Times reported that twenty-eight veterans of World War II were to be re-interred that month in the Gettysburg National Cemetery.

Sixty-nine years later, on December 2, 2016, members of our family, including four great-grandchildren, placed Christmas Wreaths on the graves of World War II veterans in the Gettysburg National Cemetery. Undoubtedly, some of those who were honored in 2016 were laid to rest in 1947.

Nancy and I have been participating in the National Wreath Project sponsored by the Sgt Mac Foundation since 2008, and this year we were accompanied by fifteen family members and friends. We were among approximately 300 volunteers who decorated wreaths and placed 1620  on headstones in the Gettysburg National Cemetery.

On December 20, 1947, the Times quoted William Haskel, assistant to the president of the New York Herald Tribune, who called Gettysburg, “a fresh air paradise.” Haskell visited Gettysburg the previous week to discuss the Fresh Air Program which placed youngsters from New York City in Gettysburg for a summer visit.  

Nancy’s 1947 diary suggests that we were busy sophomores at Gettysburg High School in December of that year. We were both members of the high school choir which performed numerous times leading up to Christmas. In addition, we were both involved in sports, and Nancy worked evenings at Murphy’s 5 & 10. When did we find time to study?

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