Saturday, July 29, 2006

Soldier Weddings

On Saturday mornings, Toby and I like to sneak away for breakfast in town. Today while we were eating, we heard an older man talking at a nearby table. He said he had lost his wife back in May. They had been married 68 years. "Yeah, she married me when I was a soldier at Ft. Sill back in 1939." The older man was just pretty cute at 80+ years of age. I wondered how he looked in uniform back in 1939 – I bet he was something!

My cousin, Fred, sent this link to pictures of his son, Captain Jim’s wedding. I have posted info and letters about my cousin who is a captain in the Marines. Capt. Jim and Ariel were planning a big August wedding in Dallas, and we all were looking forward to the party. In June, they found out that Jim would deploy to Iraq in October. So, they moved the wedding up to July 1st out on the East Coast – meaning that we could not make the wedding. I have heard that it was beautiful – just perfect as every wedding should be. I also heard that as the bride and groom went through the raised sabers, the bride did not have a clue that she would be swatted on the butt. Don’t bother looking at all of the wedding pictures, but the one on the link is classic – the surprise on Ariel’s face is real.

This wedding talk reminded me that Captain Jim’s parents got together (started courting) while Fred, (my 1st cousin) was in Vietnam. Although he knew Paula from school and church, they began to fall in love when Paula started writing Fred letters while he was overseas in Vietnam. When Fred returned home from the war, he and Paula became engaged, married, and eventually had twins (Jim and Carrie).

Captain Jim’s grandparents (my Aunt Lois and Uncle Wes) were also married while Uncle Wes was stationed at Sheppard Air Force Base during WWII – another soldier and bride wedding. My family has a letter written sometime in the 1970’s to the Wichita Falls Times and Record News by a man who had been stationed as Sheppard during WWII. He mentioned how wonderful the people of WF were – opening their homes to feed soldiers on Sunday afternoons. He said his favorite place to eat and visit had been the Fred and Lou Ella Barker home (my grandparents). He said that the food was wonderful (my grandparents were chefs/caterers), but the best part was the Barker’s two beautiful daughters. He said his Air Force buddy, Wes Lively, was lucky enough to marry one of the daughters (my Aunt Lois, Captain Jim’s grandmother – and yes, she was beautiful).

Three generations of soldier and bride weddings – we women are suckers for men in uniform. We also love a love story.

1 comment:

Buck Pennington said...

What a great story, and, of course, a GREAT picture, Lou! The photographer's timing was dead-on perfect.

Women and men in uniform. I know a little bit about that, too!