Time was when
Tuesday August 07th 2012, 11:05 pm
Filed under: Family,History

My brother sent me a link to a video wherein our uncle’s name was mentioned, their story told with the pictures and reels of the day. Wow.

My parents will be celebrating their 60th anniversary this fall and it occurs to me after watching that that we their children need to do what was done back when Mom’s dad turned 90: come armed with cameras and recorders and a list of questions and get them reminiscing for us. I know that Dad’s mom headed her county’s Red Cross knitting for the troops–how did she knit ten hours a day, as her letter said she did, with rheumatoid arthritis? Did it come later?

A nephew once had a school assignment to ask family members to write in his booklet about some memory of some day in history and then mail it to the next person and the next and finally back to him by the end of the school year. Dad wrote that he had been a teenager cutting Christmas trees with the Boy Scouts as a fundraiser and was in the back of a pickup with 49 trees piled high around him when his dad came up the road to their surprise and stopped them: Pearl Harbor had just been bombed!

I remember watching Neil Armstrong on TV walking on the moon in grainy black and white. That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. Later, my dad, my little sister and I got to watch the last of the Apollo flights take off in person, sitting on bleachers in the Florida heat at Cape Kennedy and wondering afterwards how much of the sunburn on our faces might be from the rocket boosters.

What day in history do you remember?

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Sitting in class the day Kennedy was shot and watching the news on closed circuit TV (progressive school district).

I was at camp when they landed on the moon. The boys got to see it live, since the TV was at their camp. We got bused down the hill in our pajamas and watched re-runs after they left.

Comment by Anne 08.08.12 @ 12:15 am

My first memory was of watching the moon landing – had talked my mother into letting me stay up (get up?) to see it.

I talked my elementary school into letting us watch the first shuttle launch.

Obviously a space junkie from the early days.

Comment by wildknits 08.08.12 @ 4:26 am

V-J Day. We lived in a small county seat town in northern Indiana. One of the leading citizens got completely drunk, broke into the courthouse and rang the bell until he passed out. My brothers and I still talk about it.

Comment by Abby 08.08.12 @ 4:29 am

I don’t listen to news first thing in the morning. Too depressing. So this one day I’m driving to work and I pass a friend driving in the opposite direction and he has an expression of pure horror on his face. When I arrived at work everyone was watching TV on 9/11.

Comment by Jody 08.08.12 @ 5:19 am

Fabulous idea. I think you know we’re celebrating the League’s 80th anniversary this year too…

The day in history I remember is January 28, 1986. I was home with the chicken pox and was propped up in bed, watching the Challenger launch. Dad had always said I’d NEVER have a TV in my room, but he wheeled his into my room before he left that morning…

Comment by Channon 08.08.12 @ 7:37 am

Nov 22, 1963 — I was sitting in a 7th grade math class when everyone was called into an assembly where we were told that JFK had been shot — it was the first “newsworthy” thing that I clearly remember even though I have lots of more personal memories back to when I was just under 2 years old

I probably should do more about getting some of that written down for my daughter and my grandson

Comment by Bev 08.08.12 @ 7:53 am

What fun!
One of my earliest memories is of waking up to the sound of milk being delivered at my grandparents’ home in Michigan. The clop of the horses hooves(!), the clink of the glass milk bottles in the metal carrier as the milkman walked up the driveway, the frozen cream rising out of the bottle in a column pushing up the cardboard top if we didn’t get it indoors quickly enough. Thanks for asking — if I mention it to my dd’s they laugh and say it just proves I’m older than dirt!
I too remember Neil Armstrong walking on the moon. We were at the Newport Folk Festival — folk music was a huge deal at the time. Oh, my. Makes me teary, dearie! It was pouring rain, the small b/w tv with a plastic bag over the top, the rabbit-ears sticking out of holes, was sitting on top of a tall box, Pete Seeger was singing……. Clearwater was tied up at the dock. I was there with my first dh and 2 small daughters. BIL visiting from California came too, the last time we’d all be together before my dh died of cancer 6 months later. Bitter-sweet, emphasis on sweet!
Carol in MA

Comment by Carol Telsey 08.08.12 @ 8:52 am

I was in first grade in Dodgeville, Wisconsin when the news of the assassination of Kennedy came across the loud speaker and watched my teacher burst into tears.Later, at home my mom was visibly upset.

Comment by Kris 08.08.12 @ 9:30 am

Oh, dear — too many memories! Sunday, December 7, 1941. I was sick in bed, and had just turned on the radio. And heard that the Japanese had bombed Pearl Harbor. I remember thinking ‘Now we’ll get in the war!
The day Kennedy was shot — 9/11 — the day I proposed to Amalie, and she said ‘yes’ so fast I still think she was just waiting for me to ask. The day we got married!!

Comment by Don Meyer 08.08.12 @ 9:52 am

Oh! I just watched that video link. Powerful!

Comment by Don Meyer 08.08.12 @ 10:01 am

Oh, I remember most of the ones mentioned. However the one that I will say is not 9-11. But the day they let airplanes back flying after 9-11. I was driving to the open house at High School where my girls were freshman, on the connector road between our island to the next island and I heard the roar of an airplane overhead. It scared me so bad that I had to pull over to the side of the road and sit there and cry. I looked up and all along the road were cars, pulled to the side, with drivers looking shook up, or standing outside looking up at the sky, holding their children close. With tears running down their faces.

Darn it, I’m crying now just remembering it…

Comment by afton 08.08.12 @ 12:01 pm

Two, really. Hearing about the Challenger explosion as I woke up to the radio and then many years later 9/11. Both times I just burst into tears, alone in the house and tried to come to terms with how my world shifted. A third, the tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan. Japan is one of my heart homes and I grieved a long time.

Comment by Diana Troldahl 08.08.12 @ 7:40 pm

That hot summer night, watching the moon landing, of course, but the one that gives me a real thrill is remembering my older sister sneaking Jan and me downstairs way past our bedtime to watch the Beatles on Ed Sullivan in their first performance on that show!

Comment by twinsetellen 08.08.12 @ 8:42 pm

I remember my grandmother telling me how they came to California from Oklahoma in a covered wagon. And the August day we learned Elvis died. Mom and I were big fans and it just seemed so shocking. And then I was in college and finishing finals. The woman in the next room had placed her stereo speakers in the window and played Give Peace a Chance all night long as we mourned John Lennon. Then I was at work when the Challenger exploded. Our whole team was speechless. And I was driving alone to work on 9/11. I turned on the radio and kept switching stations, hoping what I heard was some sort of hoax. Too real.

I do hope you can capture your parents’ celebration and memories. A gift for all of you.

Comment by DebbieR 08.08.12 @ 10:19 pm

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