Perry During the War
While Dorr was in the Navy the boys and I went to live with my parents in Perry until Dorr came back. A couple had volunteered to help us move to Perry with a trailer they had. We got about five miles outside of Wichita when the tire went flat on the trailer. We unloaded all the furniture on the side of the highway. It was a hot August day and we had both boys with us. A cattle truck came by and offered to take us all the way to Perry. So they loaded all of our things in the back, which was not very clean. Dorr, the boys, the driver and I all rode in the cab. It was so hot but we were so glad just to get to Perry.
During this time I was able to complete the seven hours I needed to graduate at A&M and would go in for criticism, thus earning my degree. (I even got a loud Mommie! from Mike as I walked across the stage to get my degree.) Daddy had been with the state highway department since the time the bank failed in Woodward. He would continue to work for the highway department until he retired in 1957.
I do not believe Daddy ever had a car in Perry. He always walked to and from work. I would take Eddie Max and Mike down to the town square where they enjoyed playing on the little bandstand. I had a big baby buggy and I would put one at one end and the other at the other end. We went to the library, the drug store and Lindermans grocery store every pretty day. My parents still had HiLo, my dog I had in Lone Wolf. The doctors had told me that if I got Ed a tricycle it would help his coordination development. During the war it was impossible to buy anything like that, but Real Pitts, Dorrs boss at the creamery heard about this. He found a tricycle that needed work so we took it to a machine shop in Stillwater. The man had to use parts from another tricycle, but Ed ended up with it. This was good for Ed since he could not walk, but he could really move on that little tricycle. Mike would stand on the back and they would go up and down the sidewalk. Later after we had moved to Oklahoma City and they were old enough, the boys would ride the train by themselves to Perry to see their Mimi and Nini. We even made up a song about riding the train to Perry.
By this time my husband was home safe and in good shape. Believe me, I had much practice in prayer by now.
Naturally Dorr took pictures all during the war. Since he was an officer he could not sell the pictures to the men; thus he gave them away. While they were in port he would rig up a dark room and develop and print pictures for the men. Whenever they were with an aircraft carrier he would bum paper and chemicals since they always had more supplies. While in the Navy he took orders for books of fifty pictures for ten dollars. For the first few weeks after he returned in 1946 he practically lived in my parents cellar where he had set up a dark room. I believe he made about five hundred dollars and spent it on a new professional camera, like the ones you see the photographers using in the old forties movies. Dorr was always looking for ways to make money.
Mother and Daddy always enjoyed working in the yard; Daddy had his garden and Mother her flowers.
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