Friday, March 2, 2012

It's a wonderful life!

It's hard to know where to begin to describe my visit with Mr. S..

It's hard to imagine all the things he has seen since being born in 1915.

He grew up in a relatively poor family.

He joined the Navy in 1933 and became a pilot.

He was in Pearl Harbor during the attack.

He flew over 40 missions during WWII.

He met a "cowgirl," a sweetheart  named Jeanne, just before going to Europe and they married on his return  in 1947. His oldest son, Jimmy, was born the same year.

They had a house built  in 1951, one block from the Naval Air Station in Sanford, Florida, just before he left to fight in the Korean War.

He finally retired from the Navy in 1958, after a 25 year career.

He and Jeanne still live in the same home.

They raised their three children there.

Jeanne was a nightclub singer before they got married and the photographs from her performing days hang in the living room, as do many of Mr. S.'s military photo's, along side all the many family photo's.

He got into real estate after he retired and although he wanted to sell homes, just "couldn't stop buying up a lot of places because they were so cheap."

The youngest son, Paul, lives next door in one of the homes Mr. S. bought during the 1960's.

He's physically frail but cognitively, almost intact.

He takes a bunch of herbal supplements every day and has for many years, many of which are of questionable efficacy and safety.

A colleague, who saw him prior, was often upset over this issue.

I offered NO recommendations concerning his supplements.

I did make a note of what he was taking, however, for future reference, if needed...for myself that is.

Mr. S. is a proud American, who had a distinguished military career, has been a faithful husband for 65 years, a loving father/grandfather, and was a successful businessman in the private sector.

It sounds like a pretty great life to me.

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