My Dad moved to Windsor from Manitoba to work at the Foundry. Back in the 30’s, there weren’t many opportunities in the Prairies and if you wanted to raise raise a family, you had to go East. He got a room in a house on Drouillard back when people rented their spare rooms to single, working men. He said the lady of the house was the kind of cook that he wanted to marry but she was taken so he married her daughter (my mother). They got married right before he went to war and she stayed with her mother helping to take care of the few folks they could get to stay in the house. The war was a tough time for everyone. A lot of boys didn’t come home. My Dad wrote my mom as often as he could but there were times she didn’t hear from him for a long time and she said that when she was waiting her heart would stop every time she saw a man in uniform. She kept those letters until the day she died. I found them in her dresser crumbling in a Ziploc.
They had a long life together. Once my Dad came back, he went back to his job at the Foundry and they bought a house and raised my brothers and me. My Dad would talk about his childhood in Manitoba and when he met my mother but there was a huge gap of time he’d never talk about and that was the war. My Mom said it was best to leave things but when I ready the letters after he died, I learned more about who my Dad was than I’d ever known. Pain shapes a person and my Dad, from what my Mom told me, certainly left Canada a different person than he returned. He was strong and honourable his whole life.
Bruce – 74 – Windsor