Here are two pictures of my parents. One is from 1964 down at the shore at Brant Beach and the other is from 1977 on the deck of my childhood home at 112 Prospect Street. My father was an Obstetrician and Gynecologist, as well as a surgeon; practicing medicine for 40+ years. He was a Captain in the Army and served during WWII; most notably as an Orthopedic doctor in Normandy seven days after D-Day. He also treated many malnourished concentration camp victims. One man came to visit our house annually to thank my father for helping to save his life. My father died in 1987 at the age of 82 after a 10+ year battle with an Alzheimer’s related disorder.
My Mom, Catherine, worked at the telephone company in New York City, as her mother had in the early 1900s. She was a WAVE in the Navy during WWII, a house-wife, a collection counter on Mondays at Our Lady of Mt Carmel church rectory, and a volunteer at United Way. When she was 19, she contracted Scarlet Fever and survived, so I’m told, as there was a doctor named James J. Vanderbeck who attended her. She and my father married in 1942 and brought 7 children into the world from 1946 through 1959. My Mom is still living; just having had her 93rd birthday in July 2011. She lives in Illinois with one of my sainted-sisters, as she has been contending with Alzheimer’s disease since 2006.