Papa’s World – honoring those who have served past and present – Memorial day.

My stepfather John Soules

My own father passed away when I was nineteen years old – ten years later – my mother remarried

and John Soules Jr. became my stepdad.

I knew he was in the war – but he never talked about where or what he had done.

I knew he had been wounded – but I did not know how serious.

I knew he captured a German SS officer out of uniform in a castle.

But I never knew about all the meadals.

After my mother passed away – I came across this write-up of him in her box of memories.

I was once told by a friend if the family named SKEET –

“You know your stepdad is a real-life war hero”!

After reading this I understood what he was talking about.

Thank you John “Jr” – for what you did – RIP. A true WWII hero.

Sherry’s mother and father – Barb and Bill.

He became like an older brother -father to me after we were married.

He made me promise to never tell anyone what he told me about the war.

So – I have not said much of anything except what he said I could.

One story was about him and several men in fox holes in the darkest hours of the night.

It was very cold and snow on the ground.

They could see movement across the span of white snow.

They were scared and thought the Germans were going to creep upon them.

They spent all night watching and waiting – barely breathing and so cold.

Any moment they expected an attack and were so scared.

In the dawn, they could now see what they thought were German soldiers

was leaflets that had been dropped from planes on the ground.

Some had been caught on bushes and were fluttering in the breeze.

This was a story he said I could tell and later it was funny to him and the other men.

But for that period in the night – it was hell waiting.

William “Bill” Overbeck

In the end, he was in Berlin and was a driver for a general.

He told of going to a movie theater and watching newsreels.

I wish I could say more but he made me promise so I will honor that

as I honor another WWII hero.

Thank you Bill for your service and RIP.

You have my word.

Our decorations to honor all who have served this country
Thank you for reading Papa’s World – livinglifedoingitmyway.blog

Honoring those that have served – past and present – on Memorial day.

Papa’s World – in this little town – Eldred Pa. – is a big WWII museum – tours stop all the time.

Main Street – just above the white truck to the left – is a brick-red building – with a huge Army Tank coming out the side – this is the ELDRED WWII MUSEUM!

When I was growing up – this was Fisbees Insurance and the Electric Company in the Cellar –

and right next to it was Slavin’s Furniture store and gas station.

I would roller skate down to the bays and Jack would sometimes buy me a glass coke out of the machine that stood there between the bays.

I do not remember his last name – but he was a really nice man and lived in Bullis Mills.

We also would come down here and ask for old cardboard boxes –

they all had a heavy layer of wax on them and were perfect for grass riding down the hill opposite of our front porch.

WWII MUSEUM

Today – both buildings are joined and form this fantastic museum – dedicated to WWII

and the munitions plant that made explosives for the war.

It has a full-size ARMY TANK that looks like it is busting right out the wall of the side of the building!

My stepfather – John Soules – who was decorated FIVE times with Purple Hearts and Bronze Stars

Once gave me a revolver he was given permission to bring back to the states

He had all the signed documents from the government –

Before he passed away – he asked for it back so he could donate it here!

A few years ago – I walked down and asked to see it once again.

They had it in a safe – and was told it was worth 30 to 40 thousand dollars!

He took that handheld automatic machine pistol off a NAZI OFFICER he had captured who was dressed as a civilian trying to escape.

I was told this pistol was not from WWII but from WWI and was very rare –

one of the first automatic machine guns ever manufactured by the Germans for WWI!

I got to once again hold it!

A reenactment of women working at the munitions plant outside Eldred during WWII is part of the museum.

As you walk through you come upon room after room of scenes such as this.

This MUSEUM is like something you would find in Washinton DC. yet it is here in the very small town

of ELDRED PA. in the mountains of the ALLEGHANY FOREST in WPA!

I do not know the full story of why it is here – but I do know before the PANDEMIC

regular busloads of people would stop every day.

It sits on North Main Street right across from the old fire hall.

A must-see!

Thanks for reading PAPA’SWORLD

Memories of my life growing up in a small town in NWPA called ELDRED!

WHERE EVERYONE KNEW YOUR NAME – the ’50’s ’60’s and ’70’s.

MY SITE: PAPA’S WORLD

MY BLOG: livinglifedoingitmyway.blog

MY CONTACT: fitztdf@aol.com

Papa’s World – before there was STAND BY ME – ELDRED

In a little community five miles from the New York State border –

In North West Pa. – stands a village –

called Eldred.

Nestled in the Allegany hills by the river of the same name –

Home to me for my first thirty years of life.

The Allegany Mountains

With a population through out the years at 800 to 1000 people –

Everyone knew your name and parents !

And we had a CURFEW –

yes – the fire station siren –

would blast away at 10:00 every night !

It could be heard all over town –

Main street in the 1800’s

Many a night during the Summer –

sleeping out –

be it in my own back yard or front porch –

or that of a friend –

We found ourselves roaming the streets –

long after curfew !

We did not do anything wrong other than raid some gardens .

Smoke a cigar or cigarette

and later – up on the hill –

Drink some Colt 45 !

Rural Eldred

We had friends – from all parts of town –

I lived on North Main Street

A lot of my friends lived by the ballpark –

yes we had a ball diamond with lights !

And tennis and basketball courts !

Stand by Me

Grade school friends –

later High School –

There was a movie that came out

” STAND BY ME “

Well before that –

was “ELDRED” at least in my life !

My STAND BY ME FRIENDS – me second from left

We formed a group in my Freshman year –

one of my friends fathers named BUD formed it !

It was called “THE EXPLORERS” –

a step up from the Boy Scouts.

We did everything – raised money –

held the first dances in the area.

We went on trips – Pro football games –

And my favorite – a long weekend canoe trip –

down the Allegany River !

Here in this picture you can see our camp site by the river.

Streets of Eldred

We all played sports –

baseball – basketball and football.

It kept us busy and out of trouble –

It was our time in youth –

Some are now gone –

others I see once in a while –

But – all are memories of a time long gone.

ELDRED WWII MUSEUM

This little town has a big city Museum –

rather large –

thousands of square feet –

with life size displays of people –

trucks – jeeps – armaments –

and a TANK BUSTING THROUGH ITS WALL !

A must see on the history of this area and WWII

Part of the history of the area is that

manufacture of WWII bombs

and munitions

and bullets were made here.

It was a highly guarded site –

The museum has all

and more of the lore of the area.

Bus loads of people stop and tour it.

Work out center used to be Justice of Peace – before that – a grocery store – repurpose as the town ages

It is not a large town – small in fact –

the buildings from the 1800’s –

many are still there –

only in another form.

Main street has no red lights –

And in hunting season –

it fills up with hunters from the cities.

But it is a place where I grew up –

A place of friendship through the years

A place where NORMAL stands out –

and a place called ” ELDRED “

long before ” STAND BY ME “

TOM & SHERRY

Thank you for reading – for more blogs – just type in the following

livinglifedoingitmyway.blog

for email

fitzrdf@aol.com

for HEALTH

http://www.sf.juiceplus.com

for email

ssherrylynn49@aol.com

Welcome to Papa’s World

THANK YOU