Archive for the ‘Stories’ Category

Veterans Day: A Salute to Uncle Stan,
Awarded the Purple Heart during World War II

Copies of thirty-nine letters, some written in “V-Mail,” to my uncle Stanley Misiuk (April 7, 1915–March 9, 1999) during World War II, were recently given to me by his son, my cousin David Misiuk, and his wife Patti. Saved all through the years by his father, some of the letters were written by Stanley’s sister [...]

Memorial Day 2016: Letters to Uncle Joe, Stationed in the Pacific during World War II

Copies of sixteen letters written in “V-Mail” to Joe Brodacki, my uncle, were recently given to me by his daughter, my cousin Sandra Eynon. The letters were written by his sister Mary, in her mother’s voice, as if to her son, no doubt as they sat at the kitchen table in the old farmhouse at [...]

Scenes from a Polish American Catholic Childhood

Growing up on a farm in Michigan, the only Polish thing in my life was my grandmother, my babcia. I called her Busia and lived with her from the time I was 3 almost until she died, when I was 21. She came to America in 1913, to Hamtramck, a town encircled by Detroit and, [...]

Uncles At War: A Veterans Day Remembrance

They weren’t even uncles when they went to fight in Europe and the Pacific during World War II, three of my mother’s four brothers–Stan, Joe, and John. When I was born, in 1947, the war had been over for a mere two years. In all that time, I never recall having a single conversation about [...]

Mother’s Green Beret

My mother’s French beret is forest green and embroidered with beaded chains in noodle patterns reminiscent of human brains. The label says “Merrimac Hat Corp., made in USA, 100% wool,” size 22. It smells like cedar and moth balls. I don’t know when she bought it, but it looks like something Jean Harlow or Marlene [...]