On Jan. 23, 1943, my uncle, Frank Ebner Gartz, (photo in uniform, above) reported to the draft board in Chicago to start his training for WWII. So began the correspondence between him and family & friends, comprising almost 300 letters going both ways. I’m posting many of these World War II letters, each on or near the 70th anniversary of its writing. To start with his induction, click HERE.
This blog began in Nov., 2010, when I posted a century-old love note from Josef Gärtz, my paternal grandfather, to Lisi (Elisabetha) Ebner, my paternal grandmother, and follows their bold decision to strike out for America.
My mom and dad were writers too, recording their lives in diaries and letters from the 1920s-the 1990s. Historical, sweet, joyful, and sad, all that life promises-- and takes away--are recorded here as it happened. It's an ongoing saga of the 20th century. To start at the very beginning, please click HERE.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Dear God, please let it come true!
My mom, then Lillian Koroschetz, had a fabulous evening of dancing and chatting away with Fred Gartz on May 11, 1941, but was convinced that he wouldn't follow up: "I'll just betcha he won't call!" she wrote. Well, things were looking more promising about a week later.
May 20, 1941 Tuesday 11 pm
Quite a thrill awaited me when I came home tonite. Fred had sent me a card from Turkey Run, Marshall, Indiana, reading,
“Hy-ya Lil - Have substituted hiking and horsing for the rhumba for the time being. This place is grand, especially the food. Nun, auf wiedersehen. Fritz”
I can remember distinctly only two other occasions when I got such a thrill out of something. (and she relates two other boy-related incidents) I must be in love with the guy and haven’t even gone out with him. Somehow I now have a glimmer of hope he’ll phone. Here’s hoping! Sat.,
July 12, 1941
Just did my nails - Cutex Butterscotch - and having had a most complete week, am so tired I must go to bed without putting down what I intended [in the diary]. “Lil-no-romances-in-the-summer-Koroschetz” -- that’s me! I don’t even have time in the summer and that’s no alibi, believe me!
Thursday Aug 14
Finally - I heard from Fred Gartz. He wanted me to go to some German movie with him tonite. However, I had a date to go to Hapsburg for dinner and teach Ruth how to drive. So changed the date to tomorrow night. Am I glad! Now I have it to look forward to instead of having it all over by now (11:00 pm) I hope and pray this will lead to more and frequent dates!
Friday August 15, 1941
The evening I have been waiting for a long, long time has now been realized. Fritz and I went to a little German theatre on Lincoln near Fullerton, then walked in Lincoln Park on this beautiful night, arm in arm - held hands in the show. Then to Sieben's [a Chicago outdoor brewery with great ham sandwiches] where we had some beer. Then back to the park and I think we both knew why we went back. We sat on a bench hearing the lions roar and the quacking of a duck. Oh it was heavenly! He knows all the little innuendoes of kissing and I ain’t so bad m’self, if I do say so.
[She switches to writing with indecipherable Pitman shorthand for a few lines, clearly wanting to keep this part censored! Then goes back to regular writing]
And he enjoyed it too, I’ll say. We kissed for about an hour and a half. I hope and pray he will phone me again. I can’t really believe it happened!! Tonight was like a page from a story book and he definitely is the man I want to marry. Dear God, please let it come true!!
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