As my father tells in his narrative in Where Memories Meet — Reclaiming my father after Alzheimer’s, he was stationed at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, when he was first drafted into the army. While he was away from home serving in the US Military, he sent photographs back to my mother.
She inserted them into a leather photo album that Dad had hand-tooled and sent to her.
I’m not sure exactly when this photo was taken, or where, but it shows my father working on a leather purse to send home to my mother.
Here are some photographs from Dad’s time in Columbia, South Carolina: at Fort Jackson, in town, and on a trip to Myrtle Beach. Mouse over a photo to see the caption Dad wrote on the back. Click on a photo to see a larger version, and a manual slideshow.
Downtown Columbia, S.C. – 1953
“A picture of most of our company street. The Orderly Room is on the left. The buildings on the right are barracks.”
“The Day Room and the place where we mail our letters – the little slot in the side of the building.”
“I took this one day at noon. That is how we always leave our gear aat noon or when we go to class.”
“Some of the guys getting ready for inspection.”
“The gear displayed for inspection.”
“This is my equipment that we had to carry most of the time. I took it Sunday when we had inspection.”
“At parade rest.”
“Boyd Shaner cleaning his rifle in bivouac. It is just in front of our tent, but you can’t see it.”
“Me in the same place as the one of Shaner, but he caught the toilet in this picture.” (In the background.)
“This is just a mess.”
“Left to right: Robinett, Sloop, Piazza, and Schilleo.”
“A bunch of guys I live with. Next to me in front is Retano, Shoemaker, and Van Dyke. Schaner is standing behind.”
“Some more of the guys. Scheffer is the tall one. He sleeps right above me.”
“Me in a cannonball at a swimming pool in Columbia, S.C.”
“Fishing at the end of the pier. Myrtle Beach, S.C., June 12, 1953.”
“The Atlantic Ocean. Myrtle Beach, June 13, 1953.”
“We sure had fun when this was taken.” Summer of 1953 at Fort Jackson, S.C.
“That statue sure does look big.” My mother on her visit to Fort Jackson to see my father.
“You on the capital steps, Columbia, S.C.”
“The capital in S.C.”
I wanted to share the postcard my daughter designed for me to help me inform people about Where Memories Meet and ask for reviews. I have to thank Trace Conger for the idea. He writes crime thrillers and is the author of The Shadow Broker, the first book in a series about a great character named Mr. Finn. I don’t read a lot of this genre, but I really enjoyed this story.
I contacted an Amazon Top Reviewer who had reviewed another book about Alzheimer’s to ask her if she would review Where Memories Meet. I told her a little bit about the book, added the postcard, and then said that if she didn’t want to read another story about Alzheimer’s, perhaps she would consider reviewing Dancing in Heaven. I got a response back from her pretty quickly and I thought, uh oh, she probably isn’t interested in either book. I was wrong. She asked to read BOTH books! I don’t use a lot of exclamation points, but that’s how I felt when I saw her response. This publishing experience has helped to rekindle and strengthen my belief in the goodness of humankind, and in particular individuals.
The excerpts from the review I’m going to share with you right now, however, came from someone else altogether. The part I italicized makes me cry. I think it’s because, oh my gosh, she got it. This is tough emotional business. Here is a short excerpt. The entire review is posted on Amazon’s Where Memories Meet page.
“It is Christine Grote’s ability to depict, with honesty and dignity, the struggles and the humanity behind the disease that most hit home for me.
“The book is well written and it was an honor to understand Jerry as the man he was and the man Alzheimer’s affected.
“I highly recommend Where Memories Meet: Reclaiming my father after Alzheimer’s. It reminds us that in adversity we will find our strength.” CarolineS
I am pleased to share excerpts from the first Amazon review of Where Memories Meet – Reclaiming my father after Alzheimer’s. The review was done by Grady Harp who has earned the following quality badges from Amazon for his reviews: Hall of Fame, Top 100 Reviewer, and Vine Voice.
“Christine’s eloquent tribute to her father’s passage through Alzheimer’s is one of the more valuable books available on the subject of dealing with loved ones who are victims of this relentless disease. The book is supportive, not only to her own psyche for placing her experience in words but also a primer for people who are close to a family member suffering from this ‘distancing’ ailment. Christine’s writing style is straightforward and unhampered with flights of lyricism: those flights occur because of her honesty of style in sharing. . .
“This is an immensely rewarding book to read and it is one that should gain a wide readership among the many people who share Christine’s situation. Highly Recommended.” Grady Harp
I am pleased to announce that Where Memories Meet—Reclaiming my father after Alzheimer’s is now available as a print book and Kindle at Amazon, and in other formats at Smashwords.
Thirty-three years ago today, my parents drove from Dayton to the Christ Hospital here in Cincinnati to meet our first child, and their first grandson. I dedicated Where Memories Meet to my children and their children. Although I never planned it so, I think it is fitting, and somewhat serendipitous, that I managed to launch this book on this particular day.
If you are kind enough to purchase and then read Where Memories Meet, I hope you will “Like” the book and leave a short review at Amazon. A sentence or two will do. It is a big help to me.
If you have comments or questions you’d like me to answer, please do so here.