In a break from our usual programming, Ranger wishes to recognize his father Stephen's 89th birthday, what seems a nice, round year.
As a young man he served in the worthy Civilian Conservation Corps, later working as a loader in the coal mines of Southwest Pennsylvania. He married young and remained married for 70 years, until my mother's death.
He served in the Navy During WW II in the Atlantic Theatre, later returning to the mines. Economic necessity caused him to move to Cleveland where he then entered the world of machine work. Ranger reckons the closest he got to him was in 1965-66 when he worked as a laborer -- a "chip boy" -- in the same factory as a college summer hire.
He was a skilled machinist, running a turret lathe and working steel to the ten-thousandths of an inch. In those pre-CAD days, manual set up was an exacting business. He worked in the defense and space industry towards the end of his working life.
Beyond these basics he enjoyed cars and automotive mechanical work, one of his favorite pastimes. He has always maintained contact with his Navy brethren, and hopefully this June 4 with the help of my nephew Michael, the old sea dog will once again make the annual pilgrimage to Chicago for the reunion of Task Force 22.3. Hopefully I can stand with them on the deck of the U505.
My birthday present will be an article on his wartime service to be submitted to America in WW II magazine.
Ranger's father always worked, never drank and was not frivolous. He was and is a man of his generation, as Ranger is a representative of his.