(Photo (c. 1941) of my Uncle Bob, U.S. Navy Air Corps.)
“The whole neighborhood gang, including girls, looked forward to an enchanted hour between the end of daylight, which ended our outdoor activities, and supper time. We would troop indoors, shedding our soggy outer clothing and switch on the radio. Our radio was a table model Philco that cost us $25.00 and it took us a year to pay for it in those early days of the Installment Plan.
In the mid–1930’s the popular programs were Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Bobby Benson and His H–O Ranchers, Jack Armstrong, the All American Boy, who attended Hudson High ( I can still sing the “Hudson High Fight Song!”), Dick Tracey, and Tom Mix and His Straight Shooters.”
“time when this great country knew what a real Depression was; a time when, out of a total population of 130 million people, there were 12 million unemployed.
I mean unemployed, able–bodied men, not women or some men delivering laundry, potato chips or bread for a wage of $12.00 per week, or Sharecroppers working for subsistence and $50.00 cash per year. A time when bakers each baked 1,000 loaves for every $1.00 in their pay checks. It was a grim time for adults and, in particular, for parents.”
My uncle never yelled at me. He never made fun of what I could not do correctly. He was the most patient man I have ever known. Besides all of that, I learned more about who Ben Hogan was and the impact he had on the game of golf and his theory of learning how to play the game itself.
Uncle Bob made learning a complicated, almost impossible task to accomplish an easy thing to do. All the while I was learning how to swing a six foot piece of tubing, he had me laughing and enjoying the stories he told about his life and the people he knew.
My uncle, Robert S. Lawton, was born on 15 November 1921. He served our nation from September 29, 1942 until March 3, 1946. He was in the Navy Air Corps where he was based at the Naval Station Argentia, which was in the former Dominion of Newfoundland. During the war, it “was used to base convoy protection, coastal patrol and anti-submarine aircraft, both land-based aircraft and seaplanes.”
“With appreciation and love to my uncle, Robert Lawton, who treasures imagination, wonder, humor and play with patience and love” . . .
The first two highlighted quotes in purple above are excerpts from an unpublished story entitled, “You Never Know,” that Uncle Bob wrote in the early 1990’s. They are representative of the stories he would recount to me about his own boyhood.
Carreiro, A. Keith, Ed.D. (1992). A philosophical inquiry into critico–creative teaching: Toward an informed pedagogy. (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses. (Accession Order No. AAT 9219106.)
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