Elizabeth Westlin Guion, at 5, with her broken arm
BISS – When I was five, Lad and George Brellsford, and I think Dan, were on the fence behind the grape arbor. They were pickinggrapes, sitting on the fence and picking grapes. I came over and I wanted to climb up on the fence too, because the grapes were much nicer on the top than they were on the bottom. They told me I could pick them from the bottom… so I climbed up on the fence. When I got to the top, I fell over into Dan Ward’s field, and evidently, my elbow hit a rock, because every single solitary bone was broken, so it was just hanging loose. George looked over and said “Hey Al, your sister broke her arm.” I can remember my arm spinning. I was trying to get up as I was afraid Dan Ward was going to come with his shotgun and shoot me if I didn’t get over on my side of the fence. And of course, I couldn’t do it. So anyway, they picked me up and took me into the house. Mother wasn’t home and I was lying in the living room, on the couch. I don’t remember any pain; I was probably in shock because I don’t remember any pain at all. I guess Mrs. Parks called Mother, wherever she was, Mother and Dad, and they came home. Evidently, Rusty (Heurlin) was there but I don’t remember Rusty. They told me that he carried me in his arms, cradled me in his arms all the way to the hospital so that I wouldn’t get jiggled. I can’t remember that at all. When we got to the hospital, the doctor was going to cut my dress off and I was not about to let them cut my dress off because it would kill my dress. My Mother said, “But I can sew it back together”, and I said, “But it won’t be the same. You can’t do that.” Obviously they cut it off.
The nurses made the biggest mistake they ever made. They said, “Don’t look at the light”, so I had to look at the light to see why I wasn’t supposed to look at the light. I could remember two nurses holding my head down so I couldn’t. I was moving and squirming so I could finally get to see that light. Anyway, they set my arm and I think I spent one day in the hospital, I don’t think I spent more than that.
For some reason or other I thought the doctors and nurses lived at the hospital. There was a school across the street and you could see the kids playing outside. I thought those were the children of the doctors and nurses. You could hear their voices, you know, playing out there.
I could remember them giving me ice cream. Rusty gave me a little letter (I had it for years, but I don’t know, it’s probably got lost in some of the moving). It said, “Here are two nickels for you to spend in any way you want” or something like that. It had two nickels on it. Then they gave me ice cream which was a big treat so I enjoyed that hospital stay. I felt like a little queen, you know, with everyone waiting on me. I got a teddy bear…. It was really something special. I should break my arm every week.
Tomorrow I’ll be posting some more early memories of Trumbull.
Next week, I post letters written in 1941. Lad is looking forward to returning to Trumbull after being in Venezuela for about two and a half years. Dick is delivering a car to his older brothers, Dan and Ced in Anchorage, Alaska. Grandpa and Dave are holding down the fort in Trumbull.