Trumbull – Mr. Cedric D. Guion, D.L.W., (1) – Delay, Linger and Wait – Dan’s Visit Home – April, 1942

 

Judy_0003

Trumbull, Conn.,   Apr. 13, 1942

Mr. Cedric D. Guion, D. L. W.,

Anchorage, Alaska.

Dear Sir:

If you are possessed of normal curiosity you will be wondering what unknown degree has been awarded you in your long absence from civilization (if you can term what we are now living in by the term of “civilization”). Is it some scholarly recognition of your penetration of the far north to repair planes atop of glaciers? No. Is it perchance for proficiency in snoring, which, according to the reports of one C. Heurlin, has reached a high degree of proficiency in your case? Again no. And it can have nothing to do with an Eastern Railroad which has not yet extended its rails to Alaska. Then, by heck, what is it? It is a long overdue and well merited degree in delayed correspondence signifying in all its pristine simplicity, “Delay, Linger and Wait”. That you have fairly won this award none will dispute, and if Chapters III and IV of the Saga of Plane Glacier, are as long arriving as Chapter II, it may be that by Christmas of 1943 we may be nearing the final chapter. All of which is by way of mention, as you may have suspected, that we have not heard from you of late.

Yesterday as I returned empty-handed from a trip to the P. O. Box 7 to see if there might possibly be an airmail letter from Alaska, I ran into Tiny Sperling who informed me that Nelly (Nelson Sperling) was married to a girl from Boston, having taken the step upon being made Sergeant, was at an army camp in Florida, in charge of mechanical work on automotive equipment and would shortly start for Australia.

Dan Guion

Dan Guion

During the week I received a letter from Dan asking for funds so that he might have available cash to purchase a railroad ticket home, and instructing that it be sent to his new camp in North Carolina where he expected to be before the end of the week. Of course I complied with his request. Last night a little after 10:30 the phone rang and a voice informed me that “Your son Daniel is at the Bridgeport R.R. station”. Hastily donning a few clothes and gently leading the Buick out of its stall, I vaulted lightly into the saddle and Paul Revered it up to Plumbs, placed Barbara on the handlebars and raced for Bridgeport. From Dan I learned he had not yet left for North Carolina, had of course not received my check, but through a combination of borrowing from one of his buddies, talking the ticket agent into advancing him cash out of his own pocket, and selling some postage stamps back to the U. S. Government, he finally reached Bridgeport with enough left over to make two telephone calls. He is leaving in about an hour to go back to Fort Belvoir and expects that surely this week he will make tracks for North Carolina where the rumor is he will be on a surveying crew. His application for officers training is still pending, but as this is said to involve mostly combat training, he may, after finding what the life in the map making branch is like, prefer the latter. It all depends on what develops. He looks fine, is apparently enjoying himself and doesn’t appear to be suffering from ill health.

Tomorrow, the conclusion of this letter with updates on various family members. The rest of the week will comprise two more letters from Grandpa to the two sons away from home.

Judy Guion

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Trumbull – Dear Dave (1) – News of Dave and Ced – November, 1945

 

Trumbull, Conn., Nov. 18th, 1945

Dear Dave:

When the renowned Florentine sculptor, Michelangelo, during the middle ages, was commissioned to do a figure celebrating the city’s deliverance from the Borgia’s, the only material he could obtain was a block of marble of wrong proportions. It was too narrow for its length. However, time being short, the young artist went to work with what he had and gave to the world one of its great masterpieces – “David”. Visitors who look upon this statue of the shepherd lad in battle against the mighty Goliath seldom realize why the right arm of the youth clings to his side as his hand reaches for the slang; or why his left arm hugs that side as his hand goes back for the stone; or why the knees been just as they do. The artist was working out his idea within the available space given him by that odd-sized block of marble. That he could create his great work within such narrow limits is astounding. One miscalculation would have meant failure. And the moral for my own “David” far away at this Thanksgiving season? Well, rough and done even are the materials handed to most of us out of which to carve our destiny. They frequently are not the ideal shape which we would have chosen. It is quite natural for us to curse the luck that makes the present state of things in evitable. The wiser ones choose to bless the fate that imposes such challenging necessities upon us, for it is the attitude we take towards life’s limitations which determines whether the outcome is to be a masterpiece or a mess.

Of course you will see in this allegory just another attempt by “the old man” to take some of the bitterness out of the present pill you are swallowing. Fortunately, from personal experience, I know it works.

Ced is now on his way to alliance, Ohio, to check up on the progress of his plane, stopping enroute at Pittsburgh where there is in progress and annual convention of the Federal Union enthusiasts. I am hoping that tomorrow there will be some word from him as to what progress he is making. In any event, whether he flies back here and lands at the Monroe field or comes back by train, he expects to be with us for Thanksgiving. Whether Dick will also be with us is at the present moment somewhat uncertain. He is right now toying with the thought of going back to his South Carolina base as ordered, starting tomorrow, hoping that in tomorrow’s mail he might receive word which will make that unnecessary.

And Marian writes: “back to Army routine — no matter where we move the routine seems exactly the same. We have a very nice room with private bath and separate entrance in an apartment building — more or less. I that I mean there are about four apartments (ours is the only single room) all attached to the main house. The hallway is about 2 ½ feet wide. We like it but if we are going to be here much longer, we will look for a real apartment because eating all our meals out is much too expensive. Lad is being transferred into a new co. so will know a little more about our plans in a day or two. We learn he will remain in this new holding company until the 50-point deal gets straightened out, when he would get his discharge. The Army picked yesterday to give him an influenza shot so he didn’t feel much like doing any anniversary celebrating. We went to a USO dance but came home early. At least we were together, for as it worked out, he could not have come home on a pass.”

I hope they will be able to get home for Thursday’s dinner.

Tomorrow and Wednesday, the rest of this letter, on Thursday, news from Marian and on Friday, another short letter from Grandpa.

Judy Guion

Special Picture # 264 – Early Photo of Alfred and Arla’s First Five Children – @ 1924

 

Dick, Dan, Ced, Lad and Biss with Mack @ 1924

Tomorrow, I’ll begin posting a week of letters written in 1942. Ced is in Anchorage, Alaska, working for Woodley Aircraft Company and Dan has been drafted. He is at Ft. Belvoir, Virginia (near Washington), going through Basic Training. Lad and Dick are working in Bridgeport but both are concerned about their draft status. Lad has already been classified.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Dan and Dave (2) – News From Ced – November, 1945

 

Page 2    11/11/45

And now let’s hear from Ced.

“You now are in a way a sort of archaeologist delving deeply into the past and exploring some long forgotten man, that called Cedric. Of course others from time to time have made brief sketches of his habitat and some of his occupations, but for the most part, you probably find that his is a nearly dead memory. This would be true certainly for Dan, and to a lesser extent for Dave. Dan, I have not seen or written since September, 1941, he unmarried, unmilitarized, unEuroped, and the country uninvaded and unPearl Harbored. Dave has had the pleasure of seeing my personal self somewhat more recently, he having been home in the Christmas season, 1943. First off, I owe you both letters, long overdue. I am dreadfully chagrined at my failure to correspond with the newlyweds in Français. Be assured Dan and Paulette, that this is through no intentional snub, or even lack of interest on my part, but mostly to a phobia on my part on writing letters, and also due to the fact that I have been too, too dreadfully busy in Alaska. I must still take time, while I have it at home, to write a more lengthy and chatty letter, telling about Alaska and other items of interest to you two. I wish that I could write you, Paulette, in Français, but what little of it I received in high school would hardly bear repeating even if I remembered it at all. Perhaps when we meet you can teach me the language yourself. May I here take occasion to congratulate you with all my heart, and wish for you and yours the best of everything in the future.

To Dave, who has written me on several occasions and is perhaps still waiting vainly for an answer, I must also beg forgiveness, and I might add, I am highly interested in your broad-minded observations as to treatment the Japs should receive. Dave, I think you and I have a lot in common on this score, and one of these days I’ll write you a long letter answering all your questions and telling you a little more about what’s what. I will have more time in Alaska to write, as I am no longer tied up with the Ski Club administration, and hope to have less overtime at Woodley’s.

I just learned that this letter is also for Lad and Marian, and to them I just say “poo”.

This Taylorcraft plane is to be half mine, and half Leonard Hopkin’s. We are planning to put it on floats next summer and I hope to be able to have a commercial license by then. Leonard has learned to fly and has also a private license. His wife, Marian, is also learning, but hasn’t yet soloed. My intention was to fly from Ohio to Trumbull in the plane, but the factory was unable to install the extras before the 20th of this month, so I came on home by train, and will go back and pick up the plane if I can, on the 20th, returning to Trumbull with it (landing at Monroe) and being home for Thanksgiving and the balance of November. I should start back for Alaska about the first of December.

The Taylorcraft is one of the little planes, similar to the one I had an interest in, in Anchorage once before. It is however, a brand-new one, just being finished up at the factory next week. It will carry two passengers and 50 pounds baggage. Will cruise at 90-95 m.p.h., and fly nonstop without refueling, for about 5 hours and 25 minutes. It will have a high priced two-way radio of the very latest type, and should be a fine airplane. The cost of the plane landed in Anchorage will be approximately $3200, and will break my bank for some time to come, but this figure will cover protective insurance on the plane and I will have the benefit of all the flying time from Trumbull to Alaska, an amount of time which would cost me quite a little if I were buying it in Anchorage. Now enough of this item.

I have lots more good Kodachromes for the family album, and you will soon see them, I hope. Adieu for now, and Bon Nuit, Paulette.

Ced”

Tomorrow, part 3 and on Thursday, the conclusion to this letter. On Friday, Marian writes a note to the family.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Dan and Dave (1) – Discharges and Ced is Home – November, 1945

Trumbull, Conn., Nov. 11, 1945

Dear Dan and Dave:

You to being the only outlanders left, the salutation above is correct, although on second thought, it was only about five minutes ago that Lad and Marian left for Aberdeen to make that their temporary home until he is discharged, their hope being that their sojourn will not be long and of course they are hoping to get home on a pass for Thanksgiving. However, they took along a limited amount of housekeeping utensils so that if they are stuck there for any length of time, they will have the ways and means of existing until the Army order finally comes through. Anyway, they will thus have an opportunity of celebrating their wedding anniversary together, which otherwise might not have been possible in view of the fact that obtaining another pass so soon after the one this week, might be difficult to secure. It was Marian’s birthday today so we were able to celebrate that en masse anyway. By all the laws of reason, Lad should be permitted to file his request for discharge in accordance with recent public announcement from Army headquarters, but due to a technicality in the wording, Lad not being on furlough or assigned to temporary duty, is not eligible. Dick is due for return to a camp in South Carolina the day before Thanksgiving, but is today writing for transfer to Fort Devens, which, if granted, with the necessary traveling time, will give him until after Thanksgiving to report there and file his request for discharge. Here’s hoping. As far as we can figure it out now, Aunt Elsie, Anne and Gwen (Stanley) and perhaps Lad’s friend in Aberdeen will be here for Thanksgiving, besides of course, Ced, Dick and Jean, Aunt Betty, myself and I hope Lad and Marian. The Zabels go up to their Trumbull in-laws for that day and here for Christmas. Aunt Helen (Peabody Human) has gone to the Bahamas to join Ted (Human, her husband), and Don Stanley is overseas somewhere.

Ced, in Alaska, with, I believe, a company plane.

          I mentioned Ced. Yes, he’s home. Got home Wednesday night and came in almost like Santa Claus. We were all sitting around the kitchen table, supper just being over, when in through the dining room walks Ced, as nonchalant as you please, having scorned to come in the back door, choosing rather to shinny up the front porch, onto the roof and in through the hall window, this procedure being necessary by virtue of the fact that I had put up storm windows on all the French doors on the ground floor and the front door was locked. He had flown down from Anchorage to Seattle in his own company plane and from there took the train to Ohio, where the Taylorcraft two-seater plane he had ordered was being built. Thence by train to New York, where he stopped in to see Elsie and Aunt Anne before “dropping in” on us here. I am going to ask Ced in a minute to write you a little more about the plane, etc., so I will not go into further details on that now.

The new furnace is in and working (but not paid for yet), and thanks to Dick and Ced, all the storm windows are up — the first time in many years, it seems, that I have not had to do this job myself. I doubt if they realize how much of a help they have been, as Saturday afternoons and Sundays furnish so little opportunity to do what is necessary. Also the little time Lad has been home he has been a great help in furnace regulation and other jobs of a mechanical nature that have needed to be done for a long time. It’s been so good to have three of the boys home together, but naturally only 3/5 as good as the ultimate. Anyway it’s the biggest score we’ve had in quite some time.

Tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday will complete this long letter from Grandpa to Dan and Dave, and on Friday I’ll post a note from Marian.

Judy Guion

Special Picture # 261 – A Memorable Day for Ced – 1920’s

 

 

 

 

The following is from the Memories of Cedric Duryee Guion (Ced, son #3). I honestly don’t know if this picture was taken on the same day or if they did this on more than one occasion. I can’t identify each of the individuals in this picture, but my guess is Grandma Arla and her sisters are there. I also think the little boy in front is Ced.

“We still have a series of pictures of the old Waverley in the backyard. Rusty and some of his friends, my mother and my aunts, all dressed up in these beautiful period costumes from the 1800’s that were in good condition in the attic. They all dressed up in these clothes and we took pictures of them in the Waverley. Rusty pretended to be the groom and Aunt Dorothy was the bride. Rusty had his stovepipe hat on and all the ladies were all dressed up. Of course, the Waverley didn’t have any tires on it but it looked nice.”

Images of Waverley Electric cars:   https://www.google.com/search?q=waverley+electric+car&rlz=1C1NHXL_enUS724US724&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjy_d2KouLVAhVFZCYKHTZmBkcQsAQINA&biw=1448&bih=689

History of the Pope-Waverley manufacturer: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope-Waverley

Trumbull – Dear No. 2 son and No. 3 son – No News From No. 3 Son – February, 1942

Ced @ 1945

Trumbull, Conn., Feb. 8, 1942.

Dear No. 2 boy and No. 3 boy:

This morning as I arose late, as is my wont of a Sunday morning, and glanced out of my bathroom window up toward the cluster of buildings we associate with the name of Knect, I saw but bare brown fields intervening instead of the snow-covered landscape. Only in our own driveway were isolated patches of ice to remind one that a few days ago a real winter landscape was our portion. The change is due to the fact that for the last two days a steady rain accompanied by a plus 32 degrees of temperature cleared the snow off into the swollen streams. (Exciting way to start a letter, n’est sai pas?)

We are at times driven to such little subterfuges as referred to parenthetically above by the realization that there is little news of importance to record and yet at the same time we are faced with the realization that both Alaska and Virginia are hanging on desperately waiting for news from home, as home, in turn, is waiting just as eagerly for news from you. I have lost track of the number of weeks that have passed since hearing from Ced.

Your letter, Dan, postmarked Fort Belvoir on Feb. 2nd is the last we have heard from you. The scissors and the three Spanish books you asked for were parceled and posted to you last week. I feel a bit guilty about not sending the $10 by return mail but as the scissors was the only item marked “urgent” and as you are quarantined for two weeks and unable to leave camp there didn’t seem any need for funds. For my guidance the next time you need funds will you please let me know whether you would have any bother cashing a check, as I would feel much safer mailing a check than I would five or ten dollar bills. Of course I could have sent you 10 one dollar bills at once but that seemed rather bulky. Anyway, to stop the argument here is the ten.

Now as to the income tax, sure I will pay it, if it is made out in ink and properly signed. The copy I saw, as I recall, was made out in pencil. Do you happen to recall what you did with either copy.

It seemed as though you were sober when you wrote the letter because it is quite rational and your sense of humor was very evident even to the addressing of the letter to me care of Aunt Betty, which little touch by the way she duly appreciated, but between that time and the time you put your return address on the back you must have bent your elbow too often resulting in a slight befuddlemenet of faculties in that Pvt. D. Guion gives his location as Co. D, 4th Btn. ERTC, Ft. Devens, Va. Oh well, we have to be understanding with these boys in love.

My last word of advice to you before we pass on to dishing out a few scathing remarks to Ced, is to be sure to get up in ample time in the morning so you won’t keep the captain waiting breakfast for you.

To Ced: As for you, you great big lanky backslider, is your brain so far from the writing finger on your long arm that it takes all this time to get an action message from one tother? First I blamed the delay to Uncle Sam but I’m getting a little suspicious along about now. Tell Rusty he better jack you up or I’ll be blaming him. Come on, loosen up and tell me what’s happened during the last month. I still have somewhat of a fatherly interest in you.

Aunt Betty sends her best to both of you, but this is one of the many things you may take for granted. Spring must be coming. I got a seed catalog yesterday and we turn the clock ahead tonight.

DAD

 This entire week will be filled with rather short (for Grandpa) letters filled with the usual news of family and friends to Dan, in the Army, and Ced, in Alaska.

Judy Guion