THE ANDOVER NEWSLETTER, Vol.3, #4.
Sponsored by the Democratic Town Committee.
To the Service Men and Women of Andover, Greeting!
It’s Indian Summer in the old home town, and the air, the sky, the lovely colors are the stuff ambition is made of. The brilliant colors of the trees have faded to bronze, dull gold, dark red, and brown. Lots of windows are being washed, some of the coal bins have been filled, and woodpiles are growing fast. Garden plots are being cleaned up for next year, and fall plowing is under way, while the smell of wood fires is everywhere. Andover continues to function smoothly as a township, although election day, which began with a drizzle and ended in a downpour, brought in a flood of votes for the Democratic Party. John V. Gasper is your new First Selectman, by the substantial margin of fifty votes. The other members of the Board of Selectmen are Ellsworth Mitten and Edward Merritt. Eugene Thompson is the new member of the Board of Tax Review. Waity Brown is the new Assessor. Lewis W. Phelps and Ellsworth Covell are still Town Treasurer and Clerk. Grand Jurors are Earl Galipo, Irving Pease, William E. Palmer, Lincoln Bathrick, Arnold S. Hyatt, and Elwood Hudson. Rachel Stanley is still Tax Collector. Constables are Joseph Carter, Andrew Gasper, Paul Jurovaty, Paul Kralovich, Harry Erickson, William McCarroll, and Frank H. Brown. Registrars are, again, Lillian Hamilton and Katherine Mitten. Board of Education members are Vera Cross Taylor and Virginia Brown. Library directors, Marie Hudson and Helene MacNeill; Board of Finance, E.K. Seyd and J.H. Yeomans; Norton Fund Commissioners Gertrude Seyd and Margaret Jurovaty; Fire Commissioners, Arnold Hyatt and L.W. Phelps. The Democrats are grateful for the voters who helped to put them into office, and they have pledged themselves to sound government. You can understand that the Democrats found some difficulty in sitting with dignity through the town meeting, which followed the counting of the votes, when they really wanted to stand up and cheer. The Town Hall was crowded even out into the entry with standees for the town meeting, which was, in spots, uproarious. The subject which created the most interest and the longest arguments and explanations was the overcrowded condition at Center School. Maxwell Hutchinson proved to be an able and even-tempered moderator for the meeting. Donald Macdonald read a report on the progress made by the School Building Committee, which was received with hearty commendation. In fact, any mention of a new school and community center was given a round of applause, and you could sense that what this town wants and needs now, according to the voters assembled that night, is a new school. A unanimous message of gratitude for long years of service to the Town of Andover was sent by the meeting to Louis B. Whitcomb, retired First Selectman. Another vote of thanks was given the local war price and rationing board, which has been disbanded. It’s still difficult to keep up with the comings and goings of our fast-moving armed forces, but here are a few that we caught up with during the past month. Lt. Charles Johnson received his commission on October 10, after a long grind at OCS, Quantico, Virginia. He is at home now, looking handsome and hearty, and he will report at Camp Pendleton, Oceanside, California, on October 29. GM3/c George Tedford will be in San Pedro, California, in time for Navy Day, and then he’ll be in the United States for four or five months. We’ll be expecting him in Andover for part of that time. T/S Donald Dowling of the Marines (Bette Tedford’s husband) is stationed at Pelelieu Island, on his way to China. His four-year enlistment will be up on January 15, and Mr. and Mrs. Dowling are looking forward to bringing up young Donald after that. Charlie Kukucka came down from the wilds of Newfoundland to spend part of September and October with us. His friendly disposition hasn’t changed a bit under the rigors of army life. He has gone to North Carolina for a few more months of service, and we hope and expect that he’ll be discharged when that is over. Incidentally, we suspect that Charlie may have had a little K.P. experience, judging from the way that man can do dishes. There was a big party at Town Hall while he was here, and he pitched in to help wash the dishes. He didn’t even bother to add cold water to the scalding suds, but plunged in and brought those dishes out clean and fast. Sgt. John Kukucka has a nice fresh set of discharge papers after a long, long time in the ETO. It must seem good to him to be home on the farm, after six years in the Army. ARM1/c Sonny Covell left for Alameda, California, on October 18, after a 30-day furlough. He had hitch-hiked home from California, and used up six days of his leave in that manner. Sonny has been awarded the Air Medal for his work in submarine warfare in the ETO. Soon after he gets to Alameda this time, he expects to be returned to Boston and receive his discharge from the Navy. Walter E. Tedford (Fuzzy), who enlisted in the Navy long, long ago, left this month for boot training at Bainbridge, Maryland. He has signed up for four years, so he has a lot of ocean coming his way. Lt. Clifton E. Davenport, Jr. has been singing that old song: “We hate the motion of the rolling ocean, where the wind does nothing but blow…You can have all our share. We don’t think we care For a life on the ocean wave,” within hearing of the Navy Department, and he is now assigned to shore duty at Portsmouth, N.H. Portsmouth happens to be his wife’s home town, so the Davenports are to be congratulated on having come to port just where they wanted to land. Walter (Gramp) Tedford of the Merchant Marines is on duty at the commissary at Sheepshead Bay, Long Island, and he manages to get home almost every other weekend. Pfc. Johnny (Sprout) Bonkowski blew in from Europe a couple of weeks ago, with 106 points to his credit. He really thinks those twins are the most wonderful baby girls that ever lived. Johnny will report to Damp Devens on October 24, but with all those points, we can’t imagine that he’ll hang around there long. We forgot to tell you that Russ Murray was discharged early in the fall, and he and Skipper and their two children are living in the apartment over the store. Another sailor at Bainbridge, Maryland is A/S James E. Gray, Co.4317, Barracks 428 L, U.S.N.T.C., Bainbridge. Sgt. Howard Chudoba writes from Guam to let us know he never was a Pfc., as we have been addressing him through the Newsletter. Our only excuse, Howard, is that there are just too many of you to keep up with, and we’re glad you set us straight. He explains further that his gang (Bomb.Sq.) went to radar school for 42 weeks and then became corporals without the benefit of Pfc. ratings. Well, hooray for them! He says, “We’ve been here on Guam since early July and the outfit managed to get in about a dozen good licks at the Japs before they quit. It was announced today that we now have two bronze battle stars for those missions. ….I guess this is what they call the monsoon season over here. Anyway, we’re just about up to our knees in mud….We all have hopes of returning to the States soon, but we’ll probably have to wait quite a while, as our Wing is the newest in the Marines…” Staff Sergeant Edward Heimer is at San Fernando, Northern Luzon, from which distance he is sure there is no place like the good old U.S.A--particularly Andover. His brother, Carl, was discharged on September 11, and he will make his home at Winter Haven, Florida. There’s a rumor that there may be wedding bells ringing for Carl before very long. Congratulations to MM 2/c and Mrs. Carol Wright, who were married at the home of the bride’s parents on October 12, 1945. The new Mrs. Wright is the former Elaine Bullock of Borger, Texas. Monk’s points are up around the discharge requirements, so we can expect to see them both in Andover soon, and then we’ll give them our hearty good wishes in person. We’ve done a little checking on Charlie Michalik’s record since we tucked in that item earlier in the letter, and we find that he’s weighted down with decorations--Purple Heart, Silver Star, Presidential Unit Citation, and three Battle Stars. Wow! Major Bertram Wright is now in Tokyo, after spending some time in Ieshima, the burial place of Ernie Pyle. Bert came into Yokohama Bay after waiting two days for the typhoon to blow over, and landed from an LST along with 45 jeeps and tanks. The Major doesn’t expect to be home for a long time. Lt. Commander Alex Fox, who was in Baltimore learning to fly the Hawaiian Mars, became the proud papa of twin boys, Robert and Charles, on October 3. His joy was short-lived, however, when Baby Charles died on October 14. Mrs. Fox, in San Francisco, had to return to the hospital, and Alex flew out to the coast to be with her. We are all anxious to hear that Mrs. Fox and little Robert are at home and strong again. Captain Harry Fox has returned from some hair-raising experiences in the ETO, and he’ll come to Connecticut as soon as he has had time to go to Georgia to bring his wife home with him. Julian Krzewski has been on the island of Japan for a very short time. After an exciting career among a flock of other islands, he was glad to have a chance to get ashore on the enemy’s homeland for a few minutes. But his chief interest right now is the probability that he’ll be home for Christmas, and Ruth is brushing his civvies in anticipation of the great day when he gets his discharge. Julian is adorned with three campaign ribbons and the Normandy and Okinawa Stars. Sgt. Bob Grenon is at home, after a year and a half in Europe. He landed at Boston on October 10, and he will soon have those precious discharge papers. He’s being very modest about having six (count ‘em!) battle stars and the presidential unit citation. When he’s ready to leave the Sgt. off his name, he’ll take up work with his father at the service station. He’s looking forward to getting acquainted with more people in Andover, and he says, “It’s wonderful to be home!” Sunday, October 7, saw the end of the Andover baseball season, with the young men lined up against the old men. That line of demarkation between the old and the young was drawn at age 30. Les Billings went the distance for the youngsters while Bill Thornton squeaked through for the oldsters. Going into the last half of the 5th and final inning, the old boys were leading by one run, but the under-30’s managed to squeeze across a run to tie up the game. It was gen agreed to play until the game was won or darkness fell. Nothing happened until the last half of the 8th, when the youngsters pushed across the winning run. A triple to deep center by Steve Ursin and a sensational one hand catch of a line drive by 3rd baseman John Hutchinson featured the contest. Linc Bathrick, catcher for the old men, turned his ankle in the 4th inning, a few feet from home plate, and was tagged out. This would have been the winning margin for the aged players. An All-Army outfield of John Kukucka, Charlie Kukucka, and Larry Sheehan played errorless ball for the youngsters, along with the Navy 2nd baseman Willlie Covell. Old Bill (Bosco) Thompson played right field for the oldsters. Final score: Youngsters 8; Oldsters 7. Repairs have been completed on the Gasper Cabin, and it will continue to be a center of fun. There was a mysterious fire there one early morning in September, and only a lucky series of coincidences saved it from being totally destroyed. John and Dot have the framework of their new home completed.
The Congregational Church has a new minister, and we are pleased to welcome Lt. Frederick L. Broad and his wife and two small children to Andover. Lt. Broad is now acting as assistant Chaplain at Trinity College and studying at the Hartford Seminary Foundation. He will soon be discharged from the Navy, and he will continue his studies while he lives in Andover. The people of the parish gave a farewell luncheon to Dr. Tuthill when he retired early in the fall, and gave a similar party to welcome Lt. and Mrs. Broad.
The Andover Fire Department planned a block dance, to be held in the street in front of the fire house on October 5. However, it was cold that night, and the party retired to the Town Hall, some 110-strong. Ellsworth Mitten and his orchestra furnished the swing, and some fancy capers were cut. Mr. and Mrs. O’Shanahan, parents of Marie Hudson, won the waltz contest, while Fuzzy and Bette Tedford Dowling took the honors in the jitter-bug race. You can see a blaze from the fire house windows a mile away, for they have some new draperies of the time-honored color for firemen. They are very attractive, and they have an interesting history. Some planes were towing targets over Burnap Brook Farm, when Art Savage saw the targets flutter to earth. He retrieved them and tried to contact the proper authorities for their return to service. However, no one seemed particularly interested in putting them back into the service of Uncle Sam, so Clara S. Ursin got out her sewing machine and whipped up the finished product which is the pride of our fire laddies. The man-power shortage has eased somewhat, and Johnny Phelps is back on the staff. That baseball story, in particular, has the masculine know-how between the lines. That’s a good list of discharges we had to tell you about, and we hope there’ll be more of them before the November issue of the Newsletter takes to the mail. In the meantime, let us know where you are and what you are doing, and whether it’s fun or otherwise. Vera Cross Taylor and John F. Phelps,
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