Mission Accomplished: Stop The Clock

By Muriel P. Engelman

                                 BIRTH of the BOOK

 

 

 

 

I arrived home from my two years overseas as a World War II Army Nurse, with hundreds of photographs, a head full of memories and three bottles of French champagne. Unfortunately, only one bottle survived an energetic taxi driver depositing my luggage with a heavy hand on my mother’s front doorstep. That one bottle was consumed a week later, fittingly, at Thanksgiving dinner, and the photographs were lovingly mounted over the next several weeks, into a photo album. There was a caption under each photograph, and oftentimes long paragraphs, describing the circumstances and location for each one.

 

The war was over, I went on with my life, married, had two children, and looked forward to the day when I could review and rehash my war experiences with them. However, they weren’t particularly interested in my photo album with it’s pictorial history of my war and it remained largely untouched until the 50th anniversary of  the D-Day invasion of Normandy, France.

 

 Suddenly, World War II became alive; people made pilgrimages to battle sites in Normandy and other historic areas; veterans were recruited to speak at public functions and I was among them. I was also invited to lecture in schools and at organizational meetings, and now, after all these years, my precious photographs were finally enjoyed  by many.

 

The interest and enthusiasm for World War II experiences by both students and adults alike, led to my writing the stories pertinent to each photograph, which in turn led me to writing classes at the University of South Florida to better develop my writing skills.

 

My voluminous post-war stories mostly detail my life experiences after marriage to Mel--happy, sad, exciting, comical, thrilling--I ran the gamut of them all. Reliving these times by putting them on paper has been a happy endeavor for me.