I was told that I met my father in Miami when he was in the Navy during World War II. Yet I had no recollection of Miami. However I did have an image in my head of the Capitol building in Washington at night. I had no idea where this came from. Much later in life I was at a professional conference in Washington and was near the train station one night. I saw the Capitol which matched the image in my mind. I asked my mother about this. She told me that she took me to Miami by train when I was about two. We switched trains in Washington at nighttime. Aha!
When I was about three, a man came to my grandmother’s door with a seabag in tow. My mother told me that this was my father. Confused, I ran to the parlor table and pointed to the picture of a sailor and said this was my father. I learned to accept him and had a great deal of fun with him in my early years especially at the beach on Lake Erie on the northern end of Dunkirk where I first lived with my mother and grandparents.
Around that time, another man arrived at the door whom I learned was my Uncle Dick who had been in the army infantry serving in Europe. When I asked him what he did in the army, he told me that his group rode in the the back of a truck. From time to time they got off the truck and shot their rifles. Then they got back on the truck and went to another spot. That was his whole story. He had a German luger as a souvenir but I never learned how it came to be in his possession He had a secret that I did not know about until his funeral. We will get to that.