Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Family Treasures #2

Last week I shared some of the keepsakes I have from my Dad's childhood.  Now on to his career.
Dad graduated high school in 1948 and joined the Marine Corps.  His dream was to fly airplanes.
It seems he loved airplanes from a young age and had many model airplanes in his room.
My Dad did not go to college, but did qualify for flight training school and would become an officer once he completed his courses.  To do so he had to be discharged from the Marine Corp (he was a private first class) and enlist in the Navy so he could go to flight school in Pensacola, Florida
Here he is in his navy uniform
accepting his diploma from the naval pre-flight school
He became a naval aviator in 1950
he was then decommissioned from the Navy and went back to the Marine Corps as a 2nd Lieutenant
He continued his training at El Toro (Santa Ana), Calif in early 1951

These are from his personal photo album
He flew in the Korean War taking off and landing on air craft carriers and was awarded the air medal for "meritorious acts while participating in aerial flight as a pilot" in Korea.
In 1952 he was stationed in Corpus Christi, Texas as a Flight Instructor and it was here that he met my Mother. 
They married in 1952
My brother was born in 1953 
In 1955 my Dad adopted me and I became a Buschmann too!
Dad was just Dad and his job was being a Marine and flying airplanes...I never thought much about it as a child.  I lived either on base or in communities where many other Marine families lived.
My Dad was a hard worker and did his job well and was promoted many times.  Here he is with his Capt's bars.  He went on to be promoted to Major and in 1966
He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel!
We were all very proud of him.
I really began to 'think' about the military and my Dad's career in 1967-68

My Dad was stationed in Vietnam my Senior year in high school.  With all the protests on the news I became aware and concerned.
I was and am a proud Marine Brat and never protested the war.  I wouldn't do that.  I did discuss the war with my Dad and his take on things really made me grow up and see the big picture.

This is my Dad's jewelry box.  He did not wear much more then his wedding ring and a watch but the occasional cuff links and of course dog tags.  These items mean a great deal to me.  We have some of his uniforms and military insignia's but they are in storage and I didn't get them out to photograph them.
Many of my Dad's things have been shared with my brother and the 4 Grandchildren but these three pair of cuff links are the one's I kept. His initials, the Marine Corp insignia and these ruby colored stones.  
This is his Naval Aviator Wings
Dad received the Legion of Merit award for his time in Vietnam.  He was Commanding Officer of Marine Air Control Squadron 4.  He was authorized to wear the combat 'V'.  This was a very high honor. We all were (and still are) so proud of him!
My Dad retired from the Marine Corps with almost 25 years of service in 1973.  
He went on to have a second career as a computer programmer for Litton, Industries
He retired a second time and planned to travel with my Mother across the country in their RV.  Things didn't go as planned.  Sadly my Dad was diagnosed with Parkinson's with Lewy Body Dementia.  It was hard to see this brilliant man unable to remember how to do the simplest things.  I must say Dad kept his good humor through all of it.  Mom became a caretaker and eventually a widow.  
On July 21st it will be the 10 year anniversary of my Dad's passing.  We all miss him very much.  He was an Honorable man who taught me so much and influenced the person I am.
*taking a cry break here*

Both my parents were 'keepers' and I am blessed to have so many photos, mementos and other items to help me remember their lives.
I have much more to share in future posts and not all will be so sad! 

Thanks for staying with me for this long wordy post.  
I'm linking up with 
I am featured for my post last week and I'm so honored. 
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Wishing you JOY,



Bargain Hunting Treasure Seeker said...

Thanks so much for sharing! My heart is smiling at how blessed you were and are to have the wonderful memories and keepsakes. Hugs!!

Rose L said...

I grew up in Santa Ana, CA! My parents bought a house there and lived in it for 32 years! My dad was stationed at El Toro and also L.T.A (Lighter Than Air) where they kept the blimps! He was there 1952-1954. Small world! I know LTA was closed, but I do remember going to both bases over many years to see air shows (Blue Angels!),
My sisters husband was in the Marines at El Toro as well.
We saw Disneyland get built AND Knotts Berry Farm grow. When they first bought their house there it was mostly farms and orange groves!

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

Thank you for this post it really touched me our fathers are often just our fathers we are proud of them but often we don't give enough thought to the things they did in their lives and I can't imagine the pain of losing a parent as I have both mine still living and I see them weekly as you know and I speak to mum every single night can't imagine not doing that

Betsy@My Salvaged Treasures said...

This is such a beautiful post, Linda. Your dad was such an amazing man and obviously had a huge impact on your life. This brought back so many memories of my own dad, and I had to take a little cry break too. Love your pictures and all your treasures. Thank you for sharing with us at Vintage Inspiration Party.

Vonlipi said...

Oh Linda, thank you so very much for sharing some of your family history.

I had a little cry break too and made me want to ask my Dad more about the family history.

On my Dad's side I don't recall hearing about much service but the women were really into the war effort!

Hugs Valerie x

Vicky Hunt said...

Oh Linda...your touching tribute to your dad brought a tear to my eyes as well. So very sweet! Your love and pride are so evident in your words. I love the old photos and must say, you were quite the beauty! Thanks for sharing Linda...) Hugs!

Sandy said...

Wonderful photos and memories !

Sarah said...

Linda, this is a very touching post and a wonderful tribute to your dad. I enjoyed reading this.
I didn't know you and your mom were from Corpus Christi. Did you go to elementary school there by chance? If so where?
I also lived there as a child. Small world.

Shara said...

This such a touching post, Linda. You know, I can see Tiger in your Dad's eyes and face. Thank you for sharing.

Cheri said...

What a wonderful tribute to your dad. I also was extremely close to my step dad, he was more like a dad to me than my biological dad. How lucky we both were to have these men in our lives.

the cape on the corner said...

oh, linda. what a wonderful way to remember your dad. those pictures and jewelry are so special.

Mereknits said...

What a beautiful tribute to your wonderful Father.

Marigene said...

Beautiful tribute to your dad. So sorry he had to suffer such a horrible disease at the end. My dad was also a proud Marine.

Have a Daily said...

Linda, I really enjoyed reading about your dad! He sounds like such an amazing man. He looks so young when he first started flying. It is difficult to see those that you love go through things like this. My mil passed away with Dementia and I totally relate to what you are saying! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

Rue said...

Well, now I'm all teared up.... My grandfather had Parkinson's and Alzheimers. I know what you mean about a brilliant and kind man having to go through that. Terrible stuff.

He was an amazing man and I can see why you're so proud of him.