August 5, 2015 – The “arranged” marriage

Before I tell you about the marriage I would like to tell you about my oldest friend in the entire world.  I was born in Buffalo NY in the city and lived there part of the first year of my life.  Before I was one my parents made the plunge – it was during the War and sold the two family home they had been living in and we moved to the suburbs…  Two houses down from us was a family with two daughters.   Ginny was the oldest and the first friend I remember ever having.

We lived there until I was 9 and although we went to different schools and Ginny spent her summers at a camp in the Adirondacks I have many memories of us together in the neighborhood. I had four brothers and then next door they had three sons most of the time we lived there and then on the other side was Brian who was the bully of the neighborhood as I am told.  So for girl time Ginny and I and her sisters were it on our end of the street. Our babysitters when the folks went out were the same – the Higgins girls.. I don’t remember them as far as babysitting goes but in the beginning they were it.

Ginny and I were both writers to we were able to stay in touch over the years even it it was just through Christmas cards or birthday cards.  About every ten years or so we would meet up.  I went to see her when she was living at STella NIagara, she came to see me when she worked at a Camp in Clifton Park, and then when she was married she stopped by on her way to Buffalo one time with her baby son Ben.  I have been to visit her in Seattle and at her daughters in New Haven.  There is just that special connection to each other that has never gone away.  I feel so lucky to have a friend like her.  I have grown to believe we really only have a very few friends in our lives who are really friends.  People we would trust our lives to. I think Ginny is one of those people.  Happy Birthday dear friend.

Now for the wedding.  The reason it has been quiet here was our going to a family wedding this past weekend. It was a wonderful event but the story of this couple is very old fashioned.  My brother Jim and his wife Sally have belonged for a very long time to a couples group at their church.  One time in the last couple of years one of the wives said to Jim that she had a lovely daughter who just could not find a decent man to get serious about.  All the guys wanted nothing to do with a serious relationship and that was what Rose wanted.  Jim said it is too bad since he had a son who also struggled to find a woman that wanted the kind of life he wanted. The two parents commiserated and then a little later one of their mutual friends suggested they introduce Fergus to Rose and see what would happen.  So, some how the parents set them up and the rest is as they say history…  A beautiful marriage with the couple surrounded by loving friends and family.  Could not have worked out better…

In the past Denis and I did Engaged Encounter weekends in our diocese for couples preparing to marry and we learned a lot from that experience about relationships and what makes them work and what can break them faster than a speeding bullet.  This one seems to be built on all the right ground and we wish them many years of happiness.

So back on track, here is a letter from Sheila at the end of July 1944 when she now knows where her sister Pat is and life is getting on track for her in England.  Also awaiting the arrival of who would turn out to be Maureen.  Cute about how she addresses that.


Dr and Mrs F.J. O’Connor / 193 Earl St. / Kingston On

Dear All:

I wrote yesterday, but shall write again to-day to make up for last week, but I just could not seem to get around to writing at all, it was really awful.

I got a letter from Pattsy and Jack to-day, so I’m very happy. Patt is meeting a lot of my friends. Dan Neuman (Molly’s brother) and Stub Brown (Mary know’s him) so they are all sending their love to me – across the pond. I was so gosh darn relieve when Patt’s letter came as it was just a strain, not quite knowing the where’s and why’s, but she is well established in mud now, I guess.

Be sure and send her lot of parcels now as everything is definitely rationed over there. Cookies you get one a day, and one chocolate bar a week, so she will look forward for parcels more than ever.

Mary Doyle had a cable from her brother Joe, he arrived in England on the 28th so now we are planning ways and means to get to see him. Mary Doyle is off nites now but Suddsey is on, and I guess I shall be on before long and that is not good. Poor Doylie has had so gosh darn much nites remember the first nite term at K.M.H. that was really something eh?

I haven’t really much news as there is so much we are not allowed to say but I’m really getting more adjusted here and gradually I guess I shall get use to it all. You really wonder though why Canada is so definitely under English rule and yet not a bit like them in any way shape or form.

Well dears, I hope that Cousin Kate came to visit, give her my love, and give it also to Ann, Tom and John and hope they are all enjoying their holiday.

What is Jeannie’s date? Don’t forget to cable me the day things happen and tell me if I’m an aunt or an uncle.

Well dear, shall close for now. Love to you all.

Sheila N/S C.A.O. Armed Forces Air Letter


2 thoughts on “August 5, 2015 – The “arranged” marriage”

  1. What a sweet story about the “arranged” marriage. So glad it worked out. And I loved the pics on Facebook.
    But … tatoos? I just don’t get it.


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