Monday, September 14, 2015

365 Project - Day 257 - "Mementos and Memories"

September 14, 2015 - "Mementos and Memories"

My stepfather - John H. Waterhouse - was an amazing man. He was one of the kindest, sweetest, funniest and most loving people I have ever known. He was very attached to my children - especially my son Brandon, the only boy in the family. To them he was "Grandpa John". He was there when they were born... and was very much an active part of their lives until his passing in the summer of 2003.

John was a World War II veteran. He served in the U.S. Army - 296th Engineer Combat Battalion.

This is just a small collection of mementos I have of my stepfather. To the left is a commemorative 50th Anniversary of D-Day Zippo lighter which I gave him. The inside is engraved with his name and battalion on one side... and a personal note from me on the other.

In the middle are his dog tags from the war. Although he was active with the VFW and a regular at the 296th reunions, he didn't tend to talk about the war much - other than a few funny stories here and there. He did, however, continue to wear his dog tags.

To the right is the watch he wore every day. It was given to him in 1989 by the company he worked for, in recognition of 20 years of service.

In the background is his copy of the book "Bridge To Berlin" which tells the story of the 296th during the war.

This past July marked twelve years since his passing. I remember it as if it were yesterday. I remember the tears... I remember the emotion... I remember the pain... but most of all, I remember the man - my stepfather - John H. Waterhouse. One of the kindest, sweetest, funniest and most loving people I have ever known.

I miss him dearly.

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