Joe returned home and we were married at Freeny Baptist Church by Rev. Smith Sanders, on Christmas Day, 1956. We headed for a honeymoon, on Pensacola Beach and lived in a motel until the start of tourist season, when we were priced off the beach. We moved to a one bedroom apartment owned by Mr. Earle Waite near Saufley Field, where Joe was a flight instructor. After a few months, we bought a lot nearby, from Mr. and Mrs. Hill, and had a Jim Walter shell house built on it. We moved into the shell and continued finishing the inside for several months. We lived next door to Ed and Polly Roy. He was a Navy hospital corpsman and we became very good friends and still maintain contact. Ed died on Dec. 1, 2001 and Polly lives with her daughter, Celia, in New Mexico. We lost contact with most of the people we knew during that time except for the Roys, Anne and Gerald Woolard of Pensacola, and Bob and Anne Lynn of Burnsville, MN. Bob was Joe's first married flight student at Saufley Field. We were there for the next 2 years and our main activities were going to Pensacola Beach, and Joe showed me some of the places he found as a flight student. Among those were Trader John's, The Oyster Bar, The Chicken Box and a couple of resturants, the names I can't remember.
In Dec 1958, we left active duty and moved back home. We bought a house in Madison, MS, near Jackson and our first child, David Bruce, was born on April 13, 1959. My "Auntie", Mattie V. Cleveland, still lived in Jackson, and visited us regularly. I had learned to crochet and made a baby blanket for Bruce. On my birthday, in March, Mama and Jennie gave me a needle work book, and I taught myself how to knit. Knitting became, and still is one of my favorite activities. Joe worked for Vickers for a few months and joined a Navy Reserve unit in New Orleans. Joe was offered helicopter training if he would join a helicopter unit being formed, so we went back to Pensacola, in late 1959, where Joe went through Navy Helicopter training. In the spring of 1960, Joe attended an agriculture flying school and took a job as a crop duster for the summer. He sprayed the cotton on the state penitentiary farm, where his daddy was the farm manager. In the fall, he got a job as a Biology teacher in Jackson and our daughter, Nita, was born on Feb 24, 1961. Joe flew a small helicopter for the Forestry Commission, on weekends during the school year, until it had an engine failure and crashed. He wasn't seriously hurt, but that ended that job. For a while, he tried doing in-home TV repairs. The next summer, he crop dusted. We decided the Navy was the best deal for us and he applied to return to active duty, and got orders to active service in early December, 1961. Next Page
Pensacola, FL and Madison, MS - 1956-1961
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