My father was not a computer guy, but he was pretty good with machines. When he was in his early 70s, he spent some time learning how to use my mom’s Mac so that he could write his memoirs. He printed and put them in a simple report binder, which I found very old-fashioned at the time. At some point the files from that computer were lost, but I managed to keep the paper copy. In hindsight, I’m really glad he took that step. I recently scanned them for posterity. They are:
- Autobiography (very brief, completed January 1994)
- My first 72 Years (revised and extended, completed March 1995)
- Navy Diary, Tour 1 (1944)
- Navy Diary, Tour 2 (1945)
- My Military Experience 1942-1953
Initial thoughts as I am working through the digitizing process. I hope to expound on these later, but want to capture the highlights:
- Contains no swearing, but includes some racial/cultural terms which are fairly offensive.
- My father wrote very little but his language, grammar, and formatting are precise.
- It’s interesting to see these things written out chronologically. My understanding of his life was pieced together through various stories. It’s interesting to see things described sequentially.
- Includes some moments and stories I don’t recall hearing.
- The Navy tour diaries are especially interesting to me, probably because of the details and highlights from his daily life. He shared a few stories from this era and didn’t seem traumatized by anything in his time in the service, but the diaries really help me imagine what his life was like at that time.