Sunday, February 10, 2008

After CV

Many of you have shared your lives after leaving CV so I will share some of mine.

I met my husband, Walt, in 1959 when he was attending KU Medical School. We were married in 1960, I was a Public Health Nurse until he started his medical residency a the Mayo Clinic then I became a staff nurse at the clinic.

In 1962 he was drafted into the army because of the building of the Berlin wall and the soviet military build up.

We left Rochester, Minn in March at -20 degrees F for San Antonio at +80 degrees F. After 6 weeks at Fort Sam where he learned to spit polish his shoes, salute and wear his jewelry, caduceus and Captains bars, he was deployed to Germany aboard the USS United States.

I followed a month later for what we considered would be an exciting adventure, however, I was 2 months pregnant and sick as a dog! Walt, picked me up at the Frankfurt Airport and after I christened the roadside of the Autobahn, several times, we arrived in Baumholder one of the largest US tank training areas in Germany at that time. He was the surgeon for a tank battalion. Since he was not career army we were not eligible for housing so we rented a house in Idar Oberstein.

Our 3 years in Germany were full of adventures but we were always under a cloud of the cold war. The army trained with the idea of tank warfare, traveling across the Balkans fighting all the way to Russia. On the Army Post there were large road side pictures of Russian tanks so the soldiers would become familiar with them and would recognize them in war. Our little town was 20 ks away but we could hear the tank guns shooting almost every day.

In case of war, for the dependents the plan was wives and children would convoy across Germany and France to Calais where we would board ships and cross the English Channel. Looking back on this plan I think we would have been considered causalities of the war. The whole time we were there we were ordered to carry K rations and any other emergency items we might need in our VW for our baby, Lynne, and my escape.

A year after we moved to Germany, President Kennedy was assassinated. All the US military was on full alert because at that time it was thought that Russia was involved. The dependents living in the little German towns were somewhat isolated and without very much knowledge of what was happening and were beginning to think maybe it was time to head for Calias. Fortunately, for us Russia was not involved.

I will continue this later.

6 comments:

Gary White said...

I'm eagerly awaiting the next installment, Nancy. You and Wayne must have been abroad at about the same time and on similar missions.

wayne woodruff said...

Nancy, It is amazing how parallel our experiences were at about the same time. You might be interested in reading the account of our military and army trials in my November blogs titled "Lives of Wayne and Diana Woodruff" #2 and
#3.
What year did Walt graduate from KUMC?? I was graduated June 1963 and drafted July 1964.
Kennedy was assasinated about a week before we were to be married, and I think Diana's parents thought that was a good excuse to cancel the wedding, but Diana was desperate to get me, so we went ahead.

Nancy Goode Schmid said...

Wayne, I thought the same thing when I read your postings. Walt graduated in June, 1960 on a Friday, we were married on the following Sunday and he stared his intership the following week. What hectic days we lived!

Phil Foust said...

Good job, Nancy. Did you learn any German?

Nancy Goode Schmid said...

Phil, Yes we both did. Since we lived in a little town it was sink or swim if we wanted to buy anything. Walt, who was from a German speaking family, he was 3rd generation, could speak German fairly well. He could read the newspaper, I could do what I had to do mainly shop!

DFCox said...

Nancy I apologize, I've had you confused with Janette (sp?) from the moment you started blogging. You must have wondered if I was completely 'round the bend. Where DO you live? I know it isn't two blocks from me.