Memories of 1945

Dear Editor,
Yes, I remember 1945 (“History in headlines,” Feb. 5). It was a historic year.
Our president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, died of a heart attack. Two other world leaders, the infamous Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, also died. Reportedly, Hitler shot himself and Mussolini died from the rifles of an Italian firing squad. Over 100,000 died when the atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And then the war was over!
In Clarkston, one could view the names of local men who were serving their country on a large board in front of the township hall. Across the street, the windows of O’Dell’s Drug Store were filled with framed pictures of many of our servicemen, handsomely dressed in their uniforms.
Driving around the village could be seen other windows showing a blue star on a white background, some with more than one star, designating a home whose son or sons were serving in the military. Sadly, there were some that displayed a gold star, a home where a son had died for his country.
For me, it was the year I graduated from Clarkston High School. There were 50 of us, the largest class to graduate up to that time. Our sponsors bravely took us on a two-day trip to Niagara Falls. We boarded the steamship “Greater Detroit” in Detroit, which took us to Buffalo, N.Y., and then by train we traveled to Niagara Falls.
On June 13, we received our diplomas, except for a couple of boys who had enlisted in the service and were already gone, missing the ceremony. These are some of my memories of the year 1945.
Ethelyn Hyde
Independence Township


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