Janine’s Mission 80: WWII Purple Heart Turns 96

We start with a somber note. Some of you may remember Robert Mintz from a few missions back. In fact, he is in the middle photo above. We did a birthday mission and a get well mission. He passed away on Sunday 9/18. He was 91.  Here is his obituary.   A WWII Purple Heart Recipient who lives in Cuba City, WI will be celebrating his 96th Birthday in October. Scroll down for all the details. 
— When missions are completed, the families usually send over pics of their veterans (with big smiles 😁) showing the cards they received. I post those pics at the bottom of this email, and on my facebook, instagram, and twitter– so make sure you’re following along on your favorite platform! You can see a number photos from many other past missions here. For those wishing to share a veteran’s birthday:please try to give me at least 2 month’s notice via email. 
Last but not least, if you are new here, thank you for joining! I hope you find this to be a fulfilling and meaningful way to do what you can, with what you’ve got, from where you are! 🤗 …and now here’s Mission 80:
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Mission 80: Send by 10/12

WWII Purple Heart Recipient is Turning 96!

A note from Bill’s son: 

William (Bill) Frederick was born 10/17/1926. He served in the Army from 10/25/44 to 8/9/46. Left the service as a corporal in the 3rd Division Recon. He was wounded in Riedlingen, Germany on April 25, 1945, and received a purple heart…This article provides interesting insight into his service.

Bill’s hometown is Dubuque, IA, and he resides there today. He also lived in Cassville, WI from 1959 to 1990, making a living at the Nelson Dewey Generating Station (NDGS) Power Plant. He started at NDGS in the coal yard, and retired as the plant manager. He was never able to attend college, but he was always taking courses and reading books on power generation, business, physics, mathematics, etc.

He was married 67 years to Arlette (Meyer) Frederick until her death on 12/6/2017. Bill & Arlette raised 5 kids: Steve (Karen), Barb (John Schwarz), Jeff (deceased), Jim, Mark (Kari). Bill has 10 grandchildren & 13 greats.

Bill is not a “sports nut”, but he does enjoy the Green Bay Packers, playing Euchre and Bridge, reading when he could see well, 40’s and 50’s big band music, dancing, hunting, golfing, fishing, and pretty much anything outside. His health no longer allows most of those activities, but he still enjoys a good visit, and a good letter. He is living independently, and while still fighting various maladies, remains fully faithful to our Lord, and enjoys life.

His Birthday is on the 17th but they are presenting cards to him on the 15th. Please send your cards by: 10/12 or sooner.

Mark Frederick
c/o Bill Frederick
515 W Jean St
Cuba City, WI 53807

A bit more info from Mark: My dad, Bill was diagnosed with Aplastic Anemia in August 2019 and at age 92 was given weeks-to-months to live. He has had a number of blood transfusions, has beaten all the odds so far,  I had never heard Dad’s stories from WWII…he never felt the urge to share them. I felt his experience, and all vet’s experiences, should be shared, so we can learn from the hell of war, and try not to repeat.

Here is a follow up article to the first article that was written about Bill in the Telegraph Herald. 

Janine’s Mission 79: 100 Year Old Army Nurse

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Mission 79: Send by 9/21

Army Nurse Turning 100!

A note from Ruth’s friends Mr. & Mrs. Kerestes: 

Ruth enlisted in the Army Nursing Corps after graduating from nurses training at Jameson Memorial Hospital in New Castle, Pennsylvania. As a 2nd Lieutenant she and several hundred other newly graduated cadet nursers were assigned to the USS Republic, a floating hospital ship where they treated injured patients. She was en route to Saipan as the U.S. prepared for the invasion of Japan; however, the nurses were rerouted to Fort Bliss, Texas.

After the war she met fellow World War II Veteran Harry Ketzel and married in 1947. They had a lovely life together and had two children, Amy (Navy Nurse) and Wally. After raising her family, she worked as a plant nurse at Rockwell International and was a volunteer hospital nurse for the Red Cross. In addition, she has five grandchildren (two of whom are Marines) and seven great-grandchildren. Ruth loves to read and go for walks and enjoys her independence.

Her son Wally says her health is good, but she did not want a party for her 100th Birthday. When approached with the idea of birthday cards coming from “Janine’s Team” Wally said…. let’s fill her mailbox with cards.

Please join us in wishing Ruth a happy 100th Birthday, much health, and continued happiness!

Her birthday is 9/25. Please send your cards by: 9/21

Ruth Ketzel
9111 Sharrott Road, Unit # 531A
Poland, Ohio 44514

As a proud member of the Greatest Generation Ruth continues to enjoy reminiscing with fellow veterans and others in her community and actively participates in veterans related events. Your kind words will make Ruth smile on her special day

Janine’s Mission 78–Vietnam Veteran Honor Flight

Mission 78: Send by 9/7

Cards for Gary on his Honor Flight!

Gary’s wife Carol sent me this request: MSgt Gary Webster USAF (Ret) was asked to be on the Southeast Florida Honor Flight on September 17th. Coincidentally that is the same date he enlisted in the Air Force at 17 years old and went to basic training at Lackland AFB in San Antonio TX. In 1967 he was sent to Tan Son Nhut Air Base in Saigon, South Vietnam. He was a Crew Chief on F-4 Phantom fighter jets and was there during the Tet Offensive in early 1968. He came back to the US in April 1968 and completed 4 years of active duty in September that same year. He went back into service as a member of the NH Air National Guard and served another 17 years until he retired in 1991 as a Master Sergeant. He was planning on retirement the year before and his retirement was frozen due to Desert Storm 1. He was “activated” during that time and his final “tour of duty” was in Niagara Falls NY to assist the Guard unit located there in a facilities review to upgrade them to a KC-135 refueling unit. Shortly after that, the freeze was lifted and he officially retired from the US Air Force. He doesn’t speak often of his time during the war, he is proud he served and a true patriot and supporter of this country and the military, but he doesn’t want it to define him. Family and friends are proud of his service to our country. We often find it amusing when out somewhere and there is another veteran they tend to gravitate toward each other and strike up a conversation as if they were old friends. There is definitely a special connection between those who served. So happy he is able to have this opportunity and the chance to spend time with others who served and to reminisce and remember those that were lost. 

Please send Master Sgt. at USAF Retired Gary Webster a thank you / welcome home card to open during the flight out to D.C. (PS: he’s a 60’s and Phlash phan!) 

Get your cards in the mail by: 9/7

Southeast FL Honor Flight
Attn: MSgt Gary Webster USAF (Ret)

PO Box 1503 Stuart FL. 34995

Please consider sending some additional cards for other veterans too! Just write Attn: Honor Flight Veteran on the envelope of those cards.

Woman Artist of the Battlefield

Usually you think of men painting or photographing battle scenes. Thanks for Francisco Bravo Cabrera of Jazz Artist in Valencia , we learn about a British lady artist who painted British soldiers in a variety of battles, many actually painted on the battlefield.

Click here to read about Elizabeth Southernden Thompson. Be sure to watch the video which includes Francisco’s music, Elizabeth’s paintings and a a brief biography of her.

Reblog: Civility

Denzil from Discovering Belgium shared this wonderful blog post on whatever happened to civility in the comments a few days ago. It needs to be shared more widely. It is apolitical and a general observation on the way we routinely seem to treat each other.

Whatever happened to old-fashioned civility?

Civility – formal politeness and courtesy in behavior or speech.

Do casual clothes also usher in casual rudeness and “It’s all about me!”?

Janine’s Mission 77: 90th, 98th, 100th, and 101st Birthdays!

When missions are completed, the families usually send over pics of their veterans (with big smiles 😁) showing the cards they received. I post those pics at the bottom of this email, and on my facebook, instagram, and twitter– so make sure you’re following along on your favorite platform! You can see a number photos from many other past missions here. For those wishing to share a veteran’s birthday:please try to give me at least 2 month’s notice via email. 
Last but not least, if you are new here, thank you for joining! I hope you find this to be a fulfilling and meaningful way to do what you can, with what you’ve got, from where you are! 🤗 …and now here’s Mission 77 (4 parts). 
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Mission 77 (part 1): Send by 8/13-8/16 Henry’s 98th A note from his daughter: Henry Clay Smith, US Army PFC, Company “M” 137th Infantry, served his country in Central Europe during WWII as a heavy machine gunner and was a Purple Heart recipient. After an honorable discharge, he returned to his hometown of Fountain Run, KY, married his sweetheart and served our God as a bi-vocational Southern Baptist minister for 50 years in south central KY. His wife passed away in 2018 after 72 years of marriage, and he currently lives with his only child, a daughter, in Brentwood, TN, which is near his two granddaughters and a grandson-in-law.  *His birthday is 8/17 and he is in charge of getting the mail, so feel free to make your envelopes extra decorative so he’s surprised every day he goes to the mail! 🙂 
Please send your cards any time between 8/13 and 8/16 to: Henry C Smith  805 Valley View Circle Brentwood, TN  37027

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Mission 77 (part 2): Send by 8/16 Zeke’s 90th A note from his family friend Kami: Zeke Gandara was in the 76th Engineers B Company, 24th Infantry Division. He enlisted in 1949-1952. He was in Korea from July 1950 – Nov 1951.
Please send your cards on or before 8/16 to this address:  Zeke Gandara
6832 S. 90th Street
Lincoln, NE 68521
david hoffman
Mission 77 (part 3): Send by 8/16 Bob’s 100th A note from his daughter Linda: My Dad, Robert (Bob) Huerter will be turning 100 years old on August 22nd. We will be celebrating on Saturday, August 20th, in Chanute, KS. Bob enlisted in the Navy Air Force in September, 1942. He was called to service January, 1943. After graduation in Pensacola, Florida in November, 1944, he was stationed in Northern Africa with an Air Sea Rescue Squadron. Bob was a Naval Aviator, Lieutenant Junior Grade. On one of his missions he was able to visit the Vatican in Rome. After serving his term in the service his honorable discharge was in January, 1946. Bob returned home (Goff, KS) after the service and then worked for Goodyear in Topeka, KS for several years. Bob joined the KS Highway Patrol in 1949 starting out in Topeka, then was transferred to Concordia, KS and was transferred to Chanute, KS retiring in 1982. He worked at Chanute TV for several years after his retirement. He was hired at the Friskel Funeral Home in Chanute and was employed there part time until he was 90 years old. Robert still lives in Chanute. Please wish him a Happy Birthday by sending cards to him at his assisted living facility. Thank you! Please send your cards on or before 8/16 to this address:  Robert Huerter
Guest Home Estates II
1202 S. Plummer
Chanute, KS 66720

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Mission 77 (part 4): Send by 8/24 Pat’s 101st! You may remember Pat from Mission 56. We sent cards for her 100th birthday.   A member of Janine’s Team live near her town and has become her friend and they recently met at their local VFW. During their visit, she talked about how much she loved receiving cards from everyone on her 100th. She saved them all and reads through them often!  In fact, she is still writing people back from last year.  She said, “I wonder if they will send some for my 101st birthday.” (She doesn’t know it, but the answer is …. YES we will!!) A bit more about Pat: She is a WWII veteran who served in the Navy and was with the first group of women that were sent over to Pearl Harbor after the bombing.. She taught Reading and writing to the troops.
Pat is a remarkable woman. She owns and maintains her own home. Drives herself. Is the treasurer for her local Eastern Star. Makes blankets for veterans at the VA hospital. Makes prayer shawls for people that are ill. The list goes on and on. 

Please send your cards on or before 8/24 to this address:  Pat Rudd 1065 E. 10th Street  St. Cloud, FL 34769
Help spread this mission by sharing it!
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Below are updates on past missions: 
Mission 72 (part 2): Complete! Clyde’s 96th A note from his daughter Linda: I want all involved with the birthday card missions to know how incredibly awesome they are and how much surprise and joy and they bring to the veterans and how much their efforts, cards and messages are appreciated by the vets and their families. I did not tell my dad anything and then one day he goes to get his mail from the box and had 25 birthday cards and more and more continued to arrive. When he told me about the first big haul I said wow, that’s really nice to be getting cards even 2 weeks before your birthday! His reply was so funny. He said slowly, well, yeah…but I don’t know any of these people! But they seem to know me, that I was in the Navy, a bricklayer, a fireman, etc! LOLI still didn’t tell him. He read every card and the personal messages and memories people included about their service/occupations/relatives who served were just priceless! He brought a stash of his cards to our birthday gathering and went around questioning each of my siblings and his grandchildren ….Do you know anything about these? (as he held up his cards) Finally, when he confronted me, I said ..maybe! Why? Are you happy or aggravated? When he said he was honored, I told him how it was coordinated by a wonderful, patriotic young lady named Janine…..she’s the attractive woman in the “picture’ you received Dad! . He even received a card from a young boy who was doing a report for school who wrote a nice letter and asked him questions and included a SASE for him to reply! What a great way to share history and connect the old and the new generations! May the Lord bless you and your card angels/warriors and keep you happy and healthy. You are making many birthdays, some of which may be the last one celebrated on earth, extra, extra special! Thank you doesn’t seem like enough!
Mission 75: Complete! Francis’ 97th A note from Francis’ son: Thanks very much to all for arranging this wonderful celebration of my father’s 97th birthday and WWII service! Our birthday party yesterday was a happy and huge success!
We received 243 cards (stack shown in basket) and captured the moment in this family photo: from L to R, son David, FD “Turk” Therkelson, wife Willene, and my sister, Shari.

Mission 73 (part 2): Complete! Charles Mitchell’s 100th Thank you so much for helping Make Charlie’s 100th birthday on the 4th of July over the top special…He loved receiving all the thoughtful cards.. -Joanne Daniels (friend)
Mission 73 (part 1): Complete! Marjie’s 99th Marjie’s 99th today! She was completely surprised and thrilled … and will spend many days opening up each card !!! Thank you so much! Karen Murphy
Mission 71 (part 1): Complete!

David Hoffman’s 75th

Dearest Janine,
I didn’t tell David about your card missions until his birthday (May 3); so for three plus weeks, he kept saying “I don’t know these folks “, or “How do they know so much about me?” every time he received one of his 300 plus cards. We were both so incredibly touched by each and every one! America is blessed with so many wonderful people and you have brought them together. Thank you so much!!!
Sincerely, Olivia 
PS: I wish I could have gotten all the cards in the picture….AMAZING all the handmade and David specific (GTO, Army) cards he received. AND a scrapbook page!!!

Reblog: 56 Delightfully Unusual Words for Every Day Things

If your dream is to talk like Moira Rose from Schitt’s Creek, look no further than Mrs. Byrne’s Dictionary of Unusual, Obscure, and Preposterous Words, one of the dictionaries Catherine O’Hara used to tweak her iconic character’s lines. As its name promises (and by design), the book is full of weird and wonderful words—some for things decidedly exotic, and many for things we experience regularly. The following terms for everyday things are ones you’ll want to add to your lexicon ASAP.

Read this article to learn words like bumfodder (toilet paper) or blattnerphone (tape recorder).

Thomas Cook

In Words and Music, Luisa recently blogged about Thomas Cook https://wordsmusicandstories.wordpress.com/2022/07/05/the-father-of-modern-tourism/

I got the following complaints in an email and was reminded of Luisa’s recent post .


1. “They should not allow topless sunbathing on the beach. It was very distracting for my husband who just wanted to relax.”

2. “On my holiday to Goa in India, I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don’t like spicy food.”

3. “We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish.”

4. “We booked an excursion to a water park but no-one told us we had to bring our own swimsuits and towels. We assumed it would be included in the price.”

5. “The beach was too sandy. We had to clean everything when we returned to our room.”

6. “We found the sand was not like the sand in the brochure. Your brochure shows the sand as white but it was more yellow.”

7. “It’s lazy of the local shopkeepers in Puerto Vallartato close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during ‘siesta’ time — this should be banned.”

8. “No-one told us there would be fish in the water. The children were scared.”

9. “Although the brochure said that there was a fully equipped kitchen, there was no egg-slicer in the drawers.”

10. “I think it should be explained in the brochure that the local convenience store does not sell proper biscuits like custard creams or ginger nuts.”

11. “The roads were uneven and bumpy, so we could not read the local guide book during the bus ride to the resort. Because of this, we were unaware of many things that would have made our holiday more fun.”

12. “It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England. It took the Americans only three hours to get home. This seems unfair.”

13. “I compared the size of our one-bedroom suite to our friends’ three-bedroom and ours was significantly smaller.”

14. “The brochure stated: ‘No hairdressers at the resort.’ We’re trainee hairdressers and we think they knew and made us wait longer for service.”

15. “When we were in Spain, there were too many Spanish people there. The receptionist spoke Spanish, the food was Spanish. No one told us that there would be so many foreigners.”

16. “We had to line up outside to catch the boat and there was no air-conditioning.”

17. “It is your duty as a tour operator to advise us of noisy or unruly guests before we travel.”

18. “I was bitten by a mosquito. The brochure did not mention mosquitoes.”

19. “My fiancée and I requested twin-beds when we booked, but instead we were placed in a room with a king bed.

      We now hold you responsible and want to be re-reimbursed for the fact that I became pregnant.

      This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked.”