Fisticuffs and More Fisticuffs at Heise Station – Pt. 8

There were these two particular truck drivers who were also regular customers at Heise Station. They both came in daily on their separate runs from El Centro to Los Angeles, hauling whatever crop was being harvested at the time. Both big guys, like the pile bucks,...

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The Saga of Life at Heise Station Continues – Pt. 7

With Dad at Heise Station—he was a carpenter—we were able to start the building projects the parents had planned. Dad and Uncle Ernie built a living room, a bathroom, and a couple more bedrooms—one big one for all us boys. We painted and moved in two sets of...

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Wildlife Adventures at Heise Station – Pt. 6

When we weren’t exploring with one of the pile bucks, we boys constantly explored our immediate environs around Heise Station, an area that fairly teemed with life, most of it much smaller than we were. In the desert around Westmorland, and I guess everywhere in the...

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The Heise Station Adventure Continues – Pt. 5

I managed to find a photo of the type of soda cooler we had at Heise Station. I can’t remember (that was a long time ago!) if our cooler was Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, or Nehi, but it looked a lot like the one shown here: The ice water in the soda cooler came in handy...

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Life at Heise Station – Pt. 4

When last we left our intrepid explorers at ther new abode of Heise Station, Uncle Ernie had just introduced the boys to his “desert dogs,” Skippy (the friendly one) and Shorty (the mean one): “Come on, let’s go!” I said, dashing after the dogs. “Don’t go too far....

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Our Family Reaches California – Pt. 3

In our last chapter I was trying to take in both the Yuma Prison and the Colorado River as we crossed into California, the Golden State. We drove through more desert and finally reached El Centro, the county seat of the Imperial Valley, where we would live a year...

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A “Moving” Family Story, Pt. 2

We left off last time when Auntie Honey disappeared into the “Ladies” while Mom and Uncle Ernie got the rest of us out of the car. I grabbed Rick’s hand and headed for the “Gentlemen’s” door. After we’d all rested, we went to a little café next to the Texaco and had...

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Mom Was a Veteran Too!

Although not a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, my mom, Sara Rebekkah “Betty” Borst Billuni, every bit the American as any GI, worked with the Dutch Resistance in WWII Occupied Amsterdam, delivering forged documents, distributing anti-Nazi leaflets, and smuggling...

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A World War II GI Returns Home

In honor of Veteran’s Day, I decided to post this 1945 newspaper article that announced my dad’s WWII repatriation from Stalag 7A, a German POW camp near Munich, Germany. Newspaper Clipping - Feb. 23, 1945 DETROITER FREED BY NAZIS PHONES A TEARFUL FAMILY by L.L....

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A ‘Moving’ Family Story

A ‘MOVING’ FAMILY STORY When I posted a 1955 Halloween photo on Facebook, I began thinking of my younger brother, Rick, and my two cousins, Wayne and Bob, who are all in the photo. In 1952, my family made the big move westward—from Detroit, Michigan to California’s...

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