A Christmas Story
This true story, submitted by Audrey McCrae, appeared in the Pine Run Voice several years ago. We thought that you might enjoy it again.
A Happy War Memory
This incident came up in a conversation I had at dinner recently, and the people at the table loved it and suggested that it should be shared.
During what we refer to as the “Second World War,” my husband, Johnny McCrea, was serving as a ball-turret gunner on a B-17 Bomber. He was stationed in England in 1943-1944 and their missions were over Germany. After one particularly rough raid, their plane was the only one of the squadron to reach their home base, and the plane was severely damaged. One other plane managed to make it back but landed at another base. With the squadron so depleted, it was decided to send the two remaining crews to a rest home for a week. It happened it was over Christmas.
As the holiday approached, the crews there who were enjoying their time off from combat were asked by some local people whether they would be good enough to give a Christmas party to some orphans who were billeted nearby. The offer was gladly accepted – after all what’s Christmas without children? Preparations were made – perhaps meager by our standards, but England at that time had little food and no luxuries. It was discovered that they had the makings of ice cream but no way to freeze it. A captain among them went to the phone, called a nearby American airbase, asked for the officer in charge, and told him he had need of a B-17. The officer (probably using some purple language) wanted to know what on earth for. The captain explained the circumstances – there was a short pause – and the officer told him to get the stuff over there and they’d have a plane on the runway. The ice cream makings were delivered – taken up to twenty-two thousand feet – flown around for the time it took to get it firm – then landed and delivered to the party in time for dessert. Thus those children had their taste of ice cream. I figure it was the most expensive ice cream ever made! One happy ending in the midst of war.
And That’s How the Fight Started
One year I decided to buy my mother-in-law a cemetery plot as a Christmas gift. The next year I didn’t buy her a gift. When she asked me why, I replied, “Well, you still haven’t used the gift I bought you last year.” And that’s how the fight started.
I took my wife to a restaurant. The waiter, for some reason took my order first. “I’ll have the filet steak, rare, please.” He said, “Aren’t you worried about the mad cow?” “Nah, she can order for herself.” And that’s how the fight started.
My wife sat down next to me as I was flipping channels. She asked, “What’s on TV?” I said, “Lots of dust.” And that’s how the fight started.
My wife was hinting about what she wanted for our upcoming anniversary. She said, “I want something shiny that goes from 0 to 165 in about 2 seconds.” I bought her a bathroom scale. And that’s how the fight started.
— Submitted by Dan Reid