What are the odds? When I listed a WWII era souvenir “Mother and Dad” pillow from Gunter Field, Montgomery, Alabama on Etsy, of the 35 million products on Etsy, the pillow was the only item to pop up when I searched for other Gunter Field items. Of the 25 million Etsy buyers and 1.6 million Etsy sellers, what would be the odds the woman who purchased it was one of the 353 buyers to previously purchase through the Born Again Quilts online Etsy shop? I had good friend and IPFW professor Karen Ericson figure the odds and she calculated it at 1/10,000%.
My customer Amy who lives in Virginia purchased it. She wrote a little note stating she was perusing my shop and the souvenir pillow caught her eye. Amy’s father was stationed there back in the mid-late1970s when Amy was 10-13 years old. Amy was delighted to find a souvenir from a military base that held many pleasant memories for her. The fringed pillow is made of Rayon and it reads, “Mother and Dad, In all the years I’ve known you both you planned and strived for me. Thru sacrifice of everything that could a pleasure be. This token of love I’m sending to you just as a thought from me.”
I explained to Amy how I tried to find information about the base to share with potential buyers, but the information was sketchy at best: Gunter Field base near Montgomery, Alabama was built in 1940 and named after William Adams Gunter the town Mayor who died while it was under construction. The base was a flying school for Army pilots as well as for British, French and Canadian pilots too. Amy shared her memories of the base with me, “My favorite memory from Gunter was the freedom I enjoyed living on the base. I rode my bicycle all over that base. I went to the base library, the dollar movie on Saturday at the base theater, the BX for a soda, the commissary on errands for my mother and the best of all: the base swimming pool. We kids roamed all over. It was a safe small town environment. It was a very different world.”
Amy is collecting souvenir pillows from all of the military bases she called home. She is still looking for ones from Sheppard AFB, Texas, Langley AFB, Va. and Scott AFB, Ill. So what would be the chance a Waynedale News reader would happen to have one of these and be willing to part with it? We’ll figure the odds if it happens!
Let us take heart this Memorial Day Weekend that the Memorial Park monuments will not be moved but will remain in their original setting to honor those brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. A big thank-you to all who wrote letters, made calls and participated at the public meeting.
Once again I will be marching in the Waynedale parade and standing at the graveside ceremony at Prairie Grove Cemetery. This year I will go to Memorial Park too to visit the grove and remember those who died to ensure our freedom.
We must never forget!
Lois Levihn is the owner of Born Again Quilts.