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Luise Van Dyne Aurora Vasquez Catherine Vo        

Luise Van Dyne

Other (student), War bride (Japan )

Original home:

We were foreigners growing up in Japan. My father was Estonian and ran a very successful business. However, in 1943 he had to give up his business and move to the country. I was a student at that time.

On August 14, 1945, we were living in the mountains nearly starving. About noon we all went to listen to the radio. The announcement had been made by the Emperor of Japan to surrender.

The reason we almost starved was because the local police didn't recognize our nationality and would not give us food stamps for rations.

When we heard the war ended, my brother and some of his friends went down to the police station to kill the chief of police! But it was too late, they already fled.

Those K-rations tasted so good!

Submitted by:
Linda Laurie
Poway, CA - United States

Relationship to Storyteller:
Adult volunteer

Aurora Vasquez


Catherine Vo

(Maiden Name: Florence)

U.S. Army

Sy in Korea in 1943
Born: 1941
San Jose, CA
United States
Original home:
San Jose, CA
United States

Our woman Captain told all the Cadet Nurses that we were only allowed to date officers and there were many more non-comms than officers.

Noncommissioned officers, coined “non-comms”, were ordinary soldiers. If we were caught dating non-comms, our woman Captain warned us that we would be pulled out of the Cadet Nurse program. However, while I was there, I was able to find a way to make myself and the non-comm patients happy.

I remember the first time I took out a badly injured non-comm patient to the movies. I could tell he was very pleased because this little trip gave him great happiness. Although there were times of happiness, there were also times of sadness as well. When our captain found out that we were dating non-comms, she threatened to pull us out of our Nursing schools. Luckily, the first non-comm that I dated had a highly ranked father who intervened on my behalf, and reported the woman Captain to the commanding officer of the hospital. From that day on, the hospital changed their rules, allowing the nurses to date non-comms at any time, and I was granted immunity from getting kicked out of Nurses training by my commanding officer. Even though I put my neck on the line for the non-comms, I do not regret it at all, because I was able to help boost their morale, and give them memories that they will not forget.

Submitted by:
Catherine D. Vo
San Jose, CA - United States

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