For Two Cents, I’d Marry You

Today would have been my parent’s 69th anniversary.   Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad.  Their love story was a story for all time….

My mother, Mollie Weinstein Schaffer met my dad, Jack Schaffer, after the end of World War II. She went on a blind date with Jack on New Year’s Eve 1945 which was set up by his sister who believed they would be a perfect match.

“After their second date, Mollie said to Jack, ‘For two cents, I’d marry you.'” Jack promptly gave Mollie two cents and within three weeks of their first date, they were married in Chicago.

They remained married for 54 years until Jack’s death in 2000 at the age of 92.  Mollie passed away in April 2012 at the age of 95.

Small business Saturday, November 29, 2014

Please join me as “A Book Above” bookstore celebrates small business Saturday on November 29, 2014.  They will have local authors talking about their books and selling their books.  I will be there from 10 am to noon.  A Book Above is located at 136 W. Vallette #6 in Elmhurst (southwest corner of York and Vallette Roads).  Hope you will be able to stop by.

5 Star Review from Reader’s Favorite

Reviewed By Michelle Robertson for Readers’ Favorite

Readers often only read about the men who served in World War II. What about the women? There were 150,000 women who served in the Women’s Army Corps during World War II. Come learn of one such brave woman as she served in England, France, and Germany. She tells of her adventures from basic training in Daytona Beach through to the day she approached the American shore line to return home. Come read a firsthand account about the crucial time in America when a woman, Mollie Weinstein Schaffer, put on a uniform and became a vital part of history. Mollie’s War: The Letters of a World War II WAC in Europe written by Mollie Weinstein Schaffer, Cyndee Schaffer, and Jennifer G. Mathers is a collection of correspondence from Mollie Weinstein Schaffer and her family and friends as she ventured overseas with the Women’s Army Corps during World War II.

Mollie’s letters are simply astonishing. A reader can expect to get a very vivid mental picture of the lifestyle, environment, and events of a civilian girl and military woman during the 1940s. Each letter is a memorable treasure. Mollie talks of the simple pleasures of a young girl such as dances, boyfriends, proposals, and then more serious issues such as getting into the duties of a military female; transcribing Nazi Experimental Data; aiding refugees and citizens of the war in Europe, and missionary work. Reading this incredible historical memoir, a reader can expect to be engaged thoroughly with the pure raw emotion and imagine it as it happened that day, as well gain a deeper perspective on Mollie Schaffer’s experiences, both personal and work related. Mollie’s War would be appreciated by readers interested in history, war, historical women, or the 1940s.

Article about Mollie’s War in North Shore Weekend Magazine

Please read the article in today’s North Shore Weekend magazine about Mollie’s War and my continuing effort to bring the history of the WWII women in the military, in general, and my mother, in particular, to libraries and organizations statewide (Illinois). It is on page 8. Thank you to Simon Murray for a wonderful article and Joel Lerner for great pictures.

Chicago Writers Association Speakers Bureau

Chicago Writers Association unveiled its 2014-2015 Speakers Bureau.  If you are looking for a speaker about women in the military during WWII, please keep me in mind.  I am listed on the Speakers Bureau in the History section:  The Journey to Mollie’s War :  From Inspiration to Publication.

Mollie’s War at Book Club

I had a wonderful time telling Mollie’s story at the St. Paul Lutheran Church book club in Villa Park on Monday evening. Most all of the women walked in carrying a copy of “Mollie’s War.” They bought it on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. I autographed the books and then proceeded to my presentation. The questions were amazing and most everyone had parents who served in WWII or other relatives. One woman talked about her friend’s mother who was a WAVE during the war. It was a very personal journey for everyone.

Road Scholar for 2014-2015

I am so honored and excited. I just received an email that the Illinois Humanities Council has selected me to join its Road Scholars roster for 2014-15 with my presentation entitled “The Journey to Mollie’s War: WACS and World War II.”
For over a decade, the IHC Road Scholars Speakers Bureau has been sending Illinois’ finest writers, poets, historians, anthropologists, and living history actors to present to audiences across Illinois. For a small fee, non-profit organizations are able to bring a humanities speaker to their community and share the Road Scholars experience with local audiences, friends and family. IHC takes care of the rest.

Celebrating the Fourth of July

As we all celebrate the Fourth of July, I just wanted to share the letter that Mollie wrote home on the first Fourth of July that she spent in the Army in 1944.   She was stationed “somewhere in England.”

Somewhere in England
4 July 1944
Dear Beck:
Just dropping you a few lines to let you know I am okay and feeling fine and hope everyone at home is too.  I suppose you all went out today and enjoyed some park or lake. I certainly hope Mom and Pop didn’t stay home.
We WACs were give a very nice lunch today at our Mess Hall.  It was all so unexpected—I mean the fanfare.  When we walked into our Mess Hall it was decorated with flags of England, France and the good ole USA.  We even had music from an old broken victrola.  Mom would be interested in this—we had fried chicken, peas, potatoes, lettuce, coffee, which I have now grown used to and some very nice cake—we also had the inevitable spinach.

Remembering D-Day

Remembering D-Day and all of the soldiers who served and gave their lives for our freedom.    Seventy years ago today, the Allies launched the largest military operation in history against occupied France on the beaches of Normandy.  And seventy years ago today, my mother was stationed in London as a WAC (Women’s Army Corps) assisting in the preparations for this attack and working around the clock.  Later in August she was transferred to Normandy.