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Bred in Chicago 1

O

ne of the memories of my late grade school–early high school years is the day that my father turned thirty-nine. When a family man turned thirty-nine he was no longer draftable. I look back now and think, thirty-nine is pretty old to be taking somebody who is the father of a family, but until that birthday, he lived under the shadow of the draft.

I enjoyed being an only child until I was eight. I was talking to adults most of the time. And then the day before my eighth birthday, my sister Peg was born. My brother Tom was born when I was twelve, my sister Pat when I was fourteen, and my brother Mike when I was eighteen.

Coping during the Depression

My mother was a liberated woman long before it was fashionable. She went back to work when I was about 18 months old, which women didn’t do for the most part during the mid-1930s. My mother taught school in the Chicago public school system. My dad started off as an accountant in a brokerage firm.

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