Friday, May 8, 2015

Clifford "Dale" Smith ( 1914-1984)

About a week ago, I interrupted the introduction of the children of Hiram and Estella Smith. Their oldest child was my grandmother, Nina, followed by Merroll, Neva, Ardea, and the baby Myrtice that died as a baby and whose death date is still being investigated.  Their next child was Clifford "Dale" Smith born November 23, 1914.

Dale was not around when I was growing up. I found a newspaper article about him being at G Grandma Smith's for a going away party in March of 1945.  I don't know if this was the first time he went away or not. His niece, Jean Stevens Johnson, told me in the past few years that he had been sort of a problem child. He lost his dad at age 15 so it sort of stands to reason. Jean said he "bummed" around as a young man and the family thought this was why G Grandma Smith was so kind to bums that stopped by the house for food. She was hoping that somewhere someone was feeding her son.  I haven't done any research on Dale so will just introduce him briefly and leave it at that. This could be an interesting branch to explore.

What I knew about Dale was that he was in the Navy and married a woman from the Phillipines named Daisy.  I believe Daisy had children but Dale did not.  I made a horrible faux pas/politically incorrect comment one time to a friend of my daughter's. His family was Filipino, and I was trying to say something nice.  I explained that my great uncle had married a Filipino woman. He responded by saying that his great uncle had also married a Filipino woman.

O.K. The above paragraphs were written a few weeks ago. I have done a little searching and have found a few interesting tidbits to add.

First of all, my question about when Dale enlisted has been confirmed.  It was December 28, 1941. Notice this is only a few weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor. I would certainly guess that played a factor in his enlistment.  I have read in his application to the State of Iowa for World War II Service Compensation that he served on the USS Quick a Gleaves Class destroyer. His listed dates out of the country are as follows:

July 8, 1942-Dec. 1942
April 16, 1943-Feb. 3 1945

Another time, I might do more on his service but for now I am just adding a little more. For example, every time he came home on leave, there is an article in the local newspaper. In January 1942, he was at home on furlough with his mother before going to Dearborn, Michigan to a cooking school. In the Nov. 22, 1945 paper it was reported that he had received his discharge ( Nov. 17, 1945) and now was at home with his mother.  However, his Service Compensation application lists a third out of the country entry.

Jan. 18, 1946-Dec. 30, 1947

Thanks again to those digital newspaper articles, I learned that he re-enlisted in January of 1946.

As I said before, I knew that Dale had married Daisy, a filipino girl, or was she?

I found the announcement of the marriage in the newspaper. Now, keep in mind that undoubtedly G Grandma Stella Smith reported these news articles to the local paper.  See if the article's title catches your attention as it did mine. The paper is dated Feb. 6, 1947.

Exchanges Vows with Irish Girl
A recent marriage of interest to the Scranton Community is that of Clifford Dale Smith, son of Mrs. Stella Smith of Scranton and Daisy Ferrer, on January 13 at Bagnio City, Luzon, in the Phillipine Islands.  The bride is an Irish girl, who came to the islands from Ireland when she was 8 years old.  They are living at Samar, where he is stationed at the Naval airbase.

Was being Irish more acceptable than being Filipino? 

Dale Smith was certainly a handsome man.

He is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

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