Years later this box of history opened up a world of family pain and joy to author Barbara Eymann Mohrman as she set out on a personal journey to trace her family history. Through extensive interviews and research, she uncovered much more—unspoken Eymann family secrets.
This is the gritty story of hard-scrabble life in rural Oakdale, Nebraska (population 851) starting in the heyday of the 1920s along the banks of the meandering Elkhorn River. Chriss Eymann, a newly arrived Swiss immigrant, and his wife, Hattie Mae, raised ten children on the Dust Bowl–ravaged plains during the 1930s in the depths of the Great Depression.
Their greatest sacrifice was yet to come—when they found themselves and their adopted country caught up in the greatest conflict the world had ever known. They sent four young sons off to war in the South Pacific and Europe as the family gathered around the Philco radio awaiting news of the war and the bittersweet homecomings.
The mother’s flag with its four blue stars on a white field proudly displayed the family’s precious contribution to the war effort. Yet no one could have foreseen the unfolding emotional toll as the story traces in detail and vintage photos from 1930 to 1947 the anguish, the danger, and their everlasting hope with some surprising family news that brings the story full circle.
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