Page 11 - sample-how-dad
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Background and Breakdown

         This is how it all began. Dad swam out of his amniotic fluid
to begin his life trek across a century on March 28, 1881 in Stockborn,
Germany, a small town near Kaiserlantern in Bavaria. There was no re-
port of anything unusual accompanying his birth, nothing signaling the
promise of a very lonely life. He was the first of six children, four of
whom were born in the United States. At the age of three he, with his
Mennonite parents, joined the great migration to the States in search of
freedom from military conscription and freedom of worship. They also
hoped for expanded opportunities. They made their way immediately to
a new farming area near Henderson, Nebraska, where a group of Low
German Mennonites had already settled. Their first home was a sod
house, a rough dwelling in Bavaria. Since their Bavarian dialect was so
different from the Low German, they did not find the community con-
genial and so moved on north to Wisner, Nebraska, where a settlement
of Mennonites from Bavaria had taken root.

         Dad was his father’s farmhand until the age of twenty-seven
when he came down with typhoid fever. This protracted illness was

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