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Retired Register postmaster recalls 99 years of memories

Retired Register postmaster recalls 99 years of memories

Retired Register postmaster recalls 99 years of memories

Anderson poses for a photo in his U.S...


His lifetime spans the Great Depression, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cuban missile crisis, the Cold War, FDR and JFK’s time in office, the beginning of space exploration, 9/11, the introduction of televisions, computers, the Internet and more.   
    Imagine your world without the Web, cellphones, computers, TV, air conditioning, microwaves, Walmart or modern hospitals. Eual “Pinky” Anderson doesn't have to imagine — he lived it.
    “Momma cooked over a wood stove, and we were too busy helping Daddy work the farm to play with gadgets, even if we had them back then,” he said. “The Depression had returned in 1937, so every day we struggled to survive.”
    In 1934, Anderson, the 18-year-old son of a farmer in rural central Georgia, graduated from high school and joined the Marines. After four years, he returned to civilian life, only to find himself serving in the Navy at the onset of World War II in 1941, working on destroyer escorts to protect supplies and troop ships.
    “The biggest threat was German U-boats (submarines), but they never bothered us,” he said. “We ran four destroyers to protect the convoy of ships. We traveled from New York City to England, Ireland and Scotland, but the only shore leave was in New York.”
    After the war ended, Anderson returned to Statesboro, finding work wherever he could, including Boyd's Furniture Store and, later, Boyd's Construction.
 “We went to St. Marys, where the paper mill had us build 144 homes in three or four years so that workers could live near the plant,” he said. “You know, the railroad used to run freight and passengers from Savannah to Atlanta with a depot in Dover. If you wanted to travel to either end or make a connection almost anywhere from Atlanta, you got yourself to Dover and boarded the train there.
“There was also a train from Brooklet down through Nevils to Claxton and Hagan, initially for agricultural freight but which later added passenger service to also include Egypt, Leefield and Denmark. There was the Central of Georgia Railroad and the East Georgia Railway,” he continued.
    Anderson and his wife, Charlotte, met and married in 1950. They honeymooned near Little Rock, Ark., attending her large extended family’s reunion.
“As a matter of fact, I just got our tickets for the family reunion in June,” Charlotte said. “We've been going there for the past 64 years.”
    As the couple tells their story, their daughter, Ann, sitting nearby, looks back and forth at her parents and smiles. She is their primary caregiver and driver.
    “I worked for the town of Statesboro, then for the post office for about seven years, but when the position of postmaster opened up in Register in 1965, I asked a friend for help and was able to get that job,” Anderson said. “I retired from there in 1984.”
    “We had already moved to Register,” Charlotte added. “We were fortunate to hear of a property for sale. We leased most of the property to a farmer, and Pinky kept a small garden for us.”
     “When I arrived in Register, the post office was no more than a single room with lots of boxes and two doors, front and back. I lobbied congressman (George) Hagan to get us a new building, and after lots of nagging, he got it done, and Register dedicated their new post office building in 1969. They are still using that same building today,” he said.
    Anderson celebrated his 99th birthday in Statesboro on Sunday, March 30.

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