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The start of the rest of my life!!!

After about one year in Korea, Gene went home to Zion, Illinois. Seoul, Korea to Yokohama, Japan by air (Globemaster airplane.), then by boat (U. S. S. Darby.) from Japan to Seattle, Washington. From Seattle to Chicago by air (Northwest Orient.) Gene was very glad to be out of Korea!!!!!

Gene had another 30 day leave in Zion and then was sent to Colorado Springs, Colorado for reassignment, by air (United Airlines.). While there, Gene took his first trip on his own volition and this was the start of his wanderlust life. This was a short trip by Greyhound bus to Cheyenne, Wyoming. After one month in Colorado, the army sent him by rail (Rock Island- Pullman car.) to Camp Atterberry, Indiana as a cook. He hated it!!! After six months, Gene left the army on March 9, 1954. Ten days early. He always wondered what would of happened to his life, if he would of joined the Air Force, instead of the army.

Chapter 2

After arriving back in Zion and taking one week off to recover from the army, Gene started to work on March 19, 1954 at Warwick Mfg. Co. in Zion, Illinois. His first job was as a receiving clerk, unloading trucks and checking to see that everything was all right with what the vendors sent, and then delivering the different electronic components to departments as required, as this was a big firm. Gene liked the work, except the pay was not good at all. There were about 300 people working there at the time and about 200 of them were young girls. Gene liked this very much, even though he was still shy. Social skills were not yet developed in his life (What Life!!!)

Warwick Transfer!!!! Gene was doing a little side job for a man named Joe Reardon at Warwick. Joe liked how Gene worked and asked him if he would like to be a receiving clerk in Chicago for Warwick, at a electronics plant called Halicrafters. Halicrafters was to complete a production run of a horizontal T. V. chassis that Warwick did not have time to complete. Warwick was changing over to a vertical chassis.

Gene thought that this could be a lot of fun, so he said, yes to Joe. The first Day of work in Chicago, he was told to follow Joeís car, and Joe would show him where Halicrafters plant was. He was scared that he would lose Joe in traffic, and so broke a few traffic laws to keep right behind Joeís car. Beside being the receiving clerk for Warwick at Halicrafters, Gene was to run around Chicago and pick up the parts that Halicrafters were short of, that were manufactured in and around Chicago to complete the production run.

Gene remembers one day going into one manufactures and not seeing anything wrong. But on the way out, he was stopped, by the workers at that plant, who were on strike. Gene was lucky to not end up with a broken head or arm. He blamed Joe for not telling him about the strike at that plant. Looking back on it, Joe may not of known that the plant was on strike.

Anyway, Gene went right ahead and told-off Joe about sending him to a vendor who was on strike. It is no wonder that he never advanced any further on the white collar side at Warwick.

Gene was doing two jobs at the same time. When he got back from Chicago each day, he would go to the Zion plant and pick out all the parts that he needed to take to Chicago for the next day, working till 9 pm or even 10 pm at night. If the T.V. parts were too big or too heavy, he would arrange to have them shipped on one of the local trucks that stopped at Warwick each day. This job lasted about SIX months and then he went back to his regular work at Warwick. It was at this point that he knew that he would not be satisfied with any old regular job anymore.

Gene looked around and asked many, many questions to see what he could do to make life better, right there at Warwick, so he could keep his word about getting a job and keeping it. He needed more money, so he could buy the things that made life worth living. So Gene took a correspondence course in Electronic Analyzing and studied at night time and worked at Warwick during the day. After working at Warwick for about one year as a receiving clerk and doing the electronic training thing at night, he was able to take a job as a starting grade electronic analyzer at Warwick, with a small increase in pay, but better pay to come, as he completed more and more electronic school.

Geneís first job was analyzing the (IF section.) of the T.V. chassis (This was a small sub section of the T.V. chassis.). Gene kept moving up in the jobs he could acquire at Warwick as he finished more of the electronics training. Now his pay was much better and he was able to buy motorcycles and cars. Gene bought a 1954 Harley Davidson motorcycle to make him feel better around girls, as he was still shy. He also bought a used 1954 Chevrolet in 1955, a new 1956 Chevrolet and a new 1957 Chevrolet, later. Gene was happy!!!! Well almost, as he was still shy!!!!

Everyone should have a impossible dream, and he had his. Gene at a young age wanted to be a mechanical engineer, but there just was not the money for a college education. He was able to be the next best thing, a electronics technician. In fact, it worked out much better, as he thinks in retroflex that he would not of been happy as an engineer, as his problem of being shy, would of still been with him.

Geneís friends noticed how shy he was and use to kid him, about if he would ever get married. Gene told them that not only would he marry, but he would marry five times. So donít tell stories as, He did marry five times!

Five wives!! My GOD!!!

Chapter 3

Gene first really good job at Warwick, was running a printed circuit department, (The first at Warwick.). At first, Gene had only one automated line, when this was working well, Warwick added four more lines. Gene had responsibility for the testing, analyzing and repair section, of all five of these lines, before it was broken into two different responsibilities, and Warwick had two group leaders, instead of one. Four out the five lines, built a different printed circuit board. The four different boards, were part of each T.V. chassis. This was a management job, but also it was a union job. Gene had to know all the jobs in the department, as he had to train all new employees and transfer employees. Gene had 40-50 people when he had all five lines, and about 30 people when he had 3 lines. This management job was really good for Gene, as he was forced to talk to all the people he supervised and the higher bosses. Gene was still going to school in the years 1955-57, as he wanted to move up to a better job at Warwick. In 1958, Gene was able to acquire one of the top jobs in the union, as a T.V. chassis analyzer. This was analyzing the chassis before it went into the cabinet. This was a better paying job, but not a job that Gene liked, as he had to stay in one (Station) place all day. He liked to move around the whole plant, like he could when he was a group leader. Gene loved to talk to the young girls, as there were about 600 of them now.

Gene wanderlust started up again, as Gene made another of his mistakes for life. As you will see, this will continue all of his life. As an example, Gene decided to join the Air Force, three days before Geneís son James was born. One reason that he joined the service again, was the high medical bills, that the doctors told us to expect from the difficulty with Jimís coming birth. The Air Force paid for the bills of his son Jim and also Warwick paid, through Gene's insurance company, as Gene took 30 days leave from the Air Force and didn't leave Warwick right away.  Also because Gene wanted a better education in electronics.

Gene joined the Air Fore on October 7, 1958. He asked Warwick for a leave of absents and they said Gene could have the leave. It was one of the only things that he did right. Except for the education in electronics that Gene received by going into the service, it was very much wrong. Louise did not like the service life, as she was too young, and looking back on it, he does not blame Louise.

Gene was sent (Delta Airlines.) to San Antonio, Texas to receive his service cloths and shots. Then he went to Kessler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi, for Air Born Radar School. The school was very good. At first Gene went to Kessler by himself, leaving Louise and Jim at his mom and dads place in Zion. It was a mistake to leave Louise in Zion, as she didnít get along with Geneís dad. But then no one got along with dad, as his dad was way, way too strict, on a mother so young, Louise felt like she was all by herself. Louise didnít want Gene in the Air Force.

Half way through the radar school, Gene had a leave from the Air Force for ten days, and he went and got Louise and Jim from Zion. It was Geneís hope that Louise would like the idea of traveling. For Louise traveling was not good at all. Louise got into trouble in short order, after arriving in Biloxi and he had to send Louise back to her mothers in Kenosha. he should of known better, as Louise got into trouble in Kenosha. Louise did not take care of Jim, very good at all. Most of the time she was messing around with other air force men, while Gene was going to school and trying study at night time. Believes he could of gotten a grade average of 95% instead of the 91.5% he ended up with. Gene was only interested in radar school at the time, he almost had to quit radar school, because of Louise.

The training Gene received at Kessler was very good. Gene was sent to Clinton Sherman Air Force Base at Clinton, Oklahoma. There he worked on B52 bombers and KC135 fuel tankers. Before he could get on the bombers, he had to check the safety devices on the atom bombs, that were on the B52 bombers. Gene fixed radar and radio sets.

Kessler Air Force Base - Biloxi, Mississippi.
Only 9 out of 98 students finished the course.

About six months after going to Clinton, Gene received a letter from Louisís sister, Virginia. Virginia said it would be best, if he could get back to Kenosha, as Louise was not taking care of Jim at all. Virginia said she could not find Louise anywhere and some strange woman was taking care of Jim.

Gene talked to the top super sergeant in his unit, and told him about the problems that he was having with his wife and child. The top sergeant told Gene that he should ask for a discharge under honorable conditions. Much to Geneís surprise, the Air Force gave him the discharge.

Gene went back to Kenosha to pick up Louise and Jim, to take them to Zion to live. He went back to Warwick to work, as he had a job, waiting for him as promised.

Thank GOD for Warwick, as they kept Geneís job open, as they said they would. He has always been lucky this way!!!!

How did Gene do that??? Gene doesnít know!!!

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