Ask Grandpa: Grateful for living through the Depression

Ask Grandpa
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Beloved Readers, the following letters were sent to me back in October 2018. The writers sent them in response to Grandpa’s request for things for which we are grateful. The list of things readers sent was printed the week prior to Thanksgiving Day. The following letters arrived after the column was filled. Grandpa dedicates this page to those whose letters did not make it into the original column.


I am very grateful to have so many different radio stations that I can listen to.

During WWII, 1941 to 1945, president Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, “A chicken in every pot, and a car in every garage, and food on the table.” After that it is a luxury. To have enough money to be able to have what is listed above. I am 90 years old and still have what is listed above. I don’t drive. I see and hear good, walk when I feel like it if I can. I now have chicken in every pot. Because my health is good. My house is paid for and now debt free. Thank God I was born during the depression in 1929, which the depression lasted until 1941, when WWII started. This depression what families are going through right now, is the same as I went through when I was born. This depression now is called high inflation. The reason it’s called high inflation, is because our biggest problem is more material things are needed now than I needed then.
My folks came from the old country; from Germany, Austria, Romania, in 1897-1907, on the ship S.S. Chicago; from Hungary to Chicago. My four brothers served and all my relatives served and no one was a draft dodger or complained serving the Red, White, and Blue.
Maybe the priest was right, because now I am 90 years old and still living, now knowing why. I thank my blessings as the priest said, joking, “(Name), you couldn’t die, Jesus Christ could not put up with you.” I said I’m putting up with you. I have food, clothing, and shelter, not being a slave to the lender. I thank my blessings every day, not just on Thanksgiving Day. I am glad I was born during the 1929 depression. I now know how rich I am with food, clothing, and shelter. If I was born rich, I would not know what it is like to be poor.

Last year I made a resolution that I was going to quit drinking. I am now just a couple of weeks away from one year sober. My wife says I can go with her to a New Year’s Eve party because I am now strong enough to avoid drinking. I don’t want to test myself like that. She won’t relent. Could you please print a list of reasons for me to not go? She will listen to you better than she will listen to me.

Grandpa says: Gladly. Here is the only reason you need to avoid the New Year’s Eve party: You don’t want to go.
Got something stuck in your craw? Ask Grandpa. Address your letters to Ask Grandpa c/o The Voice, 314 N. Lake Street, Suite 2, Aurora, IL 60506 or send an E-mail to

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