By Irene Kacandes
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Extra resources for Daddy's War: Greek American Stories
Bye, Dad. ” Despite the sting of “you’re never good enough,” sticking with me all these years, Dad’s “death ﬂier” story was a supreme illustration of the principles of conversation creating and sustaining relationship and of the inﬂuence of orality on literacy and vice versa that I was trying to analyze in those years. The widow not only believes her dead spouse can hear her and thus she needs new material each time she goes to his grave, but also, she knows the power of the written word, even though she herself is illiterate.
His inﬁrm grandmother is in front of him. She requests assistance to get from the ground to the opening of the wagon. An SS ofﬁcer standing near by offers to help. He moves closer. He takes out his gun and he shoots her in the back of the neck. Even now as I try to type these words I feel the heat of the bodies, I hear the voices, the shot, the profound silence in its aftermath. I experience the shocked disbelief and the raw fear that propels without volition Leon’s own body up and forward into the car.
How does that sound? Thanks a million for any length answers you have time to send back! If you want to talk about this, just let me know when to reach you on the phone. love, hugs, and kisses, irene And so it was that I ﬁnally began moving straight toward Daddy’s War in March 2004, by asking the same questions of some of my siblings that I was asking of my other informants. I ﬁrst approached Georgia and Peter, partly because at that point in our lives they had slightly less conﬂicted relationships with our father than our other siblings—maybe it helped that they both lived in California—and partly because I knew, or thought I did, something about what they knew about the War Experiences.