DECLARATIONS: THE HIDDEN STORIES OF PRINTED PHOTOS (MS. VIRGINIA)

I almost wasn't allowed to interview Ms. Virginia. After a story that was written about her than wasn't 100% correct (I don't believe it was a malicious intent), she was determined not to let that happen again. Truth be told, if I were over 100 years old and still going strong, I would probably be just as passionate that my story be told right. 

One of the pleasant surprises in interviewing people in this series has been the stories of friendship. Maybe I need to expand my expectations a bit, but love stories, war, work, and family are pretty much what I expected to hear throughout my conversations. The pictures and tales of girlfriends sticking together for years through good times and bad just warms my heart and feels so encouraging to know that the memory of these friendships have lasted.

“My husband and I were married August 29th and Pearl Harbor came. He had just gotten a job; we were engaged quite a while because he didn’t have a job and you couldn’t just get them back then. It was a time when people were selling apples and anything they could do. So, he got a job with the government and hadn’t had it too long when we got married.

"We moved to Philidelphia in a Jewish neighborhood on 56th and Pine and I loved it. The people couldn’t have been any nicer no matter what you think. I went to a little Jewish delicatessen and my Jewish friend, Sylvia, and I would go to the barrel (I wish they had a Jewish delicatessen here), she’d pick out a tomato, I’d pick out a nice hot pickle, and a big bag of potato chips. And we’d sit on the steps and eat it. She’d say, ‘Gini, I’m going to make a Jew out of you yet!’ laughs

Ms. Virginia, resident of Crofton Care and Rehabilitation Center, with family photos and stories of her best friend. 

Ms. Virginia, resident of Crofton Care and Rehabilitation Center, with family photos and stories of her best friend. 

"Sylvia lived above me. One day, when she came down to see me – nobody ever locked their door – she just walked into the room and she said, ‘Gini, guess what? I’ve been watching this candy bar there on your window sill.’ I said, ‘On my window sill?’  

‘Yes!’

Well, I went over, I moved the curtain and there was a big candy bar. My husband would hide things for me, everywhere. We didn’t have a whole lot of money but he would hide things like that. He would say, ‘I wanted to see if she dusted.’ Laughs

He had a great sense of humor, he really did.

Some of Ms. Virginia's family photos. 

Some of Ms. Virginia's family photos.