title 1923 Gaston Leo & Nonore Noland

   Gaston was about 12 years old when one summer day, his brother Leo and his wife, Nonore were visiting at the family home. It so happened that Leo asked his Mother if she would allow Gaston to come live with them in New Orleans and go to school there. He would be able to help Nonore with the baby who was expected in September. His Mother agreed and told Gaston to pack up some clothes and to go live with Leo and Nonore. So on that Sunday afternoon in June, Gaston made the move that would forever change his life

   He told me many, many tears later that he was so lonesome here away from his family and his many brothers with whom he enjoyed playing with in that big yard that he had always had such fun.

   This was such a big change in his life . He had to get acquainted with new friends,and then the new teachers at Capdau School. Some kids made fun of his French accent, One teacher he was fond of tried to teach how to pronounce the "th" sound and as much as he tried ,he never did master that. But, you know, that is all right. He was such a friendly guy that in no time he had made friends with Willie Menge, and Rudolphe Hardouin, and remained friends for life.

   Time went on and the baby boy was named Nolan. Gaston loved that baby and played with him. Not too many years ago, he told me that on time he was bouncing the baby up and down in the air,and ONE time he missed catching him and the baby fell on his head!! Well, thank the Good Lord, the baby was fine after crying a while. He told me this account in his last years, so I know it had made a big impression on him. He always had a warm spot in his heart for Noland.

   It so happened that when there is a young baby in the house, it does require certain extra tasks. So what about the diapers? Guess what? Gaston had to wash the diapers on the washboard every morning before he went to school. That, too, he told me later in life. I felt so sorry for him that he had had to do this chore. I was very sorry they did not have someone else to do this. Do you think he was a good boy? He was indeed.

   Anyway this is the baby who went into the Marines in the Pacific War and was killed on the beach at Iwo Jima in the landing from his boat on the first day of battle. Feb.19,1945. His parents did not get this sad news until April 12 ,1945. This is also the day Franklin Roosevelt died in Warm Springs Georgia. It also happened to be a day Gaston never forgot in his life....It was his Mother's birthday.(She had died in Feb.11 1938. )