UNITED Late 60’s Denver We lived in an apartment building with other pilot trainees. There was racial unrest in our country as well as Canada. There were several Canadians recently hired as well as Americans. The comment of one of the Canadians was they would trade us their French for our blacks. Florham Park I stayed with my aunt in Rye, New York, when we first moved to look for a place to rent. My aunt was recently remarried had a black maid left over from her husband’s first wife. She often reminded my aunt that the first wife “didn’t do it that way.” She was the cook and did light housework. She fluffed pillows and did minor vacuuming. She did NOT do heavy work. There was a black man that came once a week to do that. He cleaned the house including polishing the brass doorknobs. What neither had time to do was sweep the stairs into the basement. My aunt did that. While we were out in the yard, she introduced me to her neighbor. After we went back inside, she confided t
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PENSACOLA The First Duty station was Pensacola, Florida. That was southern Alabama culture. There was only one black recruit in the pilot training. The recruits had to do a survival exercise and they were ordered not to touch snakes. Florida has every variety living in the 48 states. He thought he knew which were poisonous and picked one up. He was removed from the program. There were black and white drinking fountains and separate facilities in general. Banks were open on Lincoln’s Birthday and closed on Jefferson Davis’s. This was when Lincoln and Washington had their own birthday holidays. I listened to one of the wives who had been a student at Ole Miss when it was desegregated. She said the student could have cared less. The only time there was trouble was when the reporters paid student to throw rocks. Not saying there weren’t any riots, just her experience. Another friend from Tidewater Virginia. She said at one time she wanted to hug a black person, but just couldn’t.
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COLLEGE 1957-1961 UCLA My first freshman semester was at UCLA. I pledged Alpha Gamma Delta sorority. It was all white. There were black and Jewish sororities, and possibly some others. Alpha Gam was very wary of anyone coming from Hawaii as they might be part Asian. We had a Jewish Sorority over for dinner one evening. The hashers put something on the tables derogatory to them, I don’t remember what it was. I didn’t know the connotation at the time., but the hashers did and our guests did. We were embarrassed and apologized. The hashers were reprimanded, but they were not fired. One of teachers (I think she was a graduate student) spent a lot of time bragging about the fact she was married to a Eurasian. Classes were mixed all races. No incidents and no grade disparity. Coming from essentially all white schools, I guess I thought there would be. GLENDALE COLLEGE I had changed majors five times and wanted to take a semester off to decide what I wanted to major in. My