Ralph's letters regarding John Joseph "Jack" McKinnon

I now have a literal filing system I'm using the try and organize our big tubs of family history. Ralph, the ultimate scrapbook subject, is my first and most mountainous undertaking. He wrote letters often, sometimes daily, while at sea. And he was pretty much always at sea :p

As I read through Ralph's letters, I found mentions of the Jack McKinnon family and thought you all might want to see what he had to say. He visited them in the late fall of 1942 and continued to muse about how to help the family until his unfortunate final voyage in 1943.

You'll have to read through these starting from the red and white paper letter, back. Too sleepy to reorganize them properly at the moment. https://www.flickr.com/photos/33231347@N05/albums/72157651125510348/page2

I'm sure you all know this already, but after the tragic incident with Jack (Sr.), Aggie came down to Oakland and stayed with Angela for a while. It seems Angela was feeling quite a bit of stress of her own with my grandpa Joe's adoption investigation, so the visit was probably a relief to them both. Ralph appears to be scheming up ways to help Aggie, suggesting they help with the mortgage, advise on investments, etc..

If you're looking for full context of his letters, you can find the full set here. Doubles as a peek in WWII culture/history :) https://www.flickr.com/photos/33231347@N05/sets/72157655860664781

My dad has asked me, "Why are you spending so much time on Ralph? He's not even blood-related!" I think these letters answer it best. As if my grandpa's adoption wasn't enough proof, he seems in these letters to truly care about Anne's family like his own. He feels like family to me in return. And since Aunt Clare never married, us Welka dorks are the only ones left to carry on his memory :)

I like to imagine if Ralph had still been around in 1946, maybe "baby Toomey" would have ended up in Oakland. Can you imagine? My mom would have been THRILLED. Her little brother passed away at birth (Rh- complications). She's never said it, but you can tell when she goes through her baby album and stops on his birth certificate page-- she would have liked to have a sibling.