ALL DD This is the story page to
Arthur Bryan Vernon, my grandfather’s younger brother, was known to the family first as Bud and later, during his baseball playing days as “Frisco.” He enlisted in the Army in July 1918, and was the only one of his brothers to see duty in Europe. When he went to boot camp, his mother gave him a Bible. This Bible became the focus of an interesting family story. In 2010, I received an email through from an antique dealer who informed me she had a Bible that might have belonged to someone in my family. While I was contemplating whether to buy the book (since I had not seen it yet) I was contacted by a second antique dealer. She informed me that he book was actually on Ebay and she was letting me know because she was not interested in buying it. To make a long story a little shorter, I went to Ebay, entered a bid and obtained the book. Several days later a small package arrived, reeking of cigarette smoke and tied up in brown paper. To my delight, when I opened the Bible, pasted to the first page inside the book was a picture of my great grandmother Lillie Vernon and a hand-written inscription: Arthur B. Vernon, Box 685 Ada, Oklahoma Presented by Mother and Father this 8th day of July, 1918. Tucked inside the Bible was a newspaper article documenting a win by Training Co. No. 8 over Training Co. No. 10 with Arthur pitching for the winning team, and driving in a double with two on to ensure the wining score. And finally, on the back page, a note from Arthur to his mother. It states: “I do have to return this on account of it being to large but its contents goes with me in mind this the 15th day of Sept. 1918 a day or two before I leave for the deep sea. Your son, A. B. Vernon.”
Unlike so many young men of his generation, he returned from WWI safely and also avoided the influenza epidemic of 1918 that killed up to 6% of the world’s population. How did this Bible get out of the family (since his mother kept EVERYTHING)? And what are the odds that it would find its way home?

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