I had two brothers. My older brother was named Stanley and my identical twin brother was named Roy. Stanley was born on May 11, 1929 while Roy and I popped our heads out of the womb on the third of July in 1930. I came out first, beating Roy by fifteen minutes. We weighed 4 lbs. at birth. This was the time of the Great Depression so, with a show of sympathy, a woman in the bed next to my mother in the maternity ward said “Don’t cry my dear. One of them usually dies.” No such luck. We both survived. Years later we would argue as to which one of us was dead. Since I am the only brother left standing I guess I won the argument.
Looking back on those early years I realize that the three of us rarely engaged in activities together. Stanley, being the oldest, would get to go for an airplane ride at the fair while we twins did not since there was money only for one ticket. I recall my resentment about this treatment as it happened quite often. In part, I guess, it was because Stanley followed in his father’s footsteps. Stanley was good with tools and quickly learned to help our father in his workshop while Roy and I were deemed quite incompetent when it came to doing anything mechanical. Our father drummed it into Roy and me that we were dumb bells, nincompoops, incapable of doing the simplest things with our hands. So I guess we complied with his view of us and to this day I cannot hit a nail twice without bending it. Oh, well, I learned to live with that disability and have somehow survived in spite of it.
At age 12 the family moved to Manasquan, New Jersey, a small summer resort town on the Jersey Shore about 7 miles below Asbury Park. That’s where we lived until we three boys each left the coop and went our separate ways.
I’ll relate more about Roy and Stanley in the following pages and post photographs of the three of us there.