Romance often moved quickly during World War II. Phyllis Jensen Ankeney grew up in the same neighborhood as her husband-to-be. She remembered admiring his Navy uniform after he enlisted in the service, but romance didn’t blossom until after she had joined the WAVES and they were home on leave together.
He got pretty upset when he found out I had gone in the service (laughs). He didn’t think a woman shouldn’t be there either at that point. But anyway, we came on home on leave together, not knowing it. He came from the South Pacific and I came from Florida. We happened to come home at the same time. We went together for the few days we were at home. Other than that, I had not dated him. And he said that we’d get married — that I’d get a ring for my birthday in January. This was in September. We were married the seventh of October.
We talked every night. And he wanted to get married. I said, “I don’t have any leave coming, If we’re going to get married you’re going to have to come here.” So he came right on down there. But we did have a church wedding in Pensacola. A Lutheran church. No family, no one around. Just the ones from the base that came in. The minister had a youth class there on Sunday night and he asked if I would invite them to be at the wedding, so I did.
They ended up moving back to their home town after World War II and Phyllis got pregnant almost immediately after she was discharged. Her husband did get called up into the Navy again, during the Korean War.
The photograph comes from the collection of Phyllis Ankeney.