Charles Ed Doyle and his wife Edith (Nelia) Barker Doyle will celebrate their 67th wedding anniversary at their home in Wewahitchka Nov. 22.
Ed and Nelia grew up during the Depression, living across the Stage Coach Road from each other about five miles east of Ochlocknee, GA, about 44 miles north of Tallahassee and nine miles north of Thomasville, GA.
Ed was in the US Marine Corps before World War II and got out in 1941, then joined the Navy on Dec. 8, 1941 after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He was first training recruits at the Naval Training Command in Norfolk, VA but as the German submarines got closer to America he was transferred to a mine sweeper, the USS YMS 58, on which they removed 11 German mines from the channels approaching the Naval Base at Norfolk.
He was next transferred to the USS PC 550 on which they escorted troop ships to the invasion of Africa in November 1942, when Nelia was 13, and then many invasions of Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, Italy and then France in 1944. Ed got home in July 1944 for 32 days after which he put the amphibious ship USS LSM 493 in commission in Galveston, Texas and proceeded through the Panama Canal to the Pacific and Pearl Harbor then onto Guam and north to Saipan and then to Okinawa for those invasions. Ed’s unit was ready to invade Japan when the Japanese surrendered after the atomic bombs were dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima in Japan.
Ed returned to the USA and home and he and Nelia were married on Nov. 22, 1946 (Nelia was 18) but Ed continued his Naval career becoming a Master Chief in Engineering. Nelia went to Turkey with Ed for three years and Ed retired in June 1966.
The couple made their home in Wewahitchka, close to Nelia’s sister, Marie Poole. Ed worked at the Blountstown Post Office for 20 years. Ed has been a Master Gardener in Gulf County for years under Agriculture Agent Roy Lee Carter. Ed and Nelia will both have birthdays in January 2014, he will be 92 and she will be 86. All of this after 67 years of marriage.
They are both active in master gardening, family history and collecting rocks and minerals in the mountains.