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Angel Flying on the Ground: Letters of a Gentleman's Pursuit

Richard G. Clark

May 2022 978-1-7365738-0-8

"On a hot July afternoon in 1939, I was playing a pinball machine in Hennicks with three or four others when I looked up and saw a tall, blue-eyed, ash-blonde come up the steps into the restaurant. Lighting must have struck me.  I did not know who she was, but I knew I had to find out.  I immediately got out of the pinball game and grabbed one of the waiters who was a friend of mine, and told him to find out who that girl was.  I guess I just stared at her.  In a day or so, the waiter told me that her name was Evelyn Stark, that she went to Ohio Wesleyan, and was attending Ohio State for the summer school only.  I arranged to get acquainted and managed to get a date with her a couple of weeks later.  I thought she was wonderful and I still do.  Unfortunately, so did several other guys, and while I chased hell out of her from then on, and dated her whenever she would go out with me, I made little progress for a long time."

Dick easily asks on page 70, "How can I ever get you to love me by mail" this book is the conglomeration of those love letters that started in December of 1939 and ended in 1946. When one lived 42 miles away, pre-telephone, what were the options of courtship? Letters.

Book is 465 pages as a bonus it includes scans of original letters and envelopes. 18 color pages.


Postmarked Columbus, Ohio January 19, 1941

Sunday About Noon

Dear “Angel flying on the ground,”

Here it is Sunday and I have just gotten dressed, although I have read the paper and eaten breakfast.  Really, I feel remarkably fit today.  I’ve had more sleep over this week end than I’ve had in quite a spell.  I looked at my eyes in the mirror this morning, and there isn’t even a trace of a circle.

Since I last wrote, I haven’t done an awful lot more than I had then.  Wednesday I met “Hot Horse Herbie,” Emrich, and we fooled around all evening.  Thursday I went down to the Quarterback Club meeting and saw the pictures of Paul Brown’s Massilon team.  How those kids could block! I wish Grove City could take a few lessons on that art.  Friday I had to go to Groveport and keep score for the Grove City game.  Again we got beat. – The thing that bothers me is that I can’t figure out how we’ve managed to win three games.  When I got home late Friday night, I found a letter from the originator of the flu epidemic, herself.  Saturday after I got dressed, bathed, shaved etc, (was about one o’clock) I met Murray and Tom (Wolfe’s girl made him meet her) and we went bowling and shot pool. – That was pretty profitable venture for me, as we were playing loser pays. – I got hot and didn’t lose anything.  Last night everybody had dates (except Clark, the dateless wonder) so I came home and read.  This reading is alright, but I’m getting a little sick of improving my mind.  I’d sort of like to have a date too, just to see what it’s like.

I thought maybe Miss Influenza – the girl who is like the angel flying on the ground – would fall for the very broad hint I put out, and give me a date.  But I guess I didn’t hint quite strongly enough.  I thought about coming up yesterday despite the flu, and then it got slippery and I decided not to. – At least that’s the reason I gave myself for not coming up.  Actually, I guess I’d have come flu, ice, and everything else not withstanding, if I had thought you wanted me.  But I was afraid - and undoubtedly with reason – that you’d have a date. Oh well, the books I’ve been reading have been pretty good at that! I guess I’ll become a hermit, and learn to know all about everything – except women.  What I’d like to know is, how do you ever learn to know anything about them?......


"What a great read of my dear friends grandparent’s courtship and marriage during WWII. Her grandfather’s letters to his sweetheart Evelyn and subsequent marriage are charming. These letters certainly paint the picture of the life of a young man in the Midwest as he goes off to college and then enters the service in November 1942 and then marries in May 1943. Great descriptions of what life in the service during the war was like. I could really relate to the letters as have found some of my parent’s letters to each other during WWII and growing up in the 40’s and 50’s in the Midwest heard a lot about what life was like for them. Certainly a time and place that no longer exists."

Carol L. Holmes, Sarasota, FL 2022

"In reading your letter over again I realized you had asked me to write something about your book "Angel Flying". Perhaps it's too late but I did love reading that book. It brought back so many memories of early days of how many young people struggled to get further education, worrying about the draft and when they would be called. The stories of his school teaching days were especially interesting too.  I found the book to be easy and enjoyable to read. I definitely would recommend this book for any of The Greatest Generation to read and enjoy.

I just had some good news. A year ago I nominated my father, Elvin (Oolie) Weygandt to have his name put on The Wall of Fame at the Grove City Parks and Rec Park at Windsor Park.  This year his name has been approved and will be added to the Wall on May1st, with breakfast in his honor, ball game, first pitch,  etc. I am very proud and hope I'll be able to attend, but if not some other family  members can be there.

Barbara Weygandt Burkhart, April 2021

"On several occasions, I shared these letters with my wife, Maureen as we enjoyed a glass of wine. We would sit in our family room and I would read aloud 2 or 3 letters. Reading these letters was a highlight of our day! They not only showed the love that my father had for my mom, but gave us a snapshot picture of what the war years were like for them. My father was head over heals in love with my Mom.

Needless to say, Dad's letters left their future family with a beautiful gift. "

Dick Clark,  Powell, Ohio  December 2020