Biographical Note: Gene (Eugene Lee) Shaver was born on
January 4, 1921. At the onset of World War II, he enlisted in the Navy. He was
stationed on Pearl Harbor as a laboratory technician when it was attacked by the
Japanese on December 7, 1941. Shaver eventually became a Chief Pharmacist's Mate.
He met and married Barbara A. Rehberg while stationed in Sun Valley, Idaho during
the summer of 1944. After his discharge from the Navy, Shaver attended
Marquette University from March 1946 until February 1949, when he graduated with a
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He died on May 22, 1994.
Scope and Content: From 1943 to 1945, Gene (Eugene Lee) Shaver corresponded regularly with his mother, father, and grandmother in Bristol, Illinois. In these letters, he mentions his work as a Pharmacist's Mate in the United States Navy, which took him from Pearl Harbor to the U.S. Naval Convalescent Hospital in Sun Valley, Idaho, to the small islands surrounding the Philippines. While stationed at the U.S. Naval Convalescent Hospital, Shaver wrote for the hospital's newspaper, the Sun Valley Sage. Several issues are included in the collection. Although the collection contains no wartime letters in which Shaver describes his experiences at Pearl Harbor, the event is graphically recounted in a letter that Shaver wrote to his son ca. 1991. The collection also includes the homily delivered at Shaver's funeral in 1994.
Arrangement: The correspondence (letters, postcards, and telegrams) is arranged in chronological order.