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News Article

Soldier and his Sister Reunited after 20 Years

From Democrat and Chronicle, 8 May 1944

Written by Unknown Author. Rediscovered by Lore Disalvo.

Webster Crossing - A brother and sister met for the first time in 20 years last night in Rochester.

They are Cpl. Charles J. Fulford, bomber crewman, recently returned from Bougainville, and Mrs. Charles J. Candie of Montreal, Canada.

They were brought together last night through a cousin, Mrs. Horace Helm of 31 Madison St., who “introduced” them at New York Central Railroad Station when Mrs. Candie’s train came in.

Cpl. Fulford came home for the first time in 14 years two weeks ago when he was granted an emergency furlough to visit his seriously ill mother, Mrs. Ernest Fulford of Webster Crossing New York. On the same mission his sister, who left here when she was 13, while the family lived in Rochester, returned last night.

“Are you Charlie?” asked Mrs. Candie, and “Are you Sarah?” exclaimed Corporal Fulford, when the pair met. With that Corporal Fulford put his arms around the sister he hadn’t seen since he was eight. Mrs. Candie, lacking her soldier-brother’s stoicism, burst into tears.

The tears were soon turned to laughter as the couple was feted at Crouch Doud Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Scottsville Rd., which the corporal joined last night. After the party, the long-separated pair returned to Webster Crossing, to mark the first time the entire family has been together in 20 years.

The brother and sister first became separated when eight-year-old Charles left Rochester, where the family then lived, to stay with an aunt and uncle in Honolulu. Since then Cpl. Fulford has been over most of the world as a member of the regular Army, which he joined 11 years ago.

Corporal Fulford, who has been over Rabaul and Truk in a Liberator, and wears the stars of the Coral Sea, Midway and Guadalcanal battles, has a 30 day furlough and will stay with his mother for the next few weeks, when she will have a serious operation.

Clara Barton Red Cross Helps Bring Soldier to Mother’s Bedside

From Genesee Country Express, 4 May 1944

Written by Unknown Author. Rediscovered by Lore Disalvo.

Webster Crossing - Cpl. Charles J. Fulford, after flying half way across the world, is at the beside of his critically ill mother, Mrs. Ernest Fulford at Webster Crossing, thanks to the efforts of the American Red Cross Chapter, and Clara Barton Chapter No. 1 of Dansville.

“The toughest part of the journey wasn’t the 15,000 miles from the Solomon Islands to the USA - it was that 42 miles from Rochester to Webster’s Crossing.

The slight, tired young corporal told his mother Thursday as he patted her wasted hand. She, who had been lying in Wayland Hospital a few hours before, smiled reassuringly at him. Now that her boy was home, after 14 years, everything was all right.

Cpl. Fulford, home on emergency furlough, had gone through a life-time of heartbreaking experiences on his way to his mother’s bedside.

As soon as Mrs. Fulford saw her son, transported from Rochester by the Red Cross motor corps, she admiringly touched his campaign ribbons and smiled. Then she decided she must get up and wait on him.

Her improvement was so marked as soon as she heard he was coming that her doctor decided she might go home, and if she rests carefully, remain there until her son’s furlough is up in 30 days.

Since the time Corporal Fulford on Bougainville, April 20, received the Red Cross message telling of his mother’s illness, he has spent his time in hectic travel.

The latest in his series of mis-adventures came when he reached Rochester, Wednesday night believing his parents lived in Webster, his mother’s girlhood home. He searched that village for her, asking police and neighbors, none of whom had ever heard off any Fulfords living in Webster.

Then Thursday, the Home Service Department of the Rochester Chapter American Red Cross, contacted the Clara Barton Chapter, after discovering that he should be headed not for Webster, but for Webster Crossing. The Clara Barton Chapter Home Service department took over from East Avon, where the Rochester Chapter drove hm, and took him to his home.

“It’s been worth it, whatever I’ve seen over there, just to spend a few days with Mom again,” Fulford said last night. He will remain with her until next month, when she must return to the hospital for a major operation.

Corporal Fulford explained to her that he had just returned from bombing Simpson Harbor on Rabaul, when his squadron commander gave him the Red Cross message. The commander then obtained permission for him to fly as a member of a bomber crew to Hamilton Field, Calif., thence to Buffalo and finally to Rochester.

When his furlough is up, Corporal Fulford, who has seen action in the Pacific, from the Battle for Henderson Field on Guadalcanal, Bismark sea, Coral Sea and New Georgia, will return to his jungle Jap fighting - and gladly.

His mother and father have known the reason for some time. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, Fulford’s young wife, who was expecting a child, was killed by the second wave of Jap bombers.

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