Morning News â€” Leslie Mielke
Marjorie Mecham from Groveland holds a flag that signified her husband, Archie, was serving in WWII. Archie served in the U.S. Army stationed in the Philippines and in occupied Japan from 1944-1946.
Proud to be an American is Marjorie Mecham from Groveland. A flag flies in her yard and she has flag and patriotic decorations in her home.
About her flag collection, she said, "It's something I've done for a long time.
"My daughter sends me flags when she travels and I pick flags up from places when I travel," Mecham said.
The flags spurred many a story.
Holding a flag featuring a blue star on a white field with a red border, Mecham said, "I have this flag because my husband served during World War II."
Her husband, Archie, was stationed in the Philippines in 1944 and also served in occupied Japan until 1946 when he was transferred to San Francisco.
"He came home for our first anniversary," she said.
The Mechams met when Marjorie was a freshman in high school; Archie was a senior. They dated throughout her high school years (even though she was too young to date).
They married in March 1945, two months before she graduated from high school. (Archie had a 13-day leave from the U.S. Army.)
Showing the flag from Mexico, Mecham spoke about the mission she and her husband served at Las Mochis, Mexico.
"We went down for six months to teach them how to raise potatoes," she said. "The potatoes are planted in October or November and harvested in January or February.
"I was setting out petunias on Dec. 1," said Mecham. "It's the only time I've ever gone south for the winter."
The couple also served a mission in Kentucky from 1999-2000. They worked in the state archives.
"It was really interesting," she said. "In the records, you could see where a husband left his wife one bed, one blanket, one pot and one slave.
"Kentucky is beautiful; it would be a nice place to live but my family is here," Mecham said. "I love where I live."
The Mechams farmed and raised their family in the Groveland area. Archie died in August 2011.
"We were married almost 67 years," Mecham said. "It was a good marriage; we had fun together."
The Mechams raised eight childrenâ€”Steven, Taunya, Tyana, Cristi, Marjie Dawn, Kevin, Douglas and John. They have 26 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren.