Elmer & Virginia

A World War II Romance in Letters

Cover of the Book, Elmer and Virginia A World War II Romance in Letters. Elmer and Virginia with their arm around each other on front with an addressed envelope in the back ground

“What a terrific journey we are brought along on, as two very young people make their way to adulthood amidst World War II.”

Amy M.

“This book will speak to anyone who has ever loved a soldier, sailor, or airman away at war.”

Beth W.

Elmer & Virginia

red whit and blue strip of a envelope used to underline a heading

Elmer Odell and Virginia Schill were high school teenagers from separate “sides of the tracks” when the first chapters of the Second World War began to be written. They would become a part of that narrative as they grew to adulthood and joined the Greatest Generation. As Elmer flew combat missions above the battlefields of Europe, Virginia wrote newspaper stories about life on the home front. To open this richly illustrated book is to follow them through the turbulent years of World War II.

Virginia sitting at a desk reading the news paper.

"I’m going to Farmingdale State Institute of Applied Agriculture again. They’re having a hearing for potato growers about what restrictions should be placed on the distribution of potatoes to prevent the spread of the golden nematode, potato pest. Me, as garden editor,—I get the assignment!"

Virginia – March 2, 1944 10:20 p.m.

“When I got the ship under control again I was off the runway, heading out across the grass at about 100 miles per hour. I knew I must crash so I cut off all the switches, held the stick back to try to prevent nosing over, and closed my eyes. When I opened them, I was in a farmer’s yard and the nose of my plane was in a chicken coop.”

Elmer – March 18, 1944 8:30 p.m.
Elmer in a 1940 military airplane