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Trip back in time for Rose

PUBLISHED: 23:00 03 April 2003 | UPDATED: 13:42 03 March 2010

SHE was the first Ipswich girl to marry an American Serviceman and this week was back in the town after 60 years.

Rose Davey met American Airman Joseph Havel in 1942 when she and her seven brothers and sisters were evacuated from Ipswich to Northampton.

SHE was the first Ipswich girl to marry an American Serviceman and this week was back in the town after 60 years.

Rose Davey met American Airman Joseph Havel in 1942 when she and her seven brothers and sisters were evacuated from Ipswich to Northampton.

They were married a year later and Rose, then 18, moved to Texas where her husband's family lived.

Rose, now 77, lives in New Jersey and has seven children, but they have not been back to their mum's birthplace yet, nor have her 13 grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

She has come back now, to visit her remaining brothers and sisters and catch up with family and friends.

Her niece, Carol Zuzock, 46, came with her, to see the house where her mother, Rose's sister grew up, on the Gainsborough estate in Ipswich.

She said: "It feels like a piece of the jigsaw puzzle is in place now I've seen where my mother grew up. It's so good to be here, I'm loving every minute!"

Rose's elder sister, Eileen, met another American through Rose and she followed her sister to America.

Rose said her father was sorry to see them go: " My Dad was very upset at first- he didn't want to lose us both to America!"

It has been an emotional trip, visiting old haunts, but they've been partying too- apparently ladies in their nineties were singing and dancing at a karaoke night in Newnham Court last week.

Rose said: " Everyone here has been so friendly. I like the buses too, very efficient and it's easy to get around. It all seems to be very well managed."

She promised not to leave it so long before her next visit.


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