My Life in the 1940s


I was born on September 4, 1940 at 7:00 AM at the Milwaukee County Hospital. My mom was not married. Bill Sabourin was my biological father. He may even have been married at the time. Apparently, he was a smooth talker.

We lived in a one-room apartment at 1304 N. Astor Street until 1948 when Mom married Elmer Kurtus. Then we moved to a one bedroom apartment at 1467 N. Farwell Ave.


Baby picture


Posed picture of me sitting

I remember thinking that putting the left leg under the right was not correct.


Posed picture


My mother and I lived in a one-room apartment at 1304 N. Astor Street. It was not the best place, since there were problems with rats and cockroaches.

Ron in sailor suit


Every day during the week, Mom brought me to a nursery school before she went to work. Pictures:

Lunch at nursery school

Getting out of nursery car

Playing with kids

Mom meets Elmer

One night, Mom and her sister Tyne went out to a tavern. Although Mom usually did not wear her glasses, this night she said, "Nuts with it" and wore them, so she could see better.

Tyne's sister-in-law, Ceil Hendrickson was there and introduced Elmer Kurtus to my mom. Elmer knew Ceil from Ironwood, Michigan. Elmer was 6' 2", which was a good fit for Mom, since she was also tall at 5' 7". They hit it off. However, when Elmer went to the men's room, his zipper got stuck open. This was embarrassing, since he was trying to make a good impression. I think Tyne gave him a pin, so he could close his fly.

Mom and Elmer started dating.


In November 1948, Mom married Elmer Kurtus. He then adopted me and became my Pa.

We moved to a one bedroom apartment at 1467 N. Farwell Ave.

I attended Cass Street School, which was about 6 blocks away.


Fourth Grade Essay - PDF (275KB)

Neighbor kids on Farewell (Picture of Tommy LaLacotta and his brother)

Thanksgiving dinner with the Aho's - (Picture from left to right: Tyne, Pa, Hjalmer, Mom, Tom, and Jimmy)


Ron Kurtus 2008










Family history

(coming soon)

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