The American War Bride Experience

GI Brides of World War II

April 21, 1944 - Reno, Nevada


Australian Girls Marry Americans

More than 7000 miles from their former homes, 90 Australian war brides and fiancées of United State servicemen looked with mingled curiosity and confidence upon their new homeland today.

The young women and 14 babies some of the infants only four or five months old, arrived here yesterday from the land of the Southern Cross.

“We’ve been very curious about American,” said Doris Jean Lebash, wife of marine Cpl. Joseph Lee Lebash of Shinnston, W. Va. She arrived with their five-month-old daughter, Barbara Anne.

“The American boys back home (in Melbourne) bluntly told some of us we in Austrlia were ten years behind the time. They told us we couldn’t wear these kind of clothes. And they told us we’d never see such beautiful girls as we’d see in the country. “I’m waiting to be shown,” she smiled.

Temporary lodgings last night were found for the new arrivals by the Red Cross and the war housing agency. Soon the war brides will scatter to various parts of the nation, going to the homes of their husbands.

The brides may apply for citizenship after two years. The 14 children automatically become citizens with their entry into the country.

Mrs. Lebash hopes her husband’s leave is not up, for she is counting on rejoining hime at Shinnston.

Mrs. Frank Kennaly, from Brisbane, is going to San Diego, Calif. She met her husband, a chief petty officer, eight months before they married.

Mrs. Jeanie McCulough, wife of seaman 1/c Robert McCullough is going to Cleveland, Ohio, where family of her husband lives. One husband and bride with their 11 months-old daughter, made the trip together. They were Warrant Officer and Mrs. J. R. Rose of Junction City, Kans. It was Rose’s first trip home in more than three and a half years’ sea service.

The same ship brought Australia’s prime minister, John Curtin, who is en route to Washington.

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