If you know anything about our team here in Scottsdale, it’s that we’re hopeless romantics. We like nothing more than to hear your heartfelt engagement story or the tale behind a family heirloom. So when I read this in JCK this morning, I thought it would be a great way to start the week. I’m sure you’ll agree. Lesson to be learned: love takes time. And it always comes back to you.
In the 1940s, Private David Kershaw received two rings as a token of appreciation from a Polish jeweler who had just been released from a concentration camp.
“I gave him two silver dollars and he made a ring from each,” Kershaw tells JCK. The jewelry was designed as “pre-engagement rings,” inscribed with David’s name on one, and his girlfriend Jeanne’s name on the other.
Kershaw met Jeanne Walker in New Jersey during the summer of 1943. A year later, he was drafted into the U.S. Army during World War II and served until 1946. “For a veteran, trying to get back into civilian life was difficult,” Kershaw says. “We came home and weren’t sure what the future would be.”
After his discharge, Kershaw reunited with Walker; however, the two soon split amicably. “We went our separate ways,” Kershaw says. “She went to nursing school. I went to engineering school.”
Yet Kershaw kept the rings in a safety deposit box. “I never showed them to anyone,” he says.
Kershaw and Walker went on to live separate lives and didn’t keep in touch. Kershaw earned his engineering degree in 1950, the same year he married Clara Wahl, his wife of 61 years. The two had a long, happy marriage and raised two sons. Jeanne became a registered nurse. She married twice and raised two sons (one of whom died).