A Special 1941 Christmas Present – Excerpt from Gibbon’s Secrets by RG Bud Phelps –

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A special Christmas present Bud remembers from 1941, while living in the small town of Gibbon, Nebraska just as World War II was starting.  

Reg and Addie had already bought Bud a Schwinn bike for his Christmas present back in November.  It was probably very fortunate they had because with the war production now in full swing bike production would probably be curtailed.

Christmas Day arrived and there was a small present under the tree for Bud from his Dad and Mom.  Bud opened the present first and it contained a note the said, ‘Go with your Dad – he wants to take you for a special ride’.  “I don’t know what this is all about but I’m ready for that special ride, Dad.”

“Okay son, let’s go see what we can see. Put on your hat and coat though it’s pretty cold.”

Reg drove Bud to a warehouse building he rented to store things for his trucks and said, “Okay let’s go see what’s in here. I’m going to pull your stocking cap down over your eyes and lead you into the warehouse – now don’t peek.”

Reg opened the door and lead Bud by the hand until they got inside – then he said, “You can pull up your cap now.”

Bud pulled up his cap and there stood a brand new red and cream Schwinn bike with a big tag on it that said – [BUD –  MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM DAD AND MOM].

His eyes got real big and small tears started to trickle down his cheeks – he finally found his voice and said, “Oh Dad – I’ve wanted a bike like this all of my life.”  He ran over to his bike and said, “Can I ride it home?”

“You sure can son – I’ll follow right behind you in my truck.”

Bud rode his new bike all the way home on a very cold December day with no gloves, and when he got home he said, “You know mom, my hands didn’t even get cold.  Gee whiz, I am so lucky to have this neat bike and great parents like you, thank you so much!  You’ve sure made this a very special Christmas for me.”

A tired and beat-up ‘Father Time’ was ushering out 1941 and the New Years ‘1942 Baby’ was just around the corner ready to enter the battle for freedom against the forces of evil.  Everyone in this small town of Gibbon couldn’t imagine the changes that were in store for them in the coming year.  The “Home Front” as a result of World War II was just starting to become a reality, and how the people in this small town would react was still unknown  – Time will tell………


This short story is an excerpt from my book Gibbon’s Secrets and is my gift to you this special time of the year.  Both of my historical fiction books (Gibbon’s Secrets & Back in the Day) have delightful Christmas stories in them, therefore would make great gifts.  You can order the books on my website, and I’ll even sign the copies for you and send them your way with FREE shipping costs.  

RG Bud Phelps

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