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Letters In The Margins
A memory of World War II
Based on a letter from Elly Beral to Steven Bamberger, 2 January 1982
by: Shelley Pearsall


In the early 1990s, my friend, Carola Bamberger, gave me a computer disk that wasn't working properly. After my recovery efforts on the disk, I opened a file on it called "Omastory" (Oma's story) and began to read the most amazing tale of World War II that I had ever found. Amazing particularly because Oma's Story was the story of Carola's mother — a woman I had met and talked to many times... a woman I knew who had actually been a spy during the war! When I finally finished reading the almost 30 page letter, I KNEW I would one day turn that story into a play of some type.

In 1998, I was discussing program possibilities with Bill O'Brien (then Executive Director at the Great Lakes Historical Society) who wanted a special program for Armed Forces Day. I told him about "The Letter". Bill was enthusiastic and commissioned the writing of the play.

And so LETTERS IN THE MARGINS, based on that unbelievable letter I found by accident on that "almost destroyed" computer disk, premiered at the Great Lakes Historical Society in May, 1998. Written by award-winning author, Shelley Pearsall, this one-act play has touched the hearts of the many people who have seen it since then.

All of us thank God for all the Omas and Opas in the world who risked their lives for freedom.

If you would like to present this moving play for your group, let me know -- the Eden Valley staff would be happy to bring the show to you!

Bette Lou Higgins
Artistic Director

Why was it called "Oma's Story"? "Oma" and "Opa" are German for Grandmother and Grandfather.