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When the homework was too good for school.

I MET my husband in 1942 at Constantine College when he was 16 and I was 17. My husband Norman and his younger brother Keith had attended Middlesbrough High School as had my younger brother.

I joined the WAAFS as a heavy transport driver in 1942.

While we were courting and I was on leave we would sit in my mother's front room. Twice I remember Keith, Norman's younger brother came in and asked Norman's help with his homework.

One was a paper on the properties of sand and Norman quickly wrote two pages for him. The day Keith got his homework back there was a red line through it with a note saying: "You may tell your brother I still recognise his work, signed T. Gough!" The second time was a maths problem. Mr Van Der Hayden, the maths master said to the class, "I am sorry gentlemen but I gave you a homework problem which was almost impossible for you to do, except for Keith Blackburn, apparently." He dropped a piece of chalk on Keith's desk and asked him to show the class how he did it. Of course, Keith had no idea and Mr Van Der Heydon said: "Tell your brother I still recognise his work!" That put a stop to him asking for help again and sadly my husband died almost two years ago after 61 and a half years of marriage.

- JOYCE BLACKBURN, Saltburn
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Sep 17, 2011
Words:239
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