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[Annotators Note: Interview begins with the interviewer discussing with Franklin Denius how he should answer questions throughout the interview.]Franklin W. Denius was born on 4 January 1925 and grew up in Athens, Texas. 1 of the primary interests throughout his life is football. Denius was raised by his mother and grandparents. His grandfather had a general store in Athens which is about 75 miles east of Dallas.His grandfather was a good mentor and loved athletics. He took Denius to various sporting events. Denius played football in junior high and high school and even played 1 college game.When Denius was 12 years old his family decided that with the possibility of the United States entering World War 2 he needed the discipline of attending a military school. At the age of 13 Denius was enrolled in the Schreiner Institute in Kerrville, Texas. He graduated from the Schreiner Institute in just 3 and a half years and took 1 year of college there as well.Denius graduated high school on 25 May 1942. He was 17 years old at the time so he volunteered for the Army so he could get a couple semesters of college through a program offered by both the army and navy which would allow those who volunteered before they turned 18 to take 2 semesters of college.Denius was sent to the Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He began there in late July of 1942 and his second semester ended there in early April 1943 when he was 18 years old. Prior to being called to active duty he was able to go the University of Texas for a short course in May 1943 and took sophomore English.Denius got his orders to report for active duty so he went back to Athens. All of the draftees and reserves who had not yet been called all met on the steps of the courthouse in Athens, Texas for the ride to Mineral Wells [Annotators Note: to Camp Wolters]. On the way the bus Denius was on broke down.They finally got to Camp Wolters where they were processed and officially became members of the military.
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