Village of My Berthold & Ullrich Ancestors

Ursula Kaiser

Ursula Kaiser was my maiden name.  My mother called me Ushi. My stepfather

and stepgrandfather called me Rosalie.  In public, I used the name Ursula Kaiser until I

went to college at Brigham Young University. There my roommates decided to shorten

Ursula to Sue. A year later, I got married and got a new last name as well. Ever since, I have been known as Sue Foster.


When my mother reached the age of 21, she got a job in Fechenheim, part of Frankfurt am Main, at a chemical factory.  This location was about 60 kilometers SW of her home in Oberkalbach.  In Fechenheim, she met and married my father, Richard Kaiser, in 1931.  They settled in Fechenheim across the street from the factory and I was born six years after my brother's birth.


I lived the first six years of my life during WWII. My father was drafted into the army when I was two.  Our lives were a nightmare of air raid sirens, rushing to the bomb shelter, destroyed buildings, etc.  My father died in Albania when I was four years old.  All my uncles were drafted.  All, except one, survived the war.  He starved in a Russian prisoner of war camp.


When I was ten, my mother, having been widowed for 6 years, married an American soldier and we left our extended family in Germany to live in the U.S.  I graduated from high school in New England, where I lived  nine years.  When I was 16, mother and I went back to Germany for a visit.  After that, we knew for certain that America would be our permanent home. Germany, although rebuilt somewhat from the war, was still a depressing place to live.


At age 17, I joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, better known as the Mormon church.  That was the best decision of my life.  After a year at BYU, I married an Ensign in the U.S. Coast Guard.  We criss-crossed the 50 states during his 20-year career, living in 10 different places, and had six children and adopted a Korean girl. Then we settled

in the Seattle/Tacoma region. My husband worked for Boeing as a spares engineer, retiring after 23 years.


I have had many interests over the years, including genealogy, reading, crocheting, macrame, ceramics and playing the folk guitar.  I also taught pre-school in my home for 12 years.  Genealogy still continues to hold an important place in my life.  Between 1990 and 2004, I served as the director of the Family History Center in the Puyallup Washington South Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  I still volunteer there for 3 hours a week. My husband and I supervise about 100 volunteers that are indexing the genealogical records on the microfilms of the Family History Library, the great project that will culminate in the free accessibility of scanned images on the Familysearch.org web site.


I have an associate degree in Arts and Science and another in Early Childhood Education,

and on 16 August 2007 I received my Bachelor's Degree of General Studies with an emphasis on Family History from Brigham Young University, finally attaining the education  goal I had begun 49 years earlier.


This web site is a way for me to share some of the information I have gathered about my mother's birth village, its people, and its records with others who may have ancestors in this area.   I have fond memories of my childhood visits to  my grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins in this small community.  During WW II, we were evacuated from Fechenheim when the bombing became intense and we lived in Oberkalbach for a time.  There are still three cousins and one aunt living there whom I occasionally visit, as well as nine other cousins within an hour's drive of Oberkalbach.


I have found several people in the U.S. over the internet who are distantly related to me through their roots in Oberkalbach and hope to find more.  Perhaps someday we will all get together in a "distant cousin" reunion  :-).

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My Family in April 1999

(we have added two more grandchildren since then)

Home    Katharina Berthold

Copyright 2000-2010 by Sue Foster.  Please contact me  for permission to copy and to let me know why you are interested in this information   :-)