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Meeting a cute girl on the corner

When Joe Farrell of Hannibal, Mo., was a young firefighter working at Station One on South Fourth Street - working shifts of 24 hours on and 24 hours off - he would hang out across the street at Whitney Battery Shop, on the southeast corner of South Fourth and Church, to visit with Betty Hickman, who would later become his wife. He hinted that he might have gotten in a little bit of trouble with the fire chief for this dalliance.

Betty and her mother lived on Church Street, just across from Whitney Battery Shop. She'd walk to the Courier-Post to work, then back home. From the vantage point of the downtown fire station, "He could watch ever move I made," she said.

He was a Hannibal firefighter beginning in 1939, working until he was called to serve in World War II. After a three-year absence, he returned to the force following the war.

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