Unlike many people I've met over the years, I did not grow up with a negative view of tattoos as weird or ugly. That's because my father had tattoos and I grew up seeing inked skin as normal and commonplace.
Dad served with the Canadian Army during World War II. That's why he had tattoos -- many servicemen from that war did. He volunteered for the armed forces in 1942 when he was 18 years old. He got his tattoos not too long after that. I suspect getting tattooed was a way for many young men to demonstrate bravado and machismo during a very scary time when their survival was not guaranteed.