Letters To My Mother From WWII: August 1945

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Aug 5:  This picture isn’t so very good, but I’ll send it. Of course it isn’t retouched and due to the poor lighting my hair is black.

I am thinking about one thing this morning and that thing is “coming home.” A soldier’s life is full of thrills, but the greatest thrill of all is when you know your work is finished and you are going home. I hope I get there at night – I’ll send you a wire and you can meet me at the train. Perhaps we will go straight home and perhaps we will spend the night downtown. However, I believe I would rather go out to your place. It would seem just a little bit more  like a real homecoming. I have about seventy-five dollars in my pocket now and we should have enough to pay for a vacation.

Edith is going to find out she has a real flesh and blood daddy. I hope I can make a hit with her and I think I’ll be able to manage it.

When I first came overseas I introduced you to a guy who has lived with us ever since – the censor. I guess the three of us got along pretty well together, but he was better acquainted with us than we were with him. Now he is leaving us and I don’t think he will ever be back. Let him go and God bless him.

Aug 13:  Two letters from you today! They were written just before you left for Bellaire. Yes, when you go back again I will be with you.  It will not be long now. Tomorrow I have my clearance slip from the supply room and I believe that is about the last thing I will have to do. I may be at another camp for a few days after I leave here, but by the first of the month I’ll be well on my way.

I received a nice letter from W&B today. It was a form letter which they send to all the service men along with a bulletin which contains paragraphs taken from the letters of service men. They said they considered my letter “The Letter of the Year.” so they enclosed a copy of it with each bulletin. I’ll bring it home for you to read. That letter sure gave me a good stand-in with the firm and I am mighty glad of it. (Editor’s Note: See uncensored letter dated January 13, 1945.)

I sure have a stiff shoulder today. I don’t know what caused it, but I had it when I got up this morning and it is still there. You know Flip, I have Malaria now. I wouldn’t say a word to anyone until I get on the boat. It hardly seems possible I am coming home.

It sure is dusty around this place. It looks as if it might rain tonight and I sure hope it does. We have not had a good rain for several days. I have an idea my English is going to improve within the next two months.

In a way it is sort of hard to imagine you and I having a home as well as a family. Most of our married life has been spent apart and even when we were together we never talked much about a home. I am looking forward to a very enjoyable winter. We will not spend too much money for entertainment, perhaps a movie now and then or a wrestling match. We should enjoy each other’s company enough to spend the first winter just looking at each other.

I am glad you like Bob’s work. We may get a picture from him some day. A lot of his work is done around Bellaire and most of his winter scenes are good.

There are going to be some yearling fillys on the market this fall by the young sire Blue Swords. He is by Blue Larkspur and out of Flaming Swords by Man O War. I would like to own one of them and they hadn’t better sell them too cheap. Bill Downing (Northville) has a stud out of Rose Leaves and what a royal mating that would be. If we did buy one of those fillys we could call her Crossed Sabers and two years from now we could call her foal War of Roses. You must admit that even my dream horses have mighty nice names. I never did get around to writing the letter on horses.

My heart skipped a beat when you told me about the lake being so calm. How I love that lake! It’s going to be pretty rough by the time I get home and I don’t suppose I’ll do any fishing. If you happen to get near some store where they sell sporting goods see if you can buy some shot-gun shells. We own a twelve gage and a sixteen gage and get about a dozen shells for each gun. If you can get them we will shoot a few birds ……season or no season.

v-j-day

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Aug 15:  The war is over, my bag is packed and tomorrow I start on my first leg of the journey towards home. Just how soon I get there depends on what ship I get on and how fast it goes. I suppose it will be pretty well towards the end of September before you see me.

Looking back on the past year seems more like a dream than anything else. There were times when I had an idea I would never make it. It wasn’t all bad and I am not sure I would have wanted to miss it. I can truly say I would never want to go through it again. I suppose I’ll soon forget most of what happened here. I never want to forget how beautiful the moon used to look or how restful the rain would sound as it pattered away on the jungle.

I wonder just how much change you will find in me and I in you. You may find me a little older and a little jumpy at times, but a sight more tolerant.

I haven’t much time, so I’ll see you at the station and a great big kiss, if you please.

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