August 5, 1944
Dear Mother, Dad, and Grandpa,
It is Saturday morning, and I haven’t much time to write, but I just wanted you to know that I am all right. I wish I could call you, for this letter won’t reach you for several days. I hope you aren’t worrying, for I did sound pretty bad over the telephone yesterday.
Will you please send me a bunch of stamps? I am running low.
I asked for a bath towel in my other letter because all of my towels except one are in my other barracks bag back in camp. I was out in the field working the afternoon they took our second barracks bags and stored them away. They were all piled on top of each other, and I couldn’t find mine. You see, we were supposed to put everything we would need in one bag to take with us and have the rest in camp. Well they didn’t tell us when they were going to take the barracks bags. My civilian shoes, new pair of fatigues, which I need badly, bath towels, face towels, handkerchiefs, etc., are in there.
It’s a shame, because I need those things badly. Maybe I will get a chance sometime to get in to camp to get them. Everything happens to me. Nothing ever goes right. I don’t know why, and I always try to do the right thing.
My radio doesn’t work at all. That little radio has disappointed me so many times. And it’s so nice to have a radio out here, if you have to be stuck in this hole.
I don’t get the news anymore, except of course the Dayton paper which naturally is several days old. If I had a good radio, I could know what is going on in the world.
I sure would like to see you. Oh, how I pray for this war to be over. How can it go on so long?
I try as best as I can to be cheerful and happy, but each time I get to feeling a little bit better something always happens to discourage me.
I’ll write more tonight.
I wrote most of my letter last night by flashlight. It isn’t light until 9 o’clock like it is at home.
I would give anything to be home. Please don’t worry about everything I say. I get awfully tired and lonely and discouraged, and I just have to say a lot of things.
I don’t see why they
eve expect fellows who have never done any work in the life to work as hard and do the same amount of work as others who have done nothing but manual labor for years and years. It’s so unfair. Some of these men have all kinds of jobs – railroading, truck driving, plain ditch digging, etc. Their ambitions are not mine, and I cringe whenever I think of it.
It’s so hot here. It’s simply terrible.
We are sending our clothes to a civilian laundry in De Ridder. I wish I could send mine home.
My fatigues are filthy. I have another suit here. The pants don’t looks so good, though, for there are holes in the pockets and another hole on the leg. I wish I had my new suit here. Here you went to all that trouble to get it for me, and I don’t even have it to wear.
I don’t see why we have to wear hot leggings, helmets, pistol belts, and canteens. The fatigues themselves are hot enough. And these shoes are terrible in this weather.
[undecipherable] I know I would feel better in a sensible uniform.
Well, I’m looking forward to the day when we can all be together again for good, and lead decent, normal lives.
Write me everything. I’ll try not to be so glum. I’ll know you don’t like to hear all this and I don’t blame you. Love to all of you.
P.S. I wish I could be eating your food, Mother. I gained 5 lbs. from it while I was home. I have lost it all already. I can’t gain a thing eating this food and leading this kind of life. Your cooking is so good.
It was so nice to lie in bed and read as late as I wanted to at home. The house looked so beautiful I just can’t get it out of my mind and everything at home is so beautiful and clean.
I thought the war was fast coming to an end when I was home. I guess you did, too. My hopes were raised so high.
I just can’t tell you how much I want to be home. Please don’t think me silly for saying these things all the time. Yes, I am thankful I’m not overseas yet, and I realize what those boys are going through. But still wherever I am in the Army, I’ll never be satisfied until I’m home. I wish so hard for it that it just has to come true. It would be so wonderful to be home. I do so wish I could be with you on my birthday.