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Foot Lockers Nailed to the Floor

Posted by on April 5, 2014

March, 8 1943. Dad writes home. He spends an entire page dealing with his taxes. There is no need to bore you with the details. He says that it snowed in Illinois where he is and that it is “very cold…but I do not feel it.”

About Stanley’s expected furlough, he tells Anna, “Please do not feel bad that I will be away when Stanley gets home because I want you to know that I have been with him for 19 years and its about time we tried shifting for ourselves. I have enjoyed being with my brother and I believe I have made up for about 40 years but I am sure we will see each other again very soon. Just give him my regards and my wishes for a happier reunions, one the once we get together will last indefinitely”

He reports that the pranks continue in the barracks. “Last night a guy in our barracks was out over the weekend so the other guys prepared a dummy and put it in his bed. I imagine he tried to find out who was sleeping in his bed. Two other guys found out that somebody nailed their foot lockers to the floor.”

He also says, “Yesterday a guy upstairs…was jumping up and down about 9:30 in the morning just for the fun of it because the fellows were annoyed downstairs. He was jumping away while the sergeant came up …and stood right behind him and waited for him to stop. The he took him downstairs and showed the fellows the nuisance. The fellow just said, “What’s the use of doing that. They all know me.”

He marvels, “Boy, oh boy! The baby is sure growing up.” He writes, “I like to hear about my little niece as she must be a regular comic strip.  Hope you get better weather and that will help you get her out in the good old air and strengthen her up a bit.”

As far as visiting the Weiss’ in Chicago “When I received Henry’s invitation I thought it over and had the same thought you conveyed in your letter.” He says he is too busy studying to get away anyway, “I sent away for a regular beginners radio book and that will keep me busy. I am still reading on that during my spare time and it certainly keeps me out of trouble.” So it looks like even though the Army is not assigning home to the radio group, Dad is still following his dream.

He mentions that “This coming Wednesday is Ash Wednesday and everybody is required to fast. I will go to Communion in the Eastertide season.” He also notes that the Chaplain told him they might get a choir together and that “I might go over and see what is in store as the Chaplain thinks they will need male voices.” He also mentions that “last Sunday the fellow at the organ in the chapel as we were leaving Church played Serdeczna Matko”. This in reference to a traditional Polish hymn to the Virgin Mary.

He signs off, “God bless you and keep you in his good care.”

I leave you with a Youtube video of a performance of Serdeczna Matko by the choir of the Church of Saint Michael in Stillwater, Minnesota.

Beloved Mother, protector of the people
Have compassion on the cries of orphans:
Eve’s banished children, we implore you
Care for us, care! Do not let us wander.


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