October 19, 1943. A letter from Anna to her brothers. The family continues to come to grips with the fact that Stanley is being sent overseas. In an earlier letter Dad alluded to the fact that Stanley is being sent to England. At this point in the war Germany and England have been bombing each other for over three years, while American Air Forces have only been involved in the air war over Europe for a little over a year. The D-day invasion is over eight months away.
Meanwhile, on the home front it is a Tuesday and hunting season in New York State opens tomorrow. Eddie plans on taking full advantage of it. “Eddie came home [from work] at about 6:30 and ate his supper and went hunting. He and another guy have made reservations some place up north and he says they will stay there overnight and go tomorrow morning for the day until they catch a deer and if they don’t tomorrow they will stay all day tomorrow and come home Thursday night. I hope that he gets it tomorrow and comes home the same day. …tomorrow is the first day of deer hunting and a lot of fools will be out and all excited to kill something. I don’t begrudge him the fun but I am worried until he comes home. This year he sure got the hunting bug.” Last Friday was the first day of duck season and Eddie bagged a mallard and a teal. On Monday Eddie went hunting again and “bought home a pheasant and a rabbit which he took to his father.”
The weather in Albany is starting to turn colder. Anna reports, “This week it is cold out and a winter coat comes in very handy. …We have had frost here at home several times and it looked like it was snowing out overnight.” The cold weather reminds them that it is time to get the final gardening chores done for the season. “We pulled out the carrots and beets and mama put the dainty rosebushes in the ground and covered them up with leaves and ground. I pulled up the old tomato vines and raked up leaves and cleaned the yard some. I loved to be out because the air was so clean and sharp or as they say tangy.” They bundled up the baby and she spent some time in the yard too. “Terry loved it out and she sat watching the way we were working. I walked with her on the yard some and she screamed with delight.”
The baby continues to grow and develop. Her fourth tooth has come in and she is able to stand on her own. “She certainly is improving in her walking and she can run so fast when she holds onto the hands. She can stand alone but not for long, and as soon as she noticed that she is standing by herself right away she starts to lower herself and her little ass into a sitting position and sits on the floor. …Terry can say By-By and when she is getting ready to go out and we say By-By she laughs like anything and keeps on looking from one to the other and she keeps on giving her little hands so that I will dress her quicker and she can go out. When she is all dressed and I put her on the floor and take her by the hands she starts running so fast and right for the door.”
Anna addresses a section of the letter specifically to Stanley. Apparently Stanley had sent a picture home of him and a few of the other guys in his group receiving scarves from the Red Cross. Anna writes that when she showed the picture to Eddie, he didn’t have his glasses on and “said you boys must have been receiving new socks.” She also writes, “I haven’t told him about that you might be sent across until we finally receive a letter from you from the other side. It’s not that I don’t trust him but he would one time forget and absentmindedly mention it to his folks and everybody would know and the fewer people that know that will be better. The whole world doesn’t have to know what is happening to the Murawskis”
In relation to Stanley’s impending overseas assignment, Anna confirms to him that they have received his change of address notice and other related papers that it seems servicemen were required to prepare before deployment. “Stanley, we did receive a card with the APO address on it and you have already received letters from us with that address on it. We will disregard it until further notice. We also received your last will and testament and Power of Attorney. We cried when we received it because it was so sad. It looked as if you were getting ready to die. People die sometimes but they don’t exactly like to brood about it. But since you are still here in America we feel better.”
As Anna wraps up the letter, she reflects on the prospects of her upcoming birthday. “In fact I will be 24 this coming Monday and what an old hag. It seems so old to me although I don’t feel any different….By the time this war is over and you boys get home to stay and see me again you will say gee did you get old.” She wraps up the letter with, “I have covered all the news so I will close until a further date. SO LONG, GOOD LUCK AND GOD BLESS YOU.”