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I Have to Laugh Now

Posted by on March 7, 2017

May 23, 1945.  Dad is settling in at Northwest Field on Guam and has a chance to write a letter home to share a few of the details of his trip to the Pacific Theater.  He notes that he is “fine and things are improving…by the day. I am now getting a suntan and getting rid of a slight heat rash I had. From many a viewpoint, it’s not bad out here. …We average a bottle of beer a day almost, and have an outdoor theater so things aren’t very dull around here. …The nights are swell…but no girls in sarongs. Tell ma she need not worry much about my chances of getting malaria or turning up yellow, as everything is O.K.!”

He continues, “As you can see I have a new APO number which you can use from now on. I can now tell you that I am somewhere in the Marianas Islands and have come across some fellows that I knew in the states, One big happy family I guess.”

As far as points of interest on his trip from McCook, Nebraska to the Marianas, he writes, “Before I left the U.S. I went to Seattle, Washington where I spent an evening on pass. It reminded me a lot of Denver, Colorado.” He also mentions that he “got a chance to see the Hawaiian Islands.”

As you might recall, in a previous letter Dad mentions that he managed to not get seasick on the voyage. However, there seems to have been other problems on the ship as he details, “I never did tell you about how one day we had a turkey dinner on the ship and early that morning and part of the day, the guys had the (G.I. shits). All latrines were filed and fellows sat on the ship’s rails with their bare ends hanging overboard. It didn’t get me bad and I was lucky enough to occupy a bowl. It wasn’t funny until it was all over with. I have to laugh now when I think of it.”

As far as the living conditions where he is stationed, “We’ve got an outdoor latrine, almost the type ma had in the 20s when she lived on 3rd Street. I hope ma won’t worry when I tell her we are in the jungles and there are still some Japs. However, I would appreciate a prayer now and then. Please don’t tell it to our relatives as I’d just as soon write them the Hollywood version of things which would make better reading for them. Ma always wanted the truth, though.

Before signing off his thoughts turn to both his brother and sister. “Have you been hearing from Stanley? Mail service is very good out here. Here’s hoping Stanley returns to the States and stays there. It’s a fine place to be at.” As far as his sister he writes, “I hope Anna’s expectant baby is doing fine and I wouldn’t mind at all having a nephew. I think nieces are swell too, especially Terry. She’s just my type.”

He signs off, “God Bless You All!”

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