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I Hope to Get Better Breaks

Posted by on April 19, 2014

March 23 and 26, 1943. A few letters from Dad to home. In the first he tells his family that he has just written to his brother Stanley. He also says, “I have performed my Easter duty and went to Communion the first time since being in the Army.” He also says that he played softball and went to see The Moon is Down “about the Norwegians and the Nazis taking it over.”

Poster art for the movie The Moon is Down. Image credit:

Poster art for the movie The Moon is Down. Image credit:

It is obvious he is still little homesick, as he says, “Today we had chicken and ice cream thrown at us at Chow. It wasn’t bad, but I would have preferred to eat beans at home instead.” I’m going to assume that the chicken and ice-cream was not served together.

He reflects on Anna’s comments in her last letter and says, “I am glad that mama has found a good friend in her daughter as that is how it should be.” He also notes what Anna has written about Theresa-Marie and Bun-Bun. “It makes me laugh to hear about Theresa-Marie playing with the bunny as I imagine he is rather quite taller from her. Anyway she is a tough girl and she is showing the bunny who is boss by beating him up. I hope the bunny won’t leave any raisins in her crib just for the spite of it.”

He assures his family that he has all but given up in the idea of getting into radio. “God has given me a head and I am always trying to use it. I know just how they would feel about it if I were to insist. Now that I have given up the idea of radio, I wouldn’t be surprised if fate or destiny swung around to my advantage.”

As far as what the future holds, “I have around three weeks left to the place and upon leaving I will be assigned to a base a certain amount of days ahead of time. After that I guess you get experience for a few months and then you go to see what is on the other side of the ocean. I will go to Confession and Communion before leaving this place…I need something extra as I do hope to get better breaks than what I have been getting.”  He continues, “I should at least make the grade of sergeant before this war is over. Churchill says it will take two years to beat Hitler…I hope it will take earlier.”

In his letter of the 26th he specifies what pictures of the baby he wants copies of and asks that his sister send him some more stamps. He then further addresses what may be in store for him. “I will be leaving this place on April 16th or around that time and perhaps will have my choice of two places. Maybe it might work out that there will be a place near Stanley. I asked him what he thought of the idea. I am pretty sure that you will advise me to choose two places nearest to home.” As far as the pattern of where Stanley has been stationed (Mississippi and now Washington state), he jokes “It looks that Stanley will be going to Alaska if he keeps on going any further.”

He says that “spring is really here around this part of the country except that it does get cold late at night and early in the morning. There were two robins around here and they warble in the morning… You should be seeing robins up at Albany soon if they aren’t there already.”

It looks like he is making good use of the movie theater on base. ”I saw a cartoon about Pluto on “How to Fish”. When Pluto got the fishing fever in early spring it reminded me of Eddie, although I myself used to get it. I also saw Something to Shout About with Don Ameche and Jack Oakie.”

In a P.S. he laments “This making up of beds every day with sheets and blankets is a pain in the neck to me. I guess I didn’t do it at home so I get stuck out here. You have to hang your clothes and have them buttoned too, shoes shined and laced and a lot of crap. When I get back home you probably think I am going to do the same? I’m just going too go to bed and stay there for about a month when this war is over.”

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