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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Dear Friend Feb 16, 1944 - April 4, 1944

Free mail
USO stationery
La Junta CO Feb. 16, 1944
Dear Jean:
Leaving on the 7:55 P.M. train for New York. I do not know just when I
can make it over to see you but will call you up if up still have the
I know this is a surprise to you as much as it was for me. Will arrive
home on Friday evening if the train doesn't delay very much from the
first day home I may be rushed around so much that it will be hard to be
over but will call you up instead.
Will make this short as it won't be long before I'm on that train. Give
my best of regards to the family and a kiss for Lucille.
Your friend

Free mail envelope dated Mar 27, 1944
La Junta CO Monday night
Dear Jean:
Those pictures did come out better than I expected and I believe those
pictures of the baby were pretty good. I should have taken one of a
close-up. Well, anyway, I believe with those two lights and a timing of
2 to 5 seconds should be sufficient. But not more than 5 seconds. The
one on the high-chair is clearer than the one on the sofa although the
latter is more natural looking except that it's slightly blurred. But I
like it better.
Sorry to hear about your illness and glad to know you both are coming
along fine.
After having us on pins and needles for over a week. The General was
shipped over-seas (best place for these guys) but his staff was around
for 10 days and then left us in peace.
We're all on edge here concerning that invasion and feel it might come
off any day now, their starting point is now a restricted area. You know
what that means.
You must feel glad to have heard from your brothers and your mother must
feel proud that Frank received that medal. Although I know, she'd rather
have them home. He really earned that award after all he's been through.
I agree with you, the dull finish is the best of the two, and thanks so
much for those pictures. I showed them to the boys and passed her off as
my child but the fellows took one look at me and …. Well, they didn't
believe me, at least, not with my looks anyway.
I believe you are having the war jitters. Perhaps, not often. But
nevertheless you show sign of it. Now buck up, and pray that it soon be
over. After all, it can't last forever, God forbid, and before we know
it, we will be looking back at all this and thank God for giving us the
fortitude to bear it as we are doing. My thoughts lately have been
reverting to those golden days of yesteryears but that's only natural
for all of us to get those moods now and then. Perhaps those memories
will always remain with us, hoping we can enjoy them again in the near
future. But then all God's wisdom are contained in these two words on
"Wait and Hope." That's a favorite phrase of mine and I hope you would
make them yours. I believe that'd help you out whenever you find
yourself all mixed up. Love to Lucille and Regards Friend Tony

Free mail
La Junta CO Monday, May 15
Dear Jean:
Yes, I agree with you, you should hang your head in shame, not for
writing to me sooner but for neglecting your brothers & Sal. Am I not an
agreeable one. Let me know how everything turns out with you although I
feel it really is only nerves and I don't think its too much their fault
although I know that you try to overcome whatever it is that's upsetting
you or do you?!
Glad you liked those pictures. I thought they were cute. By the way,
Charlie told me to tell you that, that skeleton is not or was not a dog.
"twas a coyote and the one beside it is a wolf. (Just like Charlie to
say a thing like but the truth if it is that he's as harmless as a fly
and a lazy one too.) He's really a sport and goes fishing and hunting a
lot when he's home. Since he's been in the army he's got himself engaged
with some girl he knew before the war and I'm afraid that he'll come
back a married man on his next furlough which will be in July sometime.
Poor fellow, - he's on K.P. this week and that means that in a few more
weeks it'll be poor me.
Glad to hear that everything else is fine and about the films, - I'm
grateful to you both to know that I have someone whom I can depend on in
case I need films. Just at present I've been lucky enough to get a few
more rolls so if and when I see that my supply is running down and
there's no chance of getting any from the P.X. I'll remember to make my
request on a separate sheet of paper. I don't want to overstock on them
and I only use them for certain occasions. I will make a request for
some rolls so that you can send them to Sal & your brothers and please
remind me of it in each of your letters so that I won't forget to do it.
I know how tougher it is for Sal to get them. I forget the number of
your camera but I think it was 120. I'll leave the number out so that
you can fill it in.
I haven't gone to Cheyenne as yet although I may do so soon. It's that
darn train ride I detest. It'll take me over ten hours and I'm too
restless for that.
I think you should know their names so that you'll know whom I'm
speaking of when I mention them by either their first name or second
name. John Emma is a (thick) Red Headed fellow. Frank Merendino (Merry)
is a slim tall fellow. What a combination we make when we walk together.
You show good judgement when keeping things from Sal and your brothers
but as for me, well, truthfully I don't mind at all and in fact it keeps
me from worrying over my own troubles if any should come up so just go
right ahead and pour it all out. It'll make you feel better and it'll
relieve you of all anxiety.
So Addie & Pete were over with the kids. I hope they're O.K. and that
Pete won't be called.
In a way I believe Roosevelt is the better man but then he's not the
only man. If we have to depend on one man we'd might as well turn
totalitarian. Lot's of things I don't approve of what he's done and I'll
never forget those words of his. I quote "- and I promise that your sons
won't be sent across, etc etc." in the meantime some of our boys were
already in Iceland. I don't mind that so much but why lie about things.
He should of told us the truth at least.
I know that Sal isn't able to write too often with the invasion coming
along so that's, O.K. He sent my folks a letter and I got one about a
week ago too.
Sorry about the furlough. It won't be for at least another four months
as things stand now.
I'll close now with regards to you and your folks and a great big kiss
to my apple dumpling bundle of joy and happiness. How much does she
weigh now?
I remain
Your friend
P.S. Note the new address. Just been changed. It's the same squad.

Free mail
La Junta CO
(four photos enclosed) envelope dated April 4, 1944
Wed. morning
Dear Jean:
As I look back, it seems to me a long time since I last wrote you so
that I am taking this opportunity to write you a few lines to say that
all is well and I hope you are too, including all at home.
Your rolls of films arrived about three or four days after I wrote to
you the last time and they came in perfect order, also in the meantime
the P.X. got some and I managed to get two rolls although I haven't used
any of them as yet. The snapshots we took a few weeks back came out
fairly well. Some of them are great. I am sending you a few and I hope
you'll like them.
By the way, in my last letter I sent you the money in bills & the change
in stamps. I was wondering if you felt slighted. If you do, don't hide
it from me. After all, just be frank cause I'm that kind of a person.
Tell me if you got it. If not then don't hesitate to let me know.
I wrote to your husband again, although I don't think we'll hear from
him for awhile on account of the invasion; or do you?
My sister-in-law wrote and told me that her sister was about three
hundred miles away from here and would like to have me come up to see
them(she's with her husband who is stationed in Cheyenne, Wyoming) and
since then I've been making plans and getting certain data's so as I'll
be able to get a three day pass without it interfering with my lectures,
calisthenics, drills, first-aid, etc. All this stuff has been piling up
on us steadily so as to keep us pretty busy on our off hours. All this
won't last for long but it does keep me on the go and the few evenings I
have free I spend in writing to the folks and some friends if I can, and
try to slip in a movie with John, and Merry. John has his troubles too
with his work and once in awhile he moans. Merry is getting the same
deal as John & I. He also has Chemical Warfare to attend to. So now I
hope you won't hold it against me for not answering sooner.
Yesterday we had to go through the Gas Chamber and real gas was used. It
is called Phosgene and it was a strong dose too. This place is about a
half mile away from my barracks which is next to a hanger. During this
time we saw a plane taking off and finally it lost altitude and tuned
off and swung into the buildings and crashed. We felt bad about it and
after awhile we thought of it being close to our place for we saw the
smoke next to this hanger. When we were through whit the Gas Chamber we
got back to look at the wreck. It was about a half block away and it hit
a small building. The three in the plane are gone but luckily no one in
the building was hurt except for a woman. She got burned a little but
not in danger.
Give my love to Lucille and best regards to all.
Your friend
P.S. Enclosed are 4 pictures.

Wed. afternoon
Dear John:
This is in answer to your letter which I just received. After I went to
lunch I found your letters waiting for me so I will drop this one with
the other one instead of re-writing the whole letter.
First, I am not vexed at all but felt maybe something was wrong so
instead I made my excuses instead. Now, you've got to get hold of
yourself. I know it's tough but at the rate you're going it is not going
to help matters any especially now that you've got to think of your
child more than anyone else. I know your husband too would feel the same
way. We've lived half of our life-time. Now the other half should be
given to our children. That is your job. But then, I'm not bawling you
out but really feel angry at this war which could have been avoided if
we'd of taken precausions. Bit that's done so the best we can do is to
hold out. After all God isn't cruel isn't cruel as to take away
something in return, I noticed that your husband doesn't write more
often but he's not to blame. The invasion is about to start so they
don't want anything of value to the enemy to leak out. You've lost 20
pounds and that's not to be sneezed at, You've just got to pull yourself
together, at least, for your child's sake. I'm glad you write to me
about your troubles, it doesn't give us a chance to worry much about
ourselves but I hope you do keep it from those overseas(your husband, &
brothers) because their burden is too great. I know you understand.
I've made my excuses for the way I sent you the money but as you didn't
mind it, it makes me feel better.
Thanks. You id right in sending it ordinary ways, because I got the
package in perfect condition.
By sensitive film, I mean that the film is more sensitive to light than
ordinary film. I t could be used with less sunlight. Most of them came
out good but I picked out the best and had duplicates made and I'm
sending them to you in this letter. Holbrook lake is just plain looking;
no buildings around. Perhaps it gives a more primative appearance and
it's scenery is fine. I never for a moment thought I was good at
description so thanks for the compliment. You're quite good at letters
No matter what candidate gets in it won't alter matters any as far as
the war is concerned. That's planned out and will go on as expected to.
Dewey against Roosevelt; that's the way it'll be. Our squadron finally
broke down and tried to compete with 1010 but couldn't come near it. At
least we got free beer, sandwiches, nick-nacks, and some fun furnished
by our own boys A new order came out that the squadron could not have
more than $25.00 in the treasury so we got a beer party. Wasn't that great?
I haven't gained any and am afraid I'll probably keep this way until
this rotten war is over. Why the heck do we have to be so animalistic in
nature. Life wasn't meant to be killed . Won't we ever learn?
It's good to get out & see people and forget everything else. It's not
wrong to do so.
I'm dying to see Lucille again and hope maybe soon it could be possible.
Give her a kiss for me. Regards to the family and take care of yourself.
I remain always
Your friend

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