August 3, 1944
Dear Mother, Dad, and Grandpa,
I am in the library writing and I am so tired I hope I don’t fall asleep before finishing it. I worked in the field all day today digging in the same hole as the one yesterday. And after that hard rain yesterday the hole was filled clear to the top with water, so we had to bail it all out. That was a job! And it was so very muddy of course, so that when I stepped into it I felt as if I were in quicksand. Finally, we had to scoop out the mud with our bare hands, and then start digging and hacking away again with pick and shovel. I’m so tired I can hardly hold my head up.
It is now Friday evening and I will pick up where I left off last night. I was so very tired I fell asleep while writing this letter last night. I do wish I could write you every day, and I’m trying my best to. Now that I cannot talk to you, I hope more than ever that we can exchange
letters every day. Let me hear from you back, Mother and Dad, as much as possible. There may not be much news to write, but even just a few lines from you every day sure helps a lot. Mother, you said that it will be better for me now that I won’t be able to call anymore. I feel so different about it though. It does me so much good just to hear your voices. If I feel depressed, which I am a lot these days, I always feel so much better after talking to you. You give me something to go on. After all, you are my parents and you’re the only ones I can or would want to talk things out with.
A I always feel that it would help so much if I could sit down face to face with you and talk everything out. I failed to do that while as much as I wanted to when I was home, and I yearn to do so now.
I hate to write and talk like I have been, for I know it worries you, and that in turn worries me. I wish I could spare you all this. You have enough on your hands as it is.
Mother, you wanted to know today if you could see me. Are you thinking of coming down? Just let me know whenever you want to come, and I’ll try to arrange a pass for either Alexandria or Shreveport.
Just think, I enlisted a year ago the 10th of this month. I can hardly realize that a whole year has passed. Oh, I was so happy at home. If I could only be home now.
I should have said something about not feeling well today. I hope I didn’t frighten you, but I just had to talk to you. I hope I didn’t frighten you, but I just had to talk to you. I felt so miserable when I woke up this morning. I had diarrhea, a headache, and a sickish feeling all over. For 3 hours straight I went to the toilet. As soon as I would come out I would have to go in again. We left for the field at 10 o’clock and I was in agony. I went to the medics after I talked to you the second time, Mother, but they had already moved out to the field. There was no latrine dug in the field until late this afternoon, so I
had to dig my own and use a newspaper. And just think of the beautiful bathroom I could be using at home.
I went to the medics again at 1 P.M., but their tent wasn’t set up yet, and they told me to come back later. I laid down on the ground all afternoon. I didn’t have to work, thank goodness. All the sergeants except one told me to take it easy, but he wanted me to work. He’s very peculiar. Some day when I see you I’ll tell you more about him. He was in the old Army, and is not very friendly with anyone. He is always bawling someone out. I just hate regimentation and discipline.
About 5 o’clock I went back to the dispensary. I had a temperature of 100⁰. They gave me some sulfa tablets and some other medicine. I have been drinking plenty of water with the sulfa, because it can be dangerous if you don’t. I do feel much better now.
I have to take two sulfa tablets every 3 hrs. for six hrs. and then
[undecipherable] one at a time after that every 3 hrs. for 6 hrs. Also I must take a teaspoonful of this other medicine every 2 hrs.
I hate living in the field. It’s so dirty and inconvenient. It looks like we will be here about 4 months. Actual maneuvers don’t start for about 3 or 4 weeks yet.
Yes, I am thankful I’m in the Signal Corps and not overseas. But still it’s the Army, And there is always hard work, details, discomfort, bad food, no appreciation or thanks for all your efforts, etc. Oh, I wish I could be home for good. It was nice to be home.
It’s getting late, so I must close now. Love to all of you.
P.S. Could you please send me a bath towel.
The box of food looks so good. I haven’t been able to eat it yet.