Sunday, February 22, 2009

Twister Hits Camp Riley

May 17, 1943

Dear Mother,

We're still alive and kicking. Much to everyone's surprise and dismay.

I'm still working on that pass. If I get the pass it will be the middle of this week sometime. It will only be five days if I get it, but that's better than nothing at all. If I don't get this pass it will mean that I won't get off until after maneuvers in the desert. When we get out there we will probably wish some of this rain would follow us.

I suppose you read about the cyclones that hit the camp here. None of them hit our side of the fort. All of them hit cavalry center. They destroyed forty-one buildings and hurt two hundred men, some were killed. The men in our barracks stood outside and watched the twister hit a hillside across the river from the camp. There wasn't anything on the hill, luckily.

Has Stubby gotten over his clothes line scare as yet? Bet he wondered what was coming down from the heavens above.

Right now the kitchen help is threatening to through it out if we don't come and get it, so clear the path here we come.
So long.


10 more sticks of wood for the home fires.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Mud, Mud, Mud

May 10, 1943

Dear Mother,

Oh mud mud every where and all the shines did vanish. Thank goodness it finally stopped raining.

We're back again to the dear ol' barracks. They finally looked good this time, and I'm not kidding anybody. Cold and wet that is putting it mildly. There wasn't a dry place on the vehicle or on us. Then the wind came up and our wet clothes and shoes felt like ice. Our hands were so cold that the fellows couldn't even light a cigarette. They used two packages of matches to light one cigarette. We rode nine hours in the rain that day then got up at two that night and rode eight more hours without any breakfast.

You asked in your letter how much time I got, well according to all information I got they were going to give us ten days. The announcement came out that they had cut that time down ten days leaving exactly 0 days. Not only that but we don't get weekends off unless things change. We worked Saturday and Sunday. After Saturday night that work Sunday was a rough deal cause I was ahurtin.

I don't suppose all you guys could come out here this month over a weekend. I doubt if it would be possible to get gas just to drive out for a visit.

Tell Dad to forget I said anything about getting the car if we go into the field this summer I don't think I'll need it.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Fort Riley, Kansas, May 2, 1943

May 2, 1943

Dear Mother,

So Dad is undecided on what place to take. Tell him to use his own judgement. He has seen them and he knows what we want as well as anybody. Don't let my kibitzing bother him.

This will be a pretty short letter due to the scarcity of news around this part of the country.

That depot job should be a good deal for Puggy. That's pretty good money to start out on. That's a good place to work too.

We take off tomorrow for the hills again. From the looks of it we may get quite a few of these week bivouacs this summer. There has been some talk that we would take off and be out in the hills all summer, but I don't know. It's been pretty warm so it should be pretty nice out this coming week. I hope.

Things are awful quiet around camp this weekend. Everyone wanted out because of the next week bivouac. Saturday being payday might have something to do with everyone going to town.

As far as I know now I will be in St. Louis about the fourth of June unless they change their minds and give me the pass sooner. They are giving everyone a chance at a pass and my name comes up about the fourth of June unless they send out more men at one time than the schedule calls for at present. There has been some talk to that effect. I'll let you know if I find out anything definite.

While I'm home this time I think I'll bring the car back to camp with me. The anti-tank section goes to town en mass of a weekend. We figured that a car would save us considerable money, in taxi, train, and bus fare. The car would take us to small places where we wouldn't have so many soldiers around. These towns that are within bus routes are so full of soldiers that you can't have too much fun.

Here's another twenty berries for the future security of the Register clan.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Easter Sunday. President Roosevelt Was Here

April 25, 1943

Dear Mother,

Easter Sunday here in camp. Everybody had to stay in camp this week end. I think practically every man here attended church services of some kind. Fifty of us from the company were chosen to attend special services at the main fort. President Roosevelt was there, he didn't say anything. Just waved his hat.

Every body in the country knew the President would be here except us soldiers. The only way we have of telling when someone important is around is by the amount of cleaning up we have to do around camp.

They weren't taking any chances around here today. The railroad tracks, the bridges, and all roads had guards of every kind and description. Also no one was permitted to enter or leave the post all day today.

Maybe you wondered why I haven't written for over a week. Well the reason was another one of those week bivouacs. This one was pretty rough, it rained one day and got pretty cold of night. The anti-tank section was on twenty-four hour guard duty every day so we had to grab our sleep whenever we could. On two different nights we were attacked by another outfit but we came out on top.

That place in Arkansas sounds pretty good except for the price. That price is pretty steep for such a small acreage. Nothing on it in improvements either. Could the bald spot be used for fruit or anything? If nothing better can be found why we had better take the place.

How about the place close to St. Louis? Have you seen it yet? From the description that sounds like a good buy. Not much money involved and fair possibilities in more ways than one. Let me know what you decide or find out.