Bivouacs and Problems

A traffic map of Hokkaido. Ken, Gus and Hook are in Chitose.

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

Aug 2, 1951

Sapporo, Japan

My dearest Rosalie

                Sorry I ain’t written in a couple of days but I ain’t had any time.  We’ve been working from sun up til sun down and we don’t have lights here so it’s kinda hard to write.

                You know that picture of you in a sweater was cute.  I don’t think I ever mentioned it before, but anyhow it’s cute.  It isn’t quite what I expected tho.

                It’s hotter than heck here now, even hotter than what it gets in A2. I’ve been in Japan a month now and I’m tired of it already.  I guess that everyone else is tired of it too.  It’s getting so we’re just living from one day to the next, most of the time we don’t know what day it is even, all we know is the date.  All the days over here are just the same so it doesn’t make much difference if you know what day it is or not.

                I’ll get to see Gus again at the end of next week and we’re going back to Tentville then.  I don’t know how long we’re going to stay there, as the division may be moving again.  We don’t know for sure yet but there are a lot of rumors.  But we’ll just have to wait and find out.

                Well honey I’ve run out of time as we’re falling out in a few minutes so I have to close, although I love you and love to write you.  I’ll try and write again tonight if I get time.  Until then – goodbye sweetheart.

                                All my love

                                                Ken

                                                                


 

 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

 

1713 Maryfield

 

Ann Arbor, Michigan

 

August 2, 1951

 

Sapporo, Japan

 

0900 Hours

 

Dear Mom and Dad

 

                Got a little time off so I’ll try and write a letter.  The last couple of days we’ve been getting in after dark so I couldn’t write.  The last couple of days it was really hot here, around 90 degrees.  It’s really dusty here now, all the roads have about two inches of dust on them.  Even the rice paddies are starting to dry up its so dry here.

 

                We’re moving back to camp Strong in a week or so.  I haven’t seen Gus in about 3 weeks now, so I’m getting kinda anxious to see him.

 

                I mailed the rest of the presents home except for Dad.  I can’t find anything Dad would like.  He wouldn’t wear any of these Jap clothes or any other thing he could get cheaper at home.  Anyhow I’ll keep looking until I find something for him.

 

                I haven’t any more time now will write again tonight.

 

                                Love

 

                                                Ken

 

                                                                                              


 

 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD #3

Howell, Michigan

4 August 1951

Sapporo, Japan

My Dearest Rosalie

                Just got up as it’s about 1100 o’clock now.  This is our Sunday today as we’re going to have to work Sunday.  I got another letter from that wonderful girl of mine from Pinckney.

                It rained all morning today but it’s clearing up now so I’m going into Sapporo this afternoon, as this will be about the last chance we get to go there. As we’re returning to Tenttown pretty soon.      It will be pretty nice to go back there.

                Yet, Gus is having a little trouble with Lois, he was getting more letters from Lois than he was from Jo. I haven’t seen Gus in a while so I don’t know anything more about it.  Gus thought it was a big joke the last I knew, I know Gus isn’t worried about it.  It’s too bad about Jo dropping out of school.

                That picture your little sister drew is really cute.

                I’m finally getting over my asthma, it ain’t too bad now.  It’ll be all gone in a week or so.  So far I’ve last about 15 pounds in the last couple of weeks.  I’m done to about 185 now.  I’ve KP tomorrow so I’ll practically get the day off, no hard work that is, so that’ll help some.

                I’ve got some of the most beautiful blisters you’ve ever seen on my feet.  I’ve never had any before, but now I’ve got 6.  Either it’s a feast or famine, and I guess that this is the feast.

                Well honey I’ve gotta close and get some sack time in.

                I’m still in love with you as much as ever, excuse me, more than ever.  I’m thinking of you all the time and waiting and praying for the day when we can be together, for ever.

                Goodbye my sweet

                Pleasant dreams and may

                God take care of you

                I love you

                                Ken

                                                                         


 

 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

 

1713 Maryfield

 

Ann Arbor, Michigan

 

4 August 1951

 

Sapporo Japan

 

Dear Mom and Dad

 

                Got the first package today along with the first newspaper.  Thank you for sending both, they were both very welcome.  The newspaper goofed up a little on the address tho, they left the company and regt off of it, so it takes a little longer  to get here.  The paper I got was from the 18th of July.

 

                It’s raining today for a change it hasn’t rained in quite awhile.  Everything is mud now instead of dust as it was until today.

 

                That box should be home pretty soon as it has been on the way 21 days.

 

                I’m going into Sapporo this afternoon as it will probably be the last chance we get to go to Sapporo as well be leaving here in about a week.

 

                That’s about all I can think of so I’ll close for now.

 

                Love

 

                                Ken

 

                                                            


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD #3

Howell, Michigan

5 August 1951

Sapporo, Japan

1900 Hours

My Dearest Rosalie

                Just got off of KP and I’ve got about an hour before it gets dark so I’m going to write you a letter, as I love you and love to write you.

                I’ve been kinda slow on writing lately as we’ve been kinda busy.  We got today off for some strange reason and it was my luck to pull KP.  Tomorrow we begin our last four day bivouac for awhile and things will return to about normal for a week or so.

                It was really nice here today but just a trifle warm.  I’m getting a real good suntan over here now.  I’m a lot darker than I was down at Camp Polk.  Over here we run around with no shirts on a lot of the time, that’s something we couldn’t do down at Polk.  Also it gets a lot hotter here than at Camp Polk.

                Just after we left Polk the army spent over $2,000,000 fixing up Polk, swimming pools, ball fiends, etc.  I guess they are planning on making a fort out of Camp Polk.

                A big spider is spinning a web right here next to my bed.  I’ve been watching him for about ½ hour now.  Just as she finished I flipped a cigarette butt thru the middle of it and really tore a hole in it.  So now he has to spin the whole thing over again.  I’ll probably kill him just before I go to bed so he’s really just wasting his time.

                We had church services out here in the field this morning.  The chaplin came out here special just for us.

                I’m getting kinda anxious to get back to Camp Strong now as I hear Chitose has really become a wild place.  As you know, the 45th is from Olka and the okkies don’t particularly care for colored boys, anyhow the JLC is stationed here and they just brought in 250 colored boys.  There’s fights in town every night now and they’re starting to close up some of the more popular beer halls because that’s where all the fights break out.

                The forty fifth is a hard outfit to get along with, they couldn’t get along with the 4th army and now they don’t get along with the JLC boys.

                Right now back in A2 its just 12 midnight Saturday as its now 8 pm Sunday here.  There’s 18 hours difference between our time and your time.

                Well honey it’s starting to get dark so I’ll have to close now but not before I tell you that I still love you, only now more than ever before.  Say-a-nota (Goodnight) honey and remember I’m always thinking about you as I always do.

                                All My Love

                                                Ken

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

                                                                         


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD #3

Howell, Michigan

7 August

Somewhere in Japan

My Dearest Rosalie

                We’ve been out on bivouac again for a change.  This is supposed to last until Friday then we move back to Tent town again.

                Took a cold shower today, and it was really cold.  We was under a waterfall up in the mountains.  It drops about 50-60 feet, so it really comes down.

                Got to sleep til noon today because our squad goofed up.  We were supposed to guard a cross road yesterday and we were kinda tired so everyone in the squad fell asleep.  Anyhow the enemy walked up to us, woke us up and told us we were captured.  So we spend all afternoon and all the night til 3 being questioned.  We got back to our company just as everyone else was getting up, so we got to go to bed.

                We’re just about ready to retire as we’re arising at 2:30 in the morning.  Also it’s getting dark out here.  We’re right in the middle of a pine forest.  It’s real nice and cool out here now, as its just turning dark,

Well honey it’s getting dark so I’m going got have to close for now.

                Bye for now honey.  I’m sending you all of my love as I’m closing this letter.

                                Love and Kisses

                                                Ken

XXXXXXXXXXXX

                                                        


 

                                                       

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD #3

Howell, Michigan

12 August 1951

Camp Strong, Japan

2130 Hours

My Dearest Rosalie

                Just got thru cleaning my rifle for inspection.  The battalion CO is going to inspect us tomorrow.  He just got transferred to our battalion, so the first thing he does is to pull an inspection.

                We’re going on a five day bivouac Thursday.  I guess they figure we ain’t been working hard enough lately.  Most of the time we’ve just been working from 0230 to 1800.

                Saw Gus last night for the first time in quite a while.  We shoot around for awhile and shot the breeze and this morning we went to church and this evening we went to see “The Lemon Drop Kid” with Bob Hope.  It was pretty good I thought.

                I like those envelopes you are using now.  I’m the only one in the company who has got a girl with that kind of stationary and I can also tell my letters a long time before they call it off.  I can’t read the Greek on the envelopes tho.

                Right now we’ve got James Melton on the radio singing.  All the songs over here are about three months behind the states.  Number one on the Hit Parade is “On Top of Old Smokey” and #2 is “If”. Mocking Bird Hill” is usually right around the top also.

Had my haircut today, now it’s almost a half inch long.  It’s nice and cool like this and I kinda like it.  Another nice feature about it is that it doesn’t need combing, but since I’ve gotten here, I only comb it for inspections and when I get passes.  When we get married I’m going to have a crew cut or know the reason why.  I’ll probably know the reason why.

                I stole a picture from John last night that he took on the ship.  I didn’t know he had taken it until he showed it to me.  Notice that beautiful stitching around the Do Do Bird that’s two hours of hard work.  I guess that we were playing cards when he took the picture, but I’m not sure.

                Well honey I’ve run out of news so I’ll close.  You asked the other day why all of the affection all of a sudden, well, that day I got two letters from you and that made me love you all the more and I just felt like telling you so.  You see, you’ve got a soldier over here who is very much in love with you and can’t wait to get home to you again and to spend the next 80 or 90 years with you.

With this I’ll close

                All of my love

                                Ken

                                                               


 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

1713 Maryfield

Ann Arbor, Michigan

12 August 1951

Camp Strong Chitose

Dear Mom and Dad

                Just got back from church.  Gus and I and Hook went this morning.  We’ve got the weekend off this week.  I did my washing this morning before church so I’m all caught up on everything.

                I got another box yesterday.  The one with the potato chips and socks.  Thanks a lot for sending everything, especially the asparagus, we haven’t had asp. since we left the states.  Also got the shoe laces and film.  My camera is made so that it can use either 120 or 620 film, so it doesn’t make too much difference which you send.

                It’s real hot here yet.  This is supposed to be the raining season but right now it is awful dry, although it looks an awful lot like rain now.

                The newspaper isn’t coming thru as yet.  It just came that one day, and since then it hasn’t come again.  They had the wrong address on that.  It should start coming pretty soon tho.

                Its raining again now, it hasn’t rained in about 2 weeks.  It never rains very hard here, just enough to get everything wet.

                Gus and I are going to go to the show tonight as there’s nothing else to do.  We’re having inspection again tomorrow, but all my stuff is clean so I haven’t too much to worry about.

                That’s about all I can think of so I’ll close

                                Love

                                                Ken

                                                          


 

 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

1713 Maryfield

Ann Arbor, Michigan

12 Aug 1951

Camp Strong

Dear Mom and Dad and Rich

                Got two letters from you today.  I’m glad you liked the stuff I sent to you.  It is supposed to be all handmade, I don’t know if it is or not.  Whoever made it didn’t get much for it, because about 5,000 yen a month is top wages around here.

                You can just save the pictures til I get home, as I know what most of them are anyhow.  Must let me know if they came out any good or not.

                Richard should be getting his package soon as it was mailed about a week and a half ago and I sent it airmail.  Also sent one to Ed and one to Marcus.  I’ve got something to mail to Dad but as it stands I’m short of yen so I’ll have to wait til the first of the month.

                I mailed that jacket for Dorothy because I owed her a birthday present from last Feb.  I got two jackets because they are cheaper that way.  You’ve got more of an arguing point if you buy two.  Every time you go into town to buy something you always argue about the price.  You always pay about 2/3 of what the merchants asked.  I saved over 1200 yen by buying two of them at once.

                It was a real nice day out for walking, nice and cool, so of course we didn’t do any, just sat thru some classes all day after having inspection this morning.  Our whole platoon passed OK.  It doesn’t happen very often that a whole platoon goes without a gig.

                By the way how’s the softball team coming?  Last I heard they were going to play for the championship and you never wrote any more.

                That’s about all I can think of

                                Love

                                                Ken

PS.  I got about 6 newspapers today, but they still don’t have the right address on the, no company or regiment number.

                                                


 

 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD #3

Howell, Michigan

15 July (August) 1951

Camp Strong

2100 Hours

My dearest Rosalie

                Got another wonderful letter from you today.  We had most of the day off to get ready for our five day bivouac.  We’re leaving at 4:00pm tomorrow and we’re supposed to walk 18-20 miles before we make camp.  It should be a real nice hike. (Ha Ha) It won’t be too bad tho, as it is fairly cool in the evening.

                We had inspection this afternoon and of course I didn’t pass.  My fatigue shirt wasn’t clean enough.  It was the first time I had worn it since I gotten it back from the cleaners.  So I and about 10 other guys went on a little hike after duty hours tonight.  It was only about four miles, so it wasn’t too bad just enough to work up a sweat.

                I got transferred to Service Company two days ago, as a truck driver.  But when I got there they said I’d be an assistant driver, (Washing trucks, doing KP and other kinds of detail) I talked to the CO and told him I really like the infantry, so they transferred me back.  I would kinda like to be a driver, but I can’t see doing all the dirty details for another company.

                It’s still hotter than… here yet.  In another month and a half it’s supposed to start snowing.   Don’t know which I like least, snow or heat.

                I think I’ll go over and see Gus tonight if he’s in.  I didn’t see him all day yesterday at all.  Went to two shows last night.  Went to the 630 show got back to the tent at 800 and someone else wanted to go to the 830 show so I went.  Seen “Katie Did It” and “Half Angel”  They were both really good, I thought.

                Well Honey that’s about all I can think of for now so I’ll close by telling you that I’m still very much in love with you and am thinking about you always.

                Bye for now

                                All my Love

                                                Ken

                                                              


 

15 August 1951

Camp Strong

Dear Mom and Dad

                Got two letters from you today and one from Ed and Helen.  I’m glad Ed and Helen liked the stuff I sent them.

                I don’t know if I told you or not, but I got Dad’s package ready to mail.  He’ll get it the first of September.

                Right now we’re getting ready to go on another five day bivouac.  It is our last regimental test.  We’re part of the XVI corps and they have company, battalion and Regimental tests.  We’ve run all except one then we don’t know what we’re going to do.

                The newspapers are starting to come thru now.  There was an article in the paper July 19 about the 45th div.  Its something about the 40th and 45th going to Korea on this rotation system that they going now, but  we don’t know anything about it.

                It is still hot over here.  It hasn’t rained in 2 weeks except one day and its really getting dry.  Even some of the rice paddies are beginning to dry up.

                That’s about all I can think of for now so I’ll close

                                Love

                                                Ken

 


 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

1713 Maryfield

Ann Arbor, Michigan

20 August 1951

Camp Strong, Chitose

Dear Mom and Dad

                Just got back from our four day bivouac this morning.  This was about the roughest bivouac we’ve had.  It was mostly to see if we were in good physical condition or not.  We spent most of the time walking.  This was supposed to be our last one, I sure hope so.

                The last 45th news carried an article about our being aggressors for the Regt. Problem.  All of the guys in the pictures are from “E” Company and the LT. is our C.O.  I was with that cpl who captured the regimental command post.  When we got to the CP we were the first ones to ever back that far.  The regimental CP is about 5 miles from the front.  We had to walk thru the lines that far without being seen.

                We had to wear bright colored scarves so we could be easily recognized, also had to wear our fatigue caps while all of the other troops were steel helmets.

                We ‘re supposed to get 6 days off now, but it doesn’t sound like the army to give us 6 days off at once.

                I got 5 newspapers today.  They still have the address wrong on it, but maybe it’s changed by now.

                That’s about all I can think of so I’ll write some more tomorrow.

                Love     

                                Ken

 

                                                              


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

21 August 1951

Camp Strong

My Very Dearest

                Sorry I haven’t written in a couple of days, but we were on bivouac the last couple of days so  we didn’t get too much chance to write so I hope you understand.

                This last bivouac is the roughest one “E” company has ever had.  It was designed to see if we were in good physical condition, so we spent most of our time walking.

                We left Camp Strong at about 4 in the afternoon and got out to our area at about 800 pm.  We only had to go about 11 miles, as we were in the rear and not a front line company for a change.  We got up at 3 the next morning, eaten chow, and started walking all over the country.  Had C-rations for chow (you haven’t really lived until you have eaten C-Rations).  Then we ate chow again at 1100 pm that night.  The third day we just did the same as the second day only less.  The last day was the roughest as we started walking back at 900 pm and arrived at a place 2 miles from camp at 2 because our squad took a short cut.  For 5 hours we walked at a 140 steps a minute and that is really moving, for a soldier fitted out for combat. (You ought to time yourself sometime.  Usual marching cadence is 120.)  When we got packs and everything we weigh about 50-60 pounds heavier.

                My poison ivy was almost cured but now I really got a beautiful dose of it.  I don’t think that it is p.i. but it is something very similar to it.

                I got a box from you today and was very happy to receive it.  Thanks a million for it honey, I could kiss you for it, but it isn’t possible so I’ll just have to thank you for it.  Thanks again.

                Tomorrow we’re going on a night problem, it’s just going to be overnight.  That’s about all we do is problem.  About one more bivouac and this kid may take off for a while.  I guess about everyone over here feels about the same way.  Everyone is getting so tired of these problems that it is pitiful.  We do about the same thing on all of them, so it gets a trifle monotonous.

                I changed my mind, I’m not going to reenlist for 30 years, it’s going to be 40 years.  I’ll be 61 when I get out.  Seriously tho, I’m not too crazy about this army, and I think I could survive without it.

                Well honey I’m running short on gab so I’ll bring this letter to a halt, but not before I tell you how much I love you.  You mean more to me than anything else in the world and you will continue to do so always

                Goodbye for now

                All my love

                                Ken

                                                                 


 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

1713 Maryfield

Ann Arbor, Michigan

22 August 1951

Camp Strong, Chitose

Dear Mom and Dad

                Just got back from the show.  Me and Gus went together tonight.  There’s not much else to do here except go to a show once in awhile.  Tomorrow we go on another problem only this is just a one day one.  We get back tomorrow night sometime around ten.

                We heard today that the Korean peace talks were called off by the Russians.  That’s about all we know as we know less about the war then you do back home.  We got a radio here now but there is only one main station here and that’s from Sapporo.  Every once in awhile we happen to get the station from Sendai, that’s down on Housie.  One nice feature of the programs there is no commercials at all as AFRS won’t allow any.

                There’s 5000 air force men moving into Camp Chitose pretty soon.  There is a new Jet airbase being built over here now.  Also there is a lot of sailors running around town now.  We even got Marines running around too.

                There isn’t too much news so I’ll close for now

                                Love

                                                Ken

PS.  Rosalie said in a letter that we were in for 33 months.  That is purely rumor.  They ran an article one day in the paper which said we were and the next day Gen. Stryon said it wasn’t true.

                                                                               


 

 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

23 August 1951

Camp Strong Chitose

1530 Hours

My Dearest Rosalie,

                Gus and I are down at the service club writing letters today.  This place was just recently built by the JLC boys here.  It isn’t as nice as the one at Deridder where Gus  and I used to go, but it is real nice compared to the rest of the buildings around here.

                We just got word that the Reds had called off the peace talks in Korea.  Everyone is wondering what that will mean for us, nothing I hope. We are only about 200 miles from Korea.

                We ran our problem off OK last night.  It was the “Battalion in Relief.”  That’s where one battalion moves up to the front and relives another one that is all ready there.  Same thing like changing shifts at Argus.

                Tomorrow we run the same problem over again only on a different shift.  Last night we ran the second shift and tomorrow we’re the first shift.  I hope this is clear to you, but it probably ain’t.  We got in at 700 this morning and got the day off to sleep, but it was too hot to sleep so everyone will probably retire early tonight.

                Sunday we go on a division problem for 5 days.  They had told us we were thru with those damn 5 day problems, but now we start one Sunday, when we get thru we get 2 days off then go on another one.  I’m getting so darn tired of these problems it’s pathetic.  The first one wasn’t bad at all, but they are all the same things over and over, it gets so boring it irks you.  One of our sergeants cracked up from these problems, took two days off and now he is a private and he’s also spending 30 days in the stockade at hard labor.  So it doesn’t pay to crack up.

                Went over to John’s two nights ago and we wrote letters at this tent.  We were going to go to town tonight but I’m suffering from financial embarrassment and will be until payday, about 5 days hence. (Pretty classy language, huh?)

                Well sweetheart be good and take care of yourself until I get home, cuz the first few weeks I’m home you ain’t going to get no sleep whatsoever at all, so you’d better get all the sleep you can now.

                Goodbye for now and remember I miss you something awful and yearn for the day I can return to you.

                                Til then

                                I love you always

                                                Ken

PS On my address you don’t have to spell Post Master out PM is good enough

PS Post script I still love you

                                                                          


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

25 August 1951

Camp Strong Japan

My Dearest Rosalie

                Got another box from you today.  It was the one with the candy in it.  Thank you very much for the candy honey, it was very good.  You never know how much I appreciate these boxes.

                Just the word we may be leaving camp tonight for our problem.  One battalion is always on the alert in case of an attack one battalion is always here.  If the island is attacked that is the regiment which moves out to meet the enemy.

                While you’re on the alert they have a nasty habit of calling the battalion out at 2 or 3 in the morning and saying we’re being invaded and to grab all you can carry and be ready to leave in 5 minutes. We just got the warning that we may be leaving tonight.  Whatta blow we just got into camp last night and we were supposed to have today and tomorrow off, but we may not have it off after all.  Those big wheels here hate to see us get a couple of days off.

                I got your heart to heart letter today honey, and you’re mistaken about the 33 months, the newspaper was wrong.  We are not sure if it is 21 or 24 but it is not 33, and don’t let anyone tell you any different.  I’ll tell what I think you ought to do in my next letter.  May be not what to ought to do, but what I think you ought to.  I gotta think about it a little bit first, as it is rather serious.

                I’m kinda P.O.ed tonight at the army.  You may detected the undercurrent in this letter.  I suppose I ought to close and get ready but I can’t seem to get into the swing of this thing but I suppose I have to.

                So long honey, this is your guy signing off for now.  Remember I love you now and always am thinking about you constantly.

                All My Love

                                Ken

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

                                                                     


 

Mr. and Mrs. Otto Zill

1713 Maryfield

Ann Arbor, Michigan

25 August 1951

Camp Strong

1600 Hours

Dear Mom and Dad

                Got your box yesterday, and was very glad to get it.  Thanks a lot for it. The cookies were really good.  Thanks a lot for it.

                We got today and tomorrow off to get ready for another bivouac. This one is supposed to last until Friday. Then we get two days off then go on another problem for about 5 days.  I  hope that winds up our problems but the big wheels here hate to see us have it easy.

                We had a shower about a block away from here for about a week, but they moved it.  I guess it made it too convenient for the troops.

                All those envelopes you mailed over are all glued shut, so I gotta close them with scotch tape.

                We’ve got the Hit Parade on the radio now.  We can get it 4 different times on this radio as some of the most popular programs are broadcast twice.

                It’s been raining all day here so far.  It was just a mist all today so it wasn’t too bad.  It usually doesn’t rain too hard or long, usually doesn’t last more than a week or so.

                That’s about all I can think of so I’ll close.

                                Love

                                                Ken

                                                           


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

Somewhere in Them Thar Hills

27 August 1951

2015 Hours

My Dearest Rosalie

                Well we’re out on bivouac again, for a change.  We’re supposed to pitch tents tonight but no one has any ambition, so I guess that we are going to sleep on the around. All we do is lay our tent on the ground and sleep on it.  If it rains, well, we get wet.

                Got two letters from you today at mail call.  Needless to say, I was real glad to hear from you.  Glad to hear you had so much fun killing chickens.  You know, that is something that I never had done.  I don’t think it would bother me, but my dad has always done it, so I never got a chance to.

                You asked if I thought you should go back to school or not.  Well honey, I would like to see you finish up school, although the money would come in handy.  We’ll make out ok together.  If we should go to Korea, well, everyone doesn’t come back, and if I didn’t you’d be out on your own and if you had a teacher’s certificate you wouldn’t be too bad off, at least you could teach.  We get paid Fri, and if I don’t get a flying ten, I’ll mail you home a box.  Every once in a while they have a nasty habit of just giving you ten dollars, and that doesn’t give you any too much elbow room.

                Just got word we have to dig fox holes so I gotta get started before dark.

                By for now sweetheart, I’m thinking about you now and always, am sending you all my love

                                Ken

                                                               


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

31 August 1951

Camp Strong Chitose

2100 Hours

My Dearest Darling Rosalie

                Just got thru packing for our little jaunt tomorrow.  We’re leaving at 750 and getting back to camp around 1130 Monday night.  It’s going to be a lot of fun.

                Got a couple of pictures back.  One was taken at our aggressor camp just after I had finished washing socks.  It was taken from inside of the next tent.  One of the guys called me and just as I turned, he snapped the picture.  The other one was taken here at camp Strong while I was washing. (I don’t want you to get any ideas from these pictures) the one looks like I’m hump backed as heck, but I had just twisted around.

                We got to sleep in this morning til 530 and it felt good for change.    The three days before we had been getting up at 0230, and that’s too early in my book.  When I get out of this army I’m never going to get up before 0800.

                Poor Gus is down in the dumps now as he has gotten but 2 letters from Jo in the last 6 weeks.  He mailed her a “Dear John” last night.  He has decided he is going to down his sorrows in “politics” now, as he had given them up for Jo.  He was even going to give me her picture, but he finally decided to keep it.

                Speaking of pictures which I wasn’t, I’m having your portrait painted.  I’ll mail it to you soon as I get it.  Sometimes these Japs do a real good job and sometimes it is lousy, you never know what to expect.  No matter how it turns out I’ll send it on, it usually takes about 2 weeks to make and I’ll send it airmail.  You’ll probably get around the 20th of Sept.

                Your idea of going to school together sounds like a lot of fun, and it also seems practical, but when you are in love who wants to be practical.  I think that I would like that  idea a lot, but the final choice is up to you honey, whatever you decide to do will be fine cuz we’ll be together no matter what.

                Also enclosing another item, the 45th div news, so you can keep track of our divisions.  It is the anniversary edition as we’ve been federalized.

                That’s about all I can think of for now so I’ll close sweetheart for now.  Until I see you again I’ll keep on thinking about you and go on loving you more each day.

                Bye for now

                                All my love

                                                Ken

                                                          


 

Miss Rosalie Nash

RFD # 3

Howell, Michigan

31 August 1951

2401 Hours

Camp Strong

My Very Dearest Rosalie

                Just got in from our little bivouac.  This one was a lot of fun too, just like the last couple we’ve had.  Got three wonderful letters from you today.  That picked my spirits a lot as my morale was lower than a snake’s chest and that is about as low as it can get.

                I just thru all my stuff in a big pile, pack, gun and helmet is just laying in the middle of the floor.  You’d probably think I was a terrible house keeper but I’m too tired to clean it up now so it will stay put for now.

                About my hair, it will be grown out when I get home, it will grow out in about two weeks.  I just had it cut short because it’s cooler and easier to handle.  I haven’t combed it in over three weeks, not enough to comb.  I can’t keep my eyes open so I’ll close, will write more tomorrow.  Until then I remain your guy.

                                All my love

                                Ken

 

 

Ken mentions this pictures in his letter dated Aug. 31, 1951
Ken also mentions this photo in the letter dated Aug.31, 1951
Ken goofing around with the guys
Ken in uniform at Tent Town (Tentville).

Copyright © 2013 Mary Elizabeth Zill VandenBerghe

AliciaHeinCook 19.08.2013 17:00

Great letters in an ongoing story. More please! lol thanks Liz!

Janet Grieves 19.08.2013 04:54

I enjoy reading this so much! What a love story!

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Latest comments

04.10 | 19:01

Of course, thank you for asking! Would love to see what you write if you can share when you are done.

04.10 | 18:39

I'm writing a book on Christmas in Wartime. Would it be ok to use a couple of comments in your dad's letters related to Christmas in the book? Many thanks!

09.07 | 22:16

If your related to Celia Gearhart Nash 1913-1988. Please contact me. I have a self-published book of poems written by her titled the View From My Window

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