June 4, 1944
Somewhere in New Guinea
Since my last letter, I have received two letters and one "V-Mail" from you. Lou Weiber [spelled elsewhere as Lew Wieber and Lew Weiver - Ed.] was rather lucky to get back so soon, wasn't he? If I ever get back to the West Coast, I'll be able to fly home on an Army bomber free of charge, since I am in the Air Corps. Haven't received the chocolates yet. I am taking another Army correspondence course, in aviation engines. Calculus is beginning to get rather difficult. Have you found out yet where Clarence [meaning Clarence Angle, who later married his sister Kitty? - Ed.] is? Either kind of notebook is O.K., as it is only for scrap paper anyway. The inoculation shots which I mentioned in a previous letter some time ago consisted of only a few booster shots which didn't amount to much. I am glad that you like your new job. Did Kitty find a new job yet? You mention various communications which come over the radio concerning the South West Pacific Campaign. It's pretty good for us over here, knowing about such things before they actually take place. I read Yvonne's letter. Maybe by the time I get back she'll be able to play as good as Paderewski or something, on the piano. I looked over Yvonne's spelling paper and read her little school paper. Enclosed, you'll find the school paper and a few scenery pictures which I took. Read the Baltimore Sun paper copy. In the picture on the front of Yvonne's school paper showing the natives building a shack is shown an Australian soldier at the right. That group of natives must be the same who built my squadron's engineering office, as I recognized the Australian soldier - who was in charge. Incidentally, the natives build all of the shacks of that type because some of the poles have on them germs which give a skin disease known by us as "Guinea rot" [probably the same as jungle rot]. It's plenty hard to cure, and several of our boys have even been sent back to the States to be cured - if possible.
Well, nothing much is doing here. I am still a crew chief on a colonel's airplane. It is my job to keep the airplane mechanically perfect and in flying condition. I have the authority to "ground" the airplane if I see fit, as the case would be if something very serious was wrong with it which would be detrimental to its flying. So, you see, more or less, the lives of some flying officers are dependent upon my mechanical ability. Last night I saw the picture Up in Arms. It was plenty comical, but as far as following the Army life, it was very untrue - such as all the scenery aboard a troop ship. Well, that just about winds up another letter. So -