Part 1 - Buckley & Lowry Field Letters
April 1943 @ Buckley Field | Denver Colorado
April 9th, 1943
Well here it is Friday afternoon and I am feeling fine. I sent that telegraph off this morning. I did not get a chance to telephone but I decided I better telegram anyhow. We got here into Denver about 7:15 PM. We get on a truck right away and came out to this field. It is about 5 miles or more out of town. And the town is not no small town. Buckley Field is just on the end of Lowry Field I am taking an armament course. It is fixing gun as far as I know. We fix all big gun. That is all I know. I can take gunner if I want to. Do you want me to or not. I might not be able to wait for an answer from you but if I don't hear from you I will decide for myself. If I pass this course and then take gunner course I come out with buck sergeant pay and wings. That makes a hundred and seventeen dollar a month. The way I am now I will not get wings if I don't take gunner. They sure are cleaning the camp now. They were going to start a four week course with everyone in the guard and then they would be classified as KP specialist. Then I think they will move out and probably across. I would be sent to some place but where I don't know. I start to school on the 19th of this month. Then it will be a 9 week course. It used to be a 12 week course but now they cut it down to 9 weeks. So far the next 9 weeks I guess I will be here. Then I will pull out to ? I hate to say this but after that it won't be long. This camp is fairly new camp and her black tar paper on the outside. It is just for school and they have women driving nearly all the truck and all the cars. The reson I came here I don't know but I first decided to stay and take my furlough but then if I would be put in military specialsist rate. I could not get out at all. And to be a guard I would not like so well. I hated to miss the furlough but I just decided. I hope this would be the best. We will have it pretty ard here for awhile till we start to school. We will get LP and it is hard here. When we start to school we start at 10PM till 6AM in the morning. We got to stand all 8 hours too. They do not have seats in the school room. Then we eat during the day on top of that. So you can see that I will be plenty busy. So if I can't mail one every day I will do my best. The mail problem here is sure poor. They have a poor system. When we hit here last night a big rain hit just before we got here. The light were all put out in the camp and it was much cooler. Today it was fairly good and then about 3PM we had a big hail storm and a good rain. We have coal stove in our barrack and I just wonder if they are the ones that daddy help make. Well the cold weather is not what I am used to. In Laredo you woke up with no blanket and here we got 3 blankets and one comfort.
April 10th 1943
Well here it is Saturday eve and I still am feeling fine. The weather here is still raining and hailing once in awhile. Two of our buddies went on KP tonight I guess the other kid and I will get it tomorrow night. We were running around all day trying to get away from this extra detail. But they put the list on the bulletin board so that way you can't miss it. After we start to school we don't have to worry about it all. It is just new ones that got to do KP before you start to school.
I ate at the PX today for a change. We could have ate at the mess hall but the other ones didn't want to get to close to here so we just sat aroundat the PX. This morning meal cost me on 15 cents. Sure was a good dinner for the money. They do feed you good here and all you want to eat. I had to get rid of my hat and that wo us together sent ours to a kid in Texas to his parents. They don't allow any hat or belt in his camp at all. So we could not get any small boxes and the only gave us 24 hours to get rid of them so that was the only thing I could do. Whenever I want it I will ask for them. But I thin the next camp you will be able to wear it. This is the first camp I heard that you can not wear them. This camp here left you do anything but some radio star put a program on and said it was a boy scout camp. So now the officers here are clamping down on everybody. So that is what a movie star can do to put on a joke. Make is bad for thousands of men. Because from now on they are going to be tough. We do not have any foot locker here and got to live out of our barrack bag again, and that is one thing I hate. I am again learning to fire a stove again. The stove in our barracks or I mean the one is next to the bed and I am need to the warm weather in Laredo and I sure like the heat. So I keep the stove burning all the time. I sore did do the running around today to keep from getting on detail. I will be glad to get to school and see how it is going to be. I hope you got pictures and radio by now. When I stopped at Trinidad Colorado, it is a Indian settlement and I got a pennant from there and a small souvenier. Send it home later. I want to get a pannant from Denver here and that will give me a few. The way they say we can go to town once a week and I sure would like to see it. I will get the honey boy a shirt from here. It is a bright color one and I will get another pillllow case with Buckley Field on it. Candy bar and gum are only 3 cents. We can get some good ice cream too. Well I was just thinking about in 5 days more I could get on the train and start home. But here I am in Denver. I am hoping to get another one so on. It sure is something hard to forget.
Here it is 8PM and I am eating on my bed next to the stove. I wrote to Chupik, my buddy from Laredo tonight.
April 11, 1943
Here it is Sundya afternoon about 4:20 and I am feeling fine but the weather not so good. It is half way raining now and sleeting. It is fairly cool out too. They claim that this is the first time that it has had this kind of heather here. The mountain this mourning are sure really White cap. Yesterday they were fairly white. I took couple of pictures of them when we was coming on the train but I have not got them develop yet. I hope the films that I had sent home with the radio will turn out good because them were some of the sqd. just the Sunday before I left there. I bought that pencil and that light for honey boy so he could member Laredo. Tomorrow I go on KP at 4AM. You only got to work about 16 hours a day. And that is 16 hours of straight work. One of my barrak bags coming from Laredo had a big hole in it. They sure did put the bags through the mill. My letter box was broken and my shine box was broken too. One of the men that just finished the course was telling me that it was tearing down small and large machine gun and small cannon. You repair them and oil them up. I think I will like it. But whenever I come back home I'll know one sure thing that I will take the guns out and go hunting. Because after shooting on the guard sqd. and then go into this school and learn more about gun. I will them them guns out at home. Whenever I get home I will show daddy some tricks about guns how to take a gun from a person and how to get away from a person with a gun on you. Well after I learn all about guns I guess I will go into the gun business.
I just got back from supper and it was fairly good. I t is still raining. I was going to the show but the show was packed and I could not get in so here I am back writing again. I built the fire up for the night and then before I go to bed I will pour in another bucket and be OK until morning. At 4AM then I get up for that nice KP that I like so well. Ha! Ha! I got my class A pass and I will send it home. I had a picutre of me taken down at one small town down the line. I will send it and you can keep it. I had a sure nice trip from Laredo up here. We were 14 together from the field and we whenever the train stopped we got off and had a real good time. Now I a m waiting to see what kind of trip we will have when we leave here. When we leave here I don't think we will have such a good time. We got off at Trinidad Colorado and ate and we went into town and march and that and play slot machine. At Fort Worth we got in at 9AM and didn't pull out till 3:10PM. We were able to pull out of train epot and we covered the whole town. Fort Worth is one of the best town that I hve been in since I went from home. That sure is a good town. I wish that you could have seen all the places I have went. But I guess you have seen lots of pretty places too when you made that trip. Maybe I will put a telephone call to home. So till next time with loads of love from in the mountain.
P.S. I am hoping that I get some mail tomorrow because the mailing is sure poor on account of so many new ones coming in and going out.
April 13, 1943
Here it is Tuesday morning about 9:55 and I am feeling fine. Here it is only 2 more days until I could have started home on a nice furlough. It started on the 16th but I was leaving on the 15 at 2:10PM. Well all that I can say is I think I really got hooked. But this is the army and the army has its way. So here I am in Denver. This camp is sure poor compaired to Laredo. It is a fairly nice camp but the don't know how to run anything so here we are. I work at KP yesterday. We had to get up at 4 and went on at 5. Well we got off at 8:15PM last night. I never did think I work that hard in the army but I had my share of it last night. I was too tired to write. Then this morning they came in and woke us up at 6. I think we were supposed to go on detail (work) but my buddies and I put on our O.D. and we took out. This is the first time that I have played out but I sure am doing it this week. Because Monday is when I start to school then we will not have to worry about K.P. and that. Yesterday when I was on we fed 1200 on my side in the morning and then at 9AM we fed nearly another 1300. Then at noon it was another 1200 and the same for supper. Two of the buddies that came with me and I wash that whole bunch of dishes. I guess I will get some more of it before school start. I went to telephone you Sunday night. But I couldn't get you for nearly 2 hours so I forgot about it. I called at 9:20PM and I decided that would be late enought but it wasn't so when one of these night I am up late or in town I will try and call you. I hope you got the radio and films alright. I bought one of those shirts and it is a size 36 they were not of the 34 and maybe he can wear it over his shirt or something. The way I hear now is that in 3 weeks in this field I will be sent to Lowry field. Lowry field is just a bit closer to town. It is a nicer field and that where I will complete my training, or course. So in the next few weeks I don't think I will be settled so much. Don't send nothing that is of value to me. I am going to send my films into town maybe tonight or tomorrow with one of the men wife that came up with me. Well the way the bulletin bourd reads I will not get paid this month. But don't worry because if I nee any money I will write for it.
This first sheet of paper that I wrote on is what they give you at this service center. I am writing this letter at the service center and is my hiding place too. It is a nice big place and got a bunch of table and that for a person to write. On Tuesday here they make everybody wear their gas masks. Thas is one thing I hate about this field is with so many different things that they got rules on. One reason I wanted to call home was that I wanted to find out about V. How about Larry on his or is he gone or not yet?
April 7, 1943
This is the U.S. O. that I called from in Fort Worth. It is a bus depot. It sure was a nice place. There is a couple of U.S.O. in Ft. Worth and as I have probably told you before I think it is the best town that I have ever hit.
April 14, 1943
Here it is Wednesday afternoon and I am going to K.P. again tomorrow and I guess it will another 16 hours. But I think we were pretty lucky because we will only get it twice for me. I got one letter from you and it was mailed on the 12th and only had clippings. I was disappointed because I thought that I would get a few words anyhow. But I never. I don't know if I sent that telegram right or not on address but it was mainly just to tell you where I was at. A person being used to a letter a day sure misses it when he doesn't get any for a week. I got a good cold yesterday. It sure did hit me hard. We woke up around 5:30 this morning and we had to eat before 7 and we just got over to eat in time. I was made barrack chief. I got to keep the barrack and that clean. I got to have detail men to do diffdfent job. I don't have to do no work but I got to report to the Lt. every day at 12:15PM. You got to tell him who was not at roll call. It is only a bunch of shit. I sure will be glad when this 3 weeks is over. If I was startioned some place I wouldn't mid the job so bad because it would help you out. But here it is just some extra work. I believe I will only be here for 3 weeks after Monday. I mean that I will start to school Monday and then go to Lowry Field, for the other 6 weeks of training. They say that Lowry is all better they have brick barracks and you can do much more. They are going to send 73% over there and the rest stay here. I am hoping that I am in that 73% that go. I am feeling fine except for the cold but it is getting worse tonight but that way it was last night and closing for tonight with lots of love from the one in Denver.
April 16, 1943
I am sitting under the cover and very hard to write and it is fairly cool and I got to keep worm. We GI the barrack this afternoon and clean the stove out so I was too lazy to build a fire. The lights will go out soon. I got a card from Bill D. today sent up from Laredo. He is out of the states by this time to my opinion. T.S.S. means Technical School Squadron. I would sooner have Laredow. I got used to the Lone Star State and where they say the ass hold of the 48 but when I hit here I will take the ass hold of the 48. I like the climate in TExas. We sleep in the same end of the barrack. In bact we run the barrack. I made one of them assistant barrack chief and the other one the mail clerk and I am the barrack chief so what more do you want. We have double deck bed. You mention about our sqd at Laredo would have sure been pretty if we would have had the ground sodded. But it didn't look bad then. I took them Sunday and I still had the feeling that I was not going to stay there to get my furlough. After I leave this field I don't know when I will be sent. But I do not think I will be any nearer home. And about a furlough is just a maybe. Because it is getting harder all the time to get one now. And I might get one right away or net stationed some place or else keep on the move. So who can tell? But you can see how everything comes out on that end and I will only be here 3 more weeks then I will goto Lowry field which is right nest to this field for six week course. I am going to be an armor on a large plane the way I get it. It will be fixing them on these big bomber and that. If I would stay here I would go on a pursuit ship for armer. But Lory Field is for bomber armor.
On K.P. we got to do everything. We do not peel potatoes, they got machine to do that. But we wash the dishes and how? And then get the other grub ready for the next meal. You keep on the go and I mean the go ----- and we kish it out to them in cafeteria style. Well I sure would love to sit down and talk with you but there is a job to be done and then I hope we can all be together again in peace in a very short time. So signing off tonight with lots of love from Wes.
April 16, 1943
Here it is Friday and I am feeling fine but that is all. I am thinking about being on the train and being home in the morning but hereI am and no hope till later. It is 2:30 P.M. and I am at the service center and writing. I got to go back to the barrack in about another hour so I can get everybody to GI it. Being I am barrack chief now I got to keep it clean and tomorrow is Sat. and it is that nice inspection. We got to have a nice clean barack or else we can't go to town. And I want to go in and see what it is like. I got a card from Bill and then Larry, Kleanor Ann and some other girl and then a couple letter from home. I mentioned to you about getting the tires recapped and get all the gas that you could and it was on the reason that I was coming home on furlough. I got my furlough but the there was the talk and I had a feeling that I wouldn't get it so that is why I didn't sya nothing out to you until I was more sure of it. I don't think I could ever get a furlough that would have been better. Becuase of my birthday and Easter but here I am and nothing I can do about it. The mail had been pretty good now on getting it but not as good as Laredo. (the good place now) I sent that telegram and I paid for it myself. It cost me 40 cents and I said Feeling fine and gave my address. I have not tried to get films here yet. I am not allowed the camera on the field at all so my buddy and I are going to take it in town some place and keep it because I want to get some good pictures here too.
April 18, 1943
Here it is Sunday evening and I am feeling fine. If I keep up this way I will not have much money before long. I got a pass yesterday (Sat.) at 4P.M. and I went into town and it cost you 20 cents one way. And this is a real town but one thing I can't understand is that the stores are not open late like at home. The prices are sure high on eating and that in town compared to that what you pay here on the post.
This afternoon I went to town again, so today I hit a new place. They got a large park here with the zoon in it. The zoo is small compared to St. Louis but it is sure nice. I spent the whole afternoon at it. We walked all over the place. Then after we got nearly all done on walking we found out you could rent a bicycle for 25 cents an hour.
We got to 9 weeks of school and then I will be sent to a shipping post. There I will stay like Dallas. Blines is doing. Waiting to get the whole army of everybody together of every type. You know they get everybody lined up for them jobs. They need so many person of every type to get a sqd up. Then you will learn everybody in your group and after you get everybody lined up for their job and know what they are going to do. In the time we were getting lined up to go across they will give you a furlough but that you cannot tell until you get there. We would be on the coast for about 3 months, so I guess I have about 5 months here. Now listen don't get excited about this now because that may be all changed because anything can happen. But I don't gthink it will be any sooner. In fact we know I got to go in with school for 9 weeks. But let us hope and pray by that time that the war will e over. But the work that I am going to do will be nice work I think. We will work on small cannon that are on the plane and the large gun that are 50 cal. Then we will get some work on bomb racks. We adjust the gun and fix them before each trip. So with lots of loads of love from the one that is always thinking of home.
April 20, 1943
Here it is Tuesday. I started last night and we tore down a 50 cal. machine gun. You got to know every piece of it. My vocabulary is sure going to increase a lots. I didn't know there was so many parts and that. And boy it sure is a mess but that what they are going to teach us and that kind of work we are going to do so a person will have to learn them. Tonight we work on it again. I don't think it will be hard work. There are lots worse job to do then this one. Well every 3 months the way I hear they put out about 10,000 armers or students from this field. Most of these will go to gunner school. I am not going to take gunner training because I believe I would like to fly but I think I will try and keep one foot on the ground all the time. Lots of the kid here are just new in the army and then they are taking this school and gunner and in 6 months will be across. I think I have had a fairly goo break becuase I have been stationed fairly ong here in this country. Lots of the kid that came in when I did is across by now. I think I will be satisfied with my work and you can't alway get the job you want.
I got your air mail and 3 cent mail at the same time. So let us go back to free mail and 3 cent mail. I think I will sen them films home from now on because it costs me 85 cents to get those developed. That is kinda high I think. Being I don't think I will get paid for ahwile you can buy that pocketbook and sed one to me. Listen when you guy one be sure it has about 2 or 3 places to put picture in it. And still not a real big one. They have some pretty nice aire corps pocketbook around here but I will leave you get me one. You ask about this school at night well there are 3 shifts and I happen to hit the night work again. That is the only thing I can do. On this line I don't know if there is a inspection line on it or not. But maybe I will be sent to another school afer I get out of here. Who knows, I sure don't. This is a full 9 week course I started last night.
April 21, 1943
I worked on the 50 caliber again and it sure is hard, to study and think when you haven't done it for a long time. It is hard to stand up for the class but a person go to do it so what can you do about it. At midnight we get to eat. Night before lad I had 5 rolls and last night I had 6 doughnuts. We were only supposed to have 2 apeiece but I went in the line 3 times. My cold is failry good but still ahve a small part left of it. My tooth is alright but there is one more I think I got to pull. Tomorrow at 1 P.M. we go for a physical exam for to see if we can past for gunner. The only time I have for myself is from after I eat dinner (1 P.M.) untill 4:30 P.M. when I eat supper. I got to do everything for myself in that time. Well I sure wish I could have come home like Dick T. but I hated to get stuck on that guard sqd because they start a four week course and taht would cut them out of everything. Chupik stayed at Laredo. And the trains are sure getting crowded. That was one thing that I was afraid of on coming home on Easter because there would have been so many traveling that you wouldn't know which way to turn. When we came up here they ahd to make up a special and from Fr. Worth on up here. If we wouldn't have been transfered we would ahve had to lay over. Gordon Dietrich was a hit old for me to run around with much. I did go to town with ime once in awhile and he is not married. That girl is just one from New York. My buddy here are Howard, Bernhard, Droemer. I will send some picutes of them home today or tomorrow.
April 22, 1943
I took my exam and I will not gunner training. I did not pass my exam. I have bad eyes and then my elbow they marked me out on. I had bad teeth too. I am marked for oversea duty and will be sent just as soon as I finish this course. I will be sent to a shipping place and wait just like these other guys are going. IT might take awhile and it might be soon. I believe I will have Sunday off this week. I am still working on the caliber 50 machine gun and will the rest of the week. Then I will go on another gun but I don't know what kind. IT sure does make your head swing to go back to schoold because that 6 hours, now they put 8 hours to you. But there is 8 more week of it. I don't know how I am going to make out on it but I will keep you up on the news.
Will send some of the pictures home tomorrow because I have not any time now.
April 24, 1943
This is Saturday. I recieved your money and all of it 6 bucks. I think you very much. I believe I mentioned it to you that Uncle Roger and Aunt Sadie sent me a buck too. I got 10 letters or birthday cards yesteray and got 3 today. The ones I got I sure like. I got a letter from Chnpik and he said that he was able to get a 3 day pass and went home. He said he did not have much time at home but it was better than nothing. They transfer some out of the guard squadron and more than to another sqd. Then the letter I got from Bill he mentioned about going through the d--- state of Texas. He got a good break to my opinion. But I don't think all of that should have been written. But he should know what is best and what he was trying. But that on the telephone, anyone could be listening.
Last night we worked on the 50 caliber machine gun and tonight is the last for the caliber 50. Last night we has a test to see how fast we could tear a gun down and put it back together again. We had to take all the working parts out. It took me 6 min. and 5 secounds. The worse one was 8 min 50 secondes. The best one was 3 min 50 seconds but he got shove back a week on kind of sickness. But anywhere between 5 minutes and 10 minutes is good time. So I don't know how next week will come out. But for this week I think I passed. We don't take any notes at all. We are not allowed any books or anything. The only think we can do is get what we can in class room. I told Bill Daniels and Carl Wand to write home with their letters because I will be moves and the letters will never catch up with me. So if you please you can send them to me, because it will take a month to make round trip and I will move.
April 26, 1943
Well on Easter day I was able to got to town. I wanted to go to church but missed it here on this field because I never got up early enough. The Catholics had theirs after the Protestant service. We were supposed to get ready at 8:15AM. Well I went to school till midnight and by time I ate and got to bed was after one. So Bernhart knew a preacher real well here. We went into town and tried to find the place but it took us till 11:30. So we were out all the way around. This Bernhard is a fairly old man a round 31 but sure doesn't look like it. He is a Lutheran. So next week we are planning on getting to go if we can get out. Then we got dinner and cost us 65 cents. Then we went out to the park again. And I don't believe we see all of it yet. We went to the museum and looked at all the different animals and we spent the most of the afternoon there. It cost us 80 cents for supper and then I wanted to go skating but I had a small headache so couple of us went to the show and the others went skating. You sure have more to do than in Laredo. I got 2 more months here now, it sure is a long ways to look ahead to and in Laredo the time passed quicker but here it is slow. If I stay here I will work on pursuit ship, that is a single seat plane and we fix the gun to shoot through the propeller and that. Something I never thought a person could do. But I will learn. At Lowry Field we work on those big ship fixing the gun and small cannon. Tonight I start on the caliber 30 machine gun. It is a little different but I think we only study on that couple of days. I sure received a lot of letters and cards for my birthday but being going to school I haven't much more time than to write home. So if you see anybody just tell them thanks and that I am busy and haven't much time to write. The weather here yesterday was sure nice in the afternoon, it got cloudy for a few minutes and then turned out nice again. We wanted to rent a bicycle but couldn't find the place. So we walked. Today the weather is very nice.
Something I never mentioned I don't believe was about all of us getting sick. I started the whole thing off last Friday. Then when we met couple of the kid that is over at Lowry that came up from Laredo, they were sick too. One of them was in the hospital. The last one is getting over with it now and that is Droemer. It was the climate I believe.
Tell daddy thanks for his letter that he wrote. And I sure wish he could see some of the things and would have been with all at home on Easter. Ending for today with lots and lots of love from the man in Denver.
April 27, 1943
Last night instead of working on a 30 caliber we work on a 20 M.M. cannon. It was a small cannon that they have on these large planes. The bullets if you want to call it that is .785 in diameter. IT is over 2 inches long and will shoot over 550 a minutes. So do you call it a cannon or not or what? All I can say I would hate to stand in front of it because I believe it would knock you down and low. We work on this cannon 4 day and then the two last days we work on a 30 caliber and go out on the range and shoot these and then clean them. Next week I guess we got a 37mm cannon. They was talking about sending us to another field instead of Lory because Lowry is too full. It is a shit house rumor and you know what they lead to some time, right and sometime wrong. But I think this school will be all right. It is kinda tiresome but it is not so bad.
I heard last night one of th ekid that came from Laredo with us that noby can be stationed down there over 9 or 10 months. I can see why they started to give the guard that commando training. They will get shipped out as guard and to b a guard I wouldn't want at all. So in one way I think I got out of there in time and that is about all. Only that I missed my furlough. We sign the payroll tomorrow and get paid Saturday sometime. But we don't get the whole month pay. We only get $20. But that is plenty good and will last me for awhile.
The weather today is a bit windy but it is still nice.
April 28, 1943
I got your clippings and air mail on the same mail. They have been coming at one a day so how much better do I want. I believe we had a better weather than you had. Well on that lily I sure with that it would get there on time and it was a good one. I sent or put the order in at 1:30 P.M. Saturday and I wanted it to be sent from ?Proner? because they give daddy some nice work. But it got there that is the main thing and I am glad it was a good one.
Well with us leaving Laredo these was 10 that was supposed to come to this field. That depends on our grade we made on the test we took at the field. We were the highest. I didn't have much idea of coming here before that but they sent that order in to the field. I could have got out of it but then I didn't know what would happen when I got back from a furlough. Because there was something in the air with that four week training for the guard. So the way everything set is that I had a chance to go to school and didn't know when I would have another one so I took it before I would be hooked in guard duty and not get out of guard. If you are an armer you do not fly. As the saying is you can't fix gun in the air. The job I do will be take the gun off a plane when it comes back from a flight and put some clean ones on. Then I take the dirty one and clean them after I go them clean put them on another plane that comes in with dirty gun. In other words I am in the air corps and I will only fix the air corps guns because they are different than the ground guns. But really I can't tell you what kind of plane I will work on until I start on my fourth week of schooling because it depends on what kind of school I will go to. ON the battle field linke that can be any place now because with the plances flying so far they can hit any place. But the way I get it I will be startioned at an airfield. It is the same kind of work that Carl Wand is doing over in England. But for the present don't worry about it because it is a long time yet. Because after I get out of school you got to get your practice on the work. If I could talk to you I could give you the while line, etc.
Today one of the kids went on sick call and they put him in the hospital. It was Howard. He had a 104 fever. The two kid that went to Lory, they was in the hospital too. All of us felt like going be we wanted to keep on in the same class. But Howard couldn't pull through it so we went on sick call. Everyone of us had the same thing.
April 29, 1943
I got a letter from Carl W. from England. It only took 15 days to get to Laredo and then 2 days up here. I am on the last night of the 20 mm cannon tonight. Well Ralph S. might say about quick rating but they sure are outting them down now and how. They claim there re too many of them running around. But if he can make them I am all for him. On this school very few fail because if you don't get it in time all they do is wah you back a class. By takig it over you get it then. But if they was you back a couple times you are put on s--- detail. Cupik is going to get a furlough the 3rd the way Lamb talk or said in his letter today. Lamb is another kid that I hang around with. I am sitting on the floor and it is hard to write.
May 1, 1943 - 2:15 P.M.
Well here it is another day and I am feeling fine but a bit warm. I have my OD on and just got paid and I decided to get away from the barrack and come here to the service center to write. Yesterday was GIthe barrack and you know what that means to get ready for inspection on Sat. morning so I did not get time to write. Tonight is the last night for this week. So now I have had the 20 mm and 50 caliber and 30 caliber. Tonight we go out on the range and fire the guns and clean them and then some of them got something wrong with them such as a sear slide or spring which make a run away gun, etc. Then next week we start on a 37 mm cannon. I think we will move out some time Monday. The way everything sounds now we will bet another train ride because Lowry field is filled up. So it is hard telling where we will e sent. Now this is not for sure but I do know that Lowry field is filled up and I doubt we will go there and I do know for sure that we are moving out because the Lt. told me that we were moving out for the last 6 week course. I know of a lots of worse job than this one and lots more men are working harder than I am. In this thing everybody for himself on breaks but still everybody got to work together.
Howard is still in the hospital and this is where we will all get separated. Because he and I were the only two that did not pass for gunner and the rest did. So being he is in the hospital we will be shipped out and he will be by himself. We wanted to stay together but he just couldn't make it and that is the only thing could happen. No Bernhardt is sick and he feels pretty bad tonight (or I mean today) and I do not know how he will stay with it. He is trying to make it tonight so he does not have to fall out a whole class.
I went into town last Sunday (Easter) AND I couldn't buy a film any where. So yesterday a kid went to town and he tried to get some for me but coudn't get any at all. He went to the Kodak place and they did not have any and said they did not know when they would get any. So the ones at home I believe I will have to send for some just as soon as I get settled again. So when I write for some you send the ones that got to be used the first.
May 2, 1943
Here it is Sunday night. Yesterday we ate something that gave everybody the GI s----. Well that is what I call it and that what everybody else calls it too. I am trying to write this laying down but did not work out so good. So I will have to sit up. This morning I woke up 3 times with pain in my belly. That at 5 I had to get up and then back to bed again. I got up at 9 and Bernhart and I went and got ready to go to curch. But when we went down to get the but it was full and would not pick us up. The buses run every half hour during the morning and that way we were late again. We didn't eat so then we came back and ate at the P.X. Then we decided we would try and get down to Howard in the hospital. We didn't know if we could or not be we were going to try anyhow. He had a couple of letters here and a newpaper and a box so we thought he would like to have that being it was Sunday. Well when we got down there they said we could not see him but we could take it to the ward that he was in. Well when we started down his ward here he was walking so we talked to him a few minutes. He is feeling pretty good now and don't know whether he will get out tomorrow or not. So I will tell you tomorrow and then we came out of the hospital and tried to get on a bus but it was full so we had to wait till another bus came around. So then we hit town at 1 P.M. We was supposed to meet Droemer there at the park at 1 P.M> Well we waited for him about 15 minutes but he didn't show up at all. So we took off because we wanted to see some country and we had to move. So we walk to the end of the street car track and got some information there. We found out we could go to Golden, Colorado for 50 cents a round trip. It has a streetcar that run out every hour. That is somewhere around 30 or 40 miles I guess. It took up an hour to get out there. It is a small town that set at the very bottom of the mountain. Then you have the mountain road that run up the mountain and the Rock Castle mountain you probably heard about the other day when a 16 year old kid pushed his two brothers off the top and they fell 300 feet and was killed. It has a big flat place on top and then it has a big drop off place in the front. I took a couple of pictures of it so you can see what I mean when I send the film home to be developed. I was sure wishing that I had the car and could have climbed the mountain but you know again it is the same old reason. Beings I am up in this part of the country as you always tell me to have a good time so I am doing it. But I sure wish you could see some of this country up here because it i nice. Then we got back to camp about 5:30 or 6 and Bernhart and I wanted to put a telephone call home but couldn't get connection. He couldn't make his before 6 or 7 hourse and they said that Chicago would hold mine up for about 4 or 5 hour. Now this is the second time I tried and couldn't make it. The bad part is that we go to school from 6 P.M. to midnight and Sunday is the only time. If I had the evening off I probably get through easy but this way I can not. So next Sunday I am not going to town is I can or ot but going down to the service center about 11 o'clock our time and put my call in and then I will set down till I get it.
This Sunday made it bad because everybody got paid and lots of telephone calls were being made. But next Sunday I will make it or know the reason why if I am here yet. So you can plan on waiting for the call. I will be moved out of here after my third week and where I finish my six week I don't know. I guess I will go by myself because I am the only one that didn't pass for gunner. Roward was with me but he is behind a week now so that leave him out. My eyes were what kept me out of gunner because they were 20-30. My right eye is 30 and left eye is 20. Your eyes got to be 20-20 to get gunner. But I could not make it so here I am. So far reading the bottom lie I could not do it with my right eye but with my left eye I could. I did get paid 20 dollars Sat. afternoon. You hae got all the pictures that I sent to you. I listen to the President talk tonight about the coal mine strike. Well to my opinion I think they should not shut down the mines because every minute a shop is shut down a person don't relize what it means on this end. But everybody in the civilian life don't realize what the army life is. After you get into the army your whole life changes then. But to my opinion I think the President did the right thing. But it still is going under the one man leadership.
You talk about the water and that in Texas and up here. Well the water is good. But since I have been in the army I have never worried about or had any trouble with my bowels moving.
About the wreck in Laredo there is still one kid in the hospital when I left there. And he will be in for a fairly long time yet. I just got a letter from Lamb and he did not mention about Higgen being out so I guess he is still in. The one kid just got out the week before we came up here.
Tonight after I couldn't get the phone call home, Bernhart and I went up and got a chicken dinner with ice cream and potatos and butter beans and milk. Cos me 55 cents so you can see I am living high. I don't know if I told you or not but does Bernhart look like he is 32 years old. I tihnk he is young looking for his age and he is very nice guy. So then we came back to the barrack and started to write letters and the one I write to is home (No place like home)
May 4, 1943
Last night we carried out another kid that came up with us. That is Droemer. He was sick and he went to the show and came back and laid down on his bed. The a kid ask him if he wanted some candy from a box he got from home and all Droemer did was just to turn over. Then I looked at him and I felt his head and he was burning up. So I ask him if he didn't think he should go to the hospital. And he couldn't even answer me. So I called Bernhart and then we rushed him away. So then today I went to the hospital. You now that I don't have much time but I still think it is my duty to go and see them because I have been with them for a long time.
Here I am again and it is Wednesday. I got three letters yesterday. I am glad to hear about the recapping. The job. I have seen around here on the tires are fairly good. The ones in Laredo were really good. But when you think that once upon a time you could buy a new one for 10 bucks and now they nearly want that much for recapping. But anything to keep the old thing going and you can enjoy it. Gorden Dietrich is Doc that I always talk about. I know he is a poor writer so the only thing you can do is ask questions.
Well the eats here are fairly good but all the camp run about the same. One thing here we have pie and cake more often than Laredo. One thing I forgot to tell you was that they put out buttermilk on the table once in awhile and I started to drink it whenever I get a chance. Sounds kind of funny but that is the truth. In fact I have started to eat lots of things.
Tonight we go out on the shooting range and shoot a Springfield rifle. I believe we get 20 rounds to shoot. Then we clean the guns and come back to the barrack. We have study two nights on this 37 M.M. cannon. It sure is a large gun and has a lot to it. I have some paper I want to send home one of these days. I want you to keep them. I don't know when but it will be some time. You mention about the climate and that with the nose bleed. Well everyone of us have had a nose bleed. But it only lasts for a couple of days and then it quit.
Well I have stayed at this camp nearly a month in fact it will be over a month before this week goes over. In fact this month sure have traveled. I don't know where but she sure went. Well then to where I don't know but I will leave you know just as soon as I get settled. And I don't want you to worry because there is nothing to worry about. And I will keep on writing. So don't forget and don't worry.
May 6, 1943
Today is Thursday and I am staying in the barrack. The Lt. came in the barrack and this morning when I went to give him the report he said that all of the barrack had to GI it every day that we are here. The Lt. sure is getting tough now because we only got this week here yet. So now we got to clean the floor and that every day. I though that Doc would answer you soon becuase all he does is set in the mail room and writing is the only thing he can do. About that exercise when you get done with that you are all out. If we wouldn't be tired out we would be doing it all the time. Every day from 10:45 A.M. to 12:15 noon we take wither exercises or drill. Every other day we have drill. There is no FBI in the army to get into. It is the MP or guards. But he would be just like a kid to want to MP because to show off and no study or no brain to it. He is probably putting a big front up and now afraid he will get into something where he will lose out altogether. You know how dumb he was in school but if he can make it I am all for him but he always scrwing sombody else out of it that does deserve it. You talk about planes being messy when they came in. Moritz is just in a plane school and anybody that fly or any place where is flying is done. At gunnery school you should have seen them plane. You stand in the back of a AT-=6 with a belt hooked to your belt and half the time you are laying out in the thin air. And that is the first time flying for a gunner where with a pilot he is used to flying somewhat.
May 7, 1943
The weather outside is raining again and I am sitting in the barrack writing. Everybody wanted to GI the barrack at 3 PM so they could go to the show. So I said it was all right with me. So, I guess we will GI at 3 instead of 1:30. I am sure going to be glad when I get rid of this job. It sure has gave me a lots of trouble. Mrs. Moritz wrote me a letter and I got it yesterday. It sure was a nice long letter and i was glad to hear from her.
Well I am moving out and I think we will go to Lowry. But I am not sure. But I will leave you know just as soon we will go to Lowry. But I am not sure. But I will leave you know just as soon we hit and get time to wire.
I heard that 28 of them men were shipped out of Laredo to other fields. Some of them are coming up here and other one to other fields. Howard got out of the hospital yesterday morning and is feeling fine.
May 8, 1943
This morning when we got up it was snowing. It was a bit rain with it but still was the first snow I have seen for a long time. It was a fairly good snow and is still keeping it up. But just as soon as it hit the ground it melts.
Well I am only moving 6 miles as far as I know now. But I am sure that I am going to Lowry Field. So you can still keep the trip in mind. Because I think the trip up hee will be much better than going to Larad. I found out about the guest house that is on the field. It is only 75 cents a night for each person that stay in the guest house for up to 3 days. I don't think that is bad at all. Because a hotel room would cost you somewhere around 4 bucks a night. But we will see how it comes out after I hit there and how everything at home. This morning when I went over to the Lt. we barrack chief got a 24 hour pass. Now if the weather get nice I am planning on going up in the mountain or something. But if the weather keeps up this way I guess I will go to the service center and enjoy myself there. If it is nice I am taking a bus up the mountain to some small town and see how it will be. I got your box of films and letter yesterday. Berhard is married. He got married at Christmas time. That 55 cent chicken dinner is the PX price. It is still snowing and raining so I think I will try to wash some clothes so when I move I will have all clean clothes to start with.
May 1943 @ Lowry Field | Denver Colorado
May 10, 1943
Well I got moved and can't say much about this first week. I am on detail work for the rest of the week and that is probably is KP. I am in the 2nd Tech. Sch. Sqd. at Lowry field No. 2 in the barrack 701.
The bunch I cam with is all seperated. I don't know where they are at but will have to find them. So I am all by myself. Again, I got to start out new and build some friends up. The other guys are on the field here but different sqd.
Yesteray after I called you up I sat around with Bernhard to get his phone call through. He got it about 4PM so then we went to town. We didn't do nothing but go to a show but it was still at out of the camp. Droemer and Howard went to Golden and they caught a ride with an old man and he too them up in the mountain and all over. They said they sure had a good time and said it sure was cold and the snow on the trees and that made it pretty. It I know my call would have went throught that quick they would have waited for me. But the operator said it might take about 4 hour but it was only an half hour. I will have to go to school from 6:30PM to 12:30. Then we eat and to bed. We get up at 10:45 AM and then eat and then dinner at 5 or 6 PM. I have 6 weeks of school here and the one week of detail. So that makes 7 weeks here anyhow. Well I just heard that we are going on KP tonight at 7 PM. And here it is 4:30 PM. And we have it the rest of the week. So you know what that means. They say it is not so hard but KP is bad when ever you talk about it. I will think of everybody tonight when I do KP.
May 11, 1943
Well here it is Tuesday afternoon and I am feeling fine and sure hope everybody at home is the same way.
I guess you want to know how I came out on the KP. Well I went on at 6:45 P.M. and got off this morning at 6 A.M. The KP wasn't so bad. The main thing we did was to get the things ready for meals today. Three of us had to peel 100 Lb of onions. That was the first time I ever had tears in my eyes for a long time. We we get them peeled and then we had to cut the up. But to cut them all you had to do was put them in a machine. But to peel them I guess the right kind of guy had not had to else he would have invented a machine for it. Then after that we peeled 1000 lbs of potatoes. But to peel them you got to only put them in a machine. But the machine doesn't pick the eyes out of them. Well that was another job. Then we had 3 basket of spinach to pick out and clean. Then we had to make the morning buns. I never did taste such good buns. They sure was good but we didn't get all we wanted. I had 3 half pints of milk. Then we opened a bunch of tomato juice. Well I had to have 3 glasses of that. That is another thing I started to drink. In fact I started to drink and ealt lots of things. But don't go too far on that drink problem. (Don't get the wrong thing in your mind.)
Well last night I found Bernhard and he is way down the field. But he got a luck break because he was put on the A shift and i was hooked on the C shift again. He gets up in the morning at 4:30 A.M. and eats and gets ready for school and eat. But then in the afternoon he get off at 3 PM and can go to town every night. But he got to be in at 10 PM. But maybe I will be better off this way and save some money. But to go to town would be lots better. Now it only cost us 10 cents to get to town. Before it was 20 cents. We get better service here too. I can not tell you much about the field because I don't know yet. But it won't take me long. Then I got to find out about you and your room if you want to come up. Over at the other field it was much better but here I am not sure about everything. But I will find out and leave you know just as soon as possible. Well that is enough about that for now.
The weather here is sure nice and you can't beat it. Ti is nice and warmed the nice cool breeze from the mountain makes it that much better. The only bad thing is that the runway is just across the road and the planes sure make the noise. We really got some real planes here. Well my page is getting to the end and here again to say hello with lots of love Wes.
P.S. You can try and send a few lines if you want to
PFC Wesley Hochgraber | 2nd Tech. Sch. Sqd. | Lowry Field, No. 2 | Bks. 701 | Denver, Colorado
May 12, 1943
Tonight it is nice and cool and it is trying its best to snow. It sure is different thatn Laredo. I did not do KP last night but I am on it for tonight and I go on at 5:45 PM. Last night I went down to see Bernhard and then I went to the show with a couple of the other kid. Bernhard work KP last night so he went to bed. But I went to the show and then got back about 9 PM to the barrack. Then this morning I didn't get up till 11:30 AM. It was too cold to get up. Then I ate and went over and waited for Berhard. Then we went to the service center and then to the Post Exhange. But on Lowry Field No. 2 the service center si not as good as Buckley Field.
May 13, 1943
I work last night on KP and can't say nothing against it. It sure wasn't hard at all. I started out at about 7 PM and 3 of us had 200 lbs of onions to peal again. Well I peeled until 9PM and then the knife slipped and I cut my thumb. You know how the army is if you only get a pin stick yougot to have it fix and a report made on it. Because if anything set in then everybody is clear except the hospital. So I had to have it clean and wrap up. Then from 9:15 PM I didn't hardly do a thing except sleep. The young kid that I was working under sure was easy and he told me to take out and hide someplace. Si I went and selpt for awhile. Then about 1 AM we fed another meal and all I had to do was tell the men where to sit down at. The mess hall where I work at is the biggest one in the U.S. It sure is a nice and clean place. I never believe they had a nice mess hall in the army. All the trays and that is nickel plated and sure does look pretty.
Well I just got back from the show and will finish this in Bernhart barrack. I have listened to the good news over the army. In another month this thing should be over with. Anyhow the biggest part will (I hope). This morning I got off of KP about and the weather was sure fine. I didn't get up until 2:30 this afternoon. Then it was getting cloudy and now I think it may be snow in the morning. When I was in Texas I wouldn't pay any attention to the cloud but now when I am north I pay more attention to it.
May 14, 1943
I got up around noon again today and they passed out our passes. So I have my class A pass, but the only thing the trouble is that I don't have much time to go any place. I think I will get KP again tonight. The only trouble being here you got to start out new on your friends. There are a few I can go with but they are the type that spend their money just as soon as they get it and then they come around trying to get some from you. I don't mind loaning money out but I still don't care for it so much. That is one thing about Bernhard he had a banking account and anytime he needed money he just wrote himself out a check. And Howard got his money and he planned ahead so he don't run to low. So with the bun oh I was with took care of their money and that was one thing nobody mentioned to the other guy about. Anything that get me more is the idea everybody running around wanting money. I am putting this penny in here because I don't know if you have seen them or not. They are made here in Denver and we see them all the time now. It is used on account of shortage of copper. I suppose. They turn in color awful quick. Under the 1943 you can see that D for Denver. They sure seem to have penny not copper color.
May 15, 1943
Here is Sat afternoon and I work KP last night and got off at 6:45 AM this morning. They had 265 pies sitting out on the table and then they put a kid over them to guard them. But during the evening there was 15 of them missing. The kid that was in my barrack at Buckley he was checking clothes. So we got a pie ad put it in the rooms and ate it when ever we got a chance to eat it. They sure was watching the pies. Then I was put in a clipper room that is where the dishes are washed. I only had to take care of the Division V. Then after I got done with washing dishes I laid down under the washer and went to sleep. Then I woke up and I seen Quincy written up on the top. Here was Meas Sullivan of Quincy, Ill and the date was 3/16/42. So I put my name under it and the date. Maybe if know that kid. When I was working last night I counted how many people it would hold. The mexx hass has seats for 1600. So you can see it is not so small. I said it was the biggest one but I was wrong. I heard last night that Scott Field got the biggest one. This is big enough for me. This morning when I got off it was raining and we only got about a mile and half walk. Well I got a bit wel. Then I came back and went to bed and woke up about 3 PM and decided I would go to town. So I clan u pand shave and got dress and a cloud came up and all of a sudden it started to rain and hail. So when it quit about 5 we had about an inch of ice on the ground. So I decided I would not go to town and might go to the show or else try and play bingo but I believe it will be the show.
May 16, 1943
Here it is Sunday afternoon and feeling very good. When I got up this morning about 10:30 the sun was out and was nice. But it soon got cloudy and it has been that way the rest of the day. I wanted to go to town but the weather wasn't so good and I got KP for tonight so I stayed in camp.
On that guest house business on the field is all put out. They don't have one on this field so I guess you will have to get in a hotel or something. I will pick you one out and give you the address and that so when you come you won't have to run all over town about it. You can decide on the date you want and I will tell you the day I get off and that way it won't be bad. Tonight it will be my last night on KP. Then I guess I will start to school Tuesday. Teh I am sure of 6 full weeks here. So you can get everything set out. I might have longer than that.
May 17, 1943
Today I moved from 701 to 708 barrackes. This is sure a nice clean place and the bed are that much better. This seems more like home. Well this morning I got off at 7 AM and came back and went to bed. About 9 the serg came in and said that 12 men failed to show up for KP so he wanted 12 more. Well I sure didn't want to go. So finally the noncommision office went and done it. So I went back to sleep at 1 PM I was woke up and had to go to a speech at the show. Then after that I went and moved.
Last night we had about 2 inch snow but this morn it didn't last long. Then afternoon it has reained all evening. I start to school tomorrow night (Tuesday) at 6:15 PM and so I can tell you more later.
I sign the pay roll tonight at 9 PM and I think I will get paid in full. That should give me around 60 bucks. I should be able to a lots with that money don't you think.
May 18, 1943
I went up after mail this morning after I mailed your and I got 7 letters. I got 5 from home and 2 from Car Wand. One was sent to Laredo and the other one to Buckley. He mentioned about another 3 day to to to London. So I got all your letters.
May 19, 1943
It is nearly 12:30 (noon) and I just went up and got the mail. I recieved another from home and one from Carl Wand. But they have been following me around. I have no evening off except one and that is my day off. But when you come I will have to get up early in the morning and can be with you every morning until about 1:30 PM in the afternoon.
You mention about Dallas wanting his fishing stuff. Well if would be more of a fisherman I would fish in these mountain streams and lakes. There is good fishing around here ut since I ate some of the fish from Laredo I can't stand them any more at all. You mention about the army display at home. Well I sure wish that all of you would go down and see it. Because there should be lots of things that would be really interesting there. And then look at them 37 m.m cannon and machine gun. All the kid here no is in good shape. The first week here is about electricity. That is wiring up these turret and that. It sure is getting deep but I think I can make it.
We had snow flakes last night the biggest I have ever seen. They were over an inch in diameter. I am tell you they were big.
May 5, 1943
The weather is very nice and the sun is shining. This morning I got up about 9:30 and went up and got the mail and the clippings. I think the mail service is really good here. You was talking about rain well we sure have had our share of it. That is about all it has done in the last week.
The work I am doing now is studying out how many ohm and amp there is running through a bunch of wire with resister. It is wiring up these turret and gun in a plane. I got two more night in it that I am off of electric and will do an explosive in a shell and different kinds. So far it has been interesting and the time fly fairly fast. And with this war business I don't pay much attention to it any more. Because I very seldom read a paper and the radio isn't so good in the barracks so that is off too. During the day I am out of the barrack and the night is school so that is the way she goes.
If you do come up, there are two big amusement park with all kinds of ride that you can spend your evenings and I don't think it will dost much. I am going out Tuesday on my day off.
May 21, 1943
The weather today is raining. WE had to stand inspection this afternoon and while he was inspecting up the lines it started to rain so we were dismissed. The morning we got up at 10:30 and GI the barrack. Then we had to march to chow by barrack now. It sure is a note. We go into the mess hall and everybody got to stand up till the whole 10 is ready to sit down. Then we got to get up at the same time. Well I had a bad barrack bag that was torn on the bottom so I turned it in today and get a new one tomorrow afternoon. Next Friday I am turning in about 2 pair of short and couple pair of socks to be salvage. Because they just as well furnish me with them as buy then myself. Half the places you can't get exchange so here is where I am going to. I was suppose to report to the Warrant Officer of Lowry Field No. 1 sometime. I was supposed to see him the 19th but when I seen my name I was ready to go to school on the 20th so I had to wait till today now I missed. I think it is about playing in the band. It is on my service record and he is the leader of the band. But it has been so long since that I played that I got to give it up as my lips ain't that good any more and I would be like starting all over again. If I would've in practice I would take it up.
On coming up here I want you to plan it so we can leave here Tuesday morning and be away all day. And so that I can find you on a Monday. In other words that you are here Monday morn and we can talk about where and what to do. I know you want to seee the town and mountains. And it just depends whether we take the car or the street car depending on you supply of gas.
May 22, 1943
The weather today is sure nice and plenty warm. I am waitin gto go up after my mail and get my barrack bag. I hope to get over to see that Warrant Officer but don't know whether I will make it or not. Got a letter from Doc and he mentioned about all of the men leaving the sqd and that said it sure was hot there. The river and that sure must be high and at Ripley I would be afraid nearly to go accross it.
A town like Quincy would do something but up here we never sign no autograph. Because there is too many around here. A class A pass is good for any time. It is from any time of day and most of the time it has a picture on it.
That feeding you mention about stew well a person gets that quite often
On that rip up here as I said before I can have the morning with you but the afternoon you will have to fix up for yourself. But jst be srue if you are staying a week so that I am able to be with you on two of my days off. So that you hit here on a Monday or Sunday night and that will be ok. But Monday just so I can get in touch with you.
May 23, 1943
We don't get no mail on Sunday so I have to wait till tomorrow and get two letters. If Bernhart would have been off today I would have went to town this morning. But he doesn't get off until next Sunday. That map I sent you is fairly good of the town.
We are studying ammunition now and the different marking and that on the boxes and what they contain in them and in the shells. They sure have a lots of different kinds of bombs and that. But they are always making something new and there just that much more to know.
That watch strap you sent me isn't much good. So I am going down and buy me a dollar one and forget about it. The band has pulled apart in a couple places already and they say you cannot fix it. So I am keeping the one side and if I can find somebody with the other side broken I will try and get it.
May 24, 1943
Well I sure will be glad to see everyone. The move after we leave here will be to some pst to receive our training that will be some place in the USA. I think that should be a couple more months. Then I may go to another school. It is hard telling but I can give you more deail of it when you come. Tomorrow is my day off and I will go to town after exercises with Bernhard. I got to wait for him and going to town with him.
May 25, 1943
I got two of your letter today the one you wrote and the mail from Carl. Mail from Carl I use to get one nearly every week from him. The mail isn't so bad coming across. But it takes awhile.
Well here it nearly 10:50PM and I just got back from town. I sure enjoyed myself at town. I went to the amusement park and sure enjoyed it. I spent 4 buck but I really enjoyed myself so that is all a person got to do. In that 4 buck I bought a nice supper. We went to a high class place and I got a ham supper. It cost me 85 cents but I didn't think that was so bad. For the first time I went on a roller coaster. You know they are high up in the air and you go around in circle and up and down. The main thing I went on it for was to get the scare out of me from Laredo wreck yet. I don't know but I can't get that out of my system. So I thought that would work. Then they had a train there they took us around the lake for only 11 cents. The prices are sure reasonable. We went to Lakeside tonight and next Tuesday I am going to the other one.
Last night we put a 1000 lb bomb up in a B-25 and left it back down again. It is a wrecked plane they have out for us to study on. These planes don'g have nothing wrong with the bombing group but most of them just nose dived into the ground. But it is something to study on.
May 26, 1943
The weather was sure nice this morning and now the afternoon it started to rain again. This morning I got all the mail from home. The card from and the school paper. It sure was nice to see the old school paper again. You think nothing much when you get it at school but then after you leave the school it is different. On this exercises now they are planning on having them in the morning instead of the afternoon. That way we would get off at noon and by one I should be able to meet you at the gate. And then have till 5:30 to get to school by 6:15 PM.
I found one person in our barrack that lives in Quincy at 4th Locust. You probably know by now and another thing he went with some of your relation. In fact your half sister Betty. He is the one that worked at the barge company and gave B his 37 Plymouth car to use all the time. And his brother goes with F. He mentioned about this brother getting married so I guess that means I will have bells ringing soon. So W&S But I was suprised to run into him. And he sure is a loud mouth. Can't beat him. He just mentioned that his mother wrote to him and said that his brother was planning on getting married soon. So I guess F is the one or does she go with him yet? Now on this I don't know what to say but he easy the way you spread it. But anyway is ok with me but what I meant was the hitching part.
May 27, 1943
The weather today reminds me of Texas. The man upstairs just got a letter from home and said that his brother was planning on getting married to Florence. On the grauation problem leav I sue the C on his night. It is pleanty ok with me but up to you. On them shirts I will wait till you come then I will get you couple of them. But to mail on this post is sure hard because they don't want you to send stuff home like that. I am suprised that he can wear my suit but just as well save the money as buy a new one. On that trip try and be here on a Tuesday because remember I have only 6 weeks here of schooling. And try to hit the 5th week of school for Tuesday but you know what you can do. I might hang around here for a week or so before I get shipped out. It is hard telling.
May 28, 1943
Yesterday Larry said he thought that I was mad at him because he was out of the army. In fact he said he think the whole bunch is mad at him. Well to me I don't care at all that he is out.
On Sunday is the same as a week day for me because they have school and exercises 7 day a week. Well then each class has one day a week off and min is Tuesday. So Sunday is just the same as a week day.
On that watch strap I just took my pocket knife and drilled a small hold in it and then spread the small head out. It i working now but I don't know how long it will last. But I tried to fix it because I hated to throw it away.
Larry wrote he got a letter from Jim D. the first one in about 4 months. Well I sure wish him luck on a furlough.
May 29, 1943
I was kind of surprised to hear you sell peonies on account of all those other patches. But if you can make a couple dollars off of them that is that much better. Mow listen on coming the 27th 28th and 29th. I graduate on the 26th. That is on Saturday morning. I am not sure of leaving then but the bunh that graduate this morning just pulled out. It will be my luck to move out. And I sure don't blame you for wanting to stop at Lincoln for a short visit. Because if you are making the trip get the most out of it because it is har dtelling when you will do it again. So see everything that you want to and I sure wish I could travel with you but you know how it is.
May 30, 1943
It rained most of the night last night and this morning it is fairly muddy out. But I am used to mud so what do I worry about. Last night was the first time I put on a pair of overshoes for a long, long time. But I knew how to walk in them yet. I was really suprised.
Last night instead of standing in line for chow. I cam back to the barrack and waited for about a half hour and then went back. I got to bed around 2AM. THis morning I was woke up at 10:30 and wash my face and went and ate. We had ham and potatoes and ice cream and lemonade for a drink. Not a bad meal at all. Then I cam back and wrote Carl a letter and got that finished so I decided to start one home. Here you got to buy the V-mail. In Laredo they gave it to you. But that is Texas and not Denver, Colorado. I sure can't see why they make us take exercise on Sunday and being this a holiday I think they should leave us off. But they claim that this is the army and a soldier never has no time off. So I guess we will take exercises. That is one thing about the army they have their way and in civilian life if you didn't feel like doing something you didn't do it. Now don't get me wrong here there is nothing wrong with the army but I am laying here and writing and don't know what I am writing about so forgive me.
I took the letter down to the service center that I wrote yesterday. I don't think it will out any sooner than this one will. All the day room post offices are closed on Sunday.
May 31, 1943
Well today is Monday and of course it is pay day and that is the main thing. We got paid in full today and I think they paid me 10 bucks too much. But I will find out next month because they will check up on it and if I did they will take it off next month.
Being today was pay day and a holiday I guess they left us off of exercises today. So I am down here with Bernhard writing this letter. There was nothing to do in our barrack so I decided I would come down with the bunch of kids that I was with. I was kind of surprised to hear that Doc wanted into the MP group. But a person mind sure changes when he is at a place like that and in work like that. And I guess it is not so cool there now winter. Doc was mad when I was down there because he wanted a furlough for the April 1st and he did not get it so then he said that he did not want any at all any more. But I see he got that out of his mind. That H & G Hodges. I am kind of suprised that they got a furlough because now they figure a emergency furlough with their regular ones. When we first hit there or I think it was in December their house burned down and it was a night and the whole family was put in the hospital over it. Then they went home and they tried to get one when I did but they couldn't. But I am glad to hear they got one. I sure would liek to know who the kid was that got shot with that 45 cal. But I thought somebody would some time because some of them didn't know what the score was. And when I was down there they had some pretty close ones. Again I will graduate on the morning of the 26th. Well I might be sent out the same day and I might not. It is just hard telling but I can move out that day and it would be my luck to move out that day. I will not have any leave here but when I get stationed at a camp when I leave here I will be able to come home. So after I leave here I will be put in a camp to receive my training. It is the main thing just practice. That will be a couple more months or more. But this is a school and they can not give you a furlough or leave unless emergency. But I will have to get stationed when I can get one. But after you leave here I would take your time and see the country and stop off any time you felt like it. But I sure would stop at Lincoln for sure. And there is nothing you got to be ashamed of. There are tourist camps fairly close to the camp.
You cut that clipping out about that women doing that to the men in service. Well that is old stuff we had that in Laredo. That is common to me. But we had a couple cases like that in Laredo and I thought I told you about it but I guess I never.
There is sure a lot of new things pop up now. You can walk down the street and an old man will walk up to you and say, "I am an ex-service man" and he want to sell you a penny pinout for a nickel. And I doubt if they know what the army is but they try anything once. When you come be sure you don't forget to bring an iron to press your clothes and that. Then I can have a good press in my clothes too.
June 1, 1943
Here it is Tuesday and my day off and I am feeling fine and sure hope the same for the ones at home. It is noon and I am still in camp. I think I will go and leave here about 4 or 5 and go out in the park again. Being I didn't have exercise I went down to Bernhard and then it was pay day for me and Bernhard didn't get paid so I loaned him a five. Then we went to the service club to eat about 4. Bernhard has got a check account but cannot use it at this field. They will not cash check for im on this field. At Buckley he could if it was for %5 and lower. But he is a person I don't worry about. His wife is hitting here the 13th of this month too. You talk about handling a 1000 lb bomb well that is a small one. You should see the 2000 lb one. But what I can't see is the small thing that holds them up. It is very small and really light. It only weights 2.7 lbs to hold a 2000 lbs bomb. But I will tell you more about it when you get here.
Last night I was talking to Russel again and he mentioned again about his brother planning on getting married. We have some pretty good talks and it brings back that god Quincy again. The old places where a person hang out and the things a person used to do. I haven't been able to use the films you sent me. And I'm not allowed it on the post so I keep my camera in my bag and when you come I will get it out somehow and you can take it home and then later if I want one you can send me Viril's.
This morning I asked the sergeant how you would get in contact with me when you came. Well what you should do is go and call information and get the number of Lowry Field. Then when you get the field ask for 2nd T.S.S. and I believe the number is 833. Then you can have your message with them and they will radio it to my barrack. Then I can get in contact with you with the number you leave or else meet you some place. I don't know if I ever told you or not but we have a loud speaker 2 way system from the orderly room and when they want to say something or call out the barrack they just put it over the speaker.
Last night I went out on the skeet range and shot skeet. Tonight is my night off and tomorrow night I go out on the pistol range. We shoot the 45 pistol. Half of the kid don' know what the thing look like and if you are an armor that is another job for you to repair them.
June 2, 1943
The weather outside isn't so good. It was raining hard and just now it changed into hail. And I don't think we will have any exercises.
Well I went to town at a little after four last night and went direct to the Lakeside Park. That is where I spent the whole evening and had a good time. For the time I had I only spent a little over 3 bucks. But I didn't think that was bad at all. So until the next week I guess I will stay in camp. But if the weather is good for some afternoon I am hunting them tourist camp for you. But if I don't you can look them up when you come in. Because I think you will come in on 36 route and if you look on that map you are right by Lowry Field and the tourist camps all the way I hear is just round where the map start on the page. Well I am sure sorry to hear about T. but I had a feeling like that wasn't mothing to monkey with. I think he better take care of them. But if I would be him and hunting for a job I would get a good one and start on some kind of a machine and watch the money problem. Because there is now use to get paid a small sum when you could get lots more from some other places. You should see the young kid that are driving the truck in this field. But that is about all that drives the truck is the woman and young. kids.
That program of the Baccalaurete service wasn't of much quality as before (the paper and printing). We had our exercise this afternoon but they were not so bad.
June 3, 1943
After the rain yesterday it turned to cool weather. Last night it was really cool and today it isn't so warm. I got up about 10:15 this morning and went up and got my mail. I got a letter from Chupik and he didn't have much to say except that he had a 14 day furlough and he enjoyed it and sure went fast. H said it sure was hot and that they were working pretty hard.
One thing I want you to hunt up for me and that is my driver license. They are at home someplace but where I sure don't know. Listen I got to have them and the main reason is that you can rent a car in these cities and that may be the next camp I can rent one and you got to have them before they will leave you have a car. And if you can't find them try and get one of some kind.
On Jr. B. you don't know what type of plane that is do you? Is it a b-25, b-24 or b-17? If he is flying them heavy bomber that will be the same kind I will have to work on. The b-17 is your flying fortress. The plan you hallways hear so much about. But the b-24 ain't a bad ship either. But them are the plane that we will check the gun before each trip and load her up and check the bomb door, etc. But what I think now is that he will be put on the coast some place and will patrol there for couple of months and will probably go across. But see you got to get a fairly lots of training here before you go across. You mention about him flying one of these big transport after the war. Well first thing he got to come back and remember there are lots of other people got the same idea. So to plan on what you are going to do after the war I think is nonsense. But that is up to him. Did he get 2nd Lt bar or flight officer on graduation? Well I sure don't blame his wife for not going with him because at night he will have off because they don't have to fly so much. And they have lots of time off. And that one thing an officers sure has a nice club at each field. But is cost them so much a month. But I think she done the wise thing.
Yesterday I had to buy some envelopes and I bought 20 of them for 3 cents. I sure thought that was cheap.
June 4, 1943
It is about 4:45 PM now. I am not going to eat on account of they have fish. So I thought I better start and write you a letter. I hope FDR fixes up the coal strike soon.
June 5, 1943
In the morning I am going out and look for some camp. Then I will mail it out in Monday morning mail. The only thing it will be hard to get up. This morning there was a class that finish and nearly the whole bunch moved out. So to be safe I think I will move out on the 26th. And I will not be abel to see you after the 25 (Friday). The gate that you want to stop is No. 4 Lowry Field. IT has a big sign out in front. And there is a parking lot just across the street. But don't pull up by the gate. But pull over by the park car. I am telling you these things just to remind you and might save you lots of trouble.
June 7, 1943
The weather today is sure nice and warm.
Now listen I have not been able to hunt for no tourist camps yet but I know where they are at. Now listen if you come into Denver by Lowry field, there are plenty. Now on this piece of map I will try and show you. What ever way you come in come out in the part of town to fine your tourist camp because if you get in the other side it will take a half hour drive back and forth from this camp. No I underline AURORA. That is a sub of Denver and there are plenty of camps in there and that is right next to camp. You don't have to pick the first camp you hit but ride into where the streetcar turns around and goes back into town. I mark that with "O" then put that A by it. Now that is where I get on No. 2 bus Lowry field and come back to camp. You could follow that bus if you want to. Remember gate No. 4. Remember where I got taht line drawing that is Aurora and will be plenty of camps there. So only take a camp in that part. Tomorrow is my day off so if I can get my new pass soon enought I will see for sure how much it will cost and send home a air mail and tell you. But if I don't I think you should have an idea anyhow. But remember you want to get in Aurora district of Denver.
All I want you to bring is an iron for sure. Listen see what train V will hit Denver on because there is a couple of train depots in town. Well, I hope you can make out by this piece of map. But jsut be sure to get along E. Colfax and out is Aurora district to hunt for a camp.
June 8, 1943
Gate No. 4
2nd Technical School Squadron Lowry Field
Well here I am again and it is Tuesday afternoon and feeling very good and sure hope the same for every one at home.
I am at YMCA and USO and writing this. I went out to see about tourist camps and there are plenty for you to pick from. Now these are at Aurora as I said before. Now this is on route 36, 40 287 as you come into Denver. The Lowry Field is just to the left of you. You can see the hangar and the field. It is a very short distance from the field. I don't think it is 6 blocks from where the street car start coming in E. Colfax. Now I am off till 2 p.m. in the afternoon. So if you hit there in the morning just drive out to the gate and have them call me from there. I will get up Monday morn and dress in suntan so if I do get the call I can come out right away. Now if you hit here on Sunday before that time call too but I don't believe you will hit here by then. Well if you want to on Sunday go to the gate about 3:30 and call in and I can see you a short time before school. I will get off of exercises about that time and will be in the barracks. It is sure nice of H. to let you have his spare tire. You mention about Rooney getting a furlough to come home to get married. When he wrote to me he sure talked about it. Don in Laredo our squadron gave furloughs to come to get married.
Well that is about all that I can write but just remember Aurora on route 36, 40 287 and a very short distance from camp and there are plenty of camps there so with love from Wes and hopin to see you soon.
June 10, 1943
Well here it is Thursday afternoon about 5:15 PM and I am feeling fairly good. Yesterday we had some tough exercises and my arms hurt a little. But today they are lots better.
I just got through with them now. I didn't write yesterday because I didn't get time. But I thought I would drop a few lines today. I don't know if this will get home before they leave but I think they will be gone. Well one sure thing this sure is nice country up here.
Well I don't know much to write but I know you will have a good time up here and don't take any more time than what the boss wants you to.
So ending for today and hoping to see you soon.
June 12, 1943
Hello Virg! I guess you are kind of lonesome but you should be able to pass your time some way. I guess by this time you know about the deferment and I hope it is for the best.
Well it is 4:30PM (Saturday) and I guess the folks are on the way fairly good. I would not be a bit suprised to see them tomorrow at this time. I sure hope you enjoy your trip as on the train and I know you will on this end.
Well Virg I don't know much more to say because I got to shave and polish my shoes and eat and be ready to go to school at 6 PM. It is sure keeping me going with some New York they are putting on us. But I guess I can make it.
July 14, 1943
Well I am feeling fine and sure hope the same for all at home.
Well I am in Birmingham, Alabama now. Arrived about an hour late. Had a very nice ride down here and slept good last night. It was really nice and cool in fact we had the best car of them all.
I went up to the ticket window just as soon as I hit here and was able to get a pullman again. So I guess I did not do so bad after all.
The country down here sure isn't like a person would think. Anyhow it is not like I thought it would be. This part of the country is only trees. They are really tall and as straight as a pole. The weather is not that bad but when you get off a pullman you really notice it (and how). The USO here is fairly good but it isn't so perfect on the inside liek some of the other ones I have seen.
I seen the kid again that I was talking to at Kansas City, MO. But being I am on a pullman again I guess I will forget about him. I met one of the kid out of Kansas City that was in my class and going to the same place as I am. So that was company any how part time. Now I think I should meet some more here.
I an't sure but I should. I don't know much more to write so I think I will end for now. I sure hope you made the trip back home OK with the tires, etc.
So for now just to leave you know that I am OK and sure hope the same for every one at home with loads of love