#23: 28 Oct 1944, Guam

U.S. Navy Fleet, Leyte. October 1944. (Photo: WWII Archives)

From 23-26 October, the Japanese utilized nearly all of their major naval ships in the Battle of Leyte Gulf but were overcome by the US 3rd and 7th fleets. The Japanese Navy was decimated and ineffective thereafter. Leyte Gulf was the first battle where US forces would see the dreaded "kamikaze" fighters. The death toll of Leyte Gulf was staggering: 65,000 Japanese died and more than 15,000 Americans were killed or wounded.

Oct. 28, 1944

Dear Sis May:

Today, Sunday is such an ideal day to write, so here's to what I hope won't be too boring. Honest, there are times I write, with no nose for news, except to say that I'm thinking of you and wish I was back home, so that I may see you all once in awhile. 

Life here in the Pacific is dreadfully hum-drum, there are times I think of this Army Career compared to a term at Leavenworth, for more severe, one is made to forget the grand free feeling that once dwelled within us. At least I can speak for the Infantry. I have met some swell fellows in service, but I'd be darned if I can go any higher than that. As you know me, I'm easily liked and never had difficulty in creating new friendships, however, once I get out of this Army of persecution, I doubt whether I'd want to remember anything about it. 

We truly fought for that sought after democratic survival, and this is all. And once I do get home, I'm going to be another civilian, glad to discard the regalia of the service and I'll happy to don the civilian clothes I look best in. Don't you agree?

May, dear someday when I do get home, I shall tell you why I feel this way. Perhaps I can say this, previously to coming into the Army I was accustomed  to acquainting myself with the fair lot of people, then came my induction. I was happy, yes - but in time finding out why I was here and finally the plunge into combat. The days were bitter and horrid, yet certain people make it their sadistic desire to create a feeling of discontent, morose, and sullen attitudes and I hardly blame the men. 

God truly knows and will recognize the toil and the good and in all righteousness, we all shall get what we deserved, And I ask no more than a quick victory and the no longer necessity to put up with a lot of nonsense from certain military minds. 

Best regards, Love to Joan & Bill,

Your loving Brother


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