Army Life – Boy, Am I Soft – June, 1942

Lad Guion with friend - Pomona - 1944 (2) head shot

Aberdeen Hospital – June 18

Dear Dad – etc.: –

Boy, am I soft. One night on bivouac and I got sick. A second night and I’m sent to the hospital. Here is the story. As you may remember, I had a slight cold when I left home. The first night in Devens didn’t help much and since then I have been going so hard that I have not had a chance to get enough rest. And anyway, Aberdeen is rather a humid place. Well, one day, my cold would be pretty good and then the next it would be worse, and I figured that if I could hold out until my first five weeks were up, I’d be able to get a little rest or even go to the hospital and get well cured.

We left Aberdeen Sunday morning as planned and got to our camp location about 10:30 A. M., attended a conglomerate service and started clearing land for tent locations. Went to eat and returned to finish cleaning. Pitched tents and prepared everything for the evening. Went for a swim in the bay and dressed for supper. Ate and had the evening to ourselves. I went down and sat on the beach until sundown and retired.

Monday – after a cold sleepless night on damp ground – most of the Co. had some sort of cold, some of their’s worse than mine. After calisthenics and breakfast, Co. A, & B attended a lecture ending with one on map reading and then a treasure hunt. I had no ambition and did not even come in 15th. Then lunch and Co. A & B started clearing the campgrounds where C & D had left off. Here I got a good dose of poison ivy. Since we had no water except in the bay and chlorinated drinking water, in order to clean up we had to swim so I went in again. Afterward, I really felt better. Then retreat, supper, a rifle check and another free evening. Watched a ballgame and saw Co. B lose to Co. A., then I retired.

Slept fine but got up Tuesday feeling lousy, and with a sore throat and chills. Had my throat painted and went on with regular work. By noon the chills were worse and I reported to the First Aid tent. Then I was told to pack my stuff and be ready to sail back at 2:30 with the mail boat. We left at 3:00. Got to A.P.G. at 5:00 and ate supper. Reported to hospital at 7:30 and was assigned to a bed (No. 18) in Ward 15. Was given enough medicine to kill everything I ever had or will have (except poison ivy) and went to bed.

Wed. I felt better but stayed in bed and slept most of the day. Given med. three times per day.

Today, my throat is quite sore, but I feel better otherwise than I have since I entered the Army. I think that with a little rest, I’ll be tip-top again.

Well, that is up to the present. For the future – – – I don’t even think that I’ll be released from here to make it home this weekend, but I’m still hoping. Nothing further as yet on my immediate future.

I’ve not received any mail, because it came out to the camp on the same boat that took me back, and it was not distributed until after I had gone. However, I should get some sometime today.

You had better not expect me home this weekend. More later – – my love to Aunt Betty and the rest.

Lad

Tomorrow, a letter from Grandpa with a little hint about getting letters from his sons.

Next weekend, and every weekend following, I’ll begin at the beginning. Many of you were not following my Blog over three years ago when I began publishing the Guion Family Saga, or as I call it, A Slice of Life. My grandfather, Alfred Duryee Guion, wrote his Reminiscences while traveling “around the world” on a freighter. He had quite a bit of time to remember bits and pieces of his life and decided to write them down for posterity, and his grandchildren. After he is married and starts a family, I will include the childhood memories of his children which I recorded.

I believe this will give you a chance to get to know the man I called “Grandpa” and the author of many of the letters you have been reading. I hope you enjoy the beginning of the Guion Family Saga.

Judy Guion

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2 thoughts on “Army Life – Boy, Am I Soft – June, 1942

  1. I thought for a while he was in Aberdeen, Scotland… but they don’t have poison ivy there, so I guess not.

    • jaggh53163 says:

      Hilary – He was at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Aberdeen, Maryland for Ordnance Training.This is where he started his training to become a mechanic Instructor for the Army. 🙂

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