Dave, Grandpa’s youngest son, has been in the Army for about two years. He turned eighteen in September, 1943, left school and enlisted over Christmas break. He wrote his first letter home on January 15, 1944. At that point he was at Ft. Devens in Massachusetts. From there he was sent to Camp Crowder in Missouri for further training. On January 31, 1945, he wrote his last letter from Camp Crowder and left for parts unknown. The next letter from Dave to Grandpa was a V-Mail “from somewhere in the Pacific”. He arrived in Okinawa but ended up staying on board the ship for a few days until the area could be cleared of any remaining Japanese troops. V-J Day occurred on August 15, 1945. His last letter from Okinawa is dated August 11, 1945. His next letter, dated August 26, 1945, came from Manila. At this point, Dave is hoping to be home in May or June, 1946.
David Peabody Guion
Jan 11, 1946
Dear Dad –
We got a message to our code room last night coming from Eisenhower and going to Gen. Styer and other base commanders. The message contained a plan for expediting the shipment of troops home for discharge. It asked for a reply as to whether it would be possible to carry out the plans. The message stated that all man with 2 1/2 years service and 45 points will be home
by April 30th. All man with 2 years of service and 40 points will be out by June 30th. This second group would include me. I have 32 points as of V-J Day and two years active service as of Jan. 13 – two days from now. The message stated that this plan was a must and a minimum. If the men could be released faster, then they should by all means be released. After the 2 1/2 year man leave Manila (in early April if they are to be in the states by the dead – line) they will start sending the man with 2 yrs., 5 months,
then 2 yrs, 3 months, etc. I figure that I should leave, at the latest, by May 15th. If we keep bringing pressure to bear on Washington, it can be sooner than that.
If we’re actually needed over here for the good of the country, then I am the last one on earth that would ask to be allowed to go home. But I think if the government had worked for weeks they couldn’t have thought of a poorer excuse than to say they don’t have replacements.
I may sound cynical, but I think if there is really a dire need for us out here, the government could have given us a better reason for keeping us here – even granting that the real reason may be a diplomatic or military secret. Therefore, I’ve come to the conclusion that politics of one sort or another has entered into the matter. I hope I’m wrong – but I’ll have to have proof to the contrary if I’m to believe anything else. With that said, I’ll change the subject.
I have here five letters from you yet unanswered. The first is a three-part job: one part concerning your information on surplus goods; the second on Thanksgiving Day activities; and third on news accumulated between Thanksgiving and the following Sunday.
I can see nothing wrong with your suggestion that I write to the Boston Corporation. I shall try to get around to doing that before too much more time passes.
The Thanksgiving Day summary was interesting but requires no comment except that I wish I could have been there. The only comment I have to make on Sunday’s letter is that if your kindness in letting the gang use the barn is being abused, by all means, close it to them. Get a hold of Bill or Win and tell them that you’re going to close it, at least until I get back, and that they had better take anything that belongs to them and that they want, out of there before you close it.
WHOOPS !!! Made a mistake! Pages 5 & 6 are inside. This is page 7 and 8 is on the back.
Tomorrow I will finish this 12 page letter from Dave.