Trumbull, Conn. February 20, 1944
Dear Ex-Trumbullites (and Marian)
Cedric Duryee Guion
You may perhaps recall, gentle readers, that at the close of last week’s chapter we had left our hero, Ced, out on a limb. Upon his return from New York he reported the best reservation he was able to obtain for his return journey was February 22, and quite ironically this Washington’s Birthday reservation was on the Jeffersonian, the crack Pennsylvania train to St. Louis, whence he expected to proceed to Texarkana for a stopover long enough to visit the. A.P.‘s. (A.P.’s – Alfred Peabody Guion (Lad) and his wife, Marian (Irwin) Guion) A few days later however, having received another wire from Art Woodley advising him to start immediately, he again visited New York Friday to try for an earlier reservation only to find the Jeffersonian date could not be better but he could take his chance without reservation on one of the other regular trains. This he decided to do so yesterday (Saturday) he held a hasty and quite informal Farewell Sourdough Flapjack Party attended by we inmates, Alta Gibson, (Arnold had already left for work) Flora Bushey, Mrs. Ives and Ethel. The one o’clock express from Bridgeport to Penn Station was very late and thus the first section gathered up those on hand for both sections which not only crowded the Bridgeport station but filled the entire length of the long platform. When the train finally pulled in it was already so crowded that people were packed standing in the aisles and also on the platform, so that we were hardly able to crowd up the steps of the train. We did manage to squeeze in but whether the rest of the waiting crowd were able to wedge themselves in I don’t know. Arriving at the station which was also packed with the usual wartime weekend crowd, Ced finally managed to get his baggage checked. We then went over to the Grand Central to say goodbye to Elsie, ate an early supper and got back to Penn Station just before Jeffersonian train time. Still no last minute cancellations on any of the St. Louis trains, but on the basis of “nothing ventured, nothing won”, Ced asked me to go through the gate with his 22nd reservation while he picked up his bags and made a last try. I waited at the foot of the stairs and finally won from the reluctant brakeman the admission that Ced might board the train on the slim chance that someone who had not canceled might still fail to show up, but that if this did not happen, he would have to get off in Philadelphia and wait for some other train. The minutes clicked by, the conductor stood with watch in hand, yelled, “All aboard.” when Ced appeared at the top of the steps, rushed down with his bag in one hand and a ticket in the other and announced, “I got it”. We said a hasty goodbye and the train pulled out leaving me with the comforting feeling that he would have a comfortable ride at least as far as St. Louis where he was due at 1:35 this afternoon. From there he goes by way of the Missouri Pacific to Texarkana. There is a train which leaves shortly after the Jeffersonian arrives, which would land him at Texarkana at 2:20 AM Monday morning. The next train to my mind is better, leaving St. Louis at 5:50 PM and arriving at Texarkana at 6:05 AM.. Possibly permitting him to have Monday breakfast with Lad and Marian. I am waiting to hear just what did happen.
From there Ced continues on to Los Angeles, thence to Seattle and from there by boat to Alaska. For your information, Ced, Aunt Betty says she mailed your Seattle letter and Elsie’s card in the mailbox in the medical building at about two o’clock, a collection from which was scheduled to be made at three. Of course everyone felt they would like to have Ced stay longer, but we did have him for such a long visit that we were more reconciled to his leaving as contrasted with Lad’s flying visit in the early fall.
David Peabody Guion
Nary a word has been received this week from Dave outside of a letter received last Monday, written the Saturday previously and expressing doubt as to his future movements. I assume he has been sent to some other camp for basic training and has been so busy he hasn’t had time to write. I hope tomorrow’s mail will bring some definite word.
Tomorrow, page 2 of this letter filled with bits and pieces of news about the rest of the family and some friends.