Army Life – Dear Dad – Lad is an Instructor – July 12, 1942

It is the middle of 1942 and Grandpa’s three oldest boys are all in the service of Uncle Sam. Lad is at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Aberdeen, Maryland, instructing new recruits on the finer points of Diesel engines. Dan is in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, learning the intricacies of surveying and map making as part of a TOPO (Topography) Unit that will be going overseas. Ced is still in Anchorage, Alaska, working as an airplane mechanic and Bush  Pilot for Woodley Aircraft, whose field has been taken over by the Army to defend Alaska. Ced keeps getting deferments but is always wondering when that will stop and he will have to join up. 

Alfred Peabody Guion

July 12, 1942

Dear Dad:

You asked me to let you know how I made out in my teaching course. The class was divided into five groups, by final score on the complete course, and I was in the fourth group. Not quite as good as the best, but well up in the class. And, to top matters, I’m now, plus everything else, instructing a class in Diesel Engines. Anyhow, that could hardly be bettered in the Army, as far as I’m concerned. But it does mean a lot of work on my part, because it is a new course, and I have to lay out a teaching program and the fellow who is in on the ground floor with me (there were only two of us in the whole Dep’t.) knows very little about Diesels. In fact, I’ve had to teach him quite a bit so far. However, we get along together well, and I think I’ll enjoy the work. He is a corporal and his name is Donald Frankenhausen. Our first class starts tomorrow.

The battery for my razor arrived yesterday to the tune of $3.22 which isn’t too bad at all.

Do you remember the parade ground on which they were building? Instead of four buildings there are now 19 completed, 27 others with the floors laid and ready for the sides and roofs, 23 more with the floor frames in place and 46 in various stages of completion. In two or three weeks the complete layout will be ready for occupation. (Isn’t it just like Lad to make note of the number of buildings in various stages of construction and to write home about it?)

I’ve not had a chance to see the Captain about insurance or anything else as yet, but I hope to find time this week.

Well, I’ve got to get going on my lesson plans again, so – hasta luego –


Tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday, a Round Robin letter from Friends and Family back in Trumbull, and on Friday, another letter from Lad.

Judy Guion

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