Trumbull – To All My Sons, Except Ced (3) – Special Birthday Letter To Dick – July 30, 1944

This week, the posts will be short to fill the week. The next letter in chronological order is a five-pager and will take a full week in the next rotation.


Richard Peabody Guion

Trumbull, Conn., July 30, 1944

Dear Richard:

If this were intended to be just an ordinary letter, you know, it might have started off with “Dear Dick”, but as this is in communication of a very “special occasion”, we naturally have to observe some formality. Of course it is a bit ahead of time, I know, but the 19th will roll around fast enough and I would much rather have this reach you a bit ahead of time that a bit late. But to forgo further preamble, here, as you may already have surmised, is what is intended to be a very special birthday letter.

By this time, you will say, he ought to have had enough experience to write a bang up birthday letter. Let’s see. Between you all, 151 birth days have come and gone, and while it is true only a small portion have occasioned letters, there have been quite a number at that; and yet with all this practice it is just as difficult as ever to say the things one feels deep down inside and to give voice to all the thankfulness and well wishing and great expectations for the future which anniversaries like this stir up in one’s heart.

Perhaps the predominant thought is a feeling of deep satisfaction for the kind of son you have turned out to be. So many times in a family of our size there is likely as not to be at least one who, in spite of all the hope and care and good intentions of the parents, go off at a tangent causing heart aches and worry and disappointments, or even if not anything so definite, there is at least an ill feeling or resentment among brothers and sisters that brings disunity in the family unit.  And, unfortunately, it takes only one to cause the rift.

Tomorrow I’ll post the rest of this special Birthday Letter to Dick, on Wednesday, a letter from Marian, on Thursday and Friday, a very interesting and informative letter from Dan who is in Normandy, following the D-Day Invasion. 

Judy Guion


World War II Army Adventure (127) Dear Gang – April 9, 1946

DPG - Dave in uniform

David Peabody Guion

Manila, P.I.

April 9, 1946

Rec’d. 4/16/46

Dear Gang –

Yep, still here.  Rumors still say we are to leave here April 13 – but the Gen. Heinzelman still hasn’t arrived.  I have three letters here which I shall answer.  The first is one written on Feb. 6 and send to Dan by mistake.  As this is all about the office, I’ll wait till I get home before I answer it.  I was glad to get a report on how things are shaping up, though.  The second was written on St. Patrick’s Day.  It contained little news but was nevertheless important.  A letter is a letter – even if it’s a short one.  I hope you all enjoyed yourselves in New York with the Stanley’s.  Wish I’d been there.

This third letter quotes a letter of mine in which I tell of being relieved of duty.  This one, I presume, is to be the last I received.  It was written March 24 and said that you are sending a copy to Aunt Dorothy in case I didn’t get it here.  By the way, thank you for Aunt Dorothy’s new address.  She sure does get around.  I probably wouldn’t have been able to find her if I hadn’t gotten this letter.  This brings me to your predictions on my arrival date in Trumbull.  The day before I received your letter, I set a date in my mind – a goal so to speak.  Figuring on leaving here Saturday (the 13th), and taking seventeen days across the Pacific (April 30), seven days across the country (May 7), three days in Fort Devens (the 10th) and one day to get home (May 11 – say 3:30 or 4:oo P.M.), my guess would be the same day as Lad’s.  The only trouble is that with this plan I’m allowing no time for the inevitable delays in Army transportation.  I’m figuring on no time in Calif. And I don’t think seven days ‘cross country is particularly slow for an Army troop train.  If I leave Saturday, though, I most certainly should be home sometime during the week of May 12 to 18.

My thanks to Lad for any and all work done at the office. I know you’ve been up to your neck, Dad, and I guess you had real need for the help.  Anything Lad does now will make it easier for me, too – so “Thanks, again, Lad.”

It looks to me as if Dan is having as much trouble getting to England as I am having trying to find a ship with my bunk on it.  I hope Dan’s nerves aren’t taking the beating mine are.  I’ll have had three weeks in the Depot next Saturday.  The usual wait is three to five days.  And to top it all off there’s no shoulder to cry on.

Guess this does it for this time.  When I get definite news that I’m leaving Saturday I may not have time to write – but I’ll try to say something even if it’s just – “I’m leaving”.  So – “till we meet again” –


Tomorrow I will begin posting a week of letters written in nineteen forty-five.  On Monday I’ll post a quick V-Mail from Lad to Dan.  The rest of the week will be devoted to a five-page letter from Grandpa to Benedicts and Bachelors. Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (126) – Dear Dad – Neglecting to Write – April 5, 1946

My Uncle Dave is getting impatient to get back to Trumbull.  This letter explains his frustration.

World War II Army Adventure (126) Dear Dad - Neglecting to Write - April 5, 1946

Manila, P.I.

April 5, 1946

Rec’d. Apr. 15

Dear Dad –

I’m truly sorry for neglecting to write at such an important time.  I left for the Depot on schedule just as I wrote.   But there wasn’t room for me on the boats that were here at the time.  I’ve been waiting at the Depot ever since.  As things stand now, I will leave here sometime around the middle of the month, getting into Frisco the first week in May.  I should be home around the middle of May.

The ship I’ll probably sail on is the General Heinzelman.  It’s arrival in Manila and it’s estimated time of arrival in the states is not yet definitely known because of storms in the Pacific.  But you can be pretty sure of seeing me is sometime between the fifteenth and twentieth of May.

I am well and unhappy – this business of waiting three weeks for a ship isn’t easy.

Don’t be surprised if I’m a little thin when I get home – hot weather never did agree with me, and I had fourteen straight months of it.  But it’s nothing that a little of your cooking won’t fix up in a short time.

See you soon –


P.S. Written in a hurry – hope you can read it.

Tomorrow I will be posting another letter from Dave to the Gang in Trumbull. 

Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (125) – Dear Gang – March 22, 1946

World War II Army Adveture (125) - March 22, 1946

March 22, 1946

Manila, P.I.

Rec’d 4/5/46

Dear Gang –

This is it! Well, it’s a start anyway.  Tomorrow I leave for the Pepple Depple (Army slang, People Depot, where the men start their journey to wherever they are going).  I should be on my way home within two weeks – possibly it will be only a few days.

I’d planned on getting some things as presents to bring home – but my time came to suddenly.  In fact I’m rushing right now.  So I’ll close this.  It may be my last ’til I get home – so –

Be seein’ ya,


Tomorrow I begin posting a week of letters written in 1944. As usual, Grandpa informs his sons (and daughter-in-law) of the latest gossip in Trumbull and includes quotes from letters written by  Dave and Marian.

Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (124) – Dear Dad – March 15, 1946

Dave is getting closer and closer to his long anticipated trip back to Trumbull.  He has been in the service for two years and two months but it will be another two months before he actually enters the kitchen at the Old Homestead.

DPG - Dave in uniform

David Peabody Guion

March 15, 1946

Manila, P.I.

Rec’d 3/22

Dear Dad –

I’ve got three or four letters here that should be answered but it’s already one A.M. on the sixteenth so I’ll just bring you up-to-date on things at this end and write you a regular letter some other time.

Last Sunday I was relieved of duty – I’m no longer working.  My job now is to sit and wait for my boat to come in.  Had I written last night, I’d have told you that I expected to leave sometime next week.  But tonight I found out that present shipping facilities don’t call for a berth with my name on it.  So now all I can tell you is that I’m waiting and that I hope it won’t be for longer than a couple of weeks.  However, this is the Army.  I can console myself with the fact that at least I’ve been considered this time – at least I’m near the top of the pile at long last.

I’ve spent this week in vacationing.  Monday I went to Corregidor and saw utter and complete destruction.  Tuesday I went to Wah-Wah Dam where there had been a bitter battle (so help me I didn’t write “bitter battle” on purpose – but it is clever (even if I say so myself)).  The whole of Wednesday was spent on a bus and, after we hit the mountain road, a truck in a successful attempt to get to Bequin, the summer capital of the Philippines. Baquin is, or was, a most beautiful city some 200 miles north of Manila nestled in mountains and fir trees.  I used three blankets at night to keep warm.  After I get home I’ll tell you of a most unusual custom of the Iqorot natives up there.  They eat dogs for food – but I won’t go into detail about it until I get home.  I’m afraid you’d read this letter at the dinner table – and it isn’t the kind of story to be told after having just finished a juicy piece of meat.  I spent all day Thursday in Baquin and all day today coming back.

Ah-Ha ! here’s the end of the page and my letter.

My love to all,


World War II Army Adventure (123) – Dear Dad – At Long Last – March 18, 1946

thisDPG - Dave in uniform

David Peabody Guion

March 18, 1946

Manila, P.I.

Dear Dad –

At long last I’ve got your letter explaining the paper which you enclosed in a letter asking me to sign it.  The letter with the form enclosed came before the earlier one which explained the whole deal.  The only thing I don’t understand is that when I came overseas I made out a Power of Attorney for you.  Is that only in case I should have been killed?

I knew nothing of my C.O.’s letter to the W.D. (War Department) about my allotments, but I was beginning to wonder if these checks were coming through.  You never mentioned receiving any of them.  The letter sent to the W.D.  from here  was probably a routine thing that happens all the time.  I don’t think you put anyone to any special trouble.

Of the four letters I have here, I find comments on only two of them are in order.  Your latest (Mar 3) tells of Dan’s meeting a Mr. Loveridge in France.  It reminds me of the fact that Aunt Anne sent me a letter in which she said that Mike Gresham is out this way in a U.S.O. Show “Three Man on a Horse”. ( , scroll down for mention of the U.S.O. Tour). I don’t remember him myself, but if I’m still here when he gets here I’ll most certainly look him up.

Your “Pictorial Thoughts” most certainly were not needed to create in me the desire to come home, but you’ll never know how welcome they were.  The pictures you sent some time ago were lost in transit between Okinawa and Manila – so these were even more welcome than they would be ordinarily – if that’s possible.

Ced sounds bitter in his letter in which he winds up saying if things keep going this way he’ll go to Sweden.  Shame on you, Ced!  Shame on me, too – because if you go, stop by for me, too.  I’m slowly becoming more and more dissatisfied with the world in general and the United States in particular.

I got a kick out of comparing the C-46 I was in (Army style) and Ced’s description of the civilian model of the Army’s C-47.  Bucket seats with space for parachute is a far cry from Ced’s “push-button stewardess”.  Oh for the life of a civilian!

Now, at last, though, I can console myself by saying “It won’t be long now.”  The picture has changed slightly (naturally – this being the Army).  A message came through the other day slowing down discharge for men in my category slightly.  It looks like it may be a month now before I start rolling and pitching my way toward the Golden Gate.

Well, guess this will have to do for now.

See you soon –


World War II Army Adventure (122) – Dear Dad – Not Much Is Happening – February 25, 1946

World War II Army Adventure (122) - Dear Dad - At Long Last - March 18, 1946

Feb 25, 1946

Manila, P.I.

Rec’d 3/6

Dear Dad –

It’s been so long since I”ve written to you, I forgot what I said last time. Not much is happening here anyway.  I’m still working and waiting for the day when they decide I should go home.

The mail situation is “deplorable”.  A couple of days ago I got yours of Feb. 2nd in which you enclosed this legal form.  But I don’t know the story behind it because I am missing mail from a number of Sundays prior to the second.  But here it is back again all signed.

You can still expect me by May 15 – but don’t drop dead if I should walk in on you before then.

This isn’t much of a letter but I’m trying to write and listen to Margaret O’Brien on the radio at the same time.  Guess I’d better give up.

See you before too long.


Tomorrow another letter from Dave to his father with some interesting comments. 

Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (120) – Dear Dad – Congratulations to Lad and Marian – January 17, 1946

Jan. 16, 1946 – Manila

Dear Dad –

I was just talking to a fellow that said he knew a fellow that got out of the Army by being declared essential to the organization in which he worked before the war.  It sounds very far-fetched to me – but I’ve gotten so desperate waiting for the Army to make a definite statement that it will stick to concerning discharge – that I figure I may as well try anything.  If you can


prove that I’m essential to the business in order for it to run properly and smoothly, and present your case to the Red Cross, maybe I won’t have to wait until May or June.  According to Ike, it will be that long before I’ll be able to go home – I’ve got just barely two years service.

I got your “book” on activities on Christmas at Trumbull. I especially liked the part about Marty. There should be more people in this world like him. I hope “growing up” doesn’t change him.


I’m in for T/4 again.  Some one of these days it will come through.  This is the fourth or fifth time I’ve gone in for it.

Tomorrow I’m going to have a tooth pulled.  Do you remember some time ago I had a large filling put in one of my teeth?  Well, it came out before we landed on Okie – and now I’m having it pulled.  Wish me luck!

Yesterday I went to Adjutant General Publications Dept. to see if I could get a job there.  They use Photo-offset out there.  I’m almost positive that I can’t get


a transfer from here – but like I said at the beginning of the letter – I’ll try anything now.

Lad and Marian’s Christmas Card to Grandpa in December, 1945.

“We cant let the rest of the family get too far ahead of us. The doctor tells us that we can expect our baby in June or July.”

I intend to write to Lad and Marian, and congratulate them, etc.  But I know myself too well.  So I’ll say it here.

Congratulations to you both (or should I say to you three). Here’s wishing you all (that’s leaving it open for more additions)  (No one knew but Lad and Marian actually had twins in June of 1946, my brother Douglas and me.) every kind of happiness throughout all the years to come.



Tomorrow, another letter from Dave to his Father.

Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (121) – Dear Dad – Nothing to Write – Jan 17, 1946 – Manila

David Peabody Guion

Jan 17, 1946 – Manila

Dear Dad –

There’s really nothing to write tonight.  But I wrote notes to Aunt Betty, Jean and Dick, and Lad and Marian.  I put “Sgt.” on the return address and I figured that I would be accused of trying to be coy or something, if I didn’t write and say that my rating had come through.

The only other thing that I can think of is that my appointment with the dentist for today was canceled.  The dentist is a first Lt. and a Major “asked” him to do something for him this morning.  So now I have to think about how much I don’t want to get my tooth pulled, from now until Monday.

The men, in general, aren’t very satisfied with Eisenhower’s latest statement.  I’ve never seen so many people all together who desired the same thing and wanted to go about it the same way as these G.I.’s in Manila.  The spirit shown here far out-does a national election and Christmas and New Year’s all rolled together.

Well, I’ve got to get up at 6:00 in the morning and it’s ten now.  So I guess I’ll “hit the sack”.

Be seein’ ya,


Tomorrow I will begin a week of letters written in August, 1945. There is a surprise later in the week.

Judy Guion

World War II Army Adventure (119) – Dear Dad (2) – January 11, 1946

This is the second half of the letter I posted on Saturday. I thought I had scheduled this, but obviously I didn’t. 

World War II Army Adventure (119) Dear Dad (2) - January 11, 1946

WHOOPS ! Made a mistake! Pages 5 & 6 are inside. This is page 7 and 8 is on the back.



May be you could get a hold of Johnny Vichiola and asked him what he wants to do.  He was our original President.

Sure I remember George Nurse.  Tell him I wish him a lot of luck, but that he can expect some keen competition when I can get my hands back into printer’s ink.

Milford Rivet’s change sounds like quite a blow. Gee, how I wish I could


get back there.  Try to hang on to everyone we’ve got now, Dad.  We can worry about new customers later.  How is the quality of our work now?  Are all our customers satisfied?  I’ve been thinking and have come to the conclusion that after the war started and labor was so hard to get, that we allowed the quality of our work to drop off.  Don’t you think it’s better to make a customer wait if you have to, but to make sure he’s satisfied with the completed job.  You had years and years more experience


then I hhave.  What do you think along those lines?

You’re right about its being important for me (or someone) to get out and dig up business, but it won’t do any good to get business unless we are sure we can handle it.  I would welcome the chance to test my ability and make Salesmanship.  I feel I’ve learned an awful lot about human nature, etc.  In the past two years, and I’d like to test my knowledge.  But I can’t help but feel the importance of knowing, before I leave the


office every morning to try my luck, that we can handle well – no – better than anyone else in town, any job that may be thrown at us.

From where I started to talk about George Nurse to hear is all in answer to yours of Dec. second.  Your letter of December 9th says that Ced will leave tomorrow for Alaska, Peggy Van Kovics called (I’ve written her), Dick would soon be out (old news now), you are sending candy, etc. in a box (I’ve received it.  Thanks.  It has been well disposed of).  Those


are the only comments I have on that subject.

The December 16th writing of your much-looked-four letters contained both good and bad news.  The bad being that you had a cold.  I’d give anything within reason to be there in the bitter cold – you’d give equally as much to be here in our 85° temperatures (and that’s just average).  The good things are humorous – Ced’s safe departure for Alaska, Dick’s arrival and his last departure before he dons those blessed “Civies”, Paulette’s letter to you, etc.  The only comment on


this would be for me to say that the T/4 that I mentioned in the letter you quoted is still hanging fire.  A second request has gone in from GHQ to Korea to our parent outfit, but GHQ is closing up here and moving to Tokyo.  If the advance doesn’t go through fairly fast, it will be again it canceled until they put me in for one at AFWCSPAC which is where it is rumored we are to go.  So maybe I’ll be discharged as a T/5.  Who cares so long as I’m discharged?



Tomorrow I will begin posting a week of letters written