July 13, 1945

Okinawa Shima – Ryukyu Islands

13 July 1945

Dearest Darling Sweetheart:

This has been a banner day for mail from you, my Dear. There were four for July 2nd-3rd-4th and 5th. I only wish you knew how good those letters were. I’ve read them over twice already. Besides your letters, I had a very nice letter from Jack and Bertha, Gen, Dolores and the bulletin from Long Beach.

I spent the entire morning writing up a report on the activities in this campaign, as well as finishing up most of my letters of condolence.

After eating dinner I relaxed for 45 minutes and then came down here and studied for a while. After that, I wrote a letter to another man in the 98th and a letter to Jack and Bertha. Two different men came in to see me about problems, and by that time, it was time to eat. Your grand letters were handed to me just before supper so I didn’t have a chance to read them until afterwards. Paul Wells got a couple of nice letters from Marjorie but just before supper also. Enclosed are two very fine pictures of her.

According to what you told me and in Gen’s letter, I imagine they will leave soon for Gen’s home. Now that puts out Paul’s going out to the Dunes. But I’m glad they will be able to see Gen’s folks. You do what you like but if you want to present $50 from us to defray their expenses, I’m perfectly willing to do whatever you like about it. I’ll leave it up to you. When you give it to them, be sure they keep it for it will cheer me out here. Even though they go to see her folks, perhaps they could spend a few days with you at the Dunes. It will be good for the children.

A campaign medal and ribbon for the Asiatic campaign. A star designates additional awards – such as Willis’ bronze star. The arrowhead (not pictured) denotes an amphibious landing.

Well Dear, I’m going to start with your letter of June 11th. I want to catch up on some of your back letters. In your letter of the 11th, you very dramatically told me about the surprise homecoming of Bob. So far Dear I have the Pacific Theatre Ribbon, (like the ones I’ve sent to you), and on it I will be able to wear a star and arrow indicating an assault landing on enemy held territory. I also have the Philippine Ribbon of Liberation with one star. I’ll be satisfied now to wear the Victory Ribbon, that is if they ever have one.

I’m glad you get to see Normans so often, I certainly miss them a lot and wish I could see them soon. They are such good friends and always so very kind and loving to me. I am going to try and write them a good letter soon.

Dear, when you talk about war, every weapon is terrible because it is designed to kill and many weapons not just one but many. If there is any glory in war, I certainly haven’t been able to see it. When up there in the thick of the fighting, when all around you see destruction and blood drenched earth, you almost cry aloud, “Lord, how long?” Letters or words cannot fully describe that which I have seen or experienced in this campaign.

The last boxes I sent to the Chief will probably come through a little slower this time. I’m especially concerned about the saber. I was offered some pretty fancy prices for it. Anywhere from 50 dollars on up. Be sure to let me know when it arrives. I hope the Chief likes those souvenirs.

I know on several occasions news reel men have taken pictures and I imagine what Don and Rachel saw must have been me all right. Sorry to hear about Kenyon’s father having been injured, but I’m glad to know it is better.

I was surprised to hear about Barbara Hutchinson. How is Clem anyhow? She is a fine girl. I have always thought a lot of her. Does she go with anyone, Dear? She deserves the best. At least from what I know she does.

We will have rest for sometime now, but only the old-timers will be able to go back to the States. When I say rest, I mean from combat, we face a very heavy training program when we receive our replacements to fulfill our casualty list. I will soon have 17 months overseas but that isn’t enough in the Army. I feel I may have a chance to be home about a year from now but not much before.

Margaret’s boss surely gave her a grand break after only working such a short time. She is certainly fortunate to say the least. Evidently the 13th must have been a very busy day for buying things.

Well Lover, I do my best to write what I feel in my heart, but I miss the mark so far at times. Often I feel so empty and just to talk and pray with you would be such a source of strength. Darling, our fellowship together is the highlight of my whole life. I do hope we can be together alone for a while so we can just talk and try to catch up on so much that we’ve missed since being apart.

Darling, I shall close for tonight and may God bless you and the folks richly in all things.

Yours Darling, because we are

His together,

Willis

Colossians 3:3

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