July 5, 1945

Okinawa Shima – Ryukyu Islands

5 July 1945

Sarah, My Beloved Darling:

Darling, late this afternoon that I had the joy of receiving your letter of June 24th, and as always your letter was a great blessing to me. I only wish you knew how much I love you. Constantly I am reminded and inspired with the very thought of your love.

This has been a hectic day and I have apparently accomplished very little. I spent the entire morning answering more inquiries from those who have lost loved ones in this campaign as well as in the Philippines. Right now I am in the process of getting all my follow-up letters ready, but they will be temporarily held off until I receive Dr. Dana’s pamphlet, “When young men die.” I want to enclose it in my follow-up letter.

After dinner there were two different men who came in to see me about problems. That took some time to take care of them. And after that I studied for a while. I wrote some letters to people to thank them for providing some worthwhile Christian literature. And just before supper I wrote a letter to Mr. and Mrs. Mason, the father and mother of Major Mason. After eating I came right back here and wanted to get this letter started to you. I got one free letter ready to send to you with some letters to read and just as I started this two more men came in to see me. They didn’t have anything in particular to see me about, I wanted to finish this letter but I felt it worthwhile to visit with them and try to make some real contacts.

By the way, I got two more letters from men who used to be with me in the 98th Division. And I got a nice v-mail a letter from Phyllis’ boyfriend in Italy. As soon as I answer the letter I will send it on into you to read.

Darling, I found a little cartoon which I’m going to enclose in this letter. Many times while talking to the men of my ear has been on the alert for an approaching enemy shell. I believe I’ve told you before, but it was a standing rule in my services if men heard anything which sounded like danger they were to take cover without even a word from me. But thank God in this last campaign I never had a single service interrupted because of enemy action. I was never sniped at during a service, but have had the sniper bullets flying around on other occasions.

In your letter of June 5th you will wondering if I still remembered how we used to say, “I love you more than ever forever and ever,” and many other such things. Dear, how could I ever forget those days and those things? I have been pretty busy at times but I have never been so busy as to not have enough time to have those precious memories linger in my mind for a few moments. Remember this Dear, I mean it much more now than I ever did. The dawn of each new day find me loving you more and thanking God more for the privilege which is mine in being your husband. I’ll be so glad when those days come again and we will be able to talk to one another as we used to do. No matter how long a letter maybe or how well-written, there are so many things that cannot be satisfactorily expressed in writing.

I was glad to know that you enjoyed the opportunity to teach at Buena on June 5th. As you said in your letter, Mrs. Textor’s type are few and far between. We need more like her in our church schoolwork. I was also glad to hear that you had the privilege of meeting with the chaplain’s wife from New Caledonia. It must have been good to see all of your old friends down at Buena.

I fully agree with you about the survey which NSBC had last summer, it takes more than just finding out things, above all else a real follow-up program is needed, and from all you have told me from time to time, it seems they failed miserably on that score.

Willis wearing his sunglasses on Hawaii.

Dear, please don’t worry about sending me things, the things I have now are a problem to carry along. In the near future when I can I’m going to send some more things home. Day before yesterday I got my duffel bag which had been in the rear area, but everything of any value whatsoever had been taken. It just made me sick, as the saying goes out here, “They’ll steal you blind.” We men up in the front lines of necessity have to leave our things behind. It really makes me disgusted. Those who got into my bag didn’t even bother to open it from the top, they took a knife or some sharp object and cut the side of the bag open. The only thing which I found was a couple of pair of my old fatigues and two old pair of shoes. One of the things I hated to lose the most was that good pair of sunglasses which I bought while in Hawaii. You will remember that I paid sixteen and a half dollars for them. I haven’t received my bedroll as yet, but I’m just a bit concerned about it. The most valuable thing I have in it is my sleeping bag. Some of the men in the rear areas take the attitude on such things, “Well, he’s up to the front and he maybe killed and we might as well be the first to pick up any valuables.” And then another reason why they break into such bags, (mainly officer’s bags), is because they think they may be able to find some whiskey. It is certainly disgusting how far men will go when they want some of that lousy stuff.

Well, Darling, I will have to close for now. God bless you and the folks in all things. I love you more than ever, Dear.

Just yours now and forever in the 

love of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Willis

Colossians 3:3

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