June 13, 1945

Willis wrote two letters on the 13th.

Okinawa Shima – Ryukyu Islands

Early June 13, 1945

My Beloved Darling:

I’m sorry I didn’t get to start this letter last night, but just as I sat down shortly before dark to start this letter to you a soldier came to me shedding tears. And his story was enough almost to make me shed tears. I cannot understand what someone women back there in the States must be thinking, especially when they are already mothers.

Men Receiving letters.

Yesterday was a banner day for me as far as mail is concerned. I got eight letters from you, Dear, they were for May 18-19-20-27-28-29-30 and June 1st. I’m going to read them again when I get a little more time. There was so much for me to do yesterday that I didn’t have enough time to read them except hurriedly. Besides your letters, I got two nice ones from Mom (she’s so sweet, I love her so much), John Mueller, Private Oglesby of the 98th Division, Connie, Mrs. John Stroo, Dolores, Russell S. Orr, Baptist State Secretary, Hollys, Gail Holley, Raymond Cox, Edith Normand, Arthur Mitchell (Jewish Christian), and some very nice letters from those who have lost loved ones in the Battle of Okinawa.

Yesterday was certainly a full day for me in every way, besides my regular evening service for my own men I had a service in the afternoon for a small unit who do not have a regularly assigned Chaplain. I used the same theme as the night before, “God is my foxhole.” And then last evening I had another service for my men. There was a larger group than last night.

After singing hymns and prayer I had a few moments for testimonies and seven man testified in short order. I only wish you could have heard them. Some at NSBC might have thought anew if they could have heard them and actually witnessed how these men testified to the goodness of our Lord. Last evening I spoke on the 127th Psalm using the first verse as the theme throughout. Several man talked to me afterward for some time and they definitely expressed a desire to live a more consecrated and dedicated life to Christ. Dear, I know it is hard for you to picture the setting; each man comes to service with his weapon at  his side, we are generally flanked on all sides by heavy and light machine guns, at our rear can now and then be heard the deep throated noise of large mortars on a firing mission. Further back can be heard the loud report of our artillery as they shoot a volley. In front is the enemy, on either side of us is the open sea filled with many of our ships, both small and large. Some of them move slowly back and forth looking for any enemy movement whatsoever. And then overhead we have our fighters and bombers constantly on the loose. It is nothing in the midst of a service to have a dozen or more come over just a few hundred feet off the ground, and when that happens it’s his show for it would take a greater voice and that of George Whitefield to ever be heard. It is a standing thing with my men if a shell (artillery) or any kind of danger should threaten our safety, they are to immediately break up without me even giving the word.

Well Lover, I’m sorry I must close but I will have to do so for now. God bless you and know I love you more than ever before.

Yours I am forever in the love of Christ Jesus

Our Lord,

Willis

Colossians 3:3

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