May 22, 1945

Okinawa Shima – Ryukyu Islands

(Early) 22 May 1945

Dearest Darling Sweetheart:

Sgt. Hansen and Willis during combat. 1945.

It is really pouring rain and here I sit in a foxhole partially full of water. Dear, I wanted to write this letter last night but it was entirely impossible. We had a heavy artillery barrage of our own and the enemy were throwing a lot our way. By midnight I was so miserable that there was no use trying to sleep, so I put my poncho over my head and sat in one corner of my foxhole while it poured. As if that wasn’t bad enough, a million mosquitoes did their best to devour all of us. Even with my poncho over my head they would get underneath and try to bite me. It finally got so bad I just got out of my foxhole and stood in the rain ready to jump back in if some of the enemies shells started landing in our vicinity. The flies are something fierce and I’m sure I need not tell you why. The air is so heavy with bad odors that at times it all but makes you sick. We have just finished getting some of our wounded man from under Japanese fire in this miserable mess. It is indeed a difficult task to carry a litter in weather like this. The terrain is rough and steep and you slip and slide and often fall. Of course I hate that, for the man is in enough pain without adding to his pain by slipping and sliding. But all you can do is your best, for if he were allowed to be exposed to the elements very long he may pass away anyhow. It is most important to get them to the aid station right away and then try to stop the loss of blood and give plasma when necessary. As soon as possible we evacuate them to the rear field hospitals. It is going to be exceedingly trying today for these roads are going to be impassable and it is a hard job for the ambulance driver to get them back safely and as soon as possible.

Lover, I hope you can read this awful scrawling, but it has been a little hard to write with my poncho over my head and writing on my lap. It is a job to get enough light to see and try to keep the paper dry and clean. I did my best but it is soiled anyhow. God bless you my Lover and give the folks my love. I love you more than ever, Darling.

Just yours forever in the love of 

our Lord Jesus Christ,

Willis

Colossians 3:3

One thought on “May 22, 1945

  • John T Reed
    May 22, 2019, 3:52 am

    This is truly heart-wrenching stuff–I remember reading this letter in the past. It’s truly a testament to the spirit of his strength that he remains positive even in these horrific conditions.

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