As I read these early letters, I'm reminded that Dad is 18 years old, writing to my mother who is only 16. It seems to me that many of the war movies I've seen depict slightly older soldiers, at least the actors who play them are older and I'm guessing the scripts are written so as not to sound too juvenile. But, when I read these early letters of my parents, I am reminded that they were just teenagers and still focused on teenage topics-- girlfriends, boyfriends, football games and the social life of the world they knew. I don't mean to imply that either of my parents were immature, just that they were young. There are still no saved letters written by my mother from this time, but oh how I'd love to have read her early ones, or the ones that Libby was writing him! Do you think Betty was offended by this letter? Notice no "love and kisses" or "XXX"'s included on this one!
Buckley Field, Colorado
Jan. 22, 1943 8:45 PM
It has occurred to me lately that you are becoming too serious in some of your letters. I don’t want to make you mad but I am sure that you will appreciate the fact that I have come straight to the point.
Betty dear, I like you ever so much and I say this sincerely, but I don’t want you to become too serious and feel bad because I am not there. I really wish I could be there to explain this to you as I never was good at expressing my self with a pen. Not that I can’t explain what I mean, but I am not sure that I can say this in a way that will not make you feel bad. Well I’ll try anyway.
You see it’s about Libby and me. We have been corresponding all along and I feel that you should know this and also that I wouldn’t want to have her think that I was receiving anything but friendly letters from you. You see I have noticed that since she has come home, her letters have become strange and seem to say between the lines of course, that she has been hearing things about you and I, which we both know are untrue. I know you wouldn’t say any thing that was the least bit untrue and especially about you and I. You are far too sweet for that.
I want you to write me just as often and more often than you have been if you find time. Maybe this letter may seem strange at first but reread it and try to understand. Make me happy by trying to understand. I don’t want any thing to break up my friendship with Libby or my friendship with you. Honestly it hurts me to write this because I think that perhaps you won’t understand. Well remember there is a soldier hoping you will understand.
Well the lights just went out so good bye.