June 6, 1944 - D-Day
First, the fall of Rome and now - D day. All I can think of is when will it be over - when will I see you - when!! By the way, exactly what does the “d” stand for?
I had two letters today, one from Fay, the other from Michael Nerenberg. No doubt you have received a letter from him by this time as he said he was going to write. His letter was most friendly and he told quite a bit about himself. He asked me to visit them some evening and I hope I shall have the opportunity to do so.
Two nice things happened today - besides D-Day. Mr Benis is in town and will visit here for a short while tomorrow morning. He wants to see Adele. And - I finally bought a fountain pen (notice signature). It retails for $1.25 and Mr. Bellet gave it to me for 75¢.
Aside from those few things, D-Day is no different than any other day for me. It has gotten warmer, there were flags in front of most every home, I worked from 12 to 6 and I'm making fine progress at my job. I had a queer feeling all day long - an unsettled feeling - the tension is over - where will it end? - and how long will it be - where are my loved ones? - are they alright? - when will I receive mail? The uncertainty is killing me.
Adele has been sleeping well and the change of my routine doesn't seem to have affected her at all. She is eating fairly well and keeps my mom on the go all day long.
Goldie is still around and probably will hold out for the weekend or later. Harry just commented that it takes an invasion to close 10 race tracks. Yep, he's still picking the winners????
I just knew France would be the first to be invaded. A flash, (Nazi source) has just come over the radio that Allies have landed in Greece. Drew Pearson predicts that the war will be over in the fall, providing the invasion is successful. Oh, baby, how can words tell you what I feel! I just can't seem to say the right things this evening - but I'm sure you know what I mean. Just knowing that I might see you even, though it isn't at all definite, is really sumpin’ to get excited about. Each day brings us closer and closer together and it makes me feel so good! I love you, my dearest husband. May God keep you well and bring you home safely to
6 June 1944
Today is a most important one in the lives of all of us, The suspense, ever-increasing, of the past few weeks, has dissipated in the climax of definite and colossal action. A series of moods have come and gone since I first heard the news. I learned about it just a little after six this morning, just after I had relieved the CQ in order that he might go to breakfast. The phone rang. It was Sgt. Murphy, calling from the Ammunition area. He asked me if I had "heard". When I asked him "heard what"?, he told me. My first reaction was one of exaltation. I don't have to tell you how we have all been looking forward to this, and the suspense has been terrific. Then, the sobering thought of the thousands of boys out there, not many miles away, on the beaches of France, giving their best in the business of fighting and killing and dying, and all the while thinking inspiring thoughts, or bitter ones, or just how to knock out that pill-box up ahead. Then, apprehension, the chilling thought that maybe all would not go as planned, Then, on hearing the news broadcasts, and especially Churchill's heart-warning message to the House of Commons, a new re-assurance, and the return of that feeling of exaltation, Over all, the elation that comes with the knowledge of a great endeavor undertaken and auspiciously inaugurated. Needless to say, the Company has been unprecedentedly busy these past few days. I myself have not been called on to perform other than I have been doing, except in one instance but many of the men are working the nights through, grabbing what sleep they can at odd moments. "Invasion" is never more than a few minutes from anyone's mind. There was no demonstration among the men at the announcement of the news, but the air has been electric ever since with suppressed excitement. The dearth of news of the new front is maddening. It has the effect of crumbs tossed to a starving man. Naturally, everyone is most anxious to know what is going on, and I've been asked a hundred times today, "heard anything new? The pilots, who could probably tell us much, if they were permitted to, are necessarily reticent. The news of new developments that come in over the radio are meager, and obviously too general to give anyone a clear picture of what is really going on,
I'm wondering, dear, what impact the news made on you, and the people of the neighborhood as a whole, I don’t know what part the various boys of the neighborhood are playing in this undertaking, and am therefore unaware of the probable emotional repercussions of all their mothers and wives and sweethearts, but this much I do know - that you and mom need worry very little on my account. It would be wonderful if all our boys could "fight" the war from my comparatively safe vantage-point. I have made it a point to keep you fully aware of my exact circumstances at all times with an eye to this day. Thus, knowing that you know my present situation, I am satisfied the news of the invasion caused you no undue apprehension on my account. I know you are all wondering and worrying about Eddie, and concerned for Harry Wynman and Eddie Strongin. I wish I could reassure you on that score, too, but, unfortunately, I have no idea as to the present circumstances of any of them. However, I would wish you all to be in good faith as to their continued well-being. Above all, do not attach any significance to a lack of mail from them, however prolonged. It will, no doubt, be necessary from time to time, for the authorities to hold up the mail for reasons of security. Refrain from jumping at conclusions. Maintain an easy mind, and a calm, spirit. Do not worry until you know that there is something to worry about. Be proud that they have attained their stature as men, in the noblest sense of the word - that they are doing their utmost to protect and bring peace to their loved ones.
Your V-mail of 30th May arrived today, and I note that you are concerned that you hadn't heard from me for twelve days. You will, no doubt, Chippie, realize why this had to be, by the time you receive this. You must learn to expect these delays, and to regard them with equanimity,
Taking Adele to the hospital to have her feet examined by a specialist sounds like a good idea, and I'm hoping you make the opportunity to do so.
Your talk about buying shoes for the punkin makes me think that it's about time I bought them for her. Too, it's about time I bought you a new dress, so tomorrow I will send off enough to cover both items,
I'm looking forward to receiving your letter of the 29th, containing those snaps you mention, and Jack N.'s letter. Yes, Baby, it should be "de-livery - but why the sudden concern over such a trifle? Or are you becoming self-conscious about your writing?
In closing, darling, I want to ask you to do your utmost to keep everyone at home in good heart in these frightening days. Discourage, as far as possible, any inclination they may have to speculate on where the boys are, or what they are doing. Keep the subject as far as possible from their minds. Concentrate, as far as you are able, on the many commonplaces of the every-day routine of living (And don't let me hear you say that you can't!) Allow no pessimistic thought to be aired by anyone without challenging the basis for it. You at home have every cause for confidence in the eventual happy conclusion to the present struggle. Do not be so unselfish as to forget that almost everyone has his own private anxiety for his own particular loved ones. Keep always in mind the unalterable fact that the most heartening victories for the country as a whole, is bought only at the price of many individual "defeats". Therefore, any overt show of exuberance in such a victory is not only in bad taste, it is apt to cause someone real pain, and create bitterness,
Good night for now, my darling. My love to the punkin, and all my dear ones. I am your adoring
June 6, 1944
Haven't received any of your authentic letters for quite a while and am anxiously awaiting one. It seems like years since we passed under the Golden Gate. I now have nine months overseas service in and have nine more months to go to be eligible to go back to our land of the free. I hope, as we all do, that the war will be over by then. Phil, did you experience any of those bombings over there? I have yet to see a Jap or even a “zero”. I'm still at the same job as a combination stock Record Clerk and Control Clerk. I don't get much exercise anymore and I'm putting on weight that I need. Remember how I looked the last time you saw me? Scrawny, wasn't I? However, I'm looking and feeling chipper these days and the little mosquito has yet to dig her beak into my anatomy. I entered a malaria control contest and my entry was as follows: “It's better to have a complexion of yellow, than get the chills and shake like Jello”—I didn't even come close to winning the prize. Flash! just heard news of the invasion of France. Gosh, Phil, there's no telling where you will be by the time this epistle reaches you. The radio is a good imitation of a pin up babe, for all the boys are gathered around it. I hope and pray for your safety and the safety of all the boys who are taking part in the biggest show on earth. I know that what I am just about to write will sound silly to you, for I'm just your kid brother, but if you are over there where those dirty Jerries are beginning to understand how hopeless their plight is, please stay close to the good earth and smudge up that fair skinned puss of yours—In other words, take good care of yourself, you big lug. I hear from the folks quite often. I'm sure you know about the arrival of one widdle he-man, Stuart Chase, so I shan't say any more about our brand new cousin. Ev wrote me that you had sent Mom, your mother-in-law and Ev orchids for Mother's Day. You certainly outdone me, Phil, for I sent the only thing available—a greet o gram. The way Ev, Gloria, and Goldie write, the spirit of Mother's Day was never higher. I know that the folks at home will be even more concerned about your safety now that the invasion is a reality, so please, Phil, write to them as often as you can and don't forget your kid brother down where South meets West. Well, Phil, here's hoping we shall be seeing each other in the very near future.
Your kid brother