Since the 19th century, American
families have had loved ones
fighting in a distance country.
Today, troops are serving in
Afghanistan miles away from base
camps. They are able to occasionally
call home when the company commander
brings the global phone into camp.
At base camp, they can call and
e-mail. Even with frequent
communication; families still wait
at home wanting assurance that their
service member is okay.
This week's article
gives us a glimpse of communication
in World War II when they had only
land mail. The letter below was
written by Harlow Hein, my father,
to his mother in Anderson, Iowa. He
was stationed at the time in the
Philippine Islands at Luzan.
Today, Luzan, P.I.
July 17, 1945
Dearest Mom, Received your swell
letter of the 8th or 9th by post
mark. So far none of the packages
have gotten here; they will be by
and by though. I've had a couple of
letters from Bud. And as yet the one
from Lill, with the pictures hasn't
gotten here. Wait awhile to mail the
vibro tool, if you haven't already.
Yes there are a few radios among
the fellows in the squadron. And we
hear programs broadcast from San
Francisco now and then. Have you
folks heard any broadcasts from
Manila? We are part of the fifth air
force and have heard in the
broadcasts that it has moved to
So Mable says Don is going home,
well I sure hope he makes it O.K. I
only hope we can all get home soon.
I've thought about Marvin a lot, I
was over where he was last heard
from, not so long ago but didn't
find out anything. If they could
contact someone who was in his
outfit at the time they might find
particulars. The Japs really
plastered that place.
(Note: The family thinks Marvin
was sent to the Philippines to build
things. He was captured by the
Japanese and was on the (Bataaan)
Death March. He probably died in
l94l of dysentery in one the prison
camps. The family was notified in
l948 that he was dead. He received
the Purple Heart.)
You say Bob Weber is here on Luzon?
Sorry to hear that Cousin Billy
isn't feeling so good. Hope he gets
along O.K. And is back in shape by
I had a letter from a fellow who
came over when I did. He was with
this outfit for awhile. But moved to
another some time ago. I suppose his
wife and folks missed his letters
while he was moving, cause on the
move you can't send or receive mail.
Hope Merle doesn't have to stay too
long over here. You say Paul traded
his 80 for a farm by Randolph. Maybe
you could sell your 40 to the guy
who got his 80.
Darn, that's a shame that the Camp
Creek Bridge went out and also
Taylor Bridge. The county should
sure be shaken up and made to fix
The money I sent home will be in a
check or draft from the government
service. So you will have to cash it
when you get it. It will probably be
sometime in August. This is just
between you and me.
The rainy season is on us full
blast now. I never saw it rain with
such effortless ease as it does here
now. It's a break from the heat
Well Mom take care of yourself -
tell the folks hello for me. Bye for
a little bit.
As always your loving son, Harlow