Transcription of Document FFDoc-0073.pdf





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73
09/25/1945 Letter Roche, Don Shields, Frank

So glad to hear from you. I'd begun to think my letter had been lost. Of course, your letter explained the delay. You certainly do get around, don't you?

I realize fully what a genuine friend means to a fellow, while in basic training. Knowing that, I can very well understand how close you and Bob were. You spoke very well of him in you letter and having lived with him for some 17 yrs, I know you meant it. You have him figured to the "T".

As you will notice, I'm on Tinian. You've probably heard of it. Saipan always did make the headlines. Our airfield here, which incidentally, is the largest in the world, is the reason for our having to take the back seat, where publicity was concerned. The field was a "hush-hush" job, during war-time. Obviously, there's little hope of our meeting while in the Pacific; but I will remember that you intend to visit my home when the War is nothing but an unpleasant memory.

I certainly  hope that you are discharged as soon as you hope to be. You must have enough points by now; having served in both theaters. I have practically 22 moths in this corner of the Earth, to my credit now and have hopes of being rotated soon. I have only 58 points and surely will stay in the U.S. if I'm lucky enough to get back. The Marine Corps always did expect two tours of Pacific duty,  from a man; but now they don't send them back out with more than 36 points.

To straighten you out a bit: Bob and I graduated from High School together in 1942. I enlisted in the Marine Corps shortly after my 17th birthday, on Feb. 15, 1943. However, I wasn't called for active duty until June and of course, in the meantime Bob went to Camp Croft.  Our trains passed each other between home and S.C. when Bob was returning to Croft and I was on my way home, from Parris Island. I'll always regret missing him at that time; when we'd already begun to realize how close we were as brothers.

I gather, from you letter, that your girl-friend is among the ranks of the faithful. Mine, I'm sorry to say, called the whole thing off, some six months ago. She's married now, to another Marine no less. Congratulations, on your choice and the best of luck to both of you in the future.

Hoping to hear from you soon, I'll sign off now. Sorry we aren't a little closer. It'd be swell to meet you. How about a rain-check on that? Swell!

I write, "inter island", on the envelope. That's an assurance that the letter won't go to  San Francisco and then out again. I think your letter went all of the way.

I forgot completely to thank you for the picture of you and Bob. Thanks a lot Frank. I had only two pictures of him in uniform. Both of you look happy.



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