O-1165025, U.S. Army
Hq. 45th Div. Arty
APO #45, c/o P.M., New York
Hello Gang -
Sorry to have taken so long this time but - well, there being no decent excuse, I'll just not say anymore about that.
the exceptionally poor mail service the past few months, mail from you people
has continued to pour in; at least, in just about every one of the mail deliveies
we've had, some one from 595 was there representing the factory bunch. Not only
that, but I recieved the Adv. Dept. package and the S.B. package just the day
before yesterday. My sincerest thanks to all of you for your thoughtful gesture.
Trouble is there's no evidence of hunger strike around here much less small appetites - so the boxes were emptied with typical military precision and speed. The Christmas spirit is really in the air now - Chistmas packages arriving daily and as abundant as the good things to eat appear to be, there's always a "taker" for anything you might open. What a bunch!
Not only is Christmas in the air but the accompanying chill of winter is really upon us. The autum-colored oaks, sycamores and maples - still beautifully bright despite the dull gray background of sky - are gradually being stripped lifeless. With the last colorful semblance of sumer and fall gone, this will really be a bleak, desolate countryside. The closer we get to Germany, the more complete is the destruction - towns and villiages uprooted and riddled from end to end; acres of woodland whittled and splintered by screaming shells and their jagged fragments; fields spotted with gaping shell holes and the rotting carcasses of cattle; homes that are now punctured shells of brick and masonry - this is war torn country, much like the scenes in ravaged Italy.
Don't know how much longer this mess will continue and I wouldn't attempt to venture a guess but I don't see how the Krauts can hold out for any length of time, being pounded from all sides, from the air and on the ground - just all the time.
forgot to tell you that I met Jim McDevitt (Capt) while gallivanting around in Rome. (Thanks for the clipping on the "Fighting Macs", Mary.) Forget what outfit he was with but we had a swell chat over some Scotch and---.
Enjoyed the poem Gates wrote for Tom Richey and thanks for sending a copy on to me. He's lost none of the touch. How about "welcome home" jobs, Gates - better get ready for it 'cause I expect a long one.
I'm sure glad to know that Rose Siegel will soon be seeing Danny again - he's really been away a long time but don't suppose Rose has to be reminded of that.
There's not much in the way of news - we're still giving the Krauts as much hell as we can ram into the tubes of our fast spitting guns and we continue the relentless drive which started for this Division way back in Sicily. The thunderous roar of aur artillery is a welcome sound to all but the Krauts - our doughboys love the whistle of outgoing steel.
Haven't had a good drink in a coon's age - unless one would call this "schnaps" or Eau de Vie we've been purchasing, good. Believe I told you about the quart of Schenley's we were issued - golly, but it went fast! Now we're painfully awaiting another issue.
Well, I've got to skip out and do a little work - will be back again 'ere long with more of this chatter.
Once again, many thanks for all the letters and the packages. With best wishes to you all, I remain as ever.
P.S. "Merry Christmas" in case I don't get another off in time for the holidays.
Had a letter from Gordon Van Ark.