Letter from LeGrand to Wife and Sons, December 29, 1945
[Written from Japan, where LeGrand was part of the U.S. Army of Occupation, to his wife and sons in Logan, Utah.]
29 Dec 1945
Dearest Wife and Sons
There isn't many days of this year left so if I'm going to get started on this letter writing business I better get busy. Your letters are coming through pretty regular now. In fact they are coming in as regular as they did when I was in Texas.
Say my Dear you know it was good to get a piece of the boys birthday cake. There was 8 or 10 fellows around and they all had a sample of the boys cake. Gee how I long to be around you folks. And to be frank and free with you the roughest part of the Army for me at least is to be away from my family. Things seem to get rolling along pretty well along some line then & my mind wanders to a White Xmas, or The Concert in the Park or 500 other lines of thought. And I am lost. Lost all the interest in the job that I had and think of angles to get out of this mess at the earliest possible date.
About the 10th or 12th of Dec. my buddy sent a Radiogram to his wife in New York. Last night he received a letter of her thrill and disappointment. The radiogram she received read something as follows: "Get dressed I expect to be home immediately" In two days or so she had the Radiogram traced back and found that it was the wrong one. Then they gave her the proper telegram that brought Bill's message.
Bill is a fine Catholic fellow from N.Y.—a machinist by trade. I went to Catholic Mass Xmas eve. 12:00 midnight Japanese girls sung in a Chorus and I enjoyed myself quite a bit.
Earlier Xmas eve we went to a Protestant & Catholic Sing Service where everyone joined in Xmas Songs. Just after that the Cherry Blossom girls put on a play—"Merry Christmas." They sang a few Xmas songs in broken English and a lot of Xmas songs in Japanese to the same music. It was worth quite a bit to hear.
Also I had quite a week just prior to Xmas. Practicing for Xmas Songs. Yes, that was a good excuse for me to get out of this high powered mess around here. Also while walking along the Jap streets I was able to learn a lot about the Japanese ways of living. It does my old soul good to get a little bit of education along the line of thought that the Japs have. Trucks—wagons—oxen—bicycles, dress and shoes, etc.
The electric power is developed in Japan as high as any section that I know. The electric interurbans [?] run fast enough to loose their wheels, but they stick and the trolly pole stays with the wire also.
Up till now I have been on steam trains—electric trains—trollies—buses. Rode in Jap trucks, bicycles, automobiles and have even walked. Get acquainted with all of these things by experience I maintain. Well its time to close for now. I have a shower then show maybe more letters this afternoon, I don't know. Remember Keep Smiling. I love you & will be seeing you before too long.
Envelope postmarked Jan 1, 1946 by the Army Postal Service
Pvt. W.L. Whipple 39943825
Co. L. 123 Inf APO 333
% P.M. San Fran Calif.
Mrs. Erline A. Whipple
265 North 3rd East Logan, Utah