Chapter XIII: Kunming, China Ė Starting the Hospital

 

July 18, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Just got in from a very nice dinner party and have really been busy all day. Col. Tyner called this morning and wanted me to move, so I packed up bag and baggage and moved down to our nice little brand new cottage and am very comfortably situated already. The cottage is in the center of the hostel area. The hostel area is all new buildings, just completed for housing our personnel. It is located just across the road from another hospital. Additional wards have been built, new Hdqs. etc., and we take over August 1. All of our people will rejoin us before then. The hostel area is all mud brick stucco outside, plastered inside, tile roofs and indoor plumbing. There are two buildings for officers, two for nurses, an officerís club, mess, barracks for enlisted men and a huge club for the enlisted men. It is really nice. The old hospital buildings are mud brick with stucco but the new ones are brick with tile roofs. The whole area will be very nice after we get straightened around and we are certainly very happy with it. Our cottage is located in the center of the officerís area. Doesnít it sound nice? and it really is. Col. and I are pinching ourselves again. We certainly didnít expect to live like this overseas, even in a hospital.

††††††††††† Guess I told you about all there was to tell you about last nightís party. The food was wonderful, chicken, pork, and fish, each being served 3 or 4 ways, vegetable mixtures, spring rolls, fresh peaches and berries for desert. Many Gom Boys and very good wine. Yesterday promotions came in on seven officers Ė 1st Lt. Zerell, the dietitician, Capts. Melton, Mesdey, Swelser, Jewett and two nurses, Lunde and Jensen. There were three Lt. Cols turned in on the same group but field grade officers have to be sent to theatre Hdqs. for theatre C.O.s approval so they will probably be two or three weeks yet. We have many more coming along soon and we hope that Col. Tynerís will be along before long. He has been put in for it, so soon a lot of our people will be very happy. Spent the morning moving and had lunch at Hdqs., then Col. Tyner and I went downtown to Hdqs, etc., trying to line up furniture for our clubs and day rooms. Well get it soon. This evening we went to a commanderís meeting of unit COs in this area. Nice drinks and snacks then a very good dinner. Had an orchestra, which was very good and put on a fine show. We sat at the head table and were introduced because we are a new unit in this base section. There were about 90 officers there all together, some came in from several hundred miles. Weather has been delightfully cool, need a jacket in the evenings. Rained some today and is still ideal sleeping weather. Iím feeling like a million and we are riding high so our morale is super.

††††††††††† While downtown yesterday bought two linen luncheon sets, some hankies, another wall hanging, some chop sticks and some gadgets. Weíll send some of them to you and thought Iíd send some things to Des, Ethyth, and perhaps the wall hanging, to Mr. Vogel. Thought I should send Des and Ethyth something because they are so very nice to you all the time. Hope Ced is feeling better by now and Jackís letter sounded encouraging. Itís late and Iím sleepy as usual so guess Iíd better go to bed and dream about you all. Iím thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much. I do love you and hope you are all well and happy and that Iíll be with you before many months.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† All the love in the world, Clint and Daddy

 

July 19, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† The mailman was extra nice today and brought me your letters of July 5, 6, 7 and also Martie Annís letter. Martie Ann, your stationery is very nice and you do write such a nice letter. Do it real often. Mart, I read your letters very hurriedly this morning and then left them at the office so I donít have them here. Ifthere were any answers required I will write them tomorrow. Didnít get a chance to write yesterday but wonít miss again. Spent most of morning downtown and was busy in the office all afternoon. The ration clerk from Convalescent Camp came by yesterday and brought me 3 nice fryers. I got one of the cooks to fry them and Tate, Warren, Tyner and I had our first little supper in the cottage -- fried chicken, bread and butter and beer. The best fried chicken Iíve had since I left the States and we ate every bit of it. Our messes, quarters, clubs, etc. are all brand new buildings and are really swell. Weíll send pictures soon as I can. Last evening we were busy all evening with officers dropping in who are just getting back from temporary duty all over China and some from India and Burma so it was late when the last left and we went right to bed. Was up early this morning and busy all day. Spent the morning checking the entire hospital area and all buildings. Most are completed; the balance are practically completed; and they are very adequate and very nice. The hospital buildings are quite widely scattered but not too bad. Was busy all afternoon in once conference after another deciding where to put this and that and assigning officers and men to duties etc. There are a million details which have to be ironed out and couldnít be foreseen so weíll be very busy for next 30 days or so. We open the doors a week from today and will have a lot of patients the day we open transferred from the hospital which has been functioning here. We feel very fortunate. We have lost only two officers since we arrived here. One transferred; the other returned to the States for emergency reasons. We have lost 14 nurses, 8 that you know of, a couple of marriages and four pregnancies, but we will get replacements for the nurses soon as we want them. Have lost only a few enlisted men. Sees like it has been a slow process and as a matter of fact most general hospitals have been over a year from time activated until se up, difference being that most of them spent a year training in the States, instead of overseas, although many have spent one to two years overseas before settling up.

††††††††††† At any rate we are all very happy to be going to work and we will really be working hard from now on. Col. Tyner was in Col. Cranse office today. Col. Cranes is Deputy Commander. He told Col. Tyner what a wonderful job I had done at ConvalescentCamp and Crane is supposed to be the hardest man to please so I feel pretty good about it. It really is running very smoothly. Iím going out there tomorrow and will probably spend about one day a week there since it will be part of our hospital next week. Since supper tonight I have been cleaning up the cottage. We donít have our coolies yet so I am it. Iíll move Chao down here as soon as I can get a place for him to live and eat. Am trying to talk to the Col. while writing this and itís a wee bit difficult to concentrate. Will write to you again in the morning. Am thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much. So glad to get your letters today and know that you and the kids are all well. Have only one complaint and that is that I do miss my Mommy and my little chicks. I do love you and miss you all so much.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 21, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Mailman was good again today and brought me your letter of July 8, one from Mr. Vogel and one from Jack. You really had to get up in the morning to get the Bells off but imagine they enjoyed it. I expect theyíll be back by the time you get this. They are really fine friends arenít they. Weíre all busy as bees getting ready to open and it wonít be long. After a few stormy sessions weíre getting along beautifully with the Hdqs here and are getting excellent cooperation.

††††††††††† Iím enclosing Jackís letter and, like he, hope they are wrong. I know that you are going to feel very badly about Ceddie but I would guess that they are not mistaken. He undoubtedly has a metastatic lesion from the Ca, which he had two years ago and he probably will not be with us long. I feel terrible about it and wish there was something that I could do. I will write him often. He is such a wonderful fellow and will be so tough on Eth and the kids. It is of course possible that the Docís are mistaken and that is what we must hope. Donít write anything, which will let Ced know.

††††††††††† Had a nice letter from Mr. Vogel. They seem very anxious to get me back doing their work again. Surely wonderful to know that you are all well. You still havenít told me whether the kids had measles or not but know they must be OK now. The kids all sound so cute the way they play and everything. Am surely glad that we have four of them. I really have a lot to do and late this afternoon want to go out to the convalescent camp to straighten out their personnel. We are moving some down here and sending some from here out there. It will all straighten out in the next few days.

††††††††††† Thinking of you all every minute and do love you all so very, very much. Will try to write a longer letter tomorrow since it is Sunday. I love you more than I can tell you.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 22, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Just happened to notice when I wrote the date that this is our 126th anniversary according to Norma and Dickís way of counting Ė so happy anniversary. Itís been a wonderful day except I wish I could have spent it with my Mommy. Mailman was very good to me this morning Ė 3 letters Ė July 9, 10 and 11. I believe I have all back letters now up to these dates so am very well up to date. OK to wait on framing the pictures and we can get them done the way we want it for our new house. How about that? Wish you would wash the hanky though. The colors wonít fade just wash it like any other silk. Certainly happy that my letter reached you on your birthday -- mighty nice timing on the part of the U.S. mail boys. The kids certainly love birthdays donít they? Donít know how you could get all the Mommies and kids in the car but guess it holds quite a few. I remember when we loaded the Bells, Mother and all of us in and told Vie about little Gary being on the way. Too bad you didnít get to go the Rapids and we will sure enough take a nice trip with all the pumpkins next summer. Glad Gregg and Craig get along so nicely. Glad you hear from Phil and Wilma. Sorry to hear she has not been well. Hotel really sounds swell last month and will probably stay that way now through December. In the next 3 or 4 months is the time to salt the dough away. I wrote to Mr. OíHara today so know he will take care of the income tax. Donít worry about it. Also I wrote to Ced and Mr. Vogel. The boys from supply just brought a box over which I had packed in Ledo so I unpacked it. Among other things were all of you early letters. I got a bang out of the first ones when you were getting a letter from Africa one day, a cable the next from Miami, the package form the Azores, Cressmanís call, etc. Must really have been a bit confusing. Glad that I am finally settled for keeps and that you know where I am.

††††††††††† Went to Convalescent Camp last night, ate dinner there and stayed an hour or so. Things are going very well there. Iíll have to go out there about once a week, or else the Col. will have to go and itís abut a 25 mile drive so imagine Iíll be going most of the time. Itís pleasant there and I donít mind the drive once a week or so. When I got back here about nine the Col. was very proud of himself. He got the boys in supply to bring us over two hospital mattresses. They are inner spring mattresses and really luscious. He had them on the beds and had made both beds. We took a bath and climbed in early then laid and talked about how elegant they were. We have lived and slept in all kinds of places since we left the States so are really in high clover. Weíve slept on everything from stone floors (when boar hunting) to rope beds, canvass cots, bamboo cots, jungle hammocks, liters, etc. so now a good bed really reels like a luxury. I have to think of the time when I insisted that we get new beds. I still insist we get a new bed when I get home, seven ft. wide so we can all get in it. It isnít like me to write about it but I canít resist saying that we will have a lot of catching up to do in that bed and I do mean it. How about that? Weíll really be another honeymoon and what a honeymoon.

††††††††††† Up for breakfast at 7:30 and worked over in the office until noon. Did absolutely nothing this afternoon except read, write letters and admire our little cottage. We are surely comfortable here and food is excellent. We really do have a wonderful bunch of boys in the mess department and all are back now. More of the boys are coming in every day. Christopher and 10 E.M. came yesterday, Mulford, McKnight today, about 25 will be in tomorrow, also Capt. Morvat, Miss Smith and Miss Zeull will move from the Convalescent Camp to the nurses quarters here in the morning and all will be moved in here before the end of the week. Today has been one of the most beautiful days that I have ever seen. Sun was bright and it was delightfully warm but not hot. Guess it never gets hot here. They say that the rains end about Sept. 1 and that the weather from then until the end of the years is perfect. Guess it gets pretty cool from January until about May with quite a bit of wind in March and April. But I wonít be here after the end of the year so I donít care how the weather is then. How about that?

††††††††††† Mart, I think of you and the kids every minute of the day and night and am so anxious to be with you again. Weíll be terribly busy from now on so the time will fly but wonít it be wonderful to see you guys all standing there when I pop off that plane in Omaha. I do love you all so very, very much and want you to keep on loving me always. Donít ever forget and I promise that Iíll love you always the same. I do love you so very much.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 24, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Your nice letter of July 12 arrived yesterday morning, which is the best service Iíve had since coming over to China. Also, a letter from Dad and Mother and Desdaís letter enclosed. Dad thinks we should sell the hotel if we can get $8,000. It would only have to make us $400 per year to be a 5% investment and I canít see it ever dropping below that amount. After all it has paid for itself a few dozen times already so I am inclined to keep it indefinitely. It also has other angles, which are important. It gives a wholesale buying power which we might someday use a lot in buying furniture, etc. and does bring in business to my office because of the amount of insurance we buy, etc. So as far as I am concerned we will keep it indefinitely unless it actually begins to loose money and then weíll lock the door and forget it.

††††††††††† Mother says she is not too popular with Mollie because of shampoos and naps. She must really be a cute doll and how Iíd love to see her performing. Wish I could have seen them marching in to Motherís with the pie and ice cream and salad. That makes quite a parade. I would surely like to see that parade here both for the kids and the food. I suppose I miss ice cream sodas and malts more than anything over here except of course you guys. I surely laughed at Gregg dreaming he was riding a horse and Craig waking him up. Gregg and Martie Ann, I promise that just as soon as I get home Iíll get you each a pony and a horse for me and Mommy, then you wonít have to dream youíre riding, you can really do it. Wonít we have a lot of fun though. Still think we better get a donkey for Mollie and Gary. How about that? Mart, your letters are just what I want to hear. So glad you and Hod had dinner and a show together.

††††††††††† The points do count for officers and the war dept. score should be announced August 1st. I have 83 points, 73 for service and dependents and 10 for the two battle stars. The points announced originally will probably be over 83 a little but will drop from time to time until I think I should get out about the end of the year. There are five officers in our unit with more points than I have. Tate, Weber, Mac, Ritchey, a chaplain, and Rich and Canterbury. Rich has one more point than I have. He came in August and I in September. Canít believe that Ralph has been gone 7 years. The time really does fly doesnít it. We are awfully busy and will stay that way for quite a while for which I am very glad. It is impossible almost to get a letter written because all day itís one officer after another for some discussion and keeps up all evening. Fred Warren and I spent the afternoon downtown looking for our officerís club furniture. While we were at it I bought furniture for the Col. and myself for our cottage. Furniture is the only thing Iíve found over here which is inexpensive. I bought a leather settee and four leather chairs to match, nice coffee table, two end tables and four nice chairs for the dinette. Whole layout cost us $60 each so we thought we might as well be comfortable to the height of our degree as long as we have such a nice cottage. Soon as your films arrive Iíll get pictures of it. Was about twelve before we got to bed and settled. Came to the office at eight and started this letter immediately. It is now after eleven and Iím still at it. I have really had interruptions. Must close and do some work. Am thinking of you all so very, very much and do love you all there is in the world.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 25, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Still busy as a bee and donít get your letters written when Iíd like to. Just now came to the office and will try to finish before the heard starts popping in. Your nice letter written July 13 came yesterday so mail is really very good. Glad Mollie got the presents from Edith to make up for not getting any on Craigís birthday. Still canít tell you the good news but should be able to any day now. Of course one piece of good news is that we are actually going to be operating in a very few days now and are all very happy about it. Was busy all day yesterday. Fred Simpson dropped in for a chat in the afternoon. He has been up the line around with an engineer battalion but is being transferred. He doesnít know as yet where he is being transferred to. After supper last night got all of the officers and nurses, who are here now, together to organize the officerís club. We elected a temporary board to get the thing started until all of the officers and nurses are here to elect a permanent board. Temp. board is: myself, President; Burlingame, Sec/Treas.; Tate and 2 nurses. I felt very good that they put Tate and I on their board because I feel that they must have confidence in their Hdqs. to do this. Tate and I have to go downtown this morning so must get started. Thinking of you every minute and do love you all so much. More than I can tell you.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 26, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Wonderful letter from you yesterday written July 14, and one enclosed from Desda. The service the last few days has been very good. I have already written to you regarding Ced and enclosed Jackís letter. I guess you know how badly I feel about it. Iíve written to Ced. Gary is getting ideas at a very early age. He is certainly advanced for his age. Probably largely because of being around the other children and of course has a brilliant mind to begin with. Sounds like Gregg and Martie Ann are real business like to be operating the newsstand. Gregg, how much money do you have now? When I said we are taking over another hospital I meant that we are taking over their buildings only. To their buildings have been added the area that we live in plus many wards, new chapel, Hdqs., receiving building, clinics, etc. The area that we live in is all new and consists of barracks for the E.M, officers and nurses quarters, E.M. mess, officerís mess, beautiful enlisted day room and theatre which seats about 500, officerís club, laundry, supply houses, P.X., post office, etc. We will take over all of the patients so weíll open the doors with a goodly number of patients and expand rapidly. The Convalescent Camp will also be a part of our hospital. It will be 172nd and as I believe I told you we have lost very little personnel and are getting replacements for those we have lost. Milton and Rohan came in last night. Rich, Rickens, Echert and Weaver are due tonight. Hagman, Burlingame and about 16 other officers and 30 some nurses are moving in today. All of our personnel will be in by the end of the month which isnít far away. The Col., Tate, myself, Warren, Mulford, Burns, Anderson, Monkus, Quinn, Whitney and others are already moved in. So very soon we will all be together and 172 will be operating a hospital.

††††††††††† You asked me about other hospitals in China. I canít tell you have many there are here but I donít know of any other general hospitals. Am awfully busy of course since there are dozens of last minute details to work out. Burlingame, Tate and I went to town yesterday and are going down this afternoon to buy the original layout for officerís club. Will fill in balance gradually. We are going to be able to have a very Stateside club and also a very nice enlisted day room. After supper last night I spent an hour or so planting flowers in front of the cottage and then t was one conference after another all evening. Our water was hooked up yesterday so had a nice shower and went to bed about ten. Have been bathing out of a helmet for a week and it works OK but frankly I donít fit in a helmet too well, so was glad to get the shower. We are really awfully comfortable. Have a very good houseboy now. Doesnít speak a word of English and I donít know what kind of Chinese because up to date we donít even know his name. He really does keep the house clean though and our shoes shinned, etc. Col. Tyner is swell to live with and very funny. Only thing is I have to get to sleep before he does because of his snoring and he is an early riser. We get up about 6:30, but the mornings are nice, so rather enjoy it. Weather is still perfect and Iím feeling like a million al the time. Seems to me as though you should be getting a lot of packages soon unless you have forgotten to mention some of them. I must have 3 or 4 on the way at least. Bracelets and pins from Delhi, bracelets from Calcutta, brief case, photo album, tea, lots of pictures. Be sure and let me know as you get them. I am enclosing a little poem, which Readinger got from his wife. Does this apply to you too? Know that Iím thinking of you rascals every minute and do love you all so much.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 27, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† No mail today or yesterday. We have so many last minute details to straighten out that we are all about ready to pull our hair out but we are really getting excited about the impending opening of 172, which is not for away. It will really be a joy. Rich, Pickens, Echect, Beaves, and Carbough came in last night. We were in conference with the various chiefs until late last night and most of morning today. Tate and I went downtown yesterday afternoon and bough some of the original outlay of furniture for the Club and will try to get down again this afternoon but the way things are going I doubt that we will get away. Will try in the next few days to write a more lengthy letter. Thinking of you all every day, every minute and do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 28, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Donít get excited about the new APO number. We have been assigned our own permanent number. It is 289 so begin to use it as soon as you get this. Havenít had any mail now for 3 days so suppose I will get a lot today, I hope. We were terrifically busy yesterday and again in conference half the night. Before we went to bed the Col. and I had a few drinks to celebrate the fact that we are now operating a hospital. We went into operation as of midnight last night. So I am now the executive officer of a 1,000 bed hospital, which is operating. I am the only man in China to enjoy such a distinction. Think about that remark a little. Twelve of our nurses came in last night. Freshman and Julius Pearson arrived today so they are rapidly all getting here and every day seems like old home week.

††††††††††† Weíve been very busy all day but have taken time to bask a little in our glory of being in operation. Things are going to be difficult and confusing for the next few weeks but all will work out in a very short time and I know weíll have a smooth running organization. Iím going to leave the office in a few minutes and go out to the Convalescent Camp to see how things are going there. Thinking of you all every minute and love you more every day.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 29, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

††††††††††† Nice letter today of July 16. Iím like you in some ways, it doesnít seem possible that Iíve been gone over eight months. The time has flown and still the night that we said goodbye does seem like an awfully long time ago. It also seems like an absolute dream that I have traveled so far and done so much in such a relatively short time. Iíll never get through telling you of the experiences. Along those lines, I donít see how the Japs can possibly hold out for 90 days. All h--- is sure to break loose in the Pacific any day now.

††††††††††† Congratulations Gregg for getting the gold star for knowing your verse at Sunday School. Would sure like to see the tomato plants and the scare crow. Martie Ann and Gregg, do you remember the man I used to make with my coat over the table? Also do you ever play with clippo.

We are terrifically busy and it is now 4 oíclock Sunday afternoon and Iíve been working until this minute. Things of course right now are in an awful mess but even in the very short time that weíve been operating, things are gradually beginning to shape up and I believe that in two weeks weíll be able to see the daylight. It is really fun to be working hard especially when we are accomplishing something every minute and I am sure that right now the patients in China are getting the best medical care that theyíre ever going to have in this theatre. Give us 30 days and it will be the best in the Army.

Mollie must really love to dress up and Iíll bet she looks like a doll. Give her a pat and a kiss and a big hug for Daddy and that goes for all the kiddies and Mommy too. Yesterday I had a letter from Corporal Moore (my mail clerk at Barkeley). He just found out that I was here. He and Sgt. Henning are both in Myithyina. He hates the place and is working in the native labor office. Sends you his regards and says his family is all fine. Weather here has been perfect all week. No rain except a little shower this morning. We are really fortunate to be living in such a marvelous climate. Nights are wonderful for sleeping. Went out to Convalescent camp yesterday after supper. Spent an hour or so there. Things there are going along nicely. We have Capt. Warner out there and one Red Cross worker and theyíre doing a good job. Wonít have to worry about that place at all.

After I left there stopped in at a club downtown. A whole gang of our people were there. Had a couple of drinks and then came home and went to bed. Up at usual time this morning and have worked all day. Went to church this morning -- Col. Tyner and I, Tate and Capt. Morvat. It was our first service since the opening so thought we should set a good example. We have a shower in our cottage and today they are putting in the stool and lavatory. Both are stateside plumbing fixtures, which are the second Iíve seen in China. The former C.O. of this place was really good to us. The Col. is pacing the floor ready to go. We eat at 4:30 and have to stop and see a patient so better get going.

Thinking of you every minute and love you all so very, very much. So glad to get your letter today and now that you are all well.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

 

July 30, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Swell letter today written July 17, which isnít bad service at all. Glad you liked the China Lantern picture. As far as coming home, on paints I will have a better idea after about August 5th, which is the date when the critical score is supposed to be announced. It keeps dropping so that I still feel sure Iíll be home by Christmas. A new deal came through today, which will let our officers over 38 years old. Believe Rich and Freshman have a good chance under this deal. Tyner will not hold anyone who gets a chance to go home although some people will be really hurt. Tate, for example, is doing a swell job and would be awfully hard to replace. Many others are the same but in the army it always works out some way. I thought for a while that I had missed some letters but believe they all came through Ė some a little late. I have written to OíHara. Glad you are getting acquainted with Mrs. Gillmore. He is a nice lad, quiet, but a good clerk. He is here in our office, in personnel section with Lt. Pearson. Max is doing a nice job of seeing the world apparently, first Scotland, now Hawaii. Heíll probably go to the Philippines and then back to the States. Who knows, I may see him before this deal is over. Would surely like to see Gregg in his baseball get up. He must really be getting to be a big youngster. I know that Iíll be amazed to see how much they all have grown. I canít get there too soon to suit me. Went to bed about 9:30 last night after reading the Post for a while. Was awake early this morning and went to breakfast about 6:45. Today has been like the last 4 or 5, a continual mad house but every day settles some problem or other and soon weíll have everything whipped into shape. Rained most of night last night and has been cloudy today with a few showers but all in all weather has been ideal. Iím feeling swell and very happy about the way things are going. Iím thinking of you all every minute and do love you so terribly much. Donít ever forget, I do love you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Cling and Daddy

 

July 31, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice big fat envelope today but opened it to find the newspaper about the Bassett girls. Disappointed but glad to get the clipping. They seem to look pretty good and didnít do too badly. Also had a letter today from Charlie Beavers. He is running a dispensary in New Delhi and is not doing much. I was really lucky Mart to come over with a unit, especially such a swell one. Fred Simpson dropped by today. He has been running a dispensary along the road and is on the way to a new assignment as a base surgeon. Col. Armstrong is in town for a few days and was out for supper. May not have told you but he and his gang have all moved. Hickle is here but we donít see much of him. The powers seem to be well pleased with the way things are beginning to shape up. It will of course take 2 or 3 weeks but we are making progress. Every day we are opening new wards and this will continue for some time. We have all of our officers here now except 1 chaplain and two medical officers and all off us are working like Trojans.

Was 9:30 before we were through last night and I went to bed right away. Was up about six. Col. Tyner is an early bird and keeps yelling at me until I get up. I am still a very good sleeper. It rained quite hard last night and was cloudy today, a little bit sloppy today. Soil here is a reddish clay and pretty gooey. Most of our road and walks however are graveled. Iím feeling like a million and love the work. Is much nicer being busy all the time. Makes the days go so fast. Hope Iíll get a letter tomorrow and soon hope Iíll get time to relax and write you a lengthy.

Iím thinking of you guys every minute and love you more than I can ever tell you. I do love you so very, very much and always will. Want to get a bath and go to bed so sleep tight, dream about Pappy and Iíll do the same.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 1, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Swell letter this morning written July 16, which is pretty good time. Received the one of the 17th two days ago but old or new they are always welcome. Itís always good to hear that you are all well and if they are eating spaghetti, guess there is no reason to worry about those guys. Glad you got a nice gift for Lynn MacQuiddy. I donít off hand think of anything appropriate for Beecher so send him a check. If I see anything Iíll send it anyway.

Glad you were able to get down and do a little shopping for yourself. Still want you and the kids to be the best dressed in town. Gregg, glad you liked the boat. Weíll be sure and build one when I get home. Weíll slip away from all those gals, take Gary with us, and go fishing. Wrote last night just before going to bed so donít have too much to write. Still busy every minute and things are day by day shaping up beautifully. The number of patients that we have, and only open a few days, is really something. Everyone is busy and working twice as hard as they should but glad to be working and now itís our own hospital. Col. Armstrong was out for lunch. The hospital which is leaving here is giving a joint party tonight so will go make an appearance at least. Just back form lunch and have a dozen people waiting so must get to work. Love you more than I can ever tell you and am counting the days until Iím home.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 2, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

I could have kissed the mailman today. Your letters of July 17, 20, 21, 22, 23 and Martie Annís letter of July 21 (with spelling and arithmetic test papers) all arrived. Martie Ann, you write a lovely letter and very newsy. Your schoolwork is really marvelous. You had better spank Mommy for not telling me that Gregg had measles. I had to wait for your letter to know about it. Surely glad that the rest of you didnít get them and that Gregg wasnít sick. Gregg, did you look like a circus clown with all of the pink spots? I remember when I was a little boy and had the measles. It sure does itch doesnít it. How are Charlie, Grace and Betty? Glad Betty is taking her training at the University. Tat will be under Dr. Howard Hunt. Tell Betty to tell Dr. Hunt that I am her cousin, etc. X-ray is an excellent field for a girl. Seems the Dickenson family goes in for the medical field. Gregg, you are quite a worker to be carrying water to the workmen. You are a very energetic boy and I am very proud of you. Tate of course has 94 points and does have a good chance of getting home soon. Possibly 60 days or a little longer. It will take some time and he probably will go by boat as will practically everyone. So glad that you got the box of things from New Delhi, Calcutta and Dibugahi. Were the compacts and cigarette case in that box or havenít you received them as yet? Guess they were in a different box. Canít recall sending a cigarette box. What is it like? I imagine that any Chinese dishes can be bought in the States so wonít bother with them. They would be an awful nuisance to pack. Have some chopsticks which Iíll send soon as I have time. Did you ever get the little marble Buddha? Did you ever get the bracelets and what not from Calcutta. Gregg, you are right, the people in India and China are queer and ignorant to pray to the funny looking idols. Their Mommies and Daddies didnít teach them the right way to pray. There is only one real God and they donít know about him so they make these funny idols. Too bad that you lost your wagon. Sounds like Gary is always cutting teeth. He must have quite a mouthful by now. Imagine he is over his cold by now and itís so good to know that you are all well. It will probably be hot now until school starts. Gary and Mollie must be quite a sight in the tub together. They must really be cuties. Glad you got a new gun Gregg. You surely took nice care of the other one. When I come home Iíll get you a real one and well go out and shoot rabbits. How about that? Remember never to point any gun, even a toy one, at anyone. Gregg, you are doing swell on your starts for remembering your Sunday school verse. When I get home Iíll get the office girl to extract all of my letters and type them up and give the kids each a set. I still am convinced that Iíll be home for Christmas and it isnít too far away. The days, weeks, and months are really going by in a flash. More so now that we are so busy. I too get goose pimples when I think of that day when Iíll hop off a plane and see you guys standing there waiting for me. Boy what a date. Weíll really have a celebration.

After supper last night Col. Armstrong and Col. Fuller came by. We had a couple of drinks then went to the party. It was a very nice party. Armstrong and Tyner both made nice short talks. Much rank including General Aurand was there. Was home at eleven, which by the way is a curfew in this theatre every night except Saturdays when itís twelve. We have to be in our quarters by that time. Up early this morning and very busy all day. Spent the morning going over surgery, all surgical wards and clinics, with Frank Hagman. We have many changes to make all though the hospital area and day by day we are getting it done.

We are really going to have a very swell hospital inside of 30 days or so. We already have Hdqs., receiving office and outpatients plus four new wards in brand new buildings. We have the clinic, E.M. and T., dental clinics, pharmacy and laboratory practically remodeled. All personnel are housed and fed in new buildings. We will open our new chapel tomorrow and probably have the first services Sunday, so things are coming along beautifully. The public relations officer and the editor of the China Lantern were out today and the Col. and I spent an hour or so giving them a story on the opening of a general hospital in China. We will undoubtedly get a lot of publicity in this theatre through the Lantern and probably a fair amount in the States. Was busy in the office all afternoon, just barely got time to read all of your letters but they of course always get the highest priority over everything else. Re-read them again and again during leisure time. Went back tonight after supper for a while and came over here about eight. Weíll probably go to bed when I get through. We are really working and are ready for bed when the day is over. Tate is working like a trooper and poor guy is on duty tonight so he will get very little sleep. He is really doing a swell job and weíll be lost if we lose him anytime soon.

††††††††††† Guess Iíve about run down so will go to bed now and dream about my very wonderful little Mommy and the chicks. I do love you all and miss you all so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

August 4, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Mailman was very good today Ė your letter and Martie Annís letter of July 25, which is very good time. Tried to write yesterday but just never got the few minutes to do it. We are still awfully busy. Was over there until 10:30 night before last and until 8 last night. Things are daily showing great improvement but there is still a whole lot to do until we have things running the way we want them. We got the furniture into the enlisted day room yesterday and are going to open the officerís club tonight. We are not having a big party until the 18th. Simply opening for business. Over here we can buy good Vodka, Rum, Brandy, so will sell it over the bar. No ice of course but weíve all forgotten what a drink with ice was like long, long ago. Rained hard all night and is still raining so is pretty sloppy today and is holding up a lot of outside work such as our baseball field, volleyball courts, etc. We are really going to have a magnificent set up when we get things done that are under way. In 30 days should be pretty well in the clear. Too bad itís so hot in Omaha but July and August always are. I personally could stand a bit of Omaha about now, heat and all. Wish you could get away for a few weeks but suppose that is impossible with so many kiddies.

Too bad Mollie skinned her nose. Glad youíre getting all the kids teeth checked. By the way, I had my teeth cleaned last week and a filling replaced. Glad M.A. is getting started with her music. Martie Ann, your letter was awfully nice. How are your gold fish getting along? Am going to make my weekly jaunt to the Convalescent Camp this afternoon but will try to get started early and back in time to get to the club for the opening. Have a lot to do and want to get away early so will try to write a lengthy tomorrow. Thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 5, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail today but canít complain because itís been very good lately. Went out to the convalescent camp after I wrote yesterday. Things there are running very smoothly. They have about completed a theatre tent, which consists of ten ward tents put together over a wooden frame, with concrete floor, stage and all. Itís really a big addition to the place. Had supper there then came back in. We opened the club last night but it was very quiet since we had no music and the booze failed to arrive but everyone thought it was a swell club. It really does look very stateside. Bar in corner and we bought 3 suites and odd chairs and tables. Itís still not complete but looks OK. Chaplain Magnan came in last night, which leaves only one officer to come and all of the nurses are here except one. We still have a few E.M.s to come and then weíll have the brood together. We got in two replacement officers yesterday for two that we had lost so we are full strength again. Bill Hickle makes the assignments and took very good care of us. Rained most of night again but has been cloudy all day, really sloppy but it dries up quite rapidly. We worked until noon today then Col. Tyner and I both slept all afternoon. Really feel like a million. We both needed it because we have really been working. Just got back from supper. We opened our Chapel this morning and Magnon is having a service at 8:30 this evening so the Col. and I are going. Donít you think we are a religious lot! I have been meaning to tell you but keep forgetting, the Col. thinks Mamie is on her way over here. If she comes to C.B.I. she will come to this theatre and the Col. is going to put her out at the Convalescent Camp. Then I will certainly lose my job of going out there on Saturdays. He is really pretty anxious about her getting here and of course doesnít know for sure that she is coming. She might be going to Pacific but she thinks that she probably pulled every string she knew to get over here and may have been able to swing it. Wonít that be a wonderful deal to be able to see his Mommy once or twice a week or so. Weíll probably be without a C.O. for the first week or so.

In one area, the other side of town where it is quite low, there was about a mile under water last night. The water covered several coolie villages and it was really pitiful to see them with all of their worldly possessions sitting along the road. They donít really have enough stuff to fill a coaster wagon. Iím enclosing a couple of prints, which an O.W.I. man took out below the Convalescent Camp. Iím not sure but what I sent these before, probably smaller prints. Think the photography is very good. Did you ever get the set of prints showing all phases of the camp? There were about 30 of them, 4 by 5 prints, and all excellent. If you didnít get them be sure to let me know so that I can get duplicates made. The Col. is interrupting every two minutes so is a little hard to concentrate. Right now he is pulling his short hair wondering what he would do if Tate or I or both went home on points right now. I sure donít know what he would do. Believe in 60 days things will be smooth enough that we could get out without too much embarrassment to the unit.

Think of you guys every minute and am counting the days until weíre all together again. The points for critical score should be announced today or tomorrow and of course weíre all anxious to know what it will be. Must get cleaned up for church so know that I am thinking of you every minute and do love you so very, very much. Be good kids and think of you Daddy. Saw Chao and Lu and they were both beaming and are very happy out there. Believe Chao has gained 10 pounds since I took him and he knows all of his words and is speaking very well. I do love you all so very, very much. Will dream about you tonight.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 7, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

I am sailing high in the clouds right at this moment since I have finally attained that long cherished rank of Lt. Col. Frankly when I came into the army I never expected to get there and that is the good news that I mentioned some time back. I knew that it was coming but there is always that possibility of some slip so didnít want to disappoint you. Bill Hickle came out this morning with the wonderful news. We didnít know about it and the order was cut August 1. The others are Colonel Tyner (Eagles), Lt. Col. Readinger, Lt. Col. Freshman, and Major Colleti. We have many more on the way, which should be in soon and it will be a big help to morale to have the promotions and will be better from the standpoint of doing business to have more rank. Guess I canít keep saying more and more about the same thing but it is really a big thrill. I would cable but we canít get decent service from here so suppose the letter would beat it there. You tell the folks and everyone and Iíll write when I get a chance.

Didnít get any mail yesterday and was awfully busy all day. Got a hold of some varnish and a brush yesterday and got started varnishing some woodwork and our dinette table after supper last night. By the time I quit it was too late to write so the Col. and I went to the Club and had a drink and then home to bed. Just got started working this morning when Hickle came in, so donít imagine weíll get much done today. I am really thrilled pink and know that you will be too. If you want to notify the World Herald it would be OK but in time the Public Relations Office in this theatre will send it in.

Am thinking of you all every minute and do love you all so very, very much. Always will love you and am counting the days until we are together. Will try to write more rationally tomorrow.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

August 8, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote this morning and sent you a cable this afternoon. Hope the cable wonít alarm you. Donít be alarmed by a cablegram because all war department official notices come by Western Union not cablegrams. I was under the impression that cables could not be sent from China but found out today that they can be. Funny part of it is that the China cable Co. still charges the old prices and canít get it changed. A cable like I sent you today, 25 words including address and signature costs 800 C N, which is less than 40 cents. They have the army greeting cables which cost 40 C N which is les than 2 cents so from now on whenever I go by the cable station Iíll drop you a hello, am well, etc. cable. Isnít that a deal. Hope it will last. Had two nice letters today, July 25 and July 26, also Gregg, your very nice writing. You are doing beautifully. Mommy, I think we have very smart children and such nice children. I am really proud of them. Glad that Mollieís nose is better. She must really be a doll. I didnít get the second package yet with the film in it. Donít send any more packages because I have a pretty good deal now with the Signal Corps for any pictures I want. Also lots of our people have cameras and take about the same pictures as I would. Martie Ann, arenít you smart to be helping Susie with her reading. Had to laugh at Gregg going tinkle in the bathtub. Thatís OK boy. Itís much better than wetting your bed. Mollie, you must be a good girl for your Daddy and not wet your pants. The little Chinese kids do that and they are awful dirty and smell bad so donít you be like the little Chinese girls. Mollie, your letter was very nice and I want you to write again real soon.

Was busy all morning and downtown all afternoon Ė not in town, but at army installations. There is a lot to be done by way of making contacts and we do have to get down often as we can. Iím trying to promote a lot of furniture for sun porches, clinic waiting rooms, some offices, etc. Iím telling you my dear that this will be no ordinary looking hospital. Things are really shaping up beautifully, much to do yet, but itís looking better every single day and in a few weeks will really be Ding How.

The boys at the slaughterhouse sent us out a nice big young beef liver today so weíre having it cooked up tonight and will serve it at the club about 9:30. We have a stock of vodka, rum, crŤme do cocoa and gin now and will start selling drinks over the bar tonight. The Col. is working on a bunch of stuff now so Iíd better quit and help him out. So glad to get your letters. They do mean so very much and I do love you guys more than anything else in all the world.

War news sound awfully good and it could certainly wind up any day now, especially if this new atomic bomb is as good as reports seem to indicate. I still say Iíll be home for Christmas and what a magnificent day that will be. Iím going to cable the folks and Hod and maybe some others tomorrow but wanted you to be sure and get yours first. I do love you all so very much. Will dream of you tonight.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

August 9, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday but I am still in the clouds from the promotion. Just got my new pay data card and I now make $533 instead of $468, which is a pretty nice increase. I will not change my allotments because they are apparently going thru all right now and I would rather not disturb them and get it mixed up. If I have too much money I will buy money orders and send it home that way. When I wrote to OíHara and gave him the figures for my army pay I calculated it on the basis of getting my Lt. Col. on August 1. Knew that wouldnít be too far off and it just happened that the order was dated August 1, so I was exactly right. All of the new Cols. and the new Majors were stepping highly all day and looks like a lot of rank around our place. When we left the office last night we gathered up a gang and went to the cottage where I opened a quart of Johnnie Walker, which I bought at the Blackstone. It didnít go far but was really good. After supper we sent to the Club. I had one quart of gin, which finishes all of my liquor. Readinger had a quart of whiskey and the Col. had a pint of vodka so we bought drinks as far as it would go. Donít believe there is very much TAT left in the organization. Went to bed about eleven. Col. Tyner gave me all of his old insignia and I passed mine down to some of the Captains who are due for their Majority soon. Burns, Anderson, Julius Pearson, Pollak, and Morvat. We really have a swell bunch of promotions on the way in. Should be about 10 a week for quite a while.

I was thinking most of the day yesterday about how thrilled you were when I got my Majority. We surely didnít think then that Iíd ever be an L. C. did we? Donít believe that Iíve ever told you but it has really been a very deep desire to be a Lt. Col. because your Dad was in the last war and now I am even with him on that one point.

We are still awfully busy but every day we are showing immense improvement and within two weeks now should be in excellent shape though still with a lot of work to be done to put this hospital in the shape that we want it in. There is no question in my mind now but what we will have the best hospital in the C.B.I. theatre within 30 days and the best anywhere overseas within two month. I rally do believe that too. I guess that I must be sold on this outfit. Guess that Iíve raved long enough for now and Iíd better get to work instead of resting on my laurels so know what Iím thinking of you al every day al the time and do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

Better get Gregg and Martie Ann a silver leaf to war now. Believe there are some of you Dadís in my bureau.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always

 

August 10, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday and I didnít write. There are still days when we donít have two minutes free all day and yesterday was one of them. We are all still walking on air with our new ranks and it is really very pleasant. We are still working very hard but things are beginning to shape up so that in another two weeks things should be getting around to where we want them. After supper last night we had a little party at the club. Just our own people and the new promotion boys bought the drinks. We served sandwiches and it was a very pleasant get-together. Elizabeth Nolting, a Red Cross worker who was in Calcutta, came in yesterday and now all of the chicks are back in the fold. The party was sort of an old home week. There have been many times in the last several months when we wondered if we would ever get them all together.

Was sort of tired this morning so slept until 7:15 and missed breakfast but went to the officer patientís mess and had some coffee. We got our hot water heater connected yesterday in the cottage so had a hot shower last night. We didnít have hot water at the Convalescent Camp so last night was the 3rd hot shower that Iíve had since I left Ledo. It really felt good. All of the construction is done now on the cottage, the electric lights in, etc. I still have to do some varnishing but outside of that it is all done and we are living very comfortable. Food is excellent so we have absolutely no complaints.

We are all getting very optimistic about the end of war with Japan, with Russia in and the new atomic bomb I expect surrender any day now. I believe that we are in an excellent position to go home as a unit right away after V.J. day. Boy oh Boy, wonít that be a happy day and it canít come too soon. I still say Iíll be home for Christmas so set the table for me. Am thinking of you guys every minute and do love you and miss you so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

Didnít get around to sending any more cables so you spread the good word.

 

August 10, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote this morning but have a few minutes so though Iíd drop a note. Mailman was quite generous and brought your letter of July 29 which is very good service. Also received a nice letter from Horall and Optimist Bulletin. You all sound swell and it is so good to hear. Envy the Buskes, etc. for the privilege of going to the lakes with their families. Surely wish I could be going anywhere or even staying home with you guys. Weíll make up for it though next summer and every summer after. Must close and go to town with the Col.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love, Clint and Daddy

 

Wrote this morning and a note this afternoon but we had another mail delivery this afternoon and I got your letters of July 27 and 28, which brings me up to July 29. I just had dinner and after dinner talked to the day nurses. I hate talking to the nurses. They listen so intently and then buzz like bees and ask a million questions but someone has to talk to them so I am it. Glad my letters are going through so well. Yours are dong beautifully now. Miss a day or so at a time and then they catch up again. By all means give Mrs. Matt the money to get her glasses. When I said raising children I meant of course the ones that we have, not additional. Donít work too hard, let the housework go and take care of yourself and the kids. Glad that the weather is better. Surprised to hear about Jane. Hope she will get through with the baby OK. Would love to see our little family all out for dinner. I am really proud of them for being such nice children. They are really perfect arenít they?

Things at the hospital are coming along beautifully and my work is letting up a little now although we are still very busy which suits me to perfection, makes the time go so much faster. Eight months ago today I believe I was in Cairo. The time has really sped fast and in a few months Iíll be home and it wonít have seemed like any time at all. I do love you all so very, very much and think of you all every minute. Am going to bed early and get caught up on shut-eye. Iíll be dreaming about you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† All My Love Always, Clint and Daddy

 

Chapter XIV: Kunming, China Ė The War Ends!

 

August 11, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

I suppose that I am about the happiest person in the world today. The news of Japanís surrender came to us over the radio at about 9:30 last night. About a dozen or so of us were in the club. I had a meeting there with the nurses at 7:30 and was having a drink afterwards. About 8 the radio said to stand by for an important announcement and at 9:30 in came the news. Within five minutes I believe every officer and nurse in the outfit was in the club and where it came from I donít know, but there were dozens of bottles of stateside whiskey. Guess the boys were hoarding for V.J. Day. We got things quieted down and under control by about midnight but I suspect there are a lot of big heads this morning. Everyone is really walking on air. It is hard to make any prediction as to when weíll get out of here and homeward bound but I would guess that we will be out of here in 30 to 90 days. I still say Iíll be home for Christmas but you know it will take time and it will probably be about December before we are home. The time is bound to fly now and I will count the days until I have you guys all in my arms again.

Guess it hasnít been officially confirmed but it is probably one of those things which will take 48 hours or so to get the big heads together and get things settled. Boy oh Boy, but I am really happy. Imagine that you will get my cable about the same day as the news of V.J. Day so can imagine that Mommy will really be in the clouds. I do love you all so very, very much and will count the hours until we are together.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 12, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday but perhaps today since we have not had delivery as yet. We are all still very happy about the war being over. I guess it has not been officially confirmed but undoubtedly will be within the next day or two. Iím wondering if the announcement was made in the States as it was here the night before last. Spent most of afternoon downtown and then sat around the cottage with the boss until about nine. Pop Warner was in from the Convalescent Camp and we had business to discuss. About nine we went to the club, had a couple of drinks, then went home and to bed early. We were up early this morning and in the office. Bob and I are going to church at 10:30 and itís about that time now. Weíre all counting the days until we get out of China and back in good old uncle sugar again. I rather hope that when we go home weíll go by boat even though it will take longer. It would be much more pleasant. I do love you and miss you all so very, very much and can hardly wait for the day that I see you all at the Omaha airport. I do love you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 12, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote a short note this morning but am doing nothing so will do it again to sort of catch up for some of the days Iíve missed recently. Tate and I went to church this morning. Chaplain Magnon made it a thanksgiving service for the end of the war and it was really splendid. He is a fine man. We had communion, etc.-- all in our new chapel, which is very nice. Had dinner and the just loafed all afternoon, read awhile, slept awhile, then went to supper and just came back to the cottage. The Col. has gone out for dinner. We were both invited to the Governorís for dinner but Iím staying in because we didnít feel that we should both go at once and leave the area. I will go later. It should be very nice. The governor is father of Gen. Lu Han who owns the home where the Convalescent Camp is.

When I was napping this afternoon dreamed that I went into a place. Col. Tyner was there. Just a big room with chairs all around. The boss had a barrel of ice cold beer and started to fix us a Dutch lunch. The waiters carried in tray after tray of meats, cheeses, pickles, etc. They opened the beer and preparation went on until just ready to eat and I woke up. My mouth was really watering. Guess I must be getting stateside ideas in my head since the war is over. The boys brought me a letter this afternoon, July 31, and such a nice letter. Sounds like you are willing to stand for a lot to get us together in a double bed, snoring, talking, stealing covers Ė donít think Iíll need any covers for a least the first year at home. Too bad poor little Mollie took another tumble. Give her a kiss for me and then it will get all better. Martie Ann and Gregg must be getting to be handsome children and know that Mollie and Gary are cute as bugs.

Yes, I do think that Iíll be home by the end of the year. You see there will be no occupation necessary here and the supply of troops in this theatre is a terrifically difficult thing, only the hump or the road you know, so I believe that all troops will be moved out of this area as soon as possible. I sincerely believe that weíll be out of China in 60 to 90 days or even less. We will probably close up shop and leave as a unit but I canít believe that theyíll set us up again at any other place because they have plenty of hospitals in the Pacific, probably a big reserve and now that casualties have stopped, they should have hospitals by the dozens. I could be wrong but I just know that Iíll be home for Christmas and boy oh boy, what a wonderful day that will be. I do love you and miss you all so very, very much. If I get home by the end of year weíll start planning the house right away and maybe if prices arenít too high we can build in the Spring and move out there. Wonít it be wonderful. I about pop when I think about it. All the love and kisses in the world to you rascals.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 14, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Donít remember for sure but believe I wrote yesterday morning, may have been Sunday night. Anyway, yesterday received your letter of July 30, had read one of July 31 the day before. Desdaís nice letter enclosed. There is no ivory available here and no Sarees but if I get back to India will pick them up for her. Do have a few things and will send them soon as I get a chance. May send them all to you and you can re-mail them to whoever you want to. Dropped Des and Ced each a short note today and enclosed a few snaps from the Ledo Road trip which you already have. Have been awfully busy all day yesterday and today and it is now 8 oíclock. Think Iíll finish this letter and take a bath and go to bed.

Had our first medical staff meeting last night and it was excellent. I imagine that we had at least 25 Chinese doctors as guests. Readinger, Rich, Canterbury, Echert, Freshman and Johnson all spoke. Amoebic Dysentery was the subject. Col. Armstrong came in last night and was here all day. Talked to Bill Hickle on phone today. Armstrong is not located here now but Hickle is still here. Has been raining most of time now for about three days and wish it would stop. Is really getting awfully sloppy. Weíll probably let up any time. We have not as yet received official confirmation on V.J. Day but feel sure that it is over and that weíll know any day now and then goodbye to China soon I hope. Still believe weíll be home by Christmas from this theatre. Iím feeling like a million and am very busy. Things at the hospital are going very well and I have no complaints except I want to get home to you precious guys soon. I do love you all so very, very much and will always,

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 15, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote to you last night but am so very happy this morning that I have to get a note off. We received official confirmation of the end of the war at 7 this morning so suppose you received it even before then. Weíve known it was coming for several days but now it is really over and that is what weíve been waiting for. Know weíll be home now in the next few months and can begin to make some plans for the future. When I get back to the Sates Iíll have a chance to attend almost any one of several special schools in all fields of medicine. Courses will be given at Mayos and all such centers. I may or may not decide to take one of these courses but believe now that if I can get out immediately Iíll do it and if I want refresher training Iíll take it on my own when and where I want it. We can decide such minor details later. Now the only thing important is to get home and with all of you. Iíll never leave you again for longer then 8 to 5 if I can help it. It will be so wonderful to see and be with you. Am about to pop at the thought of seeing you again. Tate of course is very happy and weíre all hoping to go home as a unit. Would prefer to go by boat but will go any2way they decide to take us. Think I would even try it on a bicycle. Mail isnít in yet but hope to get a letter today and then Iíll finish writing this. Keep your spirits up and do take care of yourselves. Donít work too hard. Just take care of yourself and the kids and have fun every day. Iím beginning to sound like Desda. Better change my ways.

Just got back from lunch and your nice letter of August 3 was waiting for me. You are really building up a magnificent bank account. Believe you should salt down about 2,500 now. Youíll have plenty left to pay income tax and have more money from hotel at the end of the month. I would like very much to have $5,000 in cash in the lock box in case of a freezing of bank deposits or any similar deal. In case of tough times you canít beat cash. Glad the kids liked the pony idea and Mollie the donkey. She must be a doll. Gregg, you are really a big boy to be able to whistle and Martie Ann, you must really be a big girl. You kids all be awfully good, as I know you are, and I will be home before too long. On the radio this noon they told all about the Jap surrender, etc. You must have heard it officially on August 14 at 7P.M. Can imagine that you and the folks and Eleanor are all might happy as is everyone else. Iím having many interruptions so had better close and write more later. I do love you all so very, very much and am counting the days until Iím with you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 16, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Two lovely letters today written August 4 and 5. Glad Riley Green is getting a leave. Believe heís more than due for it. Sounds like Mollie started quite a flood. She must really be a midget. Give Henri Barnes my regards. Am very much interested in Mr. Averillís ideas. Wouldnít sell all or much but would be swell to have such a community near us. If he writes I will write him in detail because something could come of it. Still believe that farm will someday be our retirement income. Wish we owned more land around that corner. Why donít you call Bob Tateís Dad and if you can buy either Daleyís farm, the old Germanís across the road or the 20 acres across the corner for $250 per acre or less buy it. Make a minimum down payment and carry the rest on a loan. Know you havenít time to bother with it but you might call Tateís Dad. Better yet, believe Iíll write to him and to Pete. Hope poor little old Gregger wonít miss me too much and Gregger, Iíll be home with you for Christmas and from then on weíll be constant pals. Weíll really have fun, riding, hunting, fishing and playing. You keep your chin up and be a good boy for Mommy and Iíll be home soon. I am awfully proud of you boy.

The children all sound mighty smart to me, all getting gold stars for knowing their verses. How was the picnic Gregg? Better write and tell me all about it. When I get home Iíll play ball with you and weíll go to Chicago and see the Cubs play. Martie Ann, you are mighty big to pack your own suitcase and go to Gaggieís and also to read to Craig. Really tickled to hear that the farm looks so good. Planting those trees was really smart. They should be pretty decent trees in one more year and wonít they look nice though. Glad that Bud and Kay are on leave in Omaha. Doubt if Bud will ever leave the States now. If he does he can probably take Kay with him and that wouldnít be too bad. In fact would be a nice experience for them. Had a letter from Fein Lohoeffner. She was in Omaha a couple of months ago and got my address. She was headed for overseas months and months ago but fell getting off the train at the port and has been in and out of hospitals ever since. She is now being discharged from Army. She wound up with a stiff knee from a fracture. She hates to leave the Army now but is anxious also to get back to civilian life. It has rained a lot last several days. Let up today but last night for a couple of hours it rained cats and dogs. We have a few wards that are on low ground next to a stream and last night it about overflowed. The boss and I, Tate and everyone were over there until late working and getting ready to move all the patients out. It was very exciting. Finally about ten the engineers blasted a dike above the hospital and then the water dropped and we came home. We were really tired after sloshing around in the mud for a few hours and slept like logs. Up early this morning and busy all day. We are all very happy about the end of the war and the rumors are flying about when weíll get out of here. I personally believe that all troops will be out of China before very long and the 172 will be headed for U.S.A. within a few months. We will probably have to operate until most of the troops are out of here. Still say Iíll be home for Christmas. Really and truly, that will be the most exciting day of my life and I do mean it. We have a lad in the hospital, Herb Stryker Jr., a Capt. In the Air Corps. Heís a fine lad, about 22. Was overseas flying for A.T.C. He feels very childish about it all. Heís in the hospital for mumps. Tate knew him in Omaha. I dropped in on him for a few minutes. Just finished dinner and think Iíll read awhile and then go to bed. I do love you all so very, very much and you only.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 17, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote last night so havenít much to write about but am going to be busy tonight so though Iíd better drop you a note. We are awarding over two hundred good conduct medals tonight so will be busy all evening. Am going out to the Convalescent Camp in the morning to award some there.

No mail today so reread yesterdayís. They are always good for reading over and over to hear the antics of the children. After I wrote you last night came over to the hospital for a while then stopped at the club and had a drink and a sandwich and then went to bed. Really slept like a log. Have been busy all day today. We have a staff meeting every Friday morning. After lunch today went over to Chaplain Ritcheyís quarters. He had promoted some ice cream from somewhere. I ate a whole water glass of it and had two pieces of pie for lunch. One cherry, one peach, so really did all right. My appetite is marvelous and I eat like a pig but am holding my weight about the same. Think Iíve lost some of my tummy.

A delegation of Chinese came to our cottage after lunch. Maj. Bosshardt had taken care of one of them so they brought gifts to Col. Tyner because he is the C.O. The delegation drove up in two new Buick sedans and after much bowing, etc., gave the boss two quarts of Scotch, 2 quarts of 5 Star Hennessey and 4 bottles of beer made in Shanghai and four boxes of cigars. The old boy whose cash took care of it is the Commissioner of Taxes for this province and apparently has plenty of dough. I about split. The Commissioner is an old timer, dressed in long robes, etc. Just as he walked in something must have slipped because his pants fell down to his ankles. You should have seen the contortions he went through to get them up.

Quite raining last night and has been a perfectly beautiful day today. Thinking of you all every minute and counting the days until we are all together again. It will be such a wonderful day. I do love you all so very, very much. A big hug and a kiss and a pat for each.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 19, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Two very nice letters today, August 6 and 8. Glad you got the tea and hope you like it as well as I do. Glad Bud and Kay are in Omaha and hope Bud can stay in the States. Greggie, do you think Uncle Bud looks like me? You hug him good but save a lot for your Pappy. Martie Ann, I sure will buy you a gardenia. Iíll get you a posie every time you and I go out courting; when we go dancing Iíll get you two.

Censorship regulations were lifted today so we can head our letters now as is this one. Also I can tell you more about the hospital. We are set up about 5 miles from Kunming. Buildings are brick or mud brick plastered inside and out with tile or tar paper roofs. We have 25 wards open now and will open two more this week. We opened on the 28th of July with 800 patients who were transferred to us from a station hospital which moved out when we came in. Weíve been very busy, over 900 patients all the time since a few days after we opened. We are the first and only General Hospital in China, which is some distinction and give this theatre a better type of medical care than they have ever had before. We had quite a nice party in the club last night. Had a 10-piece orchestra and a buffet supper. The Col. and I were kept busy entertaining local brass. Col. Armstrong and Fuller, Col. Owlnly and his staff from base section and many from SOS headquarters. All seemed to have a very nice time. I rank a couple of cups of coffee and didnít sleep too well. Worked this morning and napped and read all afternoon. Just now finished supper. There are about a dozen officers who have over 75 points-- myself, Rich, Tate, Weber, Ritchey, McKnight, Warren,,Quinn, Hitz, and Canterbury. We feel that we have some chance of going home on points but I believe we will actually go home as a unit before points work. No definite policy has come out but I personally think weíll be out of China within 90 days or so. Itís hard to settle down to trying to build a good hospital when our primary thought is when do we go home. If we get out of here any time before Nov. 15 we should be home for Christmas and I believe we can make it. At any rate it will certainly not be very long and Iím counting the days until that wonderful day when I will be with you. I know that Iím gong to appreciate my family and friends and being an American much more than ever before. I will really know form now on when Iím well off.

I have a few photos, which I couldnít send before, all taken along the road or in regard to the plane crash in which our nurses were killed. Seems like I should be able to think of lots to tell without censorship but guess itís like most things, you miss them most when you canít have them. Col. Armstrong and Col. Fuller are staying here in the cottage with us. We set up a double deck bed in the dinette. Last night Col. Armstrong, half asleep was going to bathroom and fell out of bed. Didnít hurt him but what a racket in the middle of the night. Guess Iíll go over and chew the fat with some of the boys and then come back to bed early. Thinking of you all every single minute and do love you all so very much. Will always love you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

Madame Wong was out and dropped in for a minute this afternoon. She is leaving soon for the Sates and may be in Omaha so donít be surprised if she calls you.

 

August 20, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail today and wrote a lengthy last night so havenít much to say tonight. Just finished getting two boxes ready to send. One has some linen in it, etc. Theyíre not too good but thought you might send one to Ethy or Des if you wanted to. The other box is a bunch of junk that Iíve been carting around and will never need Ė liner to my trench coat, fatigues, some cotton battle jackets, boots, etc. May make good farm clothes. In the first box are two pairs of tropical trousers, one has varnish on the seat, the other has a broken zipper. Both are good but I canít see using them until fixed so thought Iíd start getting rid of junk. Donít get excited because Iím sending clothes home but might as well get rid of junk that I canít use here. I am getting more optimistic every day about being home for Christmas. Firmly believe that Iíll make it and wonít it be wonderful though. What a day. I do love you all so very, very much and think of you every minute of the day. Am going to take a bath and go to bed so, sweet dreams.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† I do love you only. Always, Clint and Daddy

 

 

August 20, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote this morning and have had no mail today but received your very swell radiogram. I am of course still very happy about V.J. Day and promotion and know that you and the folks must be too. Have to get to work. Surely hope I get some mail tomorrow. Havenít had any since Sunday.

The situation is normal here but they changed their minds about censorship so now I canít say where I am. A little bit ridiculous. For two days we could and now we canít. No mail yesterday so should bet some today. Am anxious to get your first letters addressed to Lt. Col. and know hove you felt about it all. Was busy all day yesterday. Itís still raining quite a bit every day and weíre getting tired of it. Sun should start shinning any day now and weíll all be glad to have the rains over. Is not uncomfortable weather but just gets sloppier every day.

Col. Tyner and I went down to Col. Deckerís for dinner last night. He is the Executive Officer for this base. He and seven other officers are living in a Chinese mansion on the order of the Convalescent Camp, but even nicer. They are really living like kings. We had a very nice dinner and then saw a show right in their living room. Was a Batoon picture -- pretty good. Came home about eleven and slept like a log. Am busy this morning so better get to work. Mamie is apparently on her way over seas. The Col. received her APO card a couple of days ago. Donít know where she is headed for but could be here any day.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love you more than ever. Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 23, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice letter yesterday written August 9th. My radiogram must have arrived about the 10th or 11th so am anxious to get those letters Ė maybe today. Bet Gregg had a good time playing golf with Bud. Where is John Stautenible located now and what is he doing? Would love to see Gary boy in his training pants. He must really be getting to be quite a boy. How I would love to see him and all of you. Surely hope it will be real soon. Surprised that Leo could take time from his busy practice to drop in for a call. Do you suppose that he is simple enough to believe that I will office with him again after the deal he gave me when I left? Gregg, you must really be a big boy to be building an airplane. When we build our new house weíll have a workshop in the basement and you and I and Gary can hide out down there when the gals get to bothering us. Was very busy all day yesterday. Went out to the Convalescent Camp in the afternoon and was about eight when I left. Came home and went to bed. Up at 6:30 this morning. While I was out there I slept two hours. I was up most of the night before on some pressing business here. Had gone to bed about nine but was called at 1 or so and up most of the night.

Nothing startling -- just one of those things that goes with a place like this. Rains have been keeping up until this morning. Today is a beauty and certainly hope the rain will let up now. I slept like a log last night and feel like a million this morning. Col. had a letter yesterday from Mamie. She is in route to where we donít know but the letter was obviously from Hawaii. She had flown there from camp Beale California. Sounded very enthused. Imagine that she is going to the Philippines.

Must get to work now. We have a staff meeting in an hour. Am thinking oof you every minute and do love you all so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 25, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail again today and wish we would start getting more regular service. Was busy all day yesterday Ė staff meeting in the morning and meeting of all officers last night. The temporary board for the Officerís Club was unanimously elected as the permanent board. Tate and I tried to get rid of it but had no luck. Col. Armstrong and his crew have moved back down here and he was out for the evening. We fixed him up a room, the dinette, double deck bed, etc. Put a sign over the door Ė ďArmyís Retreat.Ē He was pleased pink over it. We promoted a carpet for our cottage and have curtains up so it really looks swell. Hasnít rained all day today and has really been a beautiful day. Late last night we got in a number of patients who were just released from a Jap Prisoner of War Camp. The whole group had been captured on Correigidor and have been in prison for over 3 years. Last night was the first time they had slept in a bed or eaten with silverware since their capture. They are really happy to be in American hands. It almost makes one cry to see them. We are giving them almost anything they want -- candy, ice cream, best food we can fix and the best of medical attention. They really have some interesting stories to tell.

Col. Tyner was tied up this morning and General Sliateineyer was here to award the Distinguished Service Medal to General Davidson. General Davidson is in the hospital as a patient. Because the Col. was busy I went over for the awarding. Beautiful medal and the General was really pleased.

Yesterday I mailed home my pilots license, short snorter and some other papers. I was afraid I might lose them and my billfold was getting very bulky so lay them away. Was downtown all afternoon and just now got back. This morning bought two cute Chinese dolls made at a convent near here. Will send them home soon. Itís time for supper so better close. Am thinking of you every minute and do love you al so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 26, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote last night just before supper so donít have too much to write this morning. The boys in the kitchen fixed us up a supper last night Ė liver and onions with all the trimmings. We had it over in the cottage Ė Warren, Mulford, Pollak and the two of us. It was really good. After supper we sat around for a while and then went over t the club. We had a four-piece band there, not much of a crowd. There were three big parties downtown and most of the nurses went to one or the other. Armstrong and Fuller were out. We went over to the cottage and sat around until about one. The army has come out with a new deal. Giving regular army commissions to A.U.S. officers. Armstong wants the Col. and I to accept regular commissions in our present rank. I believe that Col. Tyner will probably take a commission but I of course told them that I felt very honored, etc., but would not consider the deal. I only want one thing from the army now and that is out. I feel that I have been very lucky to get a Lt. Col. in less than 3 years but staying in does not appeal in any way.

Weíre getting more prisoners in every day and it is very interesting to see them. Weather is beautiful this morning and I am hoping it will stay that way. Hope to get some mail today and will finish this letter after mail arrives. (9 P.M.) No mail today either. Went to church after I started this letter -- very nice service. After dinner I went over to the club and worked all afternoon covering the front of the bar with leather and aluminum strips. Looks very swanky, or at least it will when we get through. Col. and I went over to Warrenís room for supper Ė bacon and eggs, pea soup, chili with cheese Ė all very good. After supper we had a show at the club. The picture was about two twins, one a jitterbug champ and the other an I.Q. champ. Was very entertaining. I just now got home and the Col. is in bed snoring. Think Iíll join him when I finish this letter. Surely hope I get some mail tomorrow. Canít understand the delay unless it is the change in APO to 289. That I guess could be the slip. Certainly hope it wonít take long to straighten it out. Itís now been almost a week since any of us got any mail to amount to much. Believe Iíve had one letter this week, written the 9th. We do miss the mail so much. I think of you all every minute and do love you and miss you all so very, very much. Will dream about you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 27, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Mailman was wonderful yesterday -- your letters of August 11, 12, 13, 15, Martie Annís letter, Greggís picture, KE news and a letter from Hod. Wish it would be half that good every day. Our morale gets pretty low when a week goes by without any mail. Itís funny but you know that we had the news of V.J. day on the 10th and then later confirmed so we celebrated early. Glad you got the news of my promotion and are happy about it. Also glad to know that all of the gifts have arrived. I believe that is everything now except two boxes that I sent last week and I have two dolls to send yet for the girls. Sounds as though Omaha was very jubilant over V.J. day. Keep that champagne cold and weíll drink it before Christmas. Thatís a promise that Iíll try awfully hard to keep and feel sure I can keep.

Martie Ann, your letters are so nice. I love hearing all about the V.J. Day celebration. Your pictures Gregg are very nice and you have certainly improved during the last year. Seems funny but guess youíll be starting to school again in about two weeks from time you get this letter. Wish I could be there to take you to school on the first day. Hodís letter was a riot as usual. Gregg, I hope you and Johnnie will catch the rabbit. Iíll write to Hod soon. Intended to write yesterday but was awfully busy all day and we had staff meeting last night. Went over and went to bed right after the meeting. Our staff meetings are very good. Last night Hagman, Burns, Anderson and Schwartz gave fine programs. We really have an excellent staff. Have got to get to work and will try to write more this afternoon. Know that Iím thinking of you all every minute and do love you all so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 28, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Your letter of August 17 came today and is the first letter from you which I wish I had never received. I was shocked to hear of poor Desda. It seems such a pity that she couldnít have waited until Ralph and Beech were home. Thereís nothing I can say which will tell you how badly I feel. I know what Desda meant to you and the whole Baldwin family, but there are many things in this world which none of us will ever understand. Have consolation in the knowledge that Desda led a very productive and useful life and was so charitable to everyone. We have to realize though Mart Dear that as people become Desdaís age, after such a busy life so full of tension, that their time comes to rest and let others do their work. Mart, honey, you take care of yourself and donít let this get you down. I know that Iíll be home to help you real soon. The war is now definitely over and we will not be kept in China very long.

The unit will probably be one of the last one out of the theatre but the point system and other things should get Bob and I home before many months. I feel positive that we will both be home for Christmas. It is such a wonderful thing to know that you and the kids are OK. I know that I will be the proudest person in the world when I am with you again and I promise that I will never go anywhere without you again. I have had all of the lone wolf travels that I ever want. Glad you liked the things from Calcutta. The house should be about full of stuff that I have sent. Guess weíll have to build a new house to get all of the stuff in. Bob just came in with your letter of August 7th. Donít know where itís been held up. Funny how the mail comes through and even the old ones are always welcome.

Glad Cedis holding his own and hope we can see him again while he is fairly well. Gregg, you are getting to be a big boy, riding a two-wheeled bike and collecting butterflies. Do be careful riding the bike. Donít ever go out of the yard or down the hill of the driveway. Remember that boy, will you? Martie Ann, I know that you and Mollie are beautiful girls in your sister dresses. Keep looking pretty and be good girls for your Daddy. I am sending you each a little Chinese doll real soon. They look like Chinese coolie women with babies on their backs. Will be nice for your collection.

Mart Honey, keep your chin up and know that I love you and the kids more than ever and more than anything else in the world and will be with you real soon. I do love you so much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 29, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Have been terribly busy all day and had a meeting tonight after supper which we just finished. Went to bed early last night and slept likea log. Your nice letter of August 18 came this morning. I am so happy that you and Martie Ann are going to Estes. Imagine that you will have been there and back before you get this and I do hope that you have a wonderful time. It will be nice up there now and is such a pretty place. Know the kids will be OK with Mother and Mary Joe so there is nothing to worry about. Am tired so am going to bed. I do love you all so very, very much, you only, and always will. Weather past few days has been beautiful. Iím feeling like a million. Our food is a lot better since end of the war. Was good before but now is super. Ice cream 3 times a week and plenty of everything. Still getting a lot of prisoners and they are very interesting lot. Have had some of Doolittleís flyers. Will write some more tomorrow. I do love you all so very much and am so anxious to get home.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love always, Clint and Daddy

 

August 30, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice letter today, August 20. Mail has been swell lately Ė also Optimist News and clipping from the World Herald about V.J. Day. Seems like Omaha and all the rest of the nation sort of took their hair down for the occasion. We here of course are very happy about it but celebration consisted only of a few drinks on the night of August 10. The end of the war for us has meant only one thing and that is work and I do mean work. We are working like mad but it is a real pleasure because the patients that we are getting now need medical care so badly and are so appreciative of everything that we do for them. They are very interesting to visit with and so happy to be here. They rave about the beds, food and love to visit. It is really a pleasure. We got in a bunch today among whom were many very important people. All very swell too. I went down to meet the plane today and Col. Armstrong, Gen. Aurand and others were there too.

Didnít get a good chance to answer your letter of 18th, which came yesterday. Swell of Joan to have a party for you. They are at times very nice friends. Also swell of Hod and Vie to take you to dinner. Too bad Duke and Virginia are out of their jobs but suppose hundreds of others are at the same time. Apparently the golden harvest is over for those who stayed at home and took the gravy. I am glad that I came in and believe you and the kids will always be glad, although itís been hell on earth to be gone from you for such a long time It wonít be long now until Iím on my way home to you and what a wonderful day that will be. Feel sure Iíll be home for Christmas an now that we are so busy the days and weeks fly by but they canít go too fast for me. Itís after nine and I just got home so think Iíll go to bed. Weather here now is perfectly beautiful every day Ė warm but not hot and nights are grand for sleeping. Really sleep like a top. Awarded a Purple Heart today which is the first time. A boy who comes from L.A. He left today and promised to look up Ced and Jack. He was an awfully nice lad who had parachuted out of a fighter plane month ago. The boys in special service fixed us up some pictures for our walls so cottage is now complete and really very homey. Hope you and Martie Ann are having a grand time in Estes and am anxious to hear all about it. Love you more than anything in the world. Miss you terribly and pray to be with you soon.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 1, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Didnít get a chance to write yesterday but received a letter from you and then today got three from you, one from Max and Horanís letter enclosed. Max sounds not too happy in Manila but he should be back in the States before too long. Your letters today were August 20, 21 and 23, which is really excellent service. Horaceís letter is lovely but so tragic. Glad Desda didnít suffer and tried to be gay as always until the last. She was certainly a perfect person.

Glad you had such a nice evening with the Reeds. Give them and Dr. Clayton my best regards. Know you will have a wonderful time at Estes and you do deserve a rest so very much. We will do it often when I get home and we will go see the ocean Greggie and Mollie. Weíll all go together and go fishing on a nice boat down in Florida. Wait until I get home and then Iíll see about a donation to the Childrenís Hospital. Know it will be a grand thing for Omaha and Nebraska. Do not send a donation to the Veteranís Hospital. It is government supported. Why not give it to the Masonic Boyís Home where it will do the most good. Send whatever amount you want. We can do most for Desda by being good to her children as she has been to ours. Right? You should have Patty and Mary Des visit us real often and soon as we can manage. Too bad Audrey had trouble but youíll have more fun being on your own. People who spend a lot of time there have seen and done everything and itís old stuff to them. Youíll be more comfortable in a hotel anyway. Wonít it be fun when we can all travel together again. We will really have fun every day after I get home. We are still awfully busy. Yesterday worked all day and until 10:30 last night.

Was up early this morning and worked until about 2:30 then came home and napped until suppertime. I inspected one half of the hospital this morning; the Col. took the other half. We have shown unbelievable improvement in the month that weíve been operating and within another week or so weíll have a stateside institution. Yesterday we got in two loads of most interesting patients and they were just as appreciative of our efforts as the others. In one load there were 15 Generals; in another load there were 11 Colonels. All of these men at one time were headline material and will be again soon. It is really fascinating to be around them and hear their stories. They have been very badly treated and will not be apt to forget soon. Several of them said today that when they reached Washington they were going to tell the powers that be what a wonderful job the 172 is doing. Col. Tyner had served with two of these men in the regular army years ago.

Weather is perfectly beautiful now and should stay this way until the end of the year. Days are going by so fast that I can hardly keep up with them and next couple of month will go by before we know it. I really believe that I can be on my way home within 90 days now, which will make it just right for Christmas. Mart, that will certainly be the happiest day of my life. I can see you all now waving and running when that certain plane comes into Omaha airport. I do love you all so very, very much and miss you so terribly. I am so proud of you and the kids. I think itís wonderful that we have four such wonderful children and that they have such a perfect Mommy and me such a marvelous wife. Will dream about you all every night. I do love you only.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 2, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice Sunday today. Only thing lacking was mail or better yet being with you guys. We were up at usual time this morning but worked only until noon. Last night we got in a load of people among them were sex children ranging from 2 to 11. Three of them were from the same English family with their mother. One of them, six years old, beautiful blonde curls was pretty as a picture. I played with her for quite a while. She was very friendly and had a pretty little voice with English accent. About everyone in the hospital was playing with them some time. The boys took them for a jeep ride, etc. Sure made my miss my darlings even more than usual. The one little girl was a picture of Martie Ann about 3 years ago. I napped most of afternoon. After supper went to the club and just got home. Weíre having pictures two nights a week in the club. Had Frisco Sal tonight, only fair. Our club looks real stateside now. We covered the bar with leather then put an aluminum strip around the bottom. Covered the top with brown rubber sheeting. Everyone uses it a lot since there is no other place to go much. We serve Brandy, Gin, and Vodka and have some food, usually sandwiches, every night. We are going to start tomorrow having bingo on Monday nights.

Weather remains perfectly beautiful. We were all glad to have V.J. day officially announced today. Knew of course that it was coming but is good to have it here at last. They will probably add the points now up to V.J. day and if they do I will have 8 more for 4 months overseas and 5 more for a second battle star, which we just now received officially for coming over the road. I had 78 points, now 5 and 8, will be 91 total, which is pretty well up. We donít know as yet anything very definite on officers scores but feel positive that my points will get me home by end of the year and what a wonderful day that will be. I think of you all every minute and do love you all so very, very much. Martie Ann, hope you had a wonderful time at Estes. Gregg and Mollie are certainly fine children to stay at home with Mary Jo so Mommy can have a nice trip. When I get home weíll al take a trip together and then weíll really have fun. I do love you all so very, very much, as going to bed and dream about you.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 4, 1945 Ė In China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday or today and imagine maybe you were in route to Estes during this period so mail may be a bit slow. Didnít get a chance to write yesterday. We were busy all day and up to ten last night then went to bed. We are still awfully busy and no prospects of an immediate let up. Donít want you to mention this to anyone but we received good news today. Reason I donít want you to mention it is because there is always a possibility that something will come up and it wonít come through. I will radio you if it comes through. First, the unit was recommended for the award of merit. This entitles all of us to war a gold wreath on the right sleeve. Second, a group of us were recommended for the Bronze Star for meritorious service (this is a medal different entirely from the bronze battle stars). Tate and I were both put in for it, also Rich, Jim Pickens, Pollak, Weaver, Jenett, 2 nurses and a few enlisted men. The unit will be awfully happy if we get the award and the individuals for the bronze star will really be proud. Hope they come through and will let you know by radio.

Yesterday all Hdqs. around here were closed for Labor Day but we worked a full day except came home a little early. Work is still very interesting and very gratifying and we are making a name for ourselves. I was downtown this morning and busy in the office all afternoon. We just finished supper. Tonight the dental clinic is having a party for all of their officers and men and the Col. and I are going over. Rained all night last night and most of the day but has cleared up now and is very nice.

I mailed two packages today, one with the two dolls for the girls, other other with 3 suits of O.D. wool for farming purposes only. I am gradually getting rid of all the junk that I will never use over here so when that perfectly wonderful day comes that we can go home I can throw a few things in my valpack, the meager balance in my footlocker and shove off. That will really be a day and I donít think it can be too long. 91 points now and if I get the Bronze Start it will be another 5 points or 96 so that should do it within 60 days or so. I still feel as always that Iíll be home for Christmas.

Mart, I know Iíll be the happiest person on earth the day I see you guys again. I do love you so much, miss you and think of you every single minute. Must go get cleaned up for the party. Will dream of you tonight.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 6, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Censorship has been lifted again so now I can tell you where I am. They apparently went off half-cocked a few weeks ago but now have caught up with things. Martie Annís nice letter of August 22 came yesterday and your letter Mart written from Estes on August 24. Martie Ann, you certainly write a nice letter. You and Gregg will both be having a birthday about the time you get this letter. My but you are getting grown up. A very happy birthday to both of you and have Mommy give you a birthday spanking for me, for you to grow on. Iíll be thinking of you. Have a nice party and Iíll be there for your next one. Glad you had such a nice trip to the Park and know youíve had a grand time. Surely wish that I could be with you. Next summer weíll all go together and fish and ride and drive and swim. Know Gregg and Mollie will be good and little Gary boy. How anxious I am to see you all. I do love you so much.

Was busy all day yesterday. Got in over 80 released American prisoners of war. Was down visiting with all of them this morning. Last night the Col. and I went downtown to a big victory party given by a Chinese general. There were dozens of Chinese Generals and Americans too, many speeches, etc. All of the speeches were in Chinese so they didnít mean much to me, however, the streets were a sight. It was the official Chinese celebration of V.J. day. Parades in every direction, dragons, snakes, funny men on stilts and fireworks everywhere. I have never seen such mobs of people. Could hardly get through in a jeep. Came home about eleven and stopped in the club for a minute. Weather is cloudy today but donít believe it will rain. Just got to the office and have a lot to do so must get busy. Thinking of you all every minute and love you so very, very much. Be good kids and Happy Birthday. All the love in the world.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 6, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Havenít much to write tonight since I wrote this morning. No mail today. Weather today has been perfectly beautiful and Iíve been busy all day. Was downtown twice and busy in the office the rest of the time. We finally today got orders awarding us the second battle participation star for coming over the road and that now give me 91 points. Things are coming out every day or so now on return to the States and I feel more sure every day that I will be out of China within 60 days.

If and when I get the Bronze Star for meritorious service that will be another 5 points and that should cinch the deal. Stopped in today and sent the kids each a birthday radiogram. Greggís should arrive about on time and Martie Annís will be a little early. Am getting so anxious to see you all and know Iíll be the proudest, happiest man in the world when I do see you. Thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 7, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Itís been a perfectly wonderful day. Perfect sunshiny weather. I feel like a million and had a nice letter from you written from Estes, August 25. So glad that you and Eleanor are having a good rest and that the kids are having a good time. Would surely like to see Audreyís cabin. Must be a grand place. We have eaten at the Southern Plantation many times. I believe it is on the corner, a plantation type of building with many windows. Know Gregg will love the chaps and scarf and Mollie the doll and bracelet. Glad you enjoy the Indian jewelry. It is unusual I think.

Have been busy all day as usual. Seems like one thing after another. Went downtown early, had staff meeting at eleven, worked on those Bronze Star awards, etc. Had a meeting of the Officerís Club Board at four. We got in about sixty released prisoners of war today. Sent you a China Lantern with pictures of three Doolittle flyers that we had here about a week ago. Weíve had 17 or 18 General through here so far. Wainwright did not come her but most of his staff have.

It appears that the wheels are in motion to get people out of this theatre. Today we lost 21 enlisted men who are over 38 years old. They had first priority. New deals will come up from time to time until weíll all be out. That will be a very happy day. Thinking of you every minute and do love you all so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 9, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Two nice letters yesterday both from Estes Park, one from Martie Ann. Martie Ann, you do write a lovely letter and very newsy. So glad that you and Craig were having a good time in Estes. If I see any charms for your bracelet over here Iíll get them for you. You and Eleanor must have had a fine and much needed rest. Weíll have to sneak away and take a little vacation when I get home.

Things here at the hospital have shaped up very well and now we are getting well enough along to be proud of the place. Spent the morning yesterday on weekly inspection and things really look swell. We have quite a Stateside hospital. About the best layout that I have seen in the C.B.I. Theatre. We are busy all the time, which is good because the time goes by so much more rapidly and firs thing I know Iíll be getting on that little old plane or boat headed for home.

We had a dance at the club last night with a big crowd. Our club is getting to be quite the gathering place for the entire area. Most of the nurses date pilots so the place looks like an Air Corps Club on Saturday nights. Col. Armstrong and Fuller were out last night. We sat around the cottage until 10 or so then went to the Club and had a drink or two. We wound up over in Richís room discussing the future of hunting ducks, pheasants, deer, etc. in Utah. Slept until almost eight this morning then had a leisurely breakfast and came to the office about 9. Have been busy past few days dictating letters for awards. It is a very tiring job because you have to write a bunch of bunk to get them through.

Weather remains perfectly beautiful and we have no complaints except of course we are all counting the days until we are home. Know it will be before long and I still believe Iíll be there for Christmas. Mail just came in with only an Optimist Bulletin. Thinking of you every minute and do love you so very, very much.

Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 11, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Two nice letters yesterday, 28 August, one from Martie Ann and one from you. Sounds like you had an elegant time in the Park and you and Eleanor have certainly earned the rest. Still busy every day. I was downtown most of yesterday then had officers call at 6:30 and staff meeting at 7. People are rapidly getting out of China. We have sent about 30 E.M. to the States in the past few days and Weber and Canterbury leave tomorrow. Weaver and Canterbury have both had prior overseas service so they had a high priority. Itís good t see any of them getting out because the more that get out the sooner my number comes up. It appears pretty certain that 172 will not be in Kunming more than about a month now and then weíre going to move to Shanghai which pleases us all a very great deal. Itís about 2,000 miles nearer home for one thing. Col. Cagilll is there now and has picked us out a place. We will move into the buildings of St. Johnís University. The University lies about six miles from the center of the city and he says is a modern University with very nice campus. Also he says that Shanghai is a perfectly beautiful modern city with fine hotels, restaurants, shows, etc. Prices there are very cheap. That will probably change soon as very many Americans get there. We are all very excited about the prospects of moving. A smaller hospital, 70th Field, Col. Maleiís old outfit, will come in here right away and take over as soon as we can get the load carted down.

I have talked to about 99 different people since I started this letter so hardly know what Iíve written. Better quit and get to work. Thinking of you every minute and do love you all so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 12, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday so maybe today will get some. Bob Tate is about the happiest man in the world. He will probably get orders today sending him to U.S.A. Better not mention it to anyone because things can always happen. He had over 85 points as of V.E. Day and that is why he is getting out. Every day we lose some and one of these days it will be my turn. I had 83 points as of V.E. day. I imagine that I will get out of China about Nov. 1 or there about and that will get me home for Christmas.

Was busy all day yesterday and we will continue to be busy until we move, which wonít be long. Last night we had a Chinese Bishop over to the club to talk to us. He was on the staff at St. Johnís University in Shanghai for years and until 1943. He says that there are new modern buildings and a beautiful campus and that Shanghai is a beautiful city. He talked to us abut Chinese religions and was very interesting. There are 3 main religions in China, Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism. Taoism is the oldest religion and goes back to about 300 B.C. About 50% of Chinese are Taoists, 50% Buddhists and the educated classes are Confuscianists. However because Taoism is so old it plays a very important part in Chinese life. Their religion is based on two influences, opposites, 5 elements (minerals, wood, water, fire and earth) and Twelve Cycles (an animal representing each cycle Ė dragon, snake, tiger, rat, cat, dog, chicken, pig, cow, fish and some others). They believe in fortune tellers and if you were born in the cycle of cat, for example, you wouldnít dare to marry someone whose cycle was do, etc. They go to the fortune tellers to get OK for long trips, which direction to face their house, set dates for weddings and anything else they do. They have a kitchen god, a figure on red paper, hands over the stove in the kitchen. This god is supposed to know everything that goes on in the household. They change them once a year on New Years. At this time they have a ceremony, offer dishes to the god and then send him back to heaven to report on the household by burning the paper. The foods they offer to the gods are fruits and sticky candy, so that the god will have pleasant recollections of the household, sticky so he canít talk too much.

After his talk had a show , ďJunior Miss,Ē very funny and I believe a preview to what you and I can look forward to in raising the four kidlets. If you havenít seen it do so and take Martie Ann along. A lot of laughs. Iíve got to go to work so know that I am thinking of you every minute and love you more than I can tell.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 13, 1945 Ė Kunming China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Today has been a very happy day in this organization; a gang of promotions finally came in that weíve been waiting for, for a long time. Lt. Col. Warren, Rich, and Hitz. Majors Julius Pearson, Burns, Anderson, Pollack, and chief nurse Morvat. Captains Whitney, Manbus, Moshswitz, Teuter, Mulford, Dietrick, Sonderpard and about 20 1st Lt. Nurses. I doubt if weíll be able to keep the club in one piece tonight. There is sure to be a big time by all. Weíve sweat these out for months but are finally beginning to do things for our people. Should help morale a lot. Was busy all day yesterday. Got through the Bronze Star for two of our enlisted men who are going home and went down to the reception center from where they leave to award them. They were happy boys. Weíre losing boys every day. Believe Tate will get his orders today. Donít dare mention it to anyone until weíre sure.

Mailman was good to us yesterday and today. In the two days got your letters of August 31, September 1 and 2, lovely letter from Martie Ann and one from Horace. Glad you got back from your trip and that the kids were OK. Glad Mary Jo got along with them OK. To bad Gary didnít know you. How do you think Iíll get along with him and Mollie? Iíll probably have to start from scratch with both of them. But that will be a pleasure too.

Bob just got his orders and is in heaven. My day will come -- still donít mention it. Let him tell the good news first. Staying at a ranch sounds wonderful to me. Glad Martie Ann and you got at least one horseback ride. Too bad Gary boy has a cold and the two have chigger bites. Glad they got their good conduct medals and they surely do deserve them. Glad things are OK in Calif. Hope Ced will get along all right until we can see him again. Youíre doing beautifully on building up the bank account. Will surely come in handy someday.

Our patients come from all over China. We are the only general hospital in China. We take care of Americans only; no Chinese. There have never been very many Americans in combat here; only supply and liaison work with the Chinese, so we get practically no battle casualties. All that we get along those lines are accidents and pilots once in a while. Other surgery is usually hernias, appendices, etc. Medical service has about twice as many patients as surgery. Their work is largely amoebic dysentery, malaria, pneumonias, typhus, flu and the usual run of things.

We have no tropical diseases here and they mostly come from outlying places in the field. All of our cases are flown in and we are set up only about one mile from the airport, which by the way is the terminal for hump flying and is the busiest airport in the world. Since the end of the war we have had hundreds of Americans who were Japanese prisoners. Most of them captured in the Philippines plus a lot of flyers who have bailed out in enemy territory and been captured. Have had five Doolittle flyers.

Kids must be in school now and Martie Ann taking her music lessons. Know they will both get along beautifully. Martie Ann, your letters are really lovely and I am so proud of you. Know Gregg will be writing well by the end of this year in school. Iíve been trying all day to get this letter written and have had no less than a thousand interruptions. Itís now time to go home so will try to write more in the morning. Know that Iím thinking of you every minute and counting the days until Iím with you. I do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

Chapter XV: All Thoughts Toward Home

 

September 14, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Itís been a perfectly beautiful day and Iíve been busy all day as usual. Tate is all packed and moves to the reception center tonight. Will take him a few days to be processed and then heíll be on his way. He will fly to Karachi and then go from there by boat. Donít know whether he will hit any backlogs along the way but doubt it. Am surely happy for him and only wish I were doing with him.

We got the go sign today for Shanghai. We have to evacuate 300 or 400 patients to hospitals in India. That will cut the size here so that a Field Hospital can handle it. The 70th Field will arrive here on September 20 and take over the hospital and whatever patients we have left. Col. Tyner and a small advance party will leave here about September 25 and the rest of us will go on October 1st. This has been a nice setup for us but the town is uninteresting, whereas Shanghai should be very nice from all reports. At least weíll see some more country and be 2,000 miles near home than we are now. There will be a big advantage in being in Shanghai, when we get orders home, weíll leave from there, probably by boat, and it is only a two-week trip from Shanghai to the States by boat. So once I get orders it wonít take long to get home after things straighten out. I imagine that mail service will also be better especially if itís flown across the Pacific. Iím very happy to go to Shanghai and especially since it will mean going home thru the Pacific and into California. I feel very sure that Iíll be able to get out of China within 60 days, so for sure, Iíll be there for Christmas and that will be sublime. Am getting awfully anxious to see you and the kids and Tateís leaving doesnít help. We really have nothing to complain about Ė food is excellent, I feel like a million, but I do miss you all so terribly much.

Last night was a very large night at the club. You can imagine the hilarity with 39 promotions. I thin it would be safe to say that a few people got a wee bit lit up. Just finished supper and think Iíll read, bathe and go to bed early. Hereís a snapshot taken Sunday of our cottage with us on the porch sunning ourselves. You can see from his that we are very comfortable. Know that I am thinking of you every minute and do love you so very, very much. Will always love you only.†††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 17, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Do you remember that three years ago this morning I left Omaha as a member of the armed forces and I guess I though I was going to be gone forever. Actually the three years has gone by pretty fast and we have Gary to show for the time. Financially weíve done well enough too. Paid for the farm, bought the Apartment, saved some money, bought the Buick and some bonds and have lived petty well and pretty expensively all the time. Itís been tough to be away from you for so long but it wonít be long now. I am convinced now that Iíll be out of China by November 1st, which will just put me home by Christmas or maybe even Thanksgiving. Tate left for Calcutta about noon yesterday. Donít know whether heíll go by air or water from there or how soon heíll get transportation from India but he should be home within a few weeks. The points and what not keep dropping and Iíll ht one of these days. Readinger, Freshman, and Chaplain Ritchey will leave this week, also Corbaugh, McKnight and Monkus and another 17 enlisted men.

Saturday night the Col. and I gave a supper over in the cottage for Tate and all the boys out of Hdqs. We were able to get the Bronze Star thru for Tate and made the award at the supper. Think it made Bob pretty happy. Went to the club for a while after supper. Got up early yesterday. It was one of the most beautiful days Iíve ever seen -- really gorgeous. Worked a while and then went to church. Slept a couple of hours after lunch. After supper Pop Warner and I went down to the opening of the new 10th Air Force Club. Had a nice time. Came home about 10:30. Your nice letter of Sept. 4th came yesterday. Think youíre wise to clean out the basement junk and spray. Weíll be much better place for the kids to play. Glad Martie Ann is getting started with her music lessons. Know she will do real well. Another school year has started and will again go by before we know it. We arrived in Bushnell only a year ago yesterday and look how rapidly the year has passed. Know the kids will have Happy Birthdays. Hope my radios reached them OK. Must get to work; I have to go downtown. I do love you all so very, very much and will see you soon.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 17, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote this morning but got your nice letter of September 5 and have some time so thought Iíd get off another. It surely doesnít seem possible that the kids will be seven and nine. They are really getting to be big kiddies and such nice youngsters as they are.

My stock on going home is getting better every day and I really believe now that Iíll get out of China and on my way home in about one month. Iím getting so anxious that Iím about to pop. Every time I think of it I think of seeing you guys all at the Omaha airport and imagine now that Iíll be seeing you by about November 15 or there about. I do love you all so very, very much.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 19, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Two swell letters yesterday, September 6 and 8th. You do write such nice letters. It sure doesnít seem possible that Gregg and Martie Ann are seven and nine but I know they are. Doesnít the time fly though. Your party sounded very nice Gregg and didnít you get a nice lot of presents. Glad Norma and Dick were out to see you. The dinner sounded elegant. Wasnít Jerry lucky. We had a patient here a while back, a B29 pilot. He had blown his top completely on three different occasions Ė he has missed a flight for one reason or another and each time his plane and the entire crew lost. Sixty-one is a lot of missions for anyone and they deserve to get out quick as possible. Surely glad you have the basement cleaned out. I donít know why we kept the junk at all. I did get your swell V.J. Day radio and know I wrote about it. You must be missing some letters as I am sure I am. I suppose once in a while a mailbag gets lost or caught in a big backlog on the bottom of a pile but in general I think they come thru very well.

I believe that soon as I get back to the States I can get out of the army and of course that is what I want immediately. Field grade officers with over 100 points as of V.J. day are on their way home from here now and company grade with 85, enlisted men with 75. Today Readinger, Chaplain Ritchey, Capt. Walder, Carbaugh and about 20 enlisted men are leaving. I feel very sure that Iíll be out of China by November 1st at the latest, then, if I fly, Iíll be there in a hurry or two weeks from Shanghai. November 1 isnít far away Ė do you know that. Rich and I each have 91 points so weíll probably go together and we are playing all the angles so donít be surprised at anything. We canít of course leave until the point for field grade drops to 90 but then we will go to town on the quickest way out. I feel pretty sure weíll be in the States by November 15.

Was busy all day yesterday. Last night the 40 people promoted threw a party at the club. The Col. and I had Armstrong, Fuller, Berford, Hophis and Maj. Gales all out for supper. We served supper in the cottage. Boys in the mess fixed it and brought it over. It was really a wonderful dinner, V-8, wonderful steaks, fillets just right, French fries, creamed peas, salad, ice cream with gooey pineapple sauce. We all ate till we could hardly get up. We also had hot rolls, butter and jelly, pickles and coffee. It was by far the best meal that any of us had eaten overseas. Food keeps getting better since the war is over. Sunday, after ten months, the footlocker and bedroll belonging to one of our nurses arrived here. Col. Tyner and I had packed our bathrobes and 3 Ĺ quarts of whiskey in it. It was like a Christmas box Ė 2 quarts of Four Roses and 3 1 pint of Johnnie Walker and a quart of bourbon. To top that off I got a call from the airport yesterday and went down. Allen Davis, from Myethyina, sent me 10 quarts of Coherts. So I have enough booze on hand to throw a farewell party when I get orders. Guess he is closing up over there and has a lot to spare. Stateside whiskey is practically nonexistent over here and if you can find it, it sells for $100 or more a bottle, so of course people only talk about it Ė no one ever has any. Weather remains perfectly beautiful and Iím feeling like a million all of the time. Getting anxious to come home and know it wonítí be long so that keeps me very happy. Iím enclosing some pictures of Naga hill people from Ledo. I may have sent these before but donít know for sure. Thinking of you all every minute and do love you all so very, very much.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 20, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice letter today of September 8th. Iíve had one since then, but old or new theyíre always welcome. Rowena really has a surprise in store for her with Bob already on his way home. Donít have any idea how long it will take him to get there but if he should be lucky might be any time. At any rate he is on this way. I still feel sure that Iíll be home by middle of November and that will really be a happy day. I am already planning just what Iíll do when I hit the States and can see you all now down at the airport when I pull in there. Time goes by very quickly and I know it wonít seem long now. Gregg will be happy in New Zealand and will probably get Kay there with him soon. He should get home before too awfully long but his points would not be very high.

Bet the basement looks nice. We should have done it long ago. Donít know why we never thought of it. It will be so nice for the kids to play there. Mollie and Gary must be cute bugs. I can hardly wait to see all of them and can also hardly wait to see Mommy. I havenít been at all busy today for the first time since we opened up. Worked off and on this morning but have spent the afternoon reading. Itís almost four and think Iíll go home soon. Weather is perfectly wonderful day after day and as Iíve said before, our good gets better all the time. Today at noon we had boiled beef, sweet potatoes, lima beans, tomatoes and peaches. All of our meals are real good. Iím feeling like a million and only have one complaint Ė I do miss you guys. I think of you every minute and do love you all so very, very much. Start getting ready for my homecoming about November 15 or so. I do love you all so much.†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 22, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Wrote this morning but the mailman was extra good today Ė your letters of September 9 and 11. The Col. heard from Mamie today. She wrote September 4th that they were lying at anchor in Manila Bay. They had not yet landed. She came over on the hospital ship Comfort (Joe Linsmanís ship) with 500 other nurses. They were all replacements and assigned to a pool in Manila. She has not written since so has probably left Manila for reassignment somewhere else. Also, we had an officer check the replacement pool in Manila and she was not there. She had a perfectly miserable trip, 28 days, hot day and night. Only one bath a week, beans for breakfast, etc. Said all 500 were ready to pull hair by end of the trip. I believe she will soon admit that she should have listened to her hubby just once. Got good news today. All of our 2nd Lt. Nurses were promoted to 1st Lt. Ė 29 of them. This makes a total of 87 officers that we have promoted since octination, which is very good.

Gary and Pam sound awfully cute and Iím getting awfully anxious to see them and their Mommies. According to the newssheet today I can get out of the Army as soon as I get home and I still think Iíll be home by the middle of November. Wonít it be marvelous Mart when we are all together again. Iím enclosing a clipping that one of the boys in the office got from home. This is one of the eight nurses who were killed Ė Pinky Henley.

Income tax sounds terrific but the only thing to do is pay it. I wouldnít want to get behind on it. You are doing a magnificent job of handling, not only your household duties, but also your duties as Mommy and business women. I do love you and respect you so very much. Best wife in the world without any doubts. Thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 23, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Itís a dreary drizzly day but nice for a Sunday. This is the first time itís rained in weeks. The work at the hospital is letting up now so the boss and I are taking turns on Sundays. I slept until almost noon today. Got up about nine, drank some V-8, then went back to bed. Got up just in time for diner and just finished.

We had 28 nurses promoted yesterday so last night was a wild night at the club. Also the 70th Field is here now so the place was really packed full. The 70th is Malirís old outfit but he is not with them now. They will begin to take all new patients Tuesday and then all we have to do is get rid of about 575 old ones and we will be ready to move to Shanghai. As it now stands Col. Tyner and about 25 others will go to Shanghai on the 1st of October. I donít personally expect to be in Shanghai very long before Iíll be headed for home and still believe Iíll be home by the middle of November. I canít seem to think of much of anything else these days except getting started for home and out of the army for keeps. I really havenít much to complain about from the army but it has been very tough to be away from you guys for so long.

I talked to the recorder of the board awards and citations last night. Some day this week I will get the Bronze Star medal along with a lot of others and the unit will receive the award of merit. I think weíve done awfully well by our people to get thru so many promotions, awards, etc. Considering the short time that weíve been operating.

We have a lot of new officers and nurses in the unit and the Red Cross is giving a tea dance in their honor this afternoon at 3. The rain will probably dampen the spirits some but Iíll have to go for a while at least. Iím thinking of all of you every minute and am getting might anxious to get home. I do love you all so very, very much.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 24, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Mailman was good today Ė your letters of September 10 and 12. We do not keep the prisoners more than 4 or 5 days, then fly them back to the States. If they are OK physically we send them out the day after they arrive. We havenít been getting any new ones now for about a week. Believe they are now going out of Shanghai. The ones that they flew in here were only the sickest ones plus a lot of high rank. We had 15 generals on one load. When I get home I donít ever want you to let me out of your sight. Kids sound so cute and Martie Ann and Gregg are doing beautifully in school I know. They will all be good students. Would loved to have seen Gary in the puddle of water. Too bad that Max is in the dumps. Trouble is most of the people overseas donít do anything to keep busy. We have plenty of them that just sit in their rooms every night and feel sorry for themselves. In Karachi many of them never left the barracks more than once or twice then in Ledo sat in their tents. I keep busy one way of another all of the time and so does Col. Tyner. I have never been in a poker game since I came overseas and many of them play every single night. Tate was one of the worst. There is too much to do and see for that. At the club we have 3 shows a week and the bar is always open with music every Wednesday and Saturday.

Had a letter from Tate today. He is sitting in Calcutta waiting for a boat. Expects to get one about October 1 so he should be home early in November. I bet him a diner at the Blackstone that Iíd beat him to Omaha and believe I have some chance to win. The trip will be so much shorter from Shanghai. Surely glad you are getting rid of al the old junk in the basement. It must look very nice down there now. I do definitely think you can plan on my being home for Christmas and most probably for Thanksgiving. I am lucky to be in China since that will be one of the first theatres to close and there have never been very many here anyway. Know the kids had a grand time at their parties. Iíll be there for the next birthdays in our family. Next I guess will by my own, but Iíll be there for it.

Went to the tea dance yesterday for the new officers and nurses and it was very nice. After the dance went over to Fred Warrenís where he and Pollack, Freshman and others fried bacon and eggs. Very good. Went to the show last night. Capt. Eddis, the story of Rickenbackerís life and very interesting. After the show two of our nurses and their dates invited me to have a drink with them and then discovered that they were out of whiskey so I took them all to the cottage and had a drink. One of them, whose home is in Kansas, had it all cooked up to call you when she gets in the States and say itís one of the Indian gals who just got to America. One of the boys was very interesting. He flew for R.A.F. for five years, then went back to the States and they were going to draft him into the army as a private. So he beat it to China and has been over here flying for the Chinese for 2 years. He makes $2,000 a month! He was one of the early flying Tigers with Chevault but stayed with the Chinese. Have been busy completing details for 70th Field to open up in the morning. Weíve turned them over 4 wards, a Hdqs and receiving office. We have 578 patients left to get rid of and then weíll be ready for Shanghai. They take all new patients beginning tomorrow and weíll turn over a ward at a time as we empty them. Have to go downtown so better close. Thinking of you every minute and counting the days until Iím home. I do love you so very much.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 25, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice letter today of Sept 14, Martie Annís birthday. Also a letter from Bud and one from Alyce. Georgeís letter was very nice and he really writes a fine report on the family. Iíll send it along. Someone has offered to give Alyce a horse and she wonders if she could keep it at 102 Blondo. Guess she could when we get moved out there but the horse might get tired of living in an Apartment until then. Iíll write and tell her the story.

Iím wondering if the kids got the radios that I sent. They must have been pretty slow not to have been there by the 14th but maybe Iíve missed a letter. Seems like a long time ago that that little monkey arrived. Col. Tyner was quite misquoted in the World Herald. The first planeload (21 patients) all had T.B. Of the balance, only a very small percentage had T.B. The first load were all boys who had been in Jap hospitals for a year or more. Many of the balance were in good shape. All have now been returned to the States. Hope Martie Ann will enjoy the brownies. I know they are both getting along famously in school.

We had an officerís meeting after dinner last night and then after that a medical meeting. Had an excellent program. Dr. and Mrs. Tong came in for the meeting and invited 8 of us out for dinner next Thursday. When I went out to Tongís the other day, I took some vitamins out for Do Do. Last night Mrs. Tong brought me a present. A beautiful lacquered tray from Foochow. Itís one of the nicest things Iíve seen over here. Major Gales, Gen. Aurandís aide, just got back form Canton and brought me 3 cute little pans so Iíll be sending them all along. Have been busy today down at Hdqs. most of the morning. The 70th Field Unit is starting to take all of the new admissions as of today so now we just have to get rid of the old ones and move on. Am thinking of you all every minute and do love you so very, very much. Am counting the day until weíre together again and still sincerely believe Iíll be home by the middle of November. All the love in the world.†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 26, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Mailman was extra good today Ė your letters of 15, 16, 17 of September, one from Gregg of September 4, Beechís letter, Ethyís letter and Martie Annís lovely Birthday letter. Martie Ann, you are really a grown up young lady with bath powder, bubble bath, etc. think I better hurry to get home in time for your wedding. How about that? I didnít know until today that Gregg had been promoted on March 1. Donít believe any of you ever mentioned it or else the letter was lost. Glad he is in New Zealand and can have Kay and babe with him. Do hope he will get to the States before too very long.

Nice letter from Beech (please send him another check) and also one from Ethy. Iíll write them all tonight. Hope I can see Ced when I get to the States. Your letters Mart are always so newsy and so very welcome. I wait for the mailman everyday. Your letter written on the 17th was mailed on the 18th and arrived here on the 26th, which is marvelous time. Makes you seem so close even if Iím halfway around the world. Col. Tyner mentioned the other day that he had always wanted to see the Pacific but never though heíd see it from the wrong side first but thatís what heíll be doing when he gets to Shanghai. He heard today from Mamie. She is with 27 General, 30 miles from Manila. The hospital is not set up and theyíre living in tents. I think sheís pretty discouraged. Imagine that the Col. will promote a trip to Manila soon as he gets to Shanghai. Doesnít in some ways seem possible that Iíve been gone for ten month but in other ways it seems like ten years.

Speaking of the unit citation, I was downtown today and it has been awarded. The orders are being cut today or tomorrow and also the Bronze Star medals so I will come home all decorated up like a Christmas tree. Best of all the Bronze Star medal counts for 5 points, which gives me 96 and the points are bound to drop any day now so I feel absolutely sure of being home by the middle of November, and it could be even before then. I donít want you to get too optimistic and then be disappointed like Tateís wife, but honestly, I believe that I could be home before the 1st of November. A lot will now depend upon going by boat or by air and I have high hopes of flying so donít be too dumbfounded if I write you the last letter from China within the next two weeks. Donít get too optimistic and I will keep you posted but things do look very encouraging for a drop in points soon after October 1st. Points are now 100 for field grade so I will be in on the very next drop. I can hardly retain myself. I am so very happy about even thinking of it. It could be that things would happen so fast that a letter or radio wouldnít reach you so donít be surprised at anything after about October 10th to the 20th or so. Now do not be disappointed if it takes a little longer because, at any rate, it will not be long. Glad you are getting the kidís new clothes because you know that I want them and their Mommy to be slick as chicks all the time and you must be all dolled up when I get home although you would all look like Queens and Kings to me if you were in rags. Glad for Riley and McLaughlin. Sorry that Riley is not going to practice in Omaha. Iíll miss the rascal a lot. Glad the radios arrived. They were awfully slow. Weather remains perfectly beautiful and things are going very well here. We stopped admissions yesterday and are rapidly unloading. I am not at all sure that I will go to Shanghai with the unit but that too is OK. Iíll go if Iím still here so at any rate it canít hurt me. Iím so proud of you and the kids Mart and so very anxious to get home. Will certainly never, never leave you again. I do love you so very, very much. Went to a show last night, ďThe Princess and the Bell Boy.Ē Good entertainment. We are keeping comfortably busy but not working too hard. Thinking of you all every single minute and do love you so very, very much.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

September 27, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice letter today of September 18. They are really coming through in nice shape now. Glad Max is more optimistic about getting home. The dope here is that there will be a drop in points on October 1st and that will mean me, so I am of course very optimistic. Donít have the medal yet but the order was cut today so I now have 96 points and know that will give me a good priority, so do really believe Iíll be in the States by the 1st of November. Itís possible that I wonít fly so that would mean longer but believe that I can fly so shouldnít be too long now. I really get awfully excited when I think about it and I do think about it all of the time.

Have been busy today and itís quite warm but not unpleasant and nights are always cool. Weíre going out to Dr. Tongís for dinner tonight so should be a large evening. Want to go down and get a haircut so better get in gear. Do think of you every minute and love you so very, very much.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

 

September 28, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail today but canít complain because itís been very good lately. We had an elegant evening at the Tongís. Wonderful food Ė marvelous ice-cold strawberry wine Ė very light and very potent. The Dr. is going to Peking by way of Shanghai soon and was giving one toast after another. We Bomboyed until we were all pretty well inebriated but did have a wonderful evening. The Chinese really do know how to entertain. Got home about 12 and the boss and I both overslept this morning. Didnít wake up until about nine. The boys in the office all said good afternoon when we walked in.

We got the orders today on the Bronze Star medals. Weíre going to award them a few at a time. Twenty seven came in today and weíll get more. We really had marvelous luck getting them through. We will get a total of about 65 including those already awarded. This afternoon gave them to Capt. Warner, Stone, Weaver, Sid Pollack and Jim Pearson and five nurses. They were all dumbfounded and tickled pink. In the morning Iíll get mine along with Hagman, Booshardt, Burlingame and four enlisted men. Then weíll give a few at a time until they are all awarded. The Col. is going to get the Legion of Merit and it should come in in a week or so. His has to come from Chungking. The Unit Citation will be in by the end of this week. We have a volleyball tournament going again so I played two games after supper then Junior Rich came over and weíve been chewing the fat until now. June has 92 points now and will get a Bronze Star so we will undoubtedly go home together. Nothing new out yet but still feel sure that the points will drop October 1st and that is not far away.

Weather has been beautiful today Ė sun shining brightly, nice and warm, but not uncomfortable. Still wearing cottons. Evening are cool and nights are perfect for sleeping. Am going to take a bath and go to bed now even though itís only nine but tomorrow will be a busy day with inspection, medals and what not. Am thinking of you all every minute and really counting the days until that day when Iíll see you guys lined up at the airport waiting for me and I know that that day is not too far away. I do love you all so very, very much and am getting so very anxious to have you all in my arms again.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Always, Clint and Daddy

September 30, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail yesterday and I didnít get around to writing. Itís been two days now with no mail so should hit today. Really have no complaints though because itís been coming through wonderfully. Yesterday morning the Col. made the formal award of the Bronze Star medal to me, Hagman, Boshaullt and four of the E.M. We all are very proud and I honestly donít believe that any outfit in the army has had as many awards and promotions as we are getting or already have. We are now working a skeleton crew on Saturday afternoon and Sunday so I puttered around the office a while yesterday afternoon then went over and played volleyball until supper time. After supper sat over with Rich and chewed the fat talking about the favorite subject of going home. An Air Corp friend of Juneís came in and Rich went to Canton with him today. Heíll probably be back tonight or tomorrow. We had a dance last night and I went over for a while but didnít stay and was home in bed by eleven or so. Today is my day to work but the boss just came in anyway. I awarded seven Bronze Starts to E.M. this morning and that is about all that I have to do.

The Col. and I and 4 or 5 others are invited out to a Chinese dinner tonight at the home of one of the governors. We took care of his wife here a few weeks ago. Should be a very swell dinner. Sundays are a pretty lazy day here as everywhere. We have strong hopes that in the next few days the points will drop and then in short order Iíll be on my way to home, sweet home. I still donít want you to be too optimistic but also donít want you to be too surprised if Iím home by November 1st or so. Iím really optimistic myself. It will seem too good to be true when Iím with you again and will never ever leave you for one minute. I havenít much to write but I am thinking of you every minute and do love you so very, very much. Mailed my medal to you.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

October 1, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

No mail again today. There must be bad flying weather somewhere. Weather here has been wonderful but I understand that at some of the fields itís been bad so planes are probably grounded. Col. Tyner, Rich, Warren and 3 other officers and 15 E.M. are leaving for Shanghai early in the morning. They are the advance party so the balance of our unit should follow in about a week. We have over 200 patients yet to get rid of but they are moving quickly so weíll be ready when the orders get here.

Hagman, Bosshardt, Jewett, Stone and I went to the Chinese home for dinner last night. It was at the home of the governorís aide. We had a wonderful dinner Ė 20 or more courses with dozens of dishes that Iíve never eaten before plus some of the standards. The food and wine were elegant. Came home about 10:30. Col. Tyner said that I talked in my sleep most of the night so guess the rich food was a bit too much for me. We were up early this morning and busy all day getting the boss ready to leave. I was downtown early and then we awarded some Bronze Stars this afternoon. Rich, Burlingame, Major Morvat, Jewett, Chaplain Magnon and Johnson. It has been drizzling most of the day and late this afternoon started pouring. It was getting a bit dusty on the roads so we can use it.

No news today on points except rumor has it that they are to drop to 75 for all officers and that does mean me, so my hopes are very high. Tate and Readinger are in Calcutta waiting for a boat. Iím going to do my best to fly or else go by way of Shanghai because I think it will be the quickest way. Still believe Iíll be home by November 1 or possibly before. Guess the best is for you to expect me when I arrive and I do hope it will be soon. Iím busy and must get to work but know that I am thinking of you every minute and love you more than I can every tell you. See you soon.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Love Always, Clint and Daddy

October 2, 1945 Ė Kunming, China

Mart Darling and Kiddies,

Nice little short note today written September 20. I am so happy today that it is difficult to write and I donít want you to get too excited but here is the story. I have been released from the China Theatre for return to the States. This would normally mean that I could go to Calcutta and get a boat. This would take about two weeks and the boat trip about five. So Iíve made a different deal, which is a bit complicated, but I understand it all right.

We have a Doolittle flyer here as a patient who has to have a medical attendant. Rich and I are taking him back to the States and fly all the way. It will take a few days to get procities and clearance from Macarthurís Headquarters but I believe we will leave here next Tuesday morning. That is one week from today. We will fly from here to Manila, Wake, Guam, Hawaii but we should be in Frisco by about October 12 to 15 or thereabouts and I will of course call you the minute that I arrive. I am leaving here in the morning and going to Shanghai but will come back here Friday or Saturday and leave from here. Am too happy to write any more and must get to work anyway but I do hope that you will get this letter in time to know that I am coming. It may take me a day or so to get out of Frisco but Iíll fly into Omaha. I canít tell you how happy I am to be on my way home and to my Mommy and babies. Iíll never ever leave you again. I do love you all so very, very much. Meet me at the airport.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† All My Love, Clint and Daddy

 

Historical Note: From the book Four Came Home by Col. Carroll V. Glines, 1966

††††††††††† From the cover -- April 18, 1942, General Jimmy Doolittle led the first bombing raid against Japan. Of the two missing crews only four men finally came home. This is their gripping story Ė one of bravery, patriotism and courage.

††††††††††† p. 195 Ė On October 7th (1945) orders were issued authorizing Lt. Cols. Harold L. Decker, Junior Rich, and Clinton C. Millett to proceed ďwithout delayí by first available aircraft to San Francisco, California as attendants to 2d Lt. George Barr (the last Doolittle pilot to return) Ö for delivery of patient to nearest General Hospital in Zone of Interior.Ē

††††††††††† p. 197 Ė The flight to San Francisco on October 12th (from Hawaii) was uneventful and after arrival at Hamilton Field, the escorts said goodbye to Barr and left for the nearby separation center in accordance with their orders.

††††††††††† Note: After this goodbye the story of this Doolittle flyer (George Barr), who endured 40 months of captivity and was very near death at the warís end, is very sad as his mental illness persisted and he became caught in Army medical institutions. The happy ending is that, none other than General Jimmy Doolittle, found him and assisted in his recovery. George Barr was married to Marcine Andersen in Ashland, Wisconsin on December 14, 1946. He was a teacher in Bayfield, Wisconsin and was a management analyst for the U.S. Army at Rock Island, Illinois. He passed away on July 12, 1967.

 

Personal Note: Lt. Col. Clinton C. Millett, M.D. returned home and fulfilled his dreams. He built his country home, his farm, and the Physicianís Clinic in Omaha, Nebraska. He deeply loved his wife Martha and his four children until his death in 1964. And, he never ever did leave again except for some great fishing expeditions to northern Canada.

 

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