By Betty Allison
Space limitations two weeks ago prevented publication of the entire article containing excerpts from the book, “Gordon Home Front.” Here is the rest of that article:
“I have seen some crashed and a number of hair-raisers. One B-24 had faulty brakes and when nearing the end of the runway, the pilot realized that he could not stop, so he sped up the extreme left engine . . . . .. He circled one barracks, came back into the field; hit another barracks and nipped off one wing; went through an eight foot fence and stopped just as the nose hit the Marine Hospital!”. . . . . . July claimed two of Gordon’s young businessmen- John Boyd Harlin and Webster Spear. Boyd Haney and Gaylon Brock also reported to duty.
Sgt. Robert Rogers had been in India for five months. He says it is a very beautiful place but very old and time never changes there. Hecould not disclose his present location.. . . . . Hubert Hitt says: There isn’t much that I can tell about this place except the weather is warm and it showers almost every day. We have frogs to sing us to sleep and mosquitoes to keep us awake.”. . . . . AC/C Elvin Johnson is with a group of 17 Americans that are training with the Royal Air Force in England. “We are known as the ‘good will ambassadors’. We are the first Americans to ever train under the Royal Air Force System and supervision.”
Pvt. Thorton L. Rexroat is pleased with his assignment to the Signal Corps. Their job is to “get the message through”, which is by radio, telephone, telegraph, teletype, flags, rockets or runners.. . . . . Charlie Holloway is operating a short wave radio station at the Boston Harbor Patrol Base. Who should he run into but Red DeFord. They had a good visit.. . . . . .James G. Swanner writes from Camp McCoy, Wisconsin: “There is about six inches of snow on the ground here now.”. . . . . At Ft. Ord, California, Lt. Herbert W. Chapman writes: “I am assigned as company commander to company ’L’ of the 2nd Filipino Infantry. This is no easy job because there are several that can’t speak or understand our language.”
Aubrey Terry writes: “I am still aboard the ship at this writing and really time is passing much quicker that I thought it could. We have band practice, singings, church, read, eat and sleep our time away.” . . . . .From Camp Maxey, Pvt. Bob Farmer stated: “I found out how important some of the Red Cross work is. I was in the hospital with the flu for ten days and would have gone crazy if it hadn’t been for the Red Cross. They furnished magazines, books and games to play.” . . . . . Sgt. Alfred Boggus Paints the Town Red, White and Blue in the Southwest Pacific. . . . . .Orville W. Tate writes that from the first day in battle until the fall of Germany, we took 107 towns and since that time I have been in 105 other towns. I have seen enough of this country for now!
Bill Merriman writes: “After seeing Scotland, England, Africa, Sicily, Italy, Sardinia, France, Germany and the Alps, I will still take Texas and Palo Pinto County! Just about a year ago, I took one unexpected swim out about 146 miles from land. That was a bath I could have done without!”. . . . . Major Robert W. DeFord of the U.S. Army 17th Major Port Unit, is a dock supervisor for the army‘s only port in Germany.. . . . . William Poteet sails with Merchant Marine as Chief Radio operator.
Hugh Merriman writes: “The customs here in England are different- they drive on the wrong side of the road and bicycle traffic is tremendous- big, little, old and young ride them.”. . . . . . The following have been promoted to sergeant: Alfred Boggus, Hugh Merriman, J.L. Mitchell and Raymond Sullivan.. . . . ..Aubrey Terry passed through town by train on Sunday morning. He wrote notes on coat hangers and pitched them off to Dr, Hart and Mr. Terry.
Lt. Kerby V. Rutherford writes: “Everyone knows that the task ahead of us is a big one and the spirit and thoughtfulness of you kind folks at home certainly will make is easier and more pleasant for those of us in the service. The combination of both should make a team worthy of the comparison to those great teams we have put in the field in our past history.”…Pvt. Abagi A. West is a heavy truck driver in the refueling unit in the Army Air Force. He likes his job but will be proud when he can be home breaking broncs and trading horses with Mr. A. P. Wilbar again.. . . . Troy Blue writes from the Pacific: “For you who love the pretty tropical islands, well you have been sadly misinformed!”
H. E. Harrison MM 1/C writes from New Caledonia: “This is a beautiful place but I’ve never had the urge to be a world traveler and there is no place so beautiful to me as a nice hot day, a dusty road with a nice fishing and swimming hole at the end of it!”. . . . . Lt. Herbert W. Chapman says hello from Italy where there is more fog and snow than any place he has ever seen. . . . . . Cpl. Sanly L. Skatnicke writes: “I‘m on the Anzio Beachhead and believe me, there is excitement here! I know about how a gopher feels!”
Three more Gordon men reported for induction into service. L. E. Stallings Jr. and Billy Mayo entered the army and are now at Camp Wolters. Thurman Tucker signed up with the Navy and was sent to San Diego.. . . . Second Lt. Robert N. Pierce, 21 year old airman from Gordon, having been assigned to the 8th Air Force’s 493rd Bomb Group is undergoing a pre-combat training period prior to taking part in heavy bombing attacks against German industrial and military installations.
From Dorsie Sechrist, “I am in the 6th Army in the Philippines. The people here are nice. We have all the pineapples and bananas that we want. The Japs took most of what the locals had. I think the war won’t last much longer for when we hit Japan, we will hit it hard. (and they did!)
J. L. Sawyer received five battle stars having served in Africa, Sicily, England, France and Berlin. He says that Berlin is a heap of rubble and bomb craters.
Unfortunately there were some reports of men being wounded and some killed in action. This is the sad thing about wars! But we are grateful to all who have served in any wars to keep this country safe. The numbers of men who served in World War II is astonishing and it seemed that they were stationed ALL over the world. Unfortunately, most of those veterans are no longer with us- but for those who are- we say “Thank you for your sacrifices!”