Saturday, November 17, 2012

Perry, what shall I get you for Christmas?

Perry & Gene celebrate his discharge from the Navy.
December, 1945
November 5, 1945 (Monday evening)

My darling Perry,

Oh, why don't I hear from you, dearest Perry? I get sort of blue when I come home every night and find nothing for me and it seems it's been such a long time now. I guess you will be home pretty soon but till then I still want your letters sweetheart. I do hope I get some mail tomorrow for sure.

Yes Perry, I have received three bonds for you and should get another very soon--in fact it's due now. I received my October allotment check today and will put it in the bank tomorrow. I don't think we will reach our thousand by Christmas, but anyway we won't be far from it.

Perry, what shall I get you for Christmas? I want to get you something real nice and something that you need or can really use. But I guess if you get here before Christmas, you can help me find something. Wouldn't it be fun to go Christmas shopping together? Oh Perry, we must do that. You said you liked to shop with me. Oh, we'll have such fun.

You know, there is another couple in Adams Ward who are just engaged--Wanda and Clarry. I'm so happy for them. They're such swell kids. You have met them but may not remember them. Golly, nearly everyone in the crowd from Adams is either married and having children or engaged to be married. And it's all happened over a period of a year. You and I were the first.

Yesterday was Fast Sunday. We had a wonderful testimony meeting, but I can't quite understand why it had to move me to tears. Tomorrow evening is Mutual. I'm attending the Junior Special Interest classes. Orson Hynie will be the speaker this time. I surely do like him. He is such a humble man.

I'm enjoying my job so much. My boss is a swell fellow, so good humored, though quite worldly. And the people I work with are very pleasant. I have an idea I could continue working here thru January if I wished to.

I shall go to bed now. Tomorrow is another day and maybe I'll hear from my wonderful husband. I love you, Perry. Your devoted wife, Gene

Nov. 5, 1945

Dearest Gene,

At last we are on our way for the States--for sure this time. We are loaded to capacity with high point sailors and marines for discharge and are scheduled to arrive at San Francisco November 25th. I don't know yet how long we will be there or if I will get a leave so I want you to come there so as to be there by the 25th. You can probably get a room at the Manx again or leave word at that same USO where I can meet you. You won't need to go down there, just phone. I want you to have time to rest and clean up before I arrive, so you ought to arrange to be there no later than about noon of the 25th. You will probably be rather tired after traveling up there.

We are scheduled to arrive about the 25th, but it is possible we may fall behind schedule so don't be worried if you have to wait a day or so. Try to make yourself as comfortable as possible until I get there and don't mind the expense. Better come prepared to stay at least ten days. It may be longer than that. I doubt if it will be less, or I may even get a short leave, but come prepared to stay awhile. If I can find out anymore, I will try and let you know in a letter from Eniwetok. [Marshall Islands] We are going to stop there to refuel. Also, better bring along a checkbook in case we are there longer or may need it for other reasons. I don't have too much on the books.

We left China on the 3rd and will soon pass Okinawa where a destroyer is going to take our mail, so I'm in a kind of a hurry. I hope I've told you all you need to know--don't like to leave you wondering. If I think of anything else, I'll try and let you know from Eniwetok. I got ashore for a short liberty in China and it was really quite interesting, but I can tell you all about that when I see you. Doesn't that sound good? I can hardly believe I am going to see my sweet little wife again.

I hope you aren't disappointed because this may sound like I don't expect to get a leave. It's possible I may, but there has been nothing said about it as yet, so I want you there just in case. If I do get a leave, you can ride back with me on the train, which will be a lot of fun, huh? However, don't count on it too much--you know how I am, don't like to build my and your hopes too high only for a fall.

Be sure and leave word at the USO so I will know if you arrived all right and where you are at. I can't remember the street it is on, but it's down by the water front, down by the fleet landing. You can find out where it's at and phone. I haven't had any mail for so long, I do hope you are all right and will be able to come. I love you so and can hardly wait. Goodbye for now darling, and I'll be see you. Love, Perry

November 8, 1945 (Thursday)

Dearest husband Perry,

Oh sweetheart, when you don't write me, I suffer just the same as you when you don't receive my letters. But darling, I do write you, and I pray always that you will receive them all as soon as possible. I finally got two of your letters of October 23rd and 24th--you were getting close to China. Perry, it was so wonderful to hear from you again. Please write as often as you can, sweetheart. Your letters mean so much to me. I hope you have my letters by now.

Perry, I have heard that the Marines are being taken out of China. How can you be taking some to China when they are moving out of there? That doesn't seem to make much sense to me. Darling, I am so thrilled to think that you will probably be getting out of the Navy by February. Oh, I do hope they will keep you here in the States till then too. How perfect it would be if you could be stationed in San Pedro.

But Perry, we won't be able to find an apartment anywhere cause the housing conditions are very critical. There are no vacancies at all. Servicemen and their wives can't find homes here at all. The paper says that LA will buy barracks buildings from the government to house people in temporarily. LA is becoming more crowded everyday and these conditions are getting worse.

Emily is expecting Dick home sometime this month too and is frantically looking everywhere for a house. I do hope she finds something. I am still at the Sorensen's you know and have a room to myself. It is a big house (8 rooms) and Louis says we should stay right here cause there is plenty of room. Of course, I know it won't be as nice as if we were living alone. Oh how I would love to have a little apartment so we could really be alone. But that seems quite impossible right now.

Golly, the past two days have been so cold here and the nights almost down to freezing. I'm wearing my winter pajamas now. But I guess maybe it's not quite as cold as where you are. My room is very cold though I have plenty of covers on my bed. I know I could keep very warm this winter if I had my darling to cuddle up to. (umm!)

Saturday night is the opera. Oh, I hope it's good. [This letter was never finished nor mailed. Perhaps Gene got Perry's letter of the 5th and realized that he would be in the States before he could receive any more mail from her.]

Nov. 11, 1945

Sweetheart Gene,

Our orders have been changed so that we are now routed to San Diego instead of San Francisco as I wrote in my last letter. After I wrote the last letter telling you to come to San Francisco, I learned that a possibility existed we might go to San Diego, but the mail had already left the ship. Today it was made official, a message just came in this afternoon--I saw it myself--routing us to San Diego from Eniwetok.  We are arriving there in the morning. The captain must be pretty anxious to get back too. He is giving this old ship about all it will take. It is shaking so much I can hardly write, and that is no exaggeration.

Gene, this is what I think is best, and I hope it is agreeable to you. I think you had better stay in Los Angeles and wait for me to either come there or call you from San Diego. I doubt very much if we will stay in San Diego longer than two days or just long enough to unload these Marines. Then I think there is a pretty good possibility we will come up to San Pedro for repairs. After we get there, we will find out more definitely how long we will be there. And if we should stay there for awhile, I can have you come down and maybe you could stay with the Williams for a few days. Or if I should get a 24 or 48 hour liberty, as soon as I got there, I would come right up to LA.

There are several fellows on the ship from and around LA and some are going to try and have a car down there, so I may be able to get transportation with them or try my old standby of hitchhiking. I will phone you as soon as I get there and let you know more what the score is.

I also found out another pretty good piece of news yesterday. I am on a "tentative" list with those who have fairly high points and who they expect to transfer off the ship before it leaves the States again. If I do get transferred, that means I won't have to go back out again and also a pretty good possibility I will get a leave too. Then I will just remain in the States waiting to be discharged--thanks to my little "ten-point wife." As I said, it isn't definite yet, so we will just hope and pray for the best, huh?

Think I've told you about everything. I've got to write my folks and let them know I am on my way back so must close. I love you darling and will be seeing you soon. Yours, Perry

[This was Perry's last letter. He was discharged from the Navy in December, 1945.]

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