September 6, 1943 Lois Shepard to in-laws…

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Sept 6, 1943

Dear Dick & Dad,

Labor Day. And a very wet one. We had quite a wind storm today at noon. We were eating and I started upstairs to shut windows when the dining room door started on a rampage – knocking me into a chair, about breaking my shoulder & did break my brassier strap. K. W. & Mary E. thot it quite funny. I came up home Thursday nite. Left everything under control as much a possible.

Friday we started in-picked red kidney beans & lima beans. About a bushel of each.

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Then Mom & I shelled most of the limas & canned them. I have twelve pints of lima beans. Saturday we shelled all the kidney beans that weren’t to dry & I got five pints of them. Hope to dry & can corn last of this week.

Mary starts to school tomorrow. She is ready to go. Kenny has been having a grand time here on the farm. Sue crawled today. And I’m not kidding tho I don’t suppose you’ll believe it. She went about two feet across the floor to get her rattle .

I have had only one letter from Bill since you left tho

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it was a large one. 10 sheets of paper & full. He even sent it in a large square official envelope. He wrote it because I said Herman had written Ruth a ten page letter. Nothing much of any news. Just rambling. He wrote it before he left Moses Lake.

It is time to put Kenny to bed so I’d better close. Received your cards Sat. Hope you are having a pleasant time.

Love,
Lois

September 9, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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301 Service Squadron
Pendleton AAF., Ore.
September 9, 1943

Dear Mother:

Received your letter today. Happy to hear that you are up in fish-land. Id like to join you, but I have my job and its a big one. One of these days we can be back to normal. Have been pretty busy. I think that Ill go fishing this week end and relax.

Oh yes I’d better tell you. My promotion came through

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Sept 4, 1943. I am now 1st Lt.

No more news here so Ill close house.

Write & tell about the place

Your Son
Bill

September 2, 1943 Herman Shepard to parents…

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9-2-43

Dear “Dick and Dad”

Just a line to let You know I am O.K. As you can see we are in Newark N. J. at the last minute they changed the plans. We came over here from Paterson today. Newark is a much larger city than Paterson and only 8 minutes by subway to the heart of New York City. I surely have enjoyed my trip here and have learned a lot about the Wright Engines. We are going to the propeller school now and will probably finish there tomorrow night and then be on our way home Saturday evening arriving in Colo. about 5 AM. I called Ruth last night to see how things were at home she told me that you had planed to leave about 2 AM Wednesday morning. I hope you had a nice trip and also that you didn’t have any trouble getting thru. Did you stop at Hale Mich?

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She told me that you had burned you hand I hope it is nothing serious. Better take care of it. Of course I know that “Cumminic[?] Lake” air will heal any kind of an injury, why I expect Dad to come home with a new knee. How are the Forders? Give them my regards and tell them that I surely am missing my trip this year. Im not there in body but believe me I’d really spend a lot of time pretending I was there. How did you find the cabin and all the surroundings is everything okay? I want you to write and give us all the dope. I visited several sport shops here while I didn’t have anything else to do and I found several nice trolling rods some of the banbo ones were as low as $2.98 and ran as high as $11.50 dollars and fifty cents for the metal ones. I didn’t buy any because I knew I couldn’t get one to you folks to use now and there wouldn’t be any use of me buying one to take home. So all I did was “Shop.” We have had a good time here, Lawrence. Kentucky and I have run around together and Lawrence and I have run on Kentucky all the time just about like I used to pestor Simon. He is a good sport and a clean boy.

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Lawrence is sitting here reading a “Liberty” and just taking life easy. He is a swell fellow to be out with we all do a lot of dirty talking but that is as far as it goes. If someone would ever hear us talking they would think we were the worst. We had very nice rooms at the Hotel in Paterson and the one here is very cheerful I wouldn’t mind living like this all the time if someone would furnish the money. So far including airfare, hotel and meals I’ve spent about $130.00 The meals have run pretty high as I’ve tried about all the fancy things there was on the menu including a different cocktail for nearly every meal. Tell you one thing and that is, this N. J, air does not work the same way on me as the Canadian air I would

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Have spent twice that amount of money.

Have you heard from Bill lately? I wrote him a letter and mailed it last Sunday night. I am going to try too write to him more often. You surely see a lot of servicemen around here I think most of them are here for embarkation as this is where the convoys are made up and etc. Tell dad not to overdo himself while he is up there and to leave some of the work for me to do. I hope he hooks onto such a large fish that he will have to overdo himself to land. What did you find out about”Trout” season when does it end. And I wouldn’t want you to get into any trouble, be careful and not fall in the lake and etc.

I expect I better close and get to bed as we have to get up at 5:30 AM in order to get to school on time in Caldwell at 7:30 Caldwell is about the same distance from here as Times Square, N. Y. but it takes an hour to get to Caldwell by bus and 8 minutes by subway to Times Square. So you can see the difference in travel. You would get a kick out of riding the subway.

Love to all —
Herm

 

August 24, 1943 William Shepard to home…

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301st Service Squadron
Moses Lake A. A. B., Wa.
August 24, 1943

Dear Mother and Father

Here goes a letter. I try to write Lois all the news but now and then Ill slip you all a letter, presonal like. Nothing much stirring here. Ill be here for a while yet. It doesnt look as if Ill ever get overseas. Now Im a training officer. Its a horrible death to die. Happy to hear about Herman.

Say mom how about you and dad coming out Christmas to join Lois & me and we can have christmas together? Maybe you could come about Dec 15 and stay over & go to California? It would make a real trip, a vacation for you all and a chance for us to see eachother. Leaves of absence arent being given out here. Dad would enjoy this county. Yo may never get another chance. How about it?.

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Its getting cool up here now. I expect it though because its Sept 1 almost.

Have a good time in Canada. I wish that I could come up, but the fish are just as big here and just as many. Im getting trout and bass with my fly rods. Some fun. The first bass I caught with my small rod took 5 minutes to land.

Well Ill shut up and listen

Your son
Bill

July 22, 1943 William Shepard to mother…

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301 Service Squadron
Moses Lake A.A.B., Washington
July 22, 1943

Dear Mother,

I want you to do me a favor. There is $5.00 here and I want you to get Lois a real nice wood rolling pin and put the rest in flowers with a card reading.

“For the one you broke at Pendleton” Bill.

and on the flowers put

“With love for our wooden anniversary, From a wooden soldier.”

Thanks Mother.
Everything is OK. For news read the letter I sent to Lois.

Your Son
Bill

July 7, 1943 William Shepard to Dad…

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301 Service Squadron
Moses Lake A. A. B., Wash.
July 7, 1943

Dear Dad:

As you problbaly know by now, Lois, K W and Sue are coming home with Mom. I think that it is best, because Im moving about to much for Lois to follow me, and Ill probably move over soon anyhow.

Its getting hotter than a fiddlers bitch [what does that even mean?!] here in the desert. I never knew there was a desert in the North West untill I came to Moses Lake.

I am working dawn till dark. My outfit is busy on B-17s, the heavy bombers.

 

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Right now Im at Ephrata, Wash. doing some work to help out the sub-depot here. They are behind in their work so we are helping them out.

Nothing more now so Ill close and write later. Tell Ruth & Herm hello Ill write to them later also

Your son
Bill

May 1, 1943 William Shepard to parents

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301 Service Squadron
Moses Lake Air Base
Moses Lake, Washington
May 1, 1943

Dear Mother and Dad,

I have been transferred to another squadron, and temporarily to another state. I am doing about every kind of work imaginable. This is a God-forsaken hole and I wouldnt even put a  rat in it. I am fine & so is everyone else. We hope to be in Pendleton again soon. Why dont you plan to come out and stay a month or so mother? We would be glad to have you.

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Write and tell me how everyone is.
Love to all
Bill

April 25 [1943] Lois Shepard to in-laws

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April 25 [1943]

Dear Dick

Well-Bill will be gone to Washington State tomorrow – & Evelyn leaves tomorrow nite so I shall be all alone. And Bill had to check the beds & bedding back in today so we have one daybed for all of us tonite. Nice life —

Bill wants me to stay here as he can get back to see me at times & there is a chance that he will be sent back to Pendleton Field in a month or two. Here is a proposition — Would you like to come out the last of May & stay until things are decided. Then if I decide to come back to Ohio you can help me with the children which would be one h– of a job alone. Bill is still trying for flight training –

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it will be either that or overseas — and you will want to see him before he goes.

I am going to try to get a second hand bed next week to do me. The kids are having a good time with their Easter basket this A.M. And bill hasn’t had a day at home yet. We went to a formal dance at the Officer’s Club last nite & had a very good time. I initiated the skirt & it held its own with all the other formals & I had one Tom Collins a& after one fast rhumba it started its effects but I managed to conrol myself. I only wish Bill could stay for it would be so much fun to go all the places with him. We have got to go a little in spite of this dam army– One day Bill will come home & pack to go somewhere

& then come back & unpack.–It keeps you guessing till you don’t care whether it happens or not.

Well Sue must have her bath so please write & let me know if you will come or not. Bill wants you to & he wants me to stay for a couple of months at least. I might have gotten ready & come back with Evelyn but we now know what might happen.

Love
Lois.

April 16, [1943?] Lois Shepard to Dick & Dad

This is Lois Shaw Shepard, wife of William A. Shepard (my grandparents), writing to her parent’s-in-law back in Ohio…

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April 16, [1943]

Dear Dick & Dad

Bill left this morning for Redman, Oreg. & won’t be back  till tomorrow nite. Then Monday he goes to Walla Walla, Wash. for a few days. Busy guy. K. W. & I’m here outside playing. The weather is always so nice & it is so nice that they can get out.

I received your letter of the 14th today. Glad to hear from you. Was surprised to hear about Herman. I hadn’t hardly thot of him going I guess. What is Ruth planning to do? So many are going I guess it is only to be expected.

I really should get busy & clean house. Also wash my hair. Then I have to call the electric company to4317052338_999e828a64_z

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fix my stove. I turned the oven off the other day and it doesn’t come on any more. So I can’t bake. And I want to make mince meat pie.

Evelyn is taking the kids pictures in Bill’s helmet & gas mask. They think it is fun.

Dick you don’t need to send any of those things as I don’t need them & they would only take up space. Unless you could send a few of Kenny’s toys. There is one thing go to the .10 cent store & get me some knives & a couple of table spoons. Silverware is a thing unheard of in the stores here. I have 4 spoons & forks but no table knives. We use Kenny’s for a better knife. One of Bills men built us a table that does very

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nicely.

Let me know what those telephone calls were & I shall send the money. I have a phone in case there is any need to call me ever. The number is 1139 J.

Well-I must get busy. Write and let us know about Herman. Bill will be surprised to hear about him.

Love
Lois


I don’t know what Lois is referencing regarding her brother-in-law Herman. There is no letter in the grandparents boxes for that time period from Dick & Dad.

March 20, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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Pendleton Field Ore.
March 20, 1943

Dear Mother & Dad

Forgive the lack of letters, but Ive been very busy. Working 18 to 20 hours a day the last week. Lois didnt get many letters & she telegrammed as you did. Dont worry, I just didnt have time. I have a fleet of about 100 trucks & fighting vehicles with 130 men to take care of. I have my own garage to keep the trucks & reconnasaince cars & jeeps up. We service & check them every 1000 miles. There isnt any other officer in my section to help me, so I have quite a job keeping everything going. In addition I also keep a fleet of dump trucks on a construction job. I have enough work to keep five men busy.

How is everything at home? I’d like for the war to be over so I could come back & relax. The next best thing is for home to come to me. Im looking forward to you & Lois coming out to see me. We can find a place to live even tho it is high rent. You can have a nice visit while you stay because this country is beautiful.

How are you Dad? Put in a word or two in the next letter. Ill close to work

Your son
Bill