December 13, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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470 Base Hq & A B Squadron
Pendleton AAF, Oregon
December 13, 1943

Dear Mother:

As I am in hospital I can’t send the deposit slip. If they wont to business pay the extra five and get a receipt. When I get out I’ll mail you the deposit slip. Wrap the present and then put it in a large box, then wrapped the large box. Give it to her as soon as you can and let her guess.

I’m getting along fine and may be out soon if I don’t need another operation. If I do it will be a very minor one. It is good to know the situation is corrected. It wasn’t so pleasant but the longer one lets it go the worse it gets. The surgeon says I may never be troubled again.

I’ve been in bed about 10 days now and I’m fed up with it. Sleep eat read & then repeat. I do have time to write now and I’ve written everyone imaginable including Jack Hays. If I had Ruth and Johns address I would have written them.

I’ll be back in work soon and my call for flight training will come in the near future. I’m glad that it didn’t

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come before now in a way because I would have had to have the operation at my flight training base and it would have put me behind in my work, so everything worked out O.K.

I never knew I had hemorrhoids until the flight surgeon examined me. He said as soon as I had the situation corrected I would be in perfect health and that would be no bar to my flying.

Well Pendleton is getting colder now. The leaves on the trees are falling and the mornings are getting crisp. Just like September in Ohio. It’s strange that the climate is so mild here.

Ill close mother and wish you all
Love.
Bill

December 9, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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470 Base Hq. & AB Sq.
Pendleton AAF, Ore
December 9, 1943

Dear Mohter

This is a letter of consolation to you. The war department regrets to inform you that your son
1st Lt. William A. Shepard Jr. 0570214
Was injured in the service of his country observers state that in a frenzy of patriotism, when the General yelled “shit on the jap”, he nobly pulled down his jeans and spread fourth and filth upon the yellow race untill he wore out his muzzle bore.

Seriously mother, dont worry a minute about my operation. Was one of those things. I had my choice of having it done now when there is less danger or later some 10 or 15 years. I choose now. I like to clean it up. The doctor is OK and

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I’ll probably be out before Xmas and so don’t worry.

Dont let Lois worry either. After all we have a lot of these operations any more. I didnt know it till I came in. They are nearly all successful, even the bad cases. And it pays to have it taken care of.

Ill close now. Write please
Your son
Bill

P.S. I dont have a damn thing to do but read letters so that’s the extra reason for writing.

P.P.S. I think they changed my caliber I’m not sure.

November 21, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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470 Base H.Q. and Air Base Squadron
Pendleton Army Air Field, Oregon
November 21, 1943

Dear Mother & Father:

Arrived here safely, after much delay. Waited at Patterson Field for three days. Met some fliers I knew and had a ride home, but at the last minute the flight was cancelled and I had to come via airlines I was kicked off at Cheyenne and Boise and came in on the train, just making it.

As you have probably noticed, I have been transferred to another organization. You can address all mail to the above address until further notice.

It was nice to get home and probably will be the last time for a while at least. Although it will take me three monthes to pay  you and Lois back.

Ill send you the money for Lois’ ring in two weeks. Get it wrapped and give it to her on Xmas eve for me. Ill send a note to put in with it. I can pay you back Jan & Feb.

Same old place out here. The weather ifs foggy. Im just waiting now. Ill write later.

Your son
Bill

September 19, 1943 William Shepard to parents…

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301 Service Squadron
Pendleton AAF Oregon
September 19, 1943

Dear Mom and Pop:

Ill bet that you are having a good time. I only wish that I could be with you all. It wont be to long now. We should lick Hitler in another year, then beat the socks off Tojo. That makes two years., 1945.

I probably wont be around long. You know all soldiers have to go, sooner or later, and I have been here a year and one-half now.

When I go I want you to kind of keep an eye on my family for me. Make Lois take care of herself. Im makin out another alootment to her, so she will be getting enough to live

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on. The goverment will send her 1 war bond each month and my insurance is paid automatically (my goverment insurance) I have $10,000 insurance. Lois has a power of attorney for me. Im making a will, what for I dont know, but its there just the same. All my personal affairs are in order.

Im sending a trunk home. In the trunk there will be some clothes and missceellaneous items. Lois can store them till I get back.

Please dont tell people about this. I guess best friends, mothers, fathers and sweethearts have sank as many ships as the enemy, because they let something slip. Its hard not to talk, but someone may tell someone and so on until (offensive image drawn) hears. That old promise “never to tell a soul” has cost and is costing right now, soldiers lives. I know I can trust you all. Ill write soon

Your son
Bill

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

May 11, 1943 Lois Shepard to in-laws

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May 11 [1943]

Dear Dick, Dad & all –

Well – you can cease corresponding with Bill at Moses Lake – He arrived here last nite at 2:00 A.M. and is probably on his way now to Orlando, Florida – Yes, I said Florida – lovely, isn’t it? But he will be back here in one month. We know this as he was told to take only what he’d need with him for the month. It is another school. Some sort of school of tactics.

And I shall stay here – patiently awaiting his return. It will be one hell of a month but if he is coming back it would be silly for me to come back & miss seeing him again.

Now Dick – I’d still like for yo uto come out. You may not want to now tho –  with Bill being in Florida – The thing is – tho we don’t know anything about it – is that when he gets

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back here he may soon be sent overseas. So your best bet to see him would still be to come out here. – Gee how I wish I could go to Florida with him tho I don’t imagine Orlando would be any place to stay – anyway it won’t compare with Miami Beach.

I went to a show with my neighbor last nite! Saw “Star Spangled Rythym” [released in 1942] – Very good. Also bought myself a dress yesterday – pink cotton for $7.95 I could make three for the price – It is darling tho – I must be losing weight as it is a size 13 – 14s are way too big for me. Also got Bill’s ration book but I certainly don’t need it. I’m not supposed to have it as long as he eats at Officer’s Mess but heck – I never know when he might be home & I’d need it. I just sent the films on to Bill in Wash – yesterday. I suppose they will have to follow him around the world before he

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ever gets them.

Well, Evelyn is home by now. I must write her a letter I’ve so dam[darn?] many to write it takes half of my time. Well – anything to keep me busy. – I think a few more partings from Bill & I’ll be able to keep from bawling – I’ll soon run out of tears & they don’t do you a darn[dam?] bit of good. Exept to make you feel worse.

Write & let me know what you plan to do. All I can ever plan on doing is to wait. That’s all I’ll ever get done, I guess, is wait.

Love
Lois.

P.S. Don’t mind me – I’m just getting discouraged – And I might add – Damn this War!

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 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

February 24, 1943 William Shepard to home

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Pendelton Field
February 24, 1943

Dear Mom,

Enclosed is my income tax return and the $4.00 I owe on it. Please take it or send it immediately to the place you took or sent Dads. This is important because it must be in.

Everything is O.K. except that Im busy. The country here is beautiful. I know you all would like it.

I am a transportation officer. The only job I never thought of. I have 80 trucks and about 50 different trailers to supervise. I handle the maintenance ships and dispatching with a force of 90 men. This field isnt so large, only about 2000 men. Ill have to close now and get to work. Write & give my love to everyone. Dont forget to send the tax return in right away

Love
Bill