28 April 1943 – Letter from Dad to Mom

Letter or Postcard – Letter

Sender – Ralph Peterson

Recipient – Phyllis Peterson

Postmark Place – St. Petersburg, Florida

Postmark Date – 28 April 1943

Letter Date – 27 April 1943


My dearest wife and baby,

Got another letter from you tonight, so I’m going to answer right back. I didn’t have to work at all today. All I did was eat, sleep, and listen to a lecture on chemical warfare. Sort of an easy day tomorrow. I start my job at noon. If I keep this up I will be getting fat and will soon be up to a couple of hundred pounds. I will be your old fat man then. I will have a little fat ass like yours then. Ha ha! I am sorry. I didn’t mean to say that. Anyway, I should say hinder. Uh-oh. I am sorry again. Now I bet you will be mad and never write to me again. Ha ha! What are you and Avis trying to do with Gordon? Make love to him? I can remember last Christmas when we were down home home, how Gordon wanted to have you come up to his place and look at the toys and stuff that he got. I thought you were going up there and see them. Oh well, treat the little boy alright cause he is a swell kid. Why I thought Avis was in love with Billy. For cripes sake don’t tell her that or she will wring my neck. By the way, you tell her to write me a letter. I wrote her one last. Are you going to move to California? Wait until I get shipped out there, then you can come out there. I mean if I ever get shipped out. I would much rather get sent to Wisconsin where I could come home on a weekend pass. You know darling, there isn’t much to write about tonight as I told you all the news that I knew in my first letter today. I really should write a letter to my Aunt Clara tonight, but I don’t hardly think I can as it is getting late and I will only have time for this one. Then I’m going to hit the hay. When I took a shower today I found I had lost most of my tan already. I am just about the same color as I was when I left. I will have to get out in the sun some more. I think I will go off this guard duty in about a week. I want to get some more tan and build some more muscles. I only weigh 165 now, so I ain’t losing no weight, am I. Well honey, I think I will close for tonight as I am getting tired and the lights will be going out soon. Night now to my wife and baby from Daddy

PS – Pleasant dreams sweetheart, and God bless you and our little Bonny girl. Pop

Notes: He’s going to go to the well once too often with the fat-ass jokes. At first I thought that Gordon must be Gordon Shruck, my Mom’s cousin who probably lived not too far from them. But when I checked my genealogical database that Gordon wouldn’t be born for a couple months and can be ruled out. Dad had a first cousin named Gordon Hansen, son of his Mom’s sister Bertha. He would have been 16, so not sure if he fits the description of a “swell kid” wanting to show off his toys at Christmas of 1942. This will have to be a mystery for now. Dad is obviously joking about Aunt Avis and Billy Pick. Pretty sure she was already with Cal Woodward, who she would marry in about a year. My Dad never weighed more than about 165 his entire life and never could be described as fat.

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