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August 15, 1944

Letters from George Daley

two uniformed men seated in front of a rifle

Sgt Stopper (behind), Lt Daley (in front), Maginot Line 1944

To: Mrs George F. Daley
Depot St., Hyde Park, Vermont

Return address:
Lt. George F. Daley  0-515914
406th Engr [C] Co Special
23rd Hdq’s Sp. Troops
APO #655, c/o PM
New York, New York

Somewhere in France
August 15th ‘44

Dear Folks --

I guess you must think I’ve forgotten you but tonight has been the first chance to write in what seem years --.  It’s not that I don’t want to write but rather a matter of not having the time or place. Right now I’m taking a few days rest and then will be ready to go again. I guess I never knew just what it meant to be tired both physically and mentally!!  But when you see your whole life pass before your eyes in a matter of seconds it sort of gets on your nerves. When you first tackle the Germans you get pretty scared but it wears off and soon it’s just like hunting deer up in the “diggings”.

I’m sure the news must look good to you and I’m sure the Germans aren’t going to take it much longer – but it won’t be the quick finish everyone’s looking for. They’re clever and lots of times will fight to the last man. We’re out of Normandy now and that means a lot because of the type of land.  I’ve been in both Normandy and Brittany and the latter is a beautiful country --. The French are a great people and really appreciate the liberation we’ve given them. You can see them come back to their houses or what’s left of them and they stand there looking at a heap of rubble with a wall left standing, all their possessions on their backs – turn to you and ask you how you are and smile. They beat the English by far and if my French was better I’d like to stay here awhile. It’s a great experience to go into a town where the people have never seen any Americans before --. They’d give you anything but the kitchen sink and it’s dam [sic] easy to get drunk for their liquor isn’t mild but has the kick of a horse. They hardly ever drink water but have wine and cider with their meals.

I’m quite sure I’ll see Paris and perhaps even before this reaches you --.

Don’t worry about me for it takes a lot to bother me now since I’ve seen everything you could possibly imagine --. You asked if I was serious about California and my answer is this – you’re dam [sic] well right!!  I’ve seen enough of this dam war now so that I’m ready to live like a human again. I’ve found what I want and I’m going to take it!! I may be only 22 but if you’ve been through what I have you feel like 30. I’ve learned to take advantage of everything you can so after this is over and I get home ---.  

If some of the boys I know are over here give me their address and perhaps I can look them up --.  I’m writing everyone as soon as I get the chance so in the meanwhile give them my regards, To Ellen and Harriette – just hold fast for I’ll write just as soon as possible.

I want to write Hamilton tonight so I guess it’s time to close – must congratulate him on his coming venture into matrimony – looks like I’ll be a bachelor for awhile yet. To us over here it doesn’t look like it’ll be too long but you must remember we can’t all come home at once.

There’s nothing I need or could use as I get all the essentials and that’s all we use.

Say Hello to Stub and Ada – Gramp and Gram.  If “Junior” gets through Engineer OCS I guess Grafton will have to buy a new hat. I hope he doesn’t have to go overseas but you can never tell --.

Bye for now

George Jr

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