Edward J. Thomas - World War II

21 september 1945 Friday

Memphis 15, Tenn

Dear Mom, Harry & Izzy:

This is another news bulletin about what is being done about my discharge.
I could say it in one word--nothing--but there are a few details that have
come to light which may get me out within the next two to three weeks instead of the next two to three months.

I heard that plans are being made to use the General Kennedy Hospital
in Memphis as a separation center for Second Army Headquarters. Before this plan can get started, 12 men from this headquarters are required at the
hospital to do the office work involved in separating our men from the service. I understand it has been agreed to send the 12 men, but I dont t know whether this plan will be put into effect before my time comes for me to go to Fort Sheridan. It may be my luck to be sent to Fort Sheridan just before the hospital is ready to act as a separation center.

I went over to the Personne1 Office a couple of days ago to see how my
discharge is coming along. I asked the men in the office if they have any
idea as to when I could leave. They said it was a $50 question. I answered
it correctly by saying it could be two weeks or two months, but no one cared
to pay me $50.

One of the fellows in my section showed me a letter he received from a
friend of his who wrote about his experiences at the Fort Dix separation center. Instead of clearing men out in 48 hours, it now takes five to seven days. Many men live in tents with bad feed, poor toilet facilities and no toilet paper. Everybody is restricted to his area and at no time is anybody allowed to leave the post. This condition is not the result of mere men being
discharged than was expected because the army right now is only discharging
a mere dribble--only those who have over 79 points and who are 35 years old or over with two years of service. It is quite evident that army officers
hadn't prepared themselves for any kind of program to release men and even
at this time seem to be very slow in doing anything about it. It looks as
if releasing men is so painful to them that they try to relieve the pain by
doing everything inefficiently so as to maintain their power and rank over
their poor, helpless underlings as long as possible. They realize if they act
too quickly, it won't be long before they'll have to get back to their civilian
jobs of being officeboys, selling vacuum cleaners from door to door and operating popcorn and hotdog stands.

Will be seeing you (sooner or later) Eddie

New York Publisher Quotes Book Price for Soldiers

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