“Oh, what a mother!” Ebner’s best friend, Frank Von Arx gets home on furlough, visits the Gartz household, and discovers all the goodies Frank Gartz’s mother has been sending him. Hence the high praise and asking for a report back on the treats from Burny Bros.—that was our West Madison Street bakery. Von Arx refers to the bad winter—for my grandparents, a bad winter meant long days and nights, shoveling coal into furnaces and snow off sidewalks and porches on multiple apartment buildings. Of course—no snow blowers. Plenty of shenanigans come out again in this letter. These rascals, always found a way around the rules as you’ll see in Von Arx scamming the PX.
Note: Several upcoming letters will be posted a little after they were written, like this one, to space out many with same or close-together dates.
UNITED STATES ARMY AIR FORCES
CHANUTE FIELD, ILLINOIS
March 30, 1943
Just a note to so excuse the writing. Finally got a pass last Monday and got home about 2 in the morning. Spent half the day in my civies just laying around trying to forget. Your mother had quite a meal ready for your dad so naturally I had wine and cake. She sure misses you, but from the stuff she says she has been sending you, I guess you’re a little lucky—just a little good luck in with all your bad.
Your dad and she are really busy and the winter was bad. On condition that you stick them in hiding and eat them as much for yourself as possible, I’ll try to get some bars to make up your loss on candy shortage. But this idea of a bunch of sergeants living off your mother’s ration tickets, don’t appeal to me.
How was the Burny Bros treat and the sausage? Oh—what a mother! My cousin Jim leaves for the navy Thursday and cousin Ed has a medal for marksmanship in the Coast artillery—some family.
And you also have a payday. Well, Chump, why didn’t you tell a guy the finance jerks forgot you. Me rolling in dough and you broke. How much do they owe you anyways?
Well, Frank, it’s almost time for chow and school so I’ll close. You wanted some stuff for boxing so why don’t you let me have a good long list. Sweat socks, trunks, gyms, shirts—all Bethel’s [their church] basketball equipment at your disposal.
See you at a better camp soon, I hope,
Your Pal Frank
Well, Frank, we done it!
They don’t allow more than 4 bars at a draw, so Gene Mueller, my bunkmate, and I walked in and out of the P.X. until we had a boxful of bars. I suppose we could of had a little more variety, but I thought they would be shipped better this way. If they don’t last, there seems to be more.
I hope you get these ok and soon.