July 13, 1942 William Shepard to home


July 13, 1942

Dear Pop & Mom,

Just received your package & thanks a million. In answer to your letter. I wont be flying, or studying either for a while. I wont be flying at all. as it looks now.

Ill probably be a ground officer. Lois will be coming down here to live in 2 or 3 mo. She is working at Rikes in Dayton. We are going to stick all our money in a sock so she can come down as soon as she can. after she gets here the $62 goverment and the Bell Co. checks will keep her till Im commissioned & then Ill get around $250 a mo. Im going to try to stay here on training personnel.

They need a lot of men on that anyhow. I like it fine and am having basic military drill & other work. Ill probably teach it for a month or so starting in about 3 or 4 weeks, then go to Officers Candidate


School in either Miama, St. Petersburg or Fort Benning.

How is everyone? tell them all hello. & tell Carl if he gets in the air corps to do a few things & he’ll get ahead

  1. Keep his mouth shut
  2. Keep his ass out of head quarters
  3. Do what they tell him

You have to do them all to.

Well Love to all and write


July 11, 1942 William Shepard to home


July 11, 1942

Dear Mother and Dad;
First time that I have had time to write for a long time. Please send me the following if you haven’t already,

  1. all if any of my white underwear
  2. 3 pr. new work sox, also my sweat sox.
  3. handkerchiefs
  4. house slippers
  5. Picture of the family and one of Kenny

Well thanks for the bother, I suppose I’ll get the swimming suit today, but the mail is a little bit erratic.
We have been drilling just about all the time and its getting hotter here. I think Ill go swimming tomorrow and cool off. Tell Charlie & Lydia I have 3 pals from Marion Theodore Ochs, Underwood and Burr. they are O.K. I also know quite a few fellows from Dayton.
Tell me about home when you write again & say hello to Dad and if he dont read this.
Ill have some time later if you come down. Aug 1 will probably be a busy time for me but I can get a few evenings off. Well Ill close now. Tell Ruth & Herm hello

Your son


A new thing

Because I want to keep things lively on my blog I have decided to enhance my blog posts with letters. So starting today I am going to be transcribing old family letters. I will post only one at a time. Some might be boring, some cute, some short, some long. Either way I thought it would be a fun way to add interest to the old blog. This will generally be in addition to my regular weekly posts, or occasionally the post for the week. Although I think if there is a dearth of family gossip to post about I will share several letters in a given week.

I am going to start this week off with Dick and Dad’s letters. The earliest ones we have are those that my grandfather wrote in the early 1940s just after he had signed up in the military and was finishing up his school.

This particular letter has no exact date, it it believed to have been written in about 1942.

Corrections from readers are always welcome. Also I will be transcribing the letters as read –  including no punctuation, comma’s etc, as best as I am able; sometime habit makes it hard to deliberately make mistakes.


Pvt. William A. Shepard
Flight 404D
592 S. S.
Keesler Field, Miss.

Hello Mom,

Cant telephone here right now so Ill write if Lois is at home around there somewhere get in touch with her & tell here where I am. I am writing her at Dayton. You can see where I am & what I am in by the address. Ill write and tell you next wk whether Ill be flying bombing or in the ground crew. I sure was a surprise to me because I thought I would be in the signal corps but here I am in the air corps. Right on the gulf of mexico by Biloxi, Miss. Time is short so you spread the word around for me I have to go to bed. Write you Sunday. This is Friday.

Your son