Joe’s Letters, WWII: “Failed engine & low spirits”

One of my Uncle Joe’s letters will be posted to this Blog each and every Friday until they are done. Please see below for a link to Joe’s full story and the other letters in this series so far.

Joe and crew have experienced their first few bombing raids over Germany, the first of which ended in disaster. Joe is flying out of Chedburgh in Suffolk, New Year 1945.

 Letter 104; 18th Feb 1945

letter 95 18 feb 1945 page 1letter 95 page 2letter 95 page 3
Letter transcript:

“Ched. 10.30pm Thursday.

Hello Boofull.

Well first of all we got back ok. Mom as you can see we were in that  big Op last night to Chemnitz but we had to come back before we’d even crossed the battle line in the south of France. One of our engines cut out but we got back on 3 OK.

Alec our navigator is in hospital with sinus trouble. I pity him ‘cos I’ve had it and it’s hellish painful. He fainted from it once on our way back from Dortmund. 

By the way Mom will you try and find out what shows there are on at the ‘Hip’ and Royal I think it is. In time for my leave as I would like Jean to come down to our place this next leave, if it is ok with you? I will send you the money for the tickets so that you can book them for me if you will.

Whilst on the subject of money I’m enclosing a £1 for you to help you out with whatever needs it most. It’s not for the theatre tickets but for you. 

If I don’t write much this time I hope you will excuse me as I’m feeling pretty low. I don’t know what’s the matter with me today.

Jean has been going through hell with her feet, I don’t know what she’s done. Has that knee of yours got any better?

Well goodnight and God bless. Keep smiling, I do.

Love Joe xxxxxx

Sorry about the pencil.”

family stories

So unusual for Joe to sound depressed. Fatigue, homesickness, stress of the job? Perhaps all of these things are conspiring against him.

family stories, joseph To read more about Joe’s letters please follow this link. There you will find the full selection of letters to date, as well as more information about his fascinating yet ultimately tragic story. He was our family hero. He IS our family hero. If I knew how to complete an effective RAF salute, I would salute you now, Joe. Long may your memory live in our family stories. I hope to post a new letter from Joe’s correspondence with his Mother here every Friday until they’re done. It will be a turbulent and heart-wrenching journey. Subscribe to the Blog to make sure you don’t miss any of it.

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