78th Fighter Group, 83rd Fighter Squadron WWII Letter

This letter was written by a Lieutenant fighter pilot, who at the time, was with the 83rd Squadron, 78th Fighter Group. Dated August 2, 1945. From the letter…..

   If you’ve never seen a veritable open air madhouse you should have seen this place yesterday. It was open house celebrating the Air Corps anniversary and the people took advantage of the situation to satisfy their long pent up curiosity concerning our working and living conditions. They were everywhere but in my soup and I ate that so fast that I may have overlooked two or three of them. We didn’t fly but we had to remain at the line to act as the “ten dollar a day” guide to any curious snooper that was fortunate enough to find the closet in which we had hidden ourselves, ten deep. We got everything from “Beg pardon, chap, is that an airplane (painting to a tired out jeep)? To the younger, dirtier, not so polished generation’s (commonly known as the “brat” “urchin” or “little darling”)- “got any gum chum? They about drove us nuts! People of all ages, shapes, and sizes drove into our pilots room to look around and stare at us like some things fresh out of the wax museum. After a while we became desperate enough to stage one mammoth tour before we collapsed in some convenient corner as so many water soaked paper bags. But that last tour! Wow! England hasn’t been so shocked since. The Normans invaded in 1066 and our little program will probably rank with the auspicious doings of Henry VIII or Rasputin. It just so happened that we were graced with a group of prim girls, school teachers, old maids (by preference), and ministers wives. We have pictures all over the walls down there. Every fellow who had been in the squadron has his picture on the wall, that interested the old girls. Oh what stories we told them, I shudder and can’t sleep nights thinking about it. We told them that the swastikas painted on the sides of the planes (they showed in some of the pictures) were for the Germans the boy had shot while said krauts were in a parachute. That rocked em back on their heels. Then we told them a few more friendly lies in preparation for the final shock. It was gigantic. We have a collection of photographs (maybe I shouldn’t tell you all) of young ladies attired in a few friendly smiles, to be disgustingly frank, they’re quite nude. Now the girls couldn’t help but notice them but they were going to politely overlook them. But no! The fellow showing them around boldly stopped, and pointing to the shameful collection (the cad) stated “this, is probably the most interesting part of our squadrons history” “I wouldn’t’ want anyone to get the wrong impression so I’ll explain their presence” In order to be taken into our squadron as one of the boys every applicant has to present the squadron with a picture of his wife or best girl friend.” Darling, we weren’t’ bothered the rest of the afternoon. Those girls took off like a heard of scared rabbits, never to darken our doorstep again. Mean aren’t we?  
All my love,

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