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Postmark: 01/20/1944

Return Address:
Pvt. V. Misitano
Co. A. 350th Inf APO 88c
c/o Postmaster N.Y.

Jan 16, 1944
Sun. noon.
North Africa

Dearest Mother,

    Just a few lines to let you know that I'm feeling fine and hoping that you are the same.

   I've been kept pretty busy these last few days, and today being sun. we have it off.

   I'm trying to catch up on my letters today. I just finished one to Aunt Kate and one to Pauline.

   I received a carton of cigarettes from Mrs. Damico and 4 pks. of cigarettes and two hankies from Connie yesterday, so I guess I have to write them a letter thanks some time today.

   Mother we're still training the same as ever. It's still plenty cold here, but we're all kind of getting used to it now.

   I received a letter today from Rosie and she told me that Ray Hertzog is here in N.A. also.

   Well mother, I'll close now with lots of love to you mother dear, daddy and the kids and hope that this letter finds you all in the best of health.

   Your loving Son,


   "God bless you, mother."

Supplemental Notes, Quotes, and Anecdotes:

First Days in North Africa:

Excerpts from "The Blue Devils in Italy", The Story of the 88th Infantry Division by John P. Delaney

(page 33): Military security regulations had been such that for months 88th men had not been allowed to mention the names or numbers of their units. It had been drilled into them so thoroughly that they'd almost forgotten the actual designation of their outfit. On landing in Africa however, they discovered that arrival of the 88th had been the chief topic of conversation for months and that even the Arab dock porters new about them. Camp Passage was merely a stop-over where troops lingered long enough to get a couple of decent meals and see a movie.

On the social side, if it could be called that, the troops sampled the sidewalk cafes at Casablanca, stared fascinated at the off-limits Medina section, and saw their first closeups of war in the wrecked French Battleships and cruisers in Casablanca harbor. Veiled Arab women came in for their share of attention.

The reference in the note above to "wrecked French Battleships" refers to the French Ships attacked by the British Navy in 1940 after France fell to Germany. The British destroyed the French fleet to keep it from falling into the hands of the German navy.
Destruction of French Fleet by British Royal Navy in Oran in 1940


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