Letter sent home from Anzio - Sgt Joe Miller - 36th Eng
#1

Received a very nice card from Sgt Joe Miller, Co D and his wife Barbara, at Christmas time. Joe enclosed a copy of a letter he had sent to his parents from the Anzio beachhead on May 4, 1944, just three weeks before the break-out to Rome.

 

It's a fantastic letter and I am so grateful to have it in my possession.

 

I placed a copy of it on the 36th's History page and you can view the letter here (complete with poem):

 

Enjoy!

 

Many thanks Joe and Barbara. How nice of you to do so.

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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#2

Very interesting. Its amazing all that you can learn from letters. What is important to the avereage guy is often times more interesting than the clinical description of the battles.

Maj Todd O. USMC, Retired
Grandson of LTC John O'Brien
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#3

Thanks so much for posting this. It is quite interesting how he could take something as scary and deadly as being shelled by Anzio Annie and turn it into a tounge-in-cheek poem.

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#4

Very interesting. Its amazing all that you can learn from letters. What is important to the avereage guy is often times more interesting than the clinical description of the battles.

 

My English is not great as you know, and read the handwriting is even more difficult... But I agree with CaptO. When I read the book of my grandfather's letters from the front of the Great War.... is not just history; is the "HISTORY" of a person, with his fears, his anger and sorrow for the loss of friends and companions. As an example, my grandfather was very angry with the "imboscati" ("imboscati" were those who were hidden during the First World War not to be enrolled...). In a letter received, he tells of his acquaintances, that they were angry because they could not find a home for the holidays.... holidays... while my grandfather was in the forefront....

In another letter he tells how he could shoot two Austrian soldiers from behind a rock .... they were intent on urinating ... but my grandfather did not succeed, because he thought that those two boys, had a family at home waiting for them, just like him. There are many small "paintings" of the life of a soldier, some funny, others less, but they are much less sterile of "history" itself.

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#5

I love all your "takes" on Joe's letter. That's basically what I reiterated to him, when I sent a response this morning.

 

I told him how important is was to have another personal account on our website. It really makes the war REAL. It's not just dates and events.

 

I can't imagine all the emotions going through his head, as he wrote that letter and created that poem, to send home to his parents.

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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