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Sunday, April 9, 2017

Eniwetok


Misdated 1944
Lieut. Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Monday 23 July 1944, 7:15 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Hello Sweetheart, how are you today. This has been one hot day and I found it was just as cool working on patients as trying to find a cool place on this ship. There just wasn't any.
     I showered at 5 PM, censored some mail and dressed for dinner. Just as we went to eat a cool brisk breeze came up and it's been blowing ever since. I hope it continues for things have cooled down considerably already.
We just finished our cribbage game and now here I am. The mail brought me four letters from you and one each from Deb and your mother. Now here goes.
     I think I've told you before about Eniwetok but anyway here goes. We stopped there on the way from Pearl to Ulithi but we were only there two days. Fortunately I was able to get ashore and look around. Many didn't get off. The atoll is similar to Ulithi but the scar of war is indelibly marked on the islands. All that remains of many coconut palms are blackened, charred stumps. Bomb and shell holes are all over the island. The water is crystal clear and one could see to depths up to twenty feet. However the bottom was not a sight of beauty. There were sunken boats, fragments of uniforms and remains of soldiers. Not a pretty sight to behold. Because of the lack of trees and shade the place was hot and dusty. I'm glad we didn't have to stay there long.
     Your descriptions of the house sound nice and I can't wait to get home to see it and for other reasons too.
     I had trouble making out Nina's letter but it does look like she appreciates him more after the separation. It doesn't sound like she likes the WACs either. Guess all in all being with her husband was a great improvement to what she's been putting up with.
     Getting your vacation straightened out certainly has been a problem. I know how you must feel about it all. I'm surprised you didn't tell them to forget about it all. It wasn't nice after asking you to so obviously indicate that they preferred not having you with them.
     I'm glad you are going to the Bowl and enjoying the programs. It's just another thing to take up you time till I get there. Then you won't have time for anything but me and not enough of that.
     Your ideas about a coat sound OK. Go ahead. When I get back we'll see about a fur coat.
     It would be a crime if Dick is released. What he needs is some real discipline and some hard work. Genius my eye. He is nothing but a selfish spoiled brat with no sense of obligation, loyalty, or honor. I'd just as soon not hear anymore about it.
     Our movie tonight is "Salty O'Rourke" with Alan Ladd and Gail Russell.
     No more for now so I'll say goodnight. So long Darling I'll be with you again soon.
Love
Gil

Eniwetok
Chared Stumps and Bomb Holes