Mena Weekly Star - Thursday, June 8, 1944
"Polk County Boys & Girls Serving the U.S.A."
Floyd T. SANFORD (Photo)
Mrs. E. H. Sanford, a reader of The Star, who now lives in San Diego, Calif., has two sons in the armed forces, both in the Navy. Floyd T. Sanford, whose picture is printed here, was born at Wickes in 1925, and finished at Wickes high school in 1941. He went into service in July, 1943, overseas in November of that year. When last heard from he was in Australia. The other son is William I. Sanford, who is at the Naval school at Norman, Oklahoma.
Communiqué From Sgt. Lindsey GRIFFITHS
Somewhere in Italy - May 4, 1944
Just a few lines to let you know that all the Polk county boys here with me are O.K. I looked up another Polk county boy, Lt. Harry RABB, a few days ago and found him O.K. Lt. RABB is one of the several Btry. D. men who has become an officer.
We played a part in the battle of Cassino and most of the men got a good view of the bombing, but they had no time to watch the artillery shell the town for they were busy in their part of the shelling. After you have seen the town and surrounding country, one can easily see why there was a very hard battle.
Another rare sight that some of the boys saw was the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.
The Italians are busy at the present time engaged in farming. All the farms are very small and have no fences. The cattle are herded by young boys, who keep them from getting into the crops. The Italian women in this part of Italy wear very colorful costumes. Red seems to be the favorite color. The boys hang around the small creeks when not on duty and watch the women wash clothes. They get the clothes very clean without soap or a rub board. A Rock is used for a rub board. Even on the coldest days the women were in the creeks barefoot. Most of the women here go barefoot, but wear heavy stockings with the feet out. There is some flax grown here and the women spin it by hand and make some very nice linen. Oxen are used for plowing and burros for riding in this part of Italy. The women sem to do most of the work in the fields here. I don't know what the men do, but it is a rare occasion of you see one working. In this part of Italy are a number of Italian men who once lived in the U. S. and can speak some English and all want to go back when the war is over.
Some of the boys buy fresh eggs at 25 cents apiece. But we got fresh eggs in our rations the other day, and they were really good.
We now get Coca Cola's about once a week. The Red Cross girls get around to bring up doughnuts every now and then. We also get candy bars every week, which is a treat after so much of the hard candies.
The cold weather is over and the Italians say that the rains are over. I hope they are right.
I had a chance to see Irving Berlin's show, "This Is The Army." It was a real show. I believe the audience would have kept Irving Berlin on the stage all night if it had been able to. He introduced a new song written for the Fifth Army, and it really went over big. He also sang the song he wrote in the last war.
Well, so long until a later date,
S/Sgt. Lindsey GRIFFITHS, FA
Mrs. Bonnie ANGLIN, who was in Mena the first of the week, is the wife of Pvt. W. M. ANGLIN, stationed with the U. S. Army at Fort McClellan, Ala. Mrs. Anglin and her five children live at Page, Okla., and the mother's trip to Mena was necessitated by her need of medical service.
BELL - GATELY
Mrs. L. G. BELL and granddaughter, Marie Ann GATELY, have gone to Okmulgee, Okla., to be with B. Frank BELL, while his wife is away on a trip to Annapolis, Md., to attend the graduation of her son Lloyd F. BELL at the Naval Academy.
Lt. Col. J. E. BISHOP, who had been back in the home town visiting relatives and friends during the past week, left Thursday morning for his new station at Fort Benning, Ga.
Mrs. Rebecca BROOKS, of Ink, was in Mena May 31, and began her train trip to Camp Peary, Ia. where she'll rejoin her husband, J. C. BROOKS of the U. S. Navy. This bluejacket formerly lived on Mountain Fork in Polk County, but volunteered for service with the Seabees while employed as a fireman on the MK&T, out at Parsons, Kans.
Lt. Paul BROWN, who serves with a Bombing Squadron, was located somewhere in China, when a letter written in May reached the parental home at Cove, had been in China before the world war begun. The young officer is finding it interesting to revisit some of the places in China he had seen in former years. He's a son of Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Brown.
BUCKLEY - WARNER
Miss Mildred WARNER, who had been visiting at Forrester, Ark., was in Mena en route to Alexandria, Ga., and from there planned on going to Fort Sill, Okla., for a visit with Pfc. Phillip BUCKLEY, of the Field Artillery.
BURNS - BERRY
It isn't often that a non-commissioned serviceman can give orders to one with a higher rank and get away with it, but it can be done as Cpl. Bob BURNS proved through a happening of June 2nd. Cpl. BURNS, the former schoolmaster at Cherry Hill, is with the Medical Corps at Camp Edwards, Mass., and wanted to make sure certain information he desired Mrs. Burns to have would reach her. Which resulted in the Western Union message he filed at Camp Edwards came to "Col." Bob BERRY in Mena with instructions to deliver to the party addressed. Difference in rank was forgotten and the message from the corporal was delivered by the colonel to Mrs. Burns soon after it reached Mena Friday morning. Mrs. Burns is planning on going east soon and join her husband in Massachusetts.
Sgt. Erlton BURRIS and wife, who arrived in Mena Saturday for a visit with his parents. Mr. and Mrs. E. H. BURRIS, had come from Camp Campbell, Ky., for their stay in the Ouachitas.
Mrs. Alma Carpenter and son, Claude, left Mena Friday en route to Coffeyville, Kans. where they expect to be met by S/Sgt. Kenneth L. CARPENTER, who is with the flying forces and stationed at Strother Army Air-Field near Coffeyville.
Mrs. R. C. CEARLEY and two young sons, who are now in Mena, are hopeful of having a visit soon from husband and father, Pvt. R. C. Cearley, who is stationed at Camp Hood, Tex., with the U. S. Army.
Mrs. Helen May CLIFT has gone to San Francisco, Calif., for a visit with her husband, Pvt. Ernest Clift, of the Army Air Corps, before he begins overseas service.
Marquis Coffman of the Navy Air Corps has come from San Francisco, Calif., for his first visit home since the war got well started. One reason for not making home visits sooner is that for the past 20 months he's been stationed somewhere in the New Hebrides Islands where he helps keep 'em flying through his service as aviation chief machinist mate. The young navy man is a son of W. O. (Bill) COFFMAN.
Pvt. Euell E. CRAWFORD of Hatfield Star Route, is somewhere in England with a Railway Shop unit which keeps locomotives in repair and ready to go, according to advice received by The Star from the Headquarters, European Theater of Operations.
Sgt. Dalton CURETON, better known in his home community at Cove as "Buck," went overseas as Cpl. CURETON but has been promoted. He is believed to be in India, possibly on the Burma road. His latest letter home contains one main complaint, the Weekly Stars don't get to his mail box soon enough and not as regularly as he would like.
Cpl. Aaron CUSHER is now somewhere in England and awaiting D-Day. This young Choctaw is with the U. S. Infantry, and according to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Pete CUSHER of Smithville, who were in Mena Saturday, is finding military life helpful in increasing his weight. Cpl. Cusher reported in a recent letter to his parents he weighed 200 pounds."
After a period of several weeks during which they had received no word from their son in Italy, Mr. and Mrs. Frank DUSENBURY received a message via Western Union Friday from Capt. R. L. DUSENBURY, which indicated he was OK. "All well and safe" the message read, "my thoughts are with you. All my love." Capt. DUSENBURY is with an Army engineers division which bridged the Volturno river preparatory to the recent allied offensive there toward Rome.
Pvt. Winston FOSTER of Camp Robinson spent Saturday night and Sunday here with his family.
GATELY - BELL - SULLIVAN
Mrs. Hugh GATELY has received announcement of the graduation of her nephew, Lloyd F. BELL from the Naval Academy at Annappolis, Md., which was an event of June 7. The young ensign is a real Polk county boy, having been born here when his parents lived in Posey Hollow. Following his graduation, the newly made naval officer will be married to Miss Mary SULLIVAN.
GELLEIN - HARSHMAN
Two young officers of the U. S. Navy were in Mena the final days of May, while making a change in location from Hollywood, Fla., to Shawnee, Okla. Lt. (jg) O. S. GELLEIN routed the journey this way because he was bringing his wife, the former Nettie Belle HARSHMAN and their baby daughter, Linda Sue, to Grandmother HARSHMAN's home on Hickory avenue, to remain until he got settled int he new quarters at Shawnee. Accompanying the Gellein's was Lt. (jg) Hugh ESPEY and wife, who were making a first trip to the Ouachitas and traveled on after making an overnight stop.
Flight Officer Robert H. GEYER, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. P. GEYER, is now at Yale University, New Haven, Conn., taking a short course in connection with his work. When the course is completed he expects to return to Mac Del Field, Tampa, Fla.
The War Department in announcing a list of temporary promotions this week included the name of a Mena young man, Edwin Leon GIBSON, who has been advanced from second to first lieutenant in the tank corps. He is a son of Mr. and Mrs. C. C. Gibson.
George C. GOODWIN, of Hatfield, has been promoted from Private to Private 1/c. He is now somewhere in the European theater of operations.
. . . . . WASHINGTON, June 3. ---(U.P.)---(Paper torn; some words missing.)War Department has announced the names of 857 United . . . . soldiers missing in action in the Asiatic, Central Pacific, European, Mediterranean and Southwest Pacific areas. The list includes as missing in action in . . . . Mediterranean area, 2nd Lt. Go .. L. GRAHAM, son of Mrs. Lela Graham of Mt. Ida, Ark.
Pvt. L. E. GWALTNEY came over from Camp Robinson Saturday evening for a visit with his family here and returned to camp Sunday night.
A-C Thomas H. HAAS, son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Haas of Mena, is now at Corsicana Field, at Corsicana, Texas, for primary flight training. He had previously been sent to the San Antonioa Aviation Cadet Center.
Pfc. Robert HAIRGROVE, stationed at Camp Robinson, Ark., had as his guest over the week-end a sister, Mrs. Letha GLICK of Lincoln, Neb., who was visiting in Mena. The young soldier heard of her presence in Mena and used the long distance phone in letting her know he couldn't come home but would like to have her come to Camp Robinson, which she did.
Pfc. George HEATH, with the Medical Corps somewhere in Alaska, hasn't been home since the present war began, which is one reason why his mother in Mena is hoping he'll get leave soon and come back to Polk county.
Mrs. J. B. HENDRICKS of Board Camp has received the official report from the War Department announcing that her son, Sgt. Curtis HENDRICKS had been wounded in action as of May 12, somewhere in Italy. Mrs. Hendricks got this report on June 5 and understands that the injury suffered by the soldier is of serious nature. Sgt. Curtis is a nephew of Mr. S. M. CUNNINGHAM of Mena.
Mrs. R. R. HICKS was pleased to learn recently that her son, Glenn HICKS of the U. S. Navy, who had been in the British West Indies, has been moved back to the USA and will be stationed Pensacola, Fla., as an instructor for other bluejackets.
Cpl. Oral HOLLAND, who had come from Fort Bliss, Tex., where he's stationed with an Artillery regiment, was in Mena Sunday en route to his command after having been at Ink for a home visit
Two young soldiers who are brothers and members of one of Polk county's pioneer families are many thousands of miles away from the old home at Cherry Hill, yet they want the Mena Star sent them, and their mother, Mrs. Chris HOOVER is arranging to have the wish of her soldier sons gratified. S-Sgt. James C. HOOVER will read his Stars in New Guinea. He recently had a furlough that permitted a visit to Australia and while he had a "swell trip" reports home he was "glad to be back on the job and be with his boys." Pfc. Doren A. HOOVER, with the Marines, is somewhere in the South Pacific and when he gets a Mena Star it's about "a month old but still good to read." Letters home indicate he likes the country and will likely "get fat if I stay with the Marines." He now weighs 185."
W. G. (Chub) HUNTER is making Norfolk, Va., his official home port while serving in the U. S. Navy, and that's the reason his wife and baby son are living there instead of Mena. Mrs. Hunter's mother and grandfather recently visited her at this eastern location.
Sgt. Ray JOHNSON of Smithville, Okla., who with his recent bride visited the Allen DOVER home Wednesday, has
Cpl. J. N. LACEFIELD, who had been visiting the family home on Tenth street, left Monday to return to his station at Dayton, Ohio. Cpl. Lacefield, known best to local friends as "Peg" was formerly a member of the Mena Howitzer company. He's now with the AAF and stationed at Wright Field, near Dayton.
A-C Quinton LEWIS, son of Mr. and Mrs. C. D. Lewis of Big Fork, has just arrived at the army air forces pilot school, Cochran Field, Macon, Ga.
Pvt. Will MOORE came from his station at Camp Polk, La., for a home visit in Mena, which he started Monday.
. . . . .S/Sgt. A. P. MORGAN, who had been in Mena for a visit with his mother, Mrs. O. B. Morgan, left Saturday to return to his station with the Field Artillery at Camp Howze, Tex.
started back to his station in South Carolina.
Cpl. Paul Roy Ogden, who is stationed at Camp Robinson spent the week-end visiting his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Ogden.
(Paper is torn and some words are missing.) Thomas (?) M. PARKER, son of . . . . Mrs. W. L. Parker of . . . believed to be on his way . . . . as the last letters from . . . . from a military camp on the Atlantic coast, where he had been moved from a former location in Colorado. The young att .ey is with the Medical Corps and assigned to a Field Hospital . . . . . . said to be slated for overseas service.
Pvt. Charles RAINES, son of Mr. and Mrs. Albert RAINES of Mena, who serves as an airplane mechanic with the flying forces, has been moved from Biloxi, Miss., to a Ford plant at Willow Run, Mich., for a special course of instruction that's expected to last six weeks.
PFC Warren RIGGIN, stationed at Indiantown Gap, Pa., with the U. S. Army, was advised Thursday of the serious illness of a sister living in the family home near Board Camp, and is expected to be granted leave to come to Polk County to see her.
Pvt. George L. Shewmake of the U.S. Army, better known to local friends as "Leon" is now somewhere in England and part of the invasion forces. The young soldier born in Mena, completed his first voyage across the Atlantic ocean and wrote his father, Marvin Shewmake of Mena "it was a wonderful trip."
Pvt. John STAFFORD of Camp Robinson, spent the week-end at home.
STANDRIDGE - ROBINSON
T/Cpl. Marcella STANDRIDGE, who arrived in Mena Sunday to visit her mother, Mrs. Bill ROBINSON, had come from her station at Camp Wheeler, Ga.
A report circulated in the home town that Sgt. Jimmy STIPES of the Army Air Forces was "missing in action" must have been based on an error, for the young man's parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Stipes have received a letter from him that indicates he was Okeh. This letter was written May 20, and came from somewhere in Italy and not England. The young Menaite is with the crew that handles one of the B-17's."
Sgt. Delmar S. SUMPTER, formerly stationed at Camp Chaffee, Ark., but more recently at Camp Shelby, Miss., came to Mena Monday for a visit with friends, before going on to Portland, Ore., and possible overseas service.
Ensign Robert V. TAYLOR of the Naval Air Corps, arrived Thursday morning from the Glendale training station near Chicago where he has been receiving advanced training in carrier based planes for the past month. He will have about two weeks to spend here with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. H. TAYLOR and friends before reporting to the Jacksonvile, Fla., station for further advanced flight training.
Walter E. THAMES of the Seabees, who had been visiting relatives and friends in Mena and vicinity, left Monday for his station with the construction fighters at Camp Rousseau, Point Hueneme, Calif.
Pvt. Clover THOMAS, now at home on leave from Fort Bliss, Tex., where he's stationed with the 599th Anti-Aircraft battalion, has already had half a year of overseas service. He was stationed at Kodiat, Alaska, until the last of the Japs were ousted from that area. Pvt. THOMAS lives in Scott county, and had been summoned home because of the critical illness of his octogenarian grandfather, John CLOVER, pioneer resident of the Clear Fork community. As the aged man is near the end of his days, the soldier grandson came to Mena Sunday to wire for an extension of furlough.
Mrs. Daisy THOMPSON returned to Mena May 31 after having been to Camp Rucker, Ala., for a visit with her husband, Pvt. Everet THOMPSON, who was recently transferred there from Camp Robinson, Ark. The former Mena banker is getting a good start in military service, even though it has taken him far away from the Ouachitas, where he's lived most of his life."
T/Cpl. Clyde WEATHERFORD, stationed with the Army Air Corps at Kelly Field, Tex., arrived Sunday for a visit with relatives and friends at Alder Springs and other points in the home county.
S/Sgt. Paul WILLIAMS, who is now at Camp Shelbey, Miss., with a Tank Destroyers division, grew up in Mena and entered the U. S. Army before World War II got started. His mother, Mrs. O. R. HUTTON, who lives on Stilwell Heights, is expecting Sgt. Williams to be making a home visit when her birthday comes this month.
WILLIAMS - MEDFORD
Miss Mary Ann WILLIAMS of Stroudsburg, Pa., who had been in Mena visiting Mr. and Mrs. Ed MEDFORD, left Thursday for her home. She is the sister of Lt. Clarence WILLIAMS of the AAF, who serves as a bombardier, and when last heard fromwas on his way to overseas service.
"Capt. James WOOD and Mrs. Wood, accompanied by Capt. Wood's mother, Mrs. Ellen WOOD, of Rogers, spent Sunday with Mr. and Mrs. Hal NORWOOD. The following relatives of Capt. Wood were also visitors: Lt. Commander Dr. John A. WOOD and Mrs. Wood of Little Rock; Mr. and Mrs. Jack WOOD and daughter, Marion, La.; Mr. and Mrs. Horace ROWTON and daughter, Ashdown; Dr. M. L. NORWOOD, Lockesburg; Mrs. Leonard HAMPSON and Leonard HAMPON, Jr., Lockesburg; J. P. NORWOOD, Mountain Pine; and Mr. and Mrs. Raymond NOWOOD, Little Rock. After spending a short leave with his mother and with Mrs. Wood's parents at Riverton, N.J., Capt. WOOD will return to his station in England.
Lt. Com. WOOD, an uncle of Capt. James Wood, for the past two years has been connected with a hospital in New Zealand. Dr. Wood's father was a citizen of Mena several years when the Lt. Commander was a boy."
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