Interesting Letter from Cpl. Jack Mayda(sp?) Tells of Italy
Nisqually Valley News March 23, 1944
Following is a letter written by Cpl. Jack Mayda of the Army Medical Corps, who has been stationed in Italy for some time. It tells about things that will interest you. Jack has written about hi trip to the Holy Land that will be very illuminating and we hope to have it at a later date. Here is the letter of January 19th.
Dear Mom and Joe,
Haven’t written for a week or so because we’ve been buy tearing down our winter camps and moving. We’ve been set up for a few days now at our new landing ground, but the last three days I’ve been too sick to write or do anything also. My stomach sorta went hay wire for a while, but I’m good as ever now.
Our new field is really something. You wouldn’t believe that I’ll be hobnobbing with a real Baron, would you? Well I am-the whole squadron is set up on his estate. We are using his mansion for offices and quarters and we have our dispensary in his Chapel. He didn’t like having a dispensary in his Chapel at first, but we convinced him that we could move more bodies there than he could (unreadable) so he quit arguing-well he quit after we hinted that he wouldn’t have been a Baron if he had not been a good Fascist, and that we frowned on Fascism. It’s funny how agreeable thee Italians become when you call them Fascists.
But a Baron is a little different from the ordinary Italians. He has a pair of real boots-doesn’t go barefoot-and a coat of arms. Most Italians are minus both items. Then his clothing is as good as that worn by the owner of a profitable spaghetti joint in the United States. He looks exactly how a Baron should look, now that cast iron suits are out of fashion-he’s medium height, chunky, red faced, and wears a Hitler style mustache which will be out of fashion soon. He has a nose that looks like W. C. Fields on a cold morning, which shows he uses his high position to indulge in his love of good food and extensive liquor. The old boy is on the ball though. Every morning he looks over his estate and count his beautiful peacocks as they roam through our camp-or his yard-because he is afraid some of them are
liable to find their way into some hungry GI’s mess kit. It is likely at that.
One of the Baron’s barns is our mess hall. It a stone building that was minus a roof, so we stretched netting over the top of it. Shoveled out six inches of dirt from the floor and moved the kitchen into it.
Of course wind storm came up and blew off our roof-but it’s up again for a while. One thing is certain though and that is the fact that three inch thick walls will not blow over, and they keep the wind off of us, which is better that than we ever had before.
Guess you heard about the big invasion – caught Jerry with his pants down-which should win the war sooner.
Jack said hello to everybody in Yelm and keep buying bonds.