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The Betty H. Carter Women Veterans Historical Project

Letter from Dorothy Avery to Finnigan, Jan. 1944

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Object ID: WV0204.4.016

Description: Avery, probably responding to the Battle of Bulge, writes of her excitement over the possibility that the war will soon be over. She describes what it will be like to become re-accustomed to civilian life for herself and servicemen.

Creator: Dorothy Avery

Biographical Info: Dorothy Avery (1917-1999) was a pilot in the WASPs (Women Airforce Service Pilots) from 1943-1944, then worked as an inspector for Navy-Lockheed Service Center.

Collection: Dorothy Avery Papers

Rights: It is responsibility of the user to follow the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Materials are not to be reproduced in published works without written consent, and any use should credit Jackson Library, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Full Text: Hello Finny

Gee it was mighty nice to hear from you; and such a good letter too.

Gosh it was swell that Nelson got home on Furlough and you had such a swell time. Hope and pray everything was alright and you got back to normal-

With all this grand news I imagine everything will be changed and maybe Nels won't get back overseas I doubt it very much don't you.

My brother got as far as Hawaii and I am sure he won't go further. Jeepers what piece of luck. Maybe he'll be back very soon and out of the Army. Gosh I hope so. It hardly seems real but I hope its true, though I suppose we are jumping the gun a bit. I know it will be tuff [sic] for a while too, but at least all the boys will be coming home

There'll be no more dead or injured to report and so many, many families will breath [sic] free again. Though it will be little compensation for all that have lost so much, I know they too will be happy it is all, allmost [sic] over with.

The reconversion of materials and Service men to civilian life will take time and patience, especially the service men; and especially and almost invariably amount of patience. Sure glad we got out when we did and at times it has been Hell and I do mean Hell, but I think I have conquered it and if I have enough guts and stamina I will make the grade. I just have too thats [sic] all.

I guess you and many civilians will wonder what "it" is. I guess some servicemen are changed by it to. The longing to be free. (This is a pilots version) So used to Army life civilians scare you - there [sic] lack of understanding how a person feels to see men killed and die as if routine just like Army life is routine. To move from post to post-- Air base to Air base-- Barracks life-- To romp in the wild blue yonder - so unattached to life and living, cause the next minute you may die. But for now you are free of people, Society, civilization, you live and want to live every minute that you breath [sic]; with every breath.

So for a lot, so many; it is going to be hard to get back to earth again. For many it will be heaven to get back. For me-- give me those wide open spaces. Don't fence me in-- But then that's what makes the world go around-- Good steady people like you - and people like me - dreamer, and uncorraled [sic] energies & ambitious.

Resigned my fate as I am though; I may reach that star. Wanta bet.

Things are pretty much the same here. Have some good deals cooking - (if). Oh that word.

Yes you should get out and travel a bit yourself-- Definitely and your first trip will be to see me - wherever & if ever I alight in one place-- How about that. Its a deal. I'm in favor of said revolution.

Yes this state really does have many scenic values and all very interesting with the added attraction of beautiful country side & mts. But don't get me wrong, I'll take Calif any day. We have had light thunder showers ever since I arrived every day; and many not so light but cloudburst proportions-- Wow-- I excuse you because of your vacation - But of course - However lets make those letters a little closer this time. OK. OK.

over & out

Always Dottie